Getting Started with Crochet – Beginner Hooking
Diving into a new craft or hobby can sometimes be intimidating. You’re not sure where to start, and a lot of information you find starts somewhere between advanced beginner and rock star. What about the absolute beginner, though? The one who is interested in trying, but has no clue where to start? Maybe you saw a sweater, blanket or stuffed animal you thought was just perfect, and you wanted to learn how to make it, but you had never so much as picked up a piece of yarn before. If I just described you, congratulations, you are in the right place. I am going to help you get started with crochet.
So, What is Crochet and What Can You Do With It?
Crochet is a form of fiber arts or needle craft that uses loops to create a fabric. In really simple terms, it’s variations of slip knots joined together to make a variety of things. This bare bones explanation does the craft absolutely no justice. The variations in your stitches, and the manner in which you combine them can make your project come to life.
We aren’t talking about your grandmother’s crochet, here. The projects you can create go far beyond the afghan on the back of the couch and lacy doilies of years past. Baskets, clothing, stuffed animals, jewelry, toys, washcloths, face scrubbies, purses and more can be created with crochet. You’re only limited by your imagination!
Tools and Materials to Get You Started with Crochet
Getting started with crochet doesn’t cost much. You need yarn, a hook and some scissors.
I recommend starting with a basic worsted or medium weight yarn. Worsted weight yarn is readily available, and great for beginners. For your first project, or even just for practice, you’re should avoid black yarn. It can be difficult to see where you need to put your hook, so stick with medium to lighter shades of yarn until you feel a bit more comfortable. For more detail about yarn and how to choose the right yarn for your project, check out my post on yarn types. For now, grab a skein (pronounced sk-ay-n) you like, and I will walk you through rest. We are going to practice the different stitches, and learn how to put them together to get the look you want.
The next thing you’re going to need is a hook. Your hook should match your yarn. What I mean by matching your hook to your yarn, is that the label of the yarn will indicate what hook size you should be using. You don’t want to use a large hook with a small yarn, or vice versa, as the stitches will not have the correct tension, and your project will turn out either too loose, or too tight. We will discuss tension a bit more later, for now, Most worsted weight yarns call for a size I/6mm hook. Now, hooks can get pretty fancy, there are ergonomic hooks, plastic hooks, light up hooks, etc. For more detail about hooks and how to choose the right hook for your project, check out my post on crochet hooks. What matters most is that you HAVE a hook, not how fancy it is. So feel free to begin with a standard metal hook. You don’t need anything extravagant to get started. You will learn what works best for you after you get more comfortable with the craft.
The last thing you need to get started is something to cut the yarn with. You can use regular scissors, yarn snips or even nail clippers. It doesn’t really matter what you use, as long as it makes a clean cut of the yarn, safely. So, it’s probably a good idea to keep the machete and chainsaw in the garage for this craft. For now, the scissors you have at home will work just fine. There is no need to run out and buy anything special to get going.
You’ve Got Your Materials – The Next Step
When you’re ready with your yarn and hook, you can get a more in depth look at the tools and materials used in crochet in my crochet tools post.
I’m looking forward to helping you get started! Let’s get hooking!