How to Start Crocheting: A Collab With BetsyJane

Welcome back to Books and Hooks! I hope you guys had a good weekend and are having a good start to your week! 😊

So, a little while ago, I asked BetsyJane if she wanted to do a collab post with me, and she said yes! I would definitely recommend checking out her blog, poppyseeds! She has some amazing posts! Make sure to go check out her collab post as well! It’s about how to start knitting!

In today’s blog post, I’ll go through how to start crocheting, from buying materials to finding easy beginner patterns online! If you’ve been wanting to start crocheting but didn’t know where to start, this is the post for you!

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Gathering materials

Photo by Kumo Knits on Pexels.com

Buying materials for crocheting is a very simple thing. All you really need is yarn and a crochet hook. However, with that being said, there are still a few things to look into when picking out your materials. Let’s talk a little bit about it!

Yarn

Color:

  • Avoid darkly colored yarns. While using black and dark yarns, it can be hard to see your stitches, which can be frustrating for beginners.
  • Using white yarns can also be frustrating to use for the same reason.
  • I recommend using a light/medium-colored yarn, such as light blue or green. Something that is easy to see.

Weight:

  • On the yarn label, it should say the weight number, which corresponds to how thick the yarn is. (Picture below.)
  • #0 weight is very thin, while #6 is very thick.
  • Each number has a different name (#0 is often called lace yarn, #1 is often called fingering yarn, #2 is often called fingering yarn, #3 is often called sport or DK yarn, #4 is often called worsted yarn, #5 is often called chunky or bulky yarn, #6 is often called super bulky yarn)
  • I would recommend a #4 weight yarn (worsted weight yarn), which is of medium thickness. This is usually the easiest for beginners to use because it’s not too thin or thick.

Fiber:

  • Three of the most common yarn fibers for crocheters are acrylic, wool, and cotton.
  • Acrylic yarn is a popular choice because it is widely available, inexpensive, and can come in a wide variety of colors. Some acrylic yarns do split, however, this is pretty uncommon.
  • Wool yarn is another good choice! It is very forgiving, so if you mess up on a stitch or make a mistake (which is bound to happen when you’re learning to crochet) wool is usually very easy to unravel and re-use. One thing to be aware of is that some people may be allergic to wool.
  • Because cotton yarn is not as elastic as wool or acrylic, it is a slightly less popular choice for beginners. However, if it’s summer, cotton is cooler and more breathable, and it is a good choice for those warmer months. It also really depends on what project you are working on.
  • Even though they can look really pretty, I would recommend avoiding fluffy yarns or novelty yarns at first, because the stitches are extremely hard to see when working with those yarns.
  • To review, I would recommend smooth cotton, acrylic, or wool yarn, depending on the project you’re working on. Avoid eyelash yarns and any fluffy or textured yarns.
This yarn is a #3 weight (or DK) yarn. The suggested hook size is a 6 mm or J-10 hook. You can typically find this information on all yarn labels!
Here is where it shows the fiber content. This yarn is a mix of cotton and polyester.

Hooks

Photo by Anete Lusina on Pexels.com

Material:

  • Hooks can be made out of aluminum, bamboo, and plastic.
  • Each material has its own pros and cons.
  • Aluminum hooks are generally inexpensive, last for a while, and are widely available. However, they can sometimes be painful to your hands. Because of this, some aluminum crochet hooks do have plastic or rubber handles for more comfort.
  • Bamboo crochet hooks have a good grip, so if you’re having trouble with your yarn slipping from your hook, bamboo hooks may help. They are a bit more expensive than the other materials, though.
  • Plastic crochet hooks are very affordable, and they’re lighter, so plastic’s usually used for larger sizes of hooks.
  • People typically have their own preferences as to what material they enjoy using. I would recommend experimenting with different types of hooks to find what works best for you.

Size:

  • For each size of yarn, there is a corresponding hook size.
  • On the yarn label, it should say what hook to use. (Shown in the photo above.)
  • If you’re using a #4 (worsted) weight yarn, then the hook size is usually a 5.5 or 6-mm hook. Check the yarn label to see what size to use, though.
  • There are metric and US crochet hook sizes. Here is a helpful chart for conversions.

Other materials

Although yarn and a hook are all you really need to get started, there are a few other useful materials you can buy to help you on your crochet journey.

  • It’s a good idea to have a nice pair of scissors to cut your yarn with. You can just use some scissors you have around the house, but it never hurts to buy a small pair to carry around with you when you are crocheting.
  • You can use a yarn needle to weave in the cut ends on your crochet project. There are plastic yarn needles, metal ones, sharp needles, dull ones, and curved ones. Plastic and metal are both good, but a few plastic ones I’ve had have broken, so just keep that in mind.
  • Sometimes, it’s wise to buy a little pouch to house all of your tools. If you bring your crochet project on a car ride, you’ll want to put your yarn needle, hook, scissors, and other supplies in this pouch, so you don’t lose anything. There are some that come with little loops to hold your crochet hooks and with little zipper pockets and such. You can buy something like that, or a simple pouch with one pocket, which you can usually find at Dollar Tree or Walmart.

Starting out

Now that you have your materials, you want to start crocheting. But, how do you start? Well, there are a few different options.

Take a class

  • Taking a crochet class is a good idea because you can have someone there explaining to you how to do different stitches, and you can ask them questions.
  • I don’t have any experience with a class, because I just taught myself to crochet through online blogs and YouTube videos, but I’ve heard some good things about crochet classes.
  • Classes can, however, be a bit pricey sometimes, so just keep that in mind.

Have someone teach you

  • If you have somebody in your family, or one of your friends, who crochets, you can always ask them to teach you!
  • I’ve been teaching my little sister how to crochet, which is really great. It allows her to ask me when she has any questions, and she can see in person how to do different stitches.
  • One drawback is that not everyone has that amount of time, so this might not be the best for everybody.

Blogs/websites

  • Sometimes, if I’m trying to learn a new stitch, I just don’t want to watch a YouTube video (especially if I’m out in public or something) blogs are a great alternative.
  • Blogs can be a great way to learn crocheting, too! There are a lot of people out there who post helpful tutorials about basic crochet on their blogs.
  • I like it best when I find a blog that has a lot of pictures to show how to do something.

YouTube

  • YouTube videos are a good way to learn. Unlike reading blog posts about how to crochet, you can actually see someone doing it, which is how a lot of people learn best.
  • There are many YouTubers out there who are great crochet teachers.
  • It’s also free.
  • YouTube is mainly how I learned, and it was very helpful to me.

Some of my favorite resources

Stitches and patterns

Now that you know a few ways to learn crochet, let’s look at how to practice crochet so that you can become an amazing crocheter!

  • If you aren’t taking a class and you are just learning from YouTube and blogs, first, look up how to make the foundation for most patterns: a chain! Once you’ve mastered that, you can look up tutorials on how to do the basic stitches for crochet: single crochet, double crochet, half double crochet, and treble crochet. Here is a playlist on YouTube with instructions on all of the basic stitches!
  • Practice making swatches! When I was first starting to crochet, one way I practiced my stitches was by making practice swatches. Crochet a short chain, then practice making some different stitches. You can unravel it and practice the stitch again, or work on some different stitches.
  • Make some easy projects! Scarves, washcloths, baby blankets, and basically any other project that’s just a plain square or rectangle are amazing beginner projects! A lot of them have simple stitch repetitions.

Finding patterns online:

  • Almost all of the patterns I make are ones I find on the internet.
  • A lot of YouTubers and bloggers share amazing free patterns that they design.
  • I think that YouTube videos are really good for beginners because they can see what’s happening as someone does it. Patterns may be kind of hard for beginners to read.
  • Once you’ve learned to read patterns, I would recommend watching the YouTube video as you follow along with the pattern.

Buying patterns.

  • Whether it’s in a crochet book, or if you’re buying a printable pattern on Etsy, there are many crochet patterns to buy out there!
  • I don’t tend to buy patterns a lot because I can usually find whatever pattern I’m looking for free online.
  • However, there can be some amazing patterns out there for sale. Make sure you know how to read a pattern before you buy one, though!

Patterns:

  • Some of my favorite beginner projects are washcloths, scarves, headbands/ear warmers, baby blankets, and simple hats!
  • The pattern you find should list the yarn to use. It might list a specific brand, or just say “worsted weight yarn.” Either way, make sure the yarn is suited for the specific project you’re making.
  • As I mentioned earlier, I think that video tutorials are easier for beginners to understand compared to blog tutorials, because in YouTube videos, you can see what the person is doing better than if it’s written out.

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Thank you for reading today’s post! And, thanks again, BetsyJane for doing this collab with me! Everyone go check out her post to learn how to start knitting!

Would you like to learn to crochet? Did you find this post helpful? Do you want to see more blog posts about crochet for beginners? Be sure to comment!

Have an amazing day, and have fun with your crocheting!

~ Rebekah

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11 thoughts on “How to Start Crocheting: A Collab With BetsyJane

  1. Pingback: Blog Collab: How to Start…Knitting – poppyseeds

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