I have lost count of the number of people who have told me they wished they could crochet. Most say things like ” Oh but I’m just not creative! ” or ” I just don’t have time to learn!”
I felt like that too, less than 1 year ago. I had tried and failed over many years, something like 30 to be more specific!
With platforms like Pinterest it is hard to ignore the beautiful, modern creations that pop up while you’re searching for ways to make ” healthy” doughnuts or ideas for your festive decor .Whether its cute little wristwarmers or colourful blankets. Crochet seems to be the ” in thing ” .
There are some fantastic You Tube tutorials out there such as Bella Coco. Whether you want to learn to crochet left handed, learn new stitches or create something alongside somebody else there is something for everyone. They are a great starting point. Just be aware that UK and US terminology sounds very similar and can be confusing for the beginner. If you hear the term single crochet it is US terminology. Always check first, it will save you a big headache in the long run.
You don’t need a lot to start. A cheap set of aluminium hooks can be purchased from Ebay or Amazon for just a few pounds. You may as well buy a set, as buying them individually is more expensive. There are beautiful carved wood hooks, soft grip handles and all kinds of fancy polymer clay handles to choose from but a simple set will do for now.
Cheap yarn can be found in pound shops , charity shops or Wilko. There are also some great online shops such as Wool Warehouse or Deramores just remember to check out the latest discount codes before you order.
You can find discount codes on sites such as www.hotukdeals.com
Other items you will find useful are stitch markers. It is important to mark stitches in some projects so you know where they are.These can also be used as work savers. When you take your hook out place it in the stitch to stop your stitches from being pulled out . There are some pretty ones out there, however a safety pin will do fine. I make mine, which is a lot of fun, and have a few for sale in my Etsy shop , Anziswood.
A tape measure or ruler is useful for testing your gauge. This is something that a lot of us can’t be bothered to do but once you start making slippers, hats or socks it really does become necessary.
A large eyed blunt needle for sewing in ends. You will definitely need one of these as there is nothing worse than seeing all your hard work start to unravel! A small pair of scissors is essential also.
A row counter. This is a great little tool to keep track of where you are. It is so helpful for amigurumi and lots of other projects, however a pen and paper will do if you don’t have one.
Patterns, so many are available free. Check out Pinterest, get that board made and start pinning! You will find that it is terribly addictive! So many great designs. Modern crochet has come on leaps and bounds since the 70s.
New designers have breathed life into this craft. Artists such as Sue Pinner, Janie Crow , Katie Jones Knit , Pollevie and Attic 24 continue to grab my attention with their colours and designs.
If you are not lucky enough to have a friend or family member to teach you then check out local crochet courses in your area. I have seen adverts in shop windows but I found mine on www.craftcourses.com
I booked a short 2 hour lesson with a lady local to where we were moored at the time. This made all the difference with my learning, it all started to make sense at last!
I would advise getting to know the very basics steps before you do a class. Getting the feel of the hook, learning a slip knot and practicing chains will stand you in good stead. It can be frustrating in a class if you have to keep stopping because you dont know the basics and having to wait for the teachers attention.
There are lots of great crochet books too. Places like The Works often sell some really good ones such as The Crochet Bible at a discounted price.
A project notebook is useful. You can use this to make a note of where you found the pattern, the hook size you used , the yarn used and also any problems you encountered . This makes it so much easier to remember the details.
And finally a project bag to keep your work clean and away from the cat! They can sniff out a warm, cosy spot to sleep on in seconds. When you buy yarn from the Wool Warehouse it comes in a nifty see-through bag that is perfect to reuse as a project bag.
( I have no affiliation with any of the shops mentioned , they are just the ones I use regularly.)