How to crochet

Published on April 1, 2019 6 min read

Want to learn how to crochet but don’t know where to start? Learning a new craft can seem daunting, especially if you’ve never picked up a hook before - but here at LoveCrochet we think everyone should jump on the crochet train.

We’ve got lots of helpful guides and tutorials to teach you how to crochet, from picking the right tools to step-by-step crochet tutorials. You’ll be hooked in no time!

Crochet tools and equipment for beginners

Before you begin picking your project, let's explore the essential tools and materials you need before you learn your first stitch.

Materials

Crochet hooks

Crochet hooks come in all sizes and materials including metal, plastic and wood. The hooked end is used to pull the working yarn through loops to make stitches which eventually evolve into beautifully textured crocheted fabric.

Every crocheter has different preferences when it comes to choosing a hook; some people prefer metal, while others like the warmth of a wooden crochet hook. Soft grip plastic hooks are gentle on sore hands or for those who suffer with arthritis.

Before you decide, check out our crochet hook buying guide which is packed with everything you need to know about types of hook, and how to choose the the right one for you!

Explore Our Crochet Hook Buying Guide

Shop crochet hooks for beginners

Crochet yarn

Once you’ve chosen your crochet hook, you’re ready to explore the wonderful world of yarn.

Yarn comes in a whole range of different weights, fiber blends and shades. Different yarns work better for certain crochet projects, for instance, bulky weight wool is brilliant for deliciously cozy scarves and blankets, while lighter weights are better for intricate shawls and wraps.

Blend or pop? While stitches can make a statement, most crocheters would agree that color often takes centre stage when it comes to this craft. From demure muted palettes to juicy shades and sorbet tones. Crochet is a fantastic way to explore and experiment with color with the thousands of shades available.

Learn More With Our Yarn Buying Guide

Accessories

As you advance onto more difficult projects, there are plenty of tools and accessories, such as stitch markers and pom-pom makers, to discover as you take your crafting skills to new heights. You’ll be ready to explore different styles of crochet with other hooks too, such as Tunisian crochet and Knooking! But first, back to the how to crochet basics.

Crochet stitches for beginners

So you’ve shopped for crochet hooks, found that perfect ball of yarn, now you’re ready to create your first crochet stitch. We’ve got plenty of step-by-step guides and learning to crochet videos, from the single crochet stitch, all the way up to more complicated increases, decreases and cable-effect stitches. But let's get started with the basics!

The chain

The most basic crochet skill you need to master is the chain. The chain is the foundation of most crochet projects, as you start with a row of chains and then work your stitches into them. Usually the pattern you are working on will tell you how many chains you need. Here we'll talk you through the basic steps.

1

First, tie a knot. Make a slip knot, leaving a 10cm tail of yarn.

2

Yarn over. Wrap the yarn over your crochet hook.

3

Pull through. Catch the yarn with your hook, and pull it through the existing loop.

The slip stitch

The slip stitch has lots of different functions, from joining rounds when you’re crocheting in the round (think warm hats, snuggly socks and funky bags) to finishing off your work at the end of the project.

1

Insert hook. Insert your hook into the next stitch.

2

Yarn over. Wrap the yarn over the hook, then pull through the stitch. You should have two loops on your hook.

3

Pull through loop. Pull your hook through the first loop. That’s it!

The single crochet stitch

Mastered the chain stitch and the slip stitch? You’re ready to learn the single crochet stitch (sc), known in the UK as a double crochet stitch. The single crochet is the grandfather of crochet stitches, producing tightly woven, dense fabric that can be used to make anything from simple scarves and cowls to home accessories and sweaters.

1

Insert hook. Insert your crochet hook into the next stitch.

2

Yarn over, and pull through. Wrap the yarn over the hook, and pull through. You should have two loops on your hook.

3

Yarn over again, and complete. Yarn over again, then pull through both loops on the hook.

Explore More Crochet Stitches

Crochet stitch abbreviations

You’ve got your crochet hook and yarn and you’ve practised the basic crochet stitches - you’re ready to start a whole project.

If you’ve never seen a pattern before, don't worry, we're here to guide you through. Although, on first glance the directions in a pattern might look cryptic with so many letters and numbers, once you know what the abbreviations stand for you'll be on your way.

Here are some of the most common crochet abbreviations and terms you might encounter in your crochet pattern:

  • Ch chain
  • Ss slip stitch
  • Sc single crochet
  • Hdc half double crochet
  • Dc double crochet
  • Tr treble crochet
  • Dtr double treble crochet

It's also important to remember that American and British crochet terminology are different, so it's always important to check which one the designer is using. If you're unsure take a look at our handy conversion table.

Beginner crochet projects

We’ve got a whole collection of beautiful beginner crochet patterns for you to try. Whether it's a chic scarf or vibrant mandala bag, you'll be amazed how easy it is to craft beautiful projects with a few basic stitches. We've rounded up some of our most loved easy projects for you to explore.

How to crochet a scarf

A classic scarf the perfect pattern for beginners with no tricky increases or decreases. Our super chunky scarf uses thick bulky yarn, which works up gloriously quick for snuggly yet stylish results!

How to crochet a circle

Flat circles pop up everywhere in crochet patterns, from bag bases and hats to rugs, blankets and coasters. Learning how to whip up the perfect circle is a valuable crochet skill. Follow this step-by-step circle video tutorial, and you'll be crocheting in the round in no time!

How to crochet a beanie

Our crochet beanie pattern is a wonderful introduction to both crocheting in the round and working increase stitches - so you learn two new crochet skills at once! Once you've gotten the hang of making this gorgeous beanie, you can learn how to change yarn colours, whipping up some jazzy stripy beanies and bobble hats!

How to crochet a hat

Once you've mastered the art of whipping up a simple beanie, get the creative juices flowing with our collection of free crochet hat patterns. Slouchy crochet berets, chunky cabled bobble hats, pretty cloches and even bun beanies - there's something for everyone!

Shop All Free Crochet Hat Patterns

How to crochet a blanket

Crochet blankets are super fun to make, and they're great for practising new skills and mastering different crochet stitches. Our selection of free crochet blanket patterns has something for everyone. From simple row repeat blankets for absolute beginners, to more advanced crocheted blankets with cables, bobbles and bright colorwork for the more experienced crocheters.

Shop All Free Crochet Blanket Patterns

How to crochet a granny square

The iconic granny square is a must! Worked into large blankets, patchwork throws and even statement sweaters and cardigans, the crochet granny square is one of the most versatile, not to mention mesmerizing, techniques in the stitch-esphere. Learn how to make your own - step-by-step in our helpful beginners video.

How to crochet a mandala bag

Whether you're heading to the beach or shops, nothing beats a beautiful crocheted bag to carry all your essentials. From eco-friendly market bags, large totes, funky backpacks, straw beach bags - the possibilities are endless. Our mandala bag pattern is a fabulous way to get started crocheting your first bag. Customize using your favorite summer shades for a personal twist!

Vanna Mandala Tote
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Vanna Mandala Tote

By Moogly

Beginners crochet patterns to try

Discover More Beginner Crochet Patterns

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