Crochet is not difficult…in fact it is one of the most easiest of crafts to learn and one of the most comforting. A great stress buster and unlike many other crafts doesn’t need much equipment….one hook and a ball of yarn ….and you are all set to go!
Crochet is very flexible and forgiving in that, one or 2 stitches missed or added doesn’t really matter in most patterns. You can do crochet almost anywhere and should you make a mistake it isn’t difficult to rip it off and start all over again…..
Crochet stitches aren’t complicated….once you learn the basic chain and double crochet ….you just build on that… Here we will, be learning the eight basic stitches on which most of crochet is based on.
We will be learning the,
1. The Basic Knot
2. The Chain Stitch – ch(Abbreviation)
3.Slip Stitch – ss((Abbreviation)
4.Single Crochet – sc(Abbreviation)
5. Half double Crochet – hdc(Abbreviation)
6. Double Crochet – dc(Abbreviation)
7.Treble Crochet or Triple Crochet – tr(Abbreviation)
8. Double Treble – dtr(Abbreviation)
Crochet Symbols and Abbreviations :
Each stitch with the exception of the basic knot is represented by a symbol. You should know these symbols and abbreviations by heart since these are your building tools in reading crochet patterns.
How to hold a crochet hook while crocheting:
Hold your Crochet hook between ur fore finger, middle finger and thumb gripping the hook at it’s flattest surface. Do not hold the hook too tight or too loose….just firm enough for it to work for you. The main thing is to be relaxed.
How to hold the yarn while crocheting:
There are many ways to hold yarn while crocheting. This is the way I hold yarn while making the basic knot and it works for me.
Google as many ways as you can find and choose the way you think works for you. Hold the open end of your palm in front of you facing you. Place the tail end of the yarn over the palm and wrap that end over ur fore finger.
Then bring the tail end of the yarn over the other three fingers and grip the tail end between your ring finger, little finger and thumb. Hold it firmly….not too tight or too loose. This is where you get the yarn tension right.
What is Yarn Tension?
Yarn tension is how tight or how loose you crochet and it differs from person to person. It is better to hold your yarn just right so that all your stitches are even. Don’t worry if you can’t do it right the first few times…this comes with practice. Stick to it and you will master it soon enough.
Don’t compare your pace with anybody else’s. Each person is different and mastering a crochet stitch fast or slow doesn’t make or break you…You are, and will always be that special edition that God created with love.
1. Basic knot: The basic knot is the first knot you make to build that foundation chain. It is easy to do…..but needs a bit of practice. Push your hook under the yarn which is held between your fore finger and your middle finger.
Lift the hook up so that it brings the yarn over(yo) it up as well. Yarn over is an important tern used in crochet. It amply means to wrap the yarn over the hook. And the abbreviation used is (yo).
Now twist the hook around along with the yarn to 360 degree circle so that a loop is formed.
Then yarn over and hook in the yarn through the loop .
Chain stitch forms the foundation to most crochet projects. Again hold your yarn taut….but not too tight or loose. Push the hook under the yarn ..Yarn over. Hook the yarn.
Pull the yarn with the hook thru the basic knot….
And your first chain is formed.
Push, yarn over, Pull thru the previous chain…..
A string of chains…… .
How to make a Slip Stitch(ss) :
Slip Stitches are used to join pieces of crochet together, to end a project, to make the rim of a bag, basket etc, to shape a neckline, arm hole, or any thing really. It is a very versatile tool to have in your crochet kitty.
Slip Stitch is done by increasing the loops on your hook by two and then pulling the yarn through both the loops thus decreasing loop on the hook back to one.
Pull the yarn through both the loops ….now you have just one loop on the hook
That’s it slip stitch…..and you now have a crochet ring.
This is a video tutorial that I made…it’s a very rough version…cos it’s the first time I have done anything like this….I need to edit this….but have yet to learn that….I will be doing so once I climb that mountain.
This can also be used as a base to make a crochet circle. That’s your 3 stitches for now….Practice these well…until you get a string of even chains.
My next post will be on 3 other stitches…..Single Crochet, Half double crochet and Double Crochet .
Last time I made that post on cotton Yarn/thread…..Among the many comments that I got, there were a few queries on the title of that post – ‘Yarn Gyan’.
My readers, tell me …we know what yarn is ….but what is Gyan? Gyan, means knowledge, know how, etc……..:-D!!!
Wool is one of the most commonly used materials to crochet…..considering that this art form emerged from the west..France to be precise….that comes as no surprise. In the West, they have made an art form of producing wool yarn in zillions of avatars…that wading through them is, though a delicious and delightful proposition….. also very confusing to most crocheters.
Yarn here comes in a multitude of hues, shades, colours, thickness and texture. I will broadly classify here what I know of wool as yarn….for Beginners. Once you master these very basic facts….You need to take that journey of discovery alone….because believe me, when I tell you that ….experimenting, with different fibres and hooks may not add pretty projects to your crochet resume in the speed that you wish…cos you will make time consuming mistakes…but the experience you gain is tremendous.
What is Yarn Weight?
Yarn Weight refers to the thickness of yarn used by Crocheters, Knitters, Weavers and other fibre artists.
Broadly wool yarn can be divided into 6 categories.
1. Super Fine:
This is also known as fingering yarn. It is a very light weight yarn.eg: Merino wool.
The UK/ Australia follow a system…..where yarn is differentiated by ply.
It is represented by the emblem below, by the Craft Yarn Council of America in the USA.
So if, super fine is 1 in the USA….it is known as 3ply/4 ply in the UK/Australia
Recommended Hook Sizes:
Size will be B1 to E4( USA) or 2.25mm – 3.5mm(Metric)
Gauge for a 4″x4″ swatch will be between 21 stitches to 32 stitches across.
Crochet/ knit socks, baby wear and other lacey items.
2. Fine or Sport yarn:
This is fine sport weight yarn.
Known as 5ply in UK/AUS
In the USA…it is represented by the emblem below…and is seen on the yarn label.
In the USA…it is represented by the emblem below…and is seen on the yarn label.
Gauge: For a 4″x 4″ swatch, it would work up between 8 – 11 stitches across Used: Used to hook unique hats, scarves and is good to decorate as well.
6. Super Bulky Weight Yarn:
A very Heavy Yarn, about twice as thick as worsted weight.
UK/USA equivalent to 14 ply.
In the USA…it is represented by the emblem below…and is seen on the yarn label.
What is the difference between Worsted and Medium Yarn?
It is one and the same. Both are 10ply. Just called by different names.
What is the difference between Worsted and DK yarn?
Worsted is 10 ply and Soft wool or double knitting yarn is 8 ply, thinner and softer. 8 ply is most commonly used in Europe and Australia.
What is the difference between Worsted and Bulky?
Worsted Wool is thinner than Bulky ….which is thick.
What is gauge?
Gauge is determined by yarn thickness. When you hook up a swatch the number of stitches in say a 4’x4″ swatch is the gauge of that yarn.
How does one read yarn labels?
Tabled Chart from the Craft Council of America showing the yarn weight and hook size to be used for each yarn
What are the factors that affect ur project?
1. Yarn Type
2. Hook Size
3. Individual Tension( How tight or how loose you crochet)
What is Ply?
What is Ply? Ply simply means that when the yarn is spun it is spun by twisting 2/3/4/6/ 8/ etc strands of thread together…….For e.g.: if the yarn has two strands of thread spun in …it is called 2 ply. If it has 6 p strands spun it to make it ..it is called 6 ply. A common mistake to make is to assume that since , 6ply has 6 strands it will be thicker than say a 2ply. this is true only if the individual strand in the said 6 ply and 2 ply is the same. If the individual strand in the 6 ply is very fine then naturally the 6 ply will be thinner than a 2 ply that has much thicker strands spun in.
So that’s it…………. a basic gyan on Wool. I hope this has been helpful. Most of this information is from different blogs on the internet. The Craft Yarn Council, USA; Blogger Sara Duggan from the blog Crochet & Me…and many other sources. A Big Thank You to Each and Every One of You…….
Namaste……..and May this day be full of love and contentment for you…..
A closer view of this stitch…..one of my favourites.
This isn’t my pattern, I got it from the net a long time ago and downloaded it….now I can’t remember where I got it form….which is such a pity…I would have loved to give credit to the creator.
Corner to Corner Stitch (C2C) or Diagonal Stitich Cushion Cover:
Yarn Used :
Soft Feather #5 Pearl
Hook size 1.25mm
How to hook a C2C project
Do check out the Crochet Crowd’s Tutorial…Mickey as usual makes it look so easy…;-))
Granny Square Cushion Cover
Soft Feather’s Nature…cotton yarn
Hook Size 3.00mm
Here is another pattern that I worked on ..I made a couple of gsqs in May and then left it to hibernate for a while…..by the time I got back to it….my laptop died on me…and as this was a bookmarked pattern …I lost all that information.
Which is upsetting becos I really liked the designer who did this…I do remember though that she made this and used up all her scrap yarn. If any of you have this link pls share it with me……..I would like to share the link to her site here.
Since I cannot give you the link to the pattern I am not posting any ‘how to’ pics here……though I have them….just, doesn’t seem fair….
I finally joined all the sqs with single crochet(sc) stitches…..on the front cos I liked the look better each of the coloured motif looked better in a ‘pen’ of it’s own…:-))
How to fix a fabric back to a crochet front cushion cover
I learnt to make a fabric cushion cover using this tutorial …..and i found it simple and well explained…….
In these tutorials, she shows you how to make a completely fabric cushion. I substituted the front portion of the fabric meant for the cushion, with one done in crochet and the back portion in 2 pieces as mentioned in the tutorial.
Tacked the 3 pieces together and machine stitched them.
Be careful Not to pull the crochet piece tight while sewing cos it will stretch beyond the fabric….happened to me….and I had to redo it…:-P
Well…hope you found this helpful……as I have mentioned before….I am learning to sew….I have all these grand ideas in my head….but when I put it to practice…..I find that my sewing doesn’t really bear close scrutiny…..but I aim to get there…Definitely…:-))!!!
What is, an experienced Crocheter’s idea of Paradiso, could be a beginner’s nightmare….What yarn to use with which hook for a particular pattern????
Here I will try to introduce you to the basic varieties of yarn….As you already know or will discover , the available selection of yarn all over the world is too numerous and almost impossible to collate and present in one blog post. This is but a modest attempt on my part to make yarn selection easier for beginners to crochet.
Apart from natural fabrics like Cotton, Wool, Silk, commercial yarn can come in Polyster, Acrylic, Nylon, Viscos….and a mixture of natural and artificial yarns. However….crochet is such a flexible art form that you can crochet with almost anything.
I have used Coir, Jute, Hemp and seen work done with plarn(ripping plastic bags into long strips, rolled into balls ), old bedsheets, T-shirts, dupattas, old sarees, skirts etc( that are also cut into strips and crocheted into mats, bags, etc). Recycling at it’s best.
Twine,cord, wash line cords, nylon ropes, any of these can be hooked into very useful and strong baskets, bags, pot holders. Flexible metal wires….be it aluminium, copper, silver or gold………(used in making jewellery) make beautiful crocheted jewellery and table accessories.
So basically you can crochet with anything …Well Almost….:-))
This post is about mainly on Cotton yarn……but I have added a few pics of other crochet able materials.
Cotton is one of the best of natural yarns that can used in tropical climates. Good quality cotton yarn is easy to maintain, wash and comfortable to use. In India…..we usually get Laura cotton, Anchor, Red rose ….and assorted other yarns. Outside India…DMC has a lovely and large collection of cotton yarn. So has the Korean yarn Soft Feather. Since I don’t know much about the cotton yarn available to the European and American Markets….I will leave my discussion to yarn that I have used.
What is the difference between yarn and thread?
Yarn usually comes in ply, and is usually thicker than thread…but there is yarn esp in wool …..Nako Kristal being a good example…..that is almost as thin as thread.
Cotton Thread usually comes in numbers starting from #10, #20, #30,#40,#50, #60,#70,#80, #100 Here the thread becomes thinner and finer as the numbers go higher. For Eg: #10 is thicker than # 20…#20 is thicker than #30 and so on.
#100 is super fine thread and used to crochet very delicate lace,edgings etc. Numbers #30 and above are also used for tatting.
Apart from this we also have cotton thread Pearl. This kind of thread is numbered differently than that of mercerised cotton as mentioned above. here the thread is softer, glossier and looks almost like silk. This type of thread comes in 3 numbers….#3, #5, #8
I am mentioning, the hook size to be used, with almost every yarn here…but it is to be treated as a guide and not as a rigid rule. Again you may want to crochet Loose…in which case you must choose a hook size larger than the ones mentioned against each yarn or u may wish to crochet tight….where you will then to reduce the hook size by a couple of notches….to get a closely stitched pattern.
Cotton Thread Pearl
#5 Pearl: Makes great lacey scarves, vests, boleros, bags etc…Comes in 50 gm balls(Soft Feather)
You can use hooks # 0.90mm, 0.95mm, 1.00mm,. This yarn is great to make Pretty little flowers, butterflies etc to accessorise apparel, home Decor etc, perfect for edgings, trimmings etc….comes in 10gm balls(DMC)
#8 Pearl….Hooks #0.90mm, 0.95mm, 1.00mm
#3 Pearl:Excellent for garments.
Cotton Thread #40
Used widely in tatting and for fine pieces of lace and edgings, borders, trimmings, motifs, collars etc.
Hook sizes recommended are 0.90mm, 1.00mm, 1.1mm, 1.25mm This yarn can be used to hook doilies, and anything that needs a lacey finish…I have made garments(though it is not very soft), Amigurumi, bags, purses( very pretty, but time consuming cos the yarn take time to hook up).In Anchor, this comes in 20gm balls and as you can see in the pic below….they come in a delicious palette of colors.
Cotton Thread #10
Hooks sizes 1.5mm, 1.75mm. Comes in balls of 100gms. Very versatile…can use this one to hook up almost anything.
Cotton yarn comes in various ply and thickness. I will introduce you to the yarn that I have used and know of…this will give you a broad idea of what yarn to use. I will also indicate what hook to use with what yarn….This is not a hard and fast rule…..as you get more and more experienced, you will develop your own comfort zone in choosing hooks to certain yarn.
Cotton yarn is thicker than cotton thread and most times much more softer…it is very good for making apparel, bags, baby clothes, dish cloth, blankets, anything that requires thick yarn…..and it works up very fast. yarn usually comes in ply.
What is Ply?
Ply simply means that when the yarn is spun it is spun by twisting 2/3/4/6/ 8/ etc strands of thread together…….For e.g.: if the yarn has two strands of thread spun in …it is called 2 ply. If it has 6 p strands spun it to make it ..it is called 6 ply. A common mistake to make is to assume that since , 6ply has 6 strands it will be thicker than say a 2ply. this is true only if the individual strand in the said 6 ply and 2 ply is the same. If the individual strand in the 6 ply is very fine then naturally the 6 ply will be thinner than a 2 ply that has much thicker strands spun in.
Nylon thread ..good for bags and purses…..Hook 1.75mm, 2.00mm 2.5mm
In India, we usually get knitting Yarn from Anchor, Laura And Red Rose. Of these Laura is the thickest and is to be hooked with a #3.00mm hook. Anchor is slightly thinner with a sheen to it….Can use 2.5mmm and red Rose is almost like #10 DMC Yarn…Use hook !.75 with this one.
Other Natural fibres that can be hooked:
I can walk into any place and exclaim yarn…..recently I got what I called yarn and what Hubby darling exasperatedly called twine, cord etc…..I got these Hemp, Jute and natural fibres…….and I have great plans for these buddies…
This is an unusual find…..this lovely beige cotton yarn is from India…it will be excellent for apparel….soft, with a lovely sheen to it and easy to hook. Unfortunately only for export.
OTHER CROCHETABLE STUFF(for the lack of a better word)
Hook size depends on the width here…I would use a 3.00mm for the orange and green yarn and a 4.00mm for the broader purple shaded one.
Below A Metallic Silver Georgette Ribbon….Use 8.00mm or above…..
I do hope that you have found this post useful….do tell me what you think of this one…if you have information on cotton yarn, that you think can help make this article more helpful….Pls do not hesitate to let me know. If you can share pictures with me that would be great….I will add them to this post and credit you for that info.
Adios Amigos..For Now…Until Next time…Huggggggs!!!!