How to get better at crochet

(19 Posts)
PastaandCheese Sun 11-May-14 08:41:38

My Nan taught me to crochet and I've recently taken it up again to make squares for Woolly Hugs. I'm much faster at crochet than knitting which says more about my knitting than my crochet!

So far I can only make a granny square and a granny stripe.

How do I get better? I'd like to be able to make flowers and more detailed squares but I don't know where to start.

Are there any books you'd recommend?

drinkyourmilk Sun 11-May-14 08:44:37

I learnt using you tube videos. I just stopped and rewound a million times until I could copy them. I had my book of stitches on hand to translate US to UK terms.
I'm learning to follow patterns now.

Pinkandpurplehairedlady Sun 11-May-14 08:47:18

I learnt using patterns on Ravelry. Once you've got the hang of pattern reading its just a case of practise.

drinkyourmilk Sun 11-May-14 08:49:19

Can you get to a library? I picked up loads of books there. I just keep trying.
There are some lovely groups on Facebook- creative crochet crew, Crochet addict, granny square crochet.

DotToDott Sun 11-May-14 08:49:33

i used the happy hooker book.

very clear instructions and diagrams for lots of stitches which then allow you to make hearts, flowers, circles, cables etc.

i cannot stand learning anything via video.

PastaandCheese Sun 11-May-14 08:56:51

I think the nub of it is learning to read a pattern. I can do the individual stitches and know what they are called but I am stumped after that.

I will check out the library for the Happy Hooker and similar.

I found YouTube good for reminding me how to do the stitches initially so will see what is on there for slightly more complicated patterns.

PolterGoose Sun 11-May-14 11:17:51

I can't learn with videos at all. Attic24 has taught me the most, and then just pootling around with some nice yarn and a hook trying out patterns from my ever growing pile of crochet books.

Happy Hooker is American so you'll need to remember that for stitches, I've stuck to UK terms patterns to keep it easy. Most crochet books have a basic guide to stitches.

Lonecatwithkitten Sun 11-May-14 19:43:33

Attic 24 and Simply Crochet magazine have been my learning ground, then more and more practice.

PookBob Sun 11-May-14 19:48:01

To get myself comfortable with all the stitches I made a scarf that was alternate rows DC, HTR, TR, DTR, TR, HTR, DC, which looked ace.

Once I finished that, nothing really scared me and I had a go at any fancy pattern I found.

I can't work from videos either, Attic24 has helped me a lot too, also a couple of the Nicki Trench books.

I've just bought this flowers and can't wait to try a few, I'm hoping to try the knitted ones as well, although I haven't knitted for years.

PookBob Sun 11-May-14 19:49:46

That's a very good book

Lonecatwithkitten Sun 11-May-14 19:51:56

Oh that book is one my wish list.

The Happy Hooker book is really good as the pictures are really clear but worth noting that it uses the American terms.

The Attic 24 blog is also really clear about where to put your hook.

PastaandCheese Mon 12-May-14 06:22:27

See I can actually knit and can follow a knitting pattern but I hold the wool incorrectly which is deeply ingrained bad habit now and means I am terribly slow as a have the twist the wool round the hook by gripping it in my hand each time.

Being a returning hooker I've mastered holding the wool correctly so I'm much quicker.

Off to library tomorrow to see what they have for me to browse through.

Don't know HTR or DTR so need to learn those stitches.......

Attic24, little tin bird and crochet crowd with a little input from the lady at my local pottery place taught me to hook earlier this year.

MiaowTheCat Mon 12-May-14 13:34:49

Flowers are easy - Attic 24 has a fair few different ones on there. Moogly also has some great video tutorials on there - and the crochet along squares thing going on - but they're quite complex patterns - I've looked at a few of them and wimped out!

I've got a lot of different square books (I'm rather fond of square based crochet for various reasons - I don't have the concentration span to manage larger bits of work at the moment - plus with two toddlers, if they get hold of a small square of crochet it's only an hour's work lost compared to hours and hours if they unravel something worked in rows).

Depending on if you're good working with US terms or not (I don't find them hard to work between) - I'm loving one called "the granny square book" and another (this one's UK terms) called "100 bright & colourful granny squares to mix & match / Leonie Morgan."

I also have the Edie Eckmann "Beyond the Square" book I've done quite a lot from... and the Jan Eaton one - but I have more problems with patterns not working out from that one than any of the others.

I find if I come across a stitch that I haven't done before google usually does the trick.

Or if you're wanting a bit of very hand-held variety... what about the as-you-go blanket (I was doing it as a cushion cover but I always fuck up and lose stitches at the end of rows and it became distinctly triangular)
notyouraveragecrochet.com/as-we-go-stripey-blanket/

Half treble... work as a treble but instead of pulling through two loops and then two loops again... pull through the lot in one go.

Double treble... work as a treble but instead of winding the yarn around the hook once - wind it twice and then you do through two loops > through two loops > through two loops.... extend this line of logic for a treble-treble you might come across occasionally! Once you've got the tension and muscle-memory of twirling a hook around down right - there really isn't that much variety in terms of what stitches you have to learn (and like I say - I just hit up google if I'm stuck on one).

Oh and the Aldi random crap aisle (you know the one I mean if you've ever been in there - one week they'll be flogging chainsaws and the next - baby potties) often has crochet books lurking in there!

PastaandCheese Mon 12-May-14 13:53:04

That blanket pattern is perfect for practising different skills! Thank you.

Like Pookbob's scarf suggestion but I'd like to make something for DS's room I think.

This is why I like crochet..... Mistakes are immediately obvious and easily corrected so you can dive into something like the blanket. Knitting is a pain to practice because it takes a few rows of work before you can assess how you're getting on!

Kniternator Tue 13-May-14 08:04:32

I started doing a CAL (Crochet along), each week we had a different square which used different techniques. It was really helpful. Have a look online as there are a few out there.

YeGodsAndLittleFishes Tue 13-May-14 08:20:55

That blanket is stunning!

I started with that flowers book, making granny squares, then made some ripple blankets.

Find a new stitch you like the look of and make a blanket or scarf using it, then you'll remember that stitich. Look up the brit/uk shorthand for it and the videos of how it's done and how it looks in a pattern.

Next I bought a couple of books of square patterns for woolly hug ideas, and just experimented a bit.

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