When you first start to crochet there is a lot to learn. It is a simple craft but like all things it can seem tricky until you’ve done a little practice.
You might wonder…
How do you hold the crochet hook? How do you do a single crochet or a double or a treble? How do you know which part of the crochet stitch to put the hook into when you get to the next row?
Of course, we all make crochet mistakes – and not only when we start learning to crochet. So today I want to go over a couple of common mistakes that are pretty easy to fix.
Using the wrong yarn
Don’t get me wrong: you can crochet with any yarn. But sometimes we choose the wrong yarn for the particular project. Yarn comes in different weights. The weight is just the thickness of the yarn. Say you’re making a blanket, you might choose a thicker yarn which will crochet up quickly in nice big stitches. Your blanket would grow quickly which is always fun! Or you might choose a finer – or thinner – yarn and have delicate small stitches. It will take longer to crochet but could look so pretty.
Think about your project and read the pattern with the suggested yarn weight before you get started. You might even want to stitch a small sample using the yarn to see how it will be to work with.
Using the wrong size crochet hook
The size of your crochet hook should relate to the weight of yarn you are using. Most yarn will have a suggested hook size on the packaging. If not, stitch a sample using the yarn and the hook size you think best. If the stitches are too small, change to a larger hook. If they are too large or loose, switch to a smaller hook.
There are a couple of different systems for labelling hook sizes so check out this chart from Fresh Stitches.
Mistaking U.S. and U.K. terminology
I didn’t realise for a while that a double crochet in the U.S. is called a treble in the U.K. This can make a big difference if you are trying to follow a pattern but using the wrong terminology. Most patterns or blog tutorials will tell you which terminology they use – or in some cases it doesn’t matter, perhaps if the same stitch is being used the whole time – so watch out for this. Check out a little conversion chart here to see which stitches to be careful of.
Crocheting too tight
It is easy to crochet too tight. If you’re holding the yarn tightly, the stitches will end up tight too. You will find that you won’t be able to easily put your hook into the stitches. The fix? Practice. As you get more comfortable with crochet, you will naturally hold the yarn looser. If you really can’t seem to fix it with practice, try switching to a larger hook.
Splitting the yarn with your hook
Another thing that can happen with tight crochet but also just with any crochet project is splitting the yarn with the hook as you insert it to do another stitch or as you wrap the yarn around the hook. This often happens because the yarn has unwound a little so the strands are not as close together. If the yarn is unwinding, stop every once and a while to rewind the yarn. Sometimes just letting go of the yarn and giving it a shake will let it go back to a tighter wind again. Then keep an eye as you’re inserting your hook that you haven’t split the yarn. Some of this is practice as well.
I hope that helps with your crochet and don’t forget to come and show off your crochet projects – or any other projects – to our And Sew We Craft community over on Facebook.