Why You Should Learn Crochet

Crochet is an amazing skill to have in your toolbox, and it’s rhythmic patterns can have soothing, therapeutic benefits. As a knitter and crocheter, the things I love about crochet is that:

  • I think it’s a bit easier to learn than knitting
  • Crochet can be sculptural. With knitting you’re primarily knitting a flat cloth, with some manipulations, but crochet can go in any direction and be more 3-dimensional.
  • With only 1 live stitch in crochet, it’s harder to mess up and drop stitches
  • Knowing crochet opens up your world to so many new patterns to make, and makes your skills super flexible (especially if also know to knit and want to combine techniques in a single item!)

You can learn crochet (even if you are a total beginner) with my free online crochet course, where I walk you through how to read a crochet pattern, step by step.

Tips for Learning to Crochet

When you’re picking your first crochet project here are some of my tips and things to keep in mind.

  • Don’t use cotton yarn.  Unlike wool, cotton doesn’t have any give to it.  So it’s harder to keep your tension consistent.  By using a yarn made of a more flexible fiber, like wool, you’re just making it easier for you to maintain consistent tension and have better looking stitches.  Also, since cotton has little give, it’ll also cause your hands to ache pretty quickly and you’ll need to take more breaks.
  • Always check your gauge by crocheting a swatch. I know it’s tempting to dive right into your project, but if your pattern gives you a gauge, then it’s really important that you knit in this same gauge. Even if you use the same yarn and needle size as the designer, it’s likely your gauge will be different (because everyone has a different tension they hold their yarn with).  So you’ll need to make some adjustments to get yours right.  This could mean adjusting your needle size, or switching to a different size yarn if needed. Depending on the item, not getting your gauge right could have severe consequences — the bigger the item or the more shaping it has, the bigger the impact.  (Just ask me how I once made sleeves for a sweater that was a better fit for my cat than me 😬)
  • Stick to basic stitches.  This means scanning the pattern and making sure it only uses chain stitch, single crochet, half double, double or treble crochet.  Anything else might be too complicated for your first project.

6 Easy, Fashionable Crochet Patterns

Here are my 6 curated pattern picks for easy, fashionable crochet projects. It’s important to pick something that you actually like, and would actually use or wear.  Your first project doesn’t have to be boring! Any of these crochet projects would be great for beginners learning to crochet.

Ripples Scarf Pattern

This ripple scarf pattern is anything but basic, but still uses the foundational stitches. It would be perfect as a first crochet project for beginners.

Peter pan crochet collar pattern

Peter Pan Collar

This peter pan collar pattern is the perfect first project — as it only uses the single crochet stitch.  It’s also super quick to make, and is a fun accessory to add to your wardrobe.

Simple ribbed tank top free crochet pattern

Crochet Crop Tank Top

This super stylish cropped tank top is a wonderful example of something fashionable and modern that is still super easy to make. 

Easy coasters crochet pattern

Easy Boho Coasters

These adorable boho coasters (and placemats!) only use a single crochet stitch (plus chain and slip stitch) so they’re super simple, but they give you the practice of crocheting in the round.

Easy Ribbed Hat

While a crochet hat may seem complicated, this is actually uses really simple stitches and is made flat, then seamed up the side. A perfect first crochet project.

Crochet Summer Shirt

So, while a crochet shirt could be ambitious, this crochet pattern only uses simple stitches and the shape is boxy without a lot of complex shaping, or armholes, so it makes a good beginner crochet project.

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