6 Common Crochet Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

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Love the idea of crocheting but...

Oops!

1.One of my favorite mistakes is that people don't know the difference between knitting and crocheting. That sounds basic sure but my husband who I have been married to for years always will ask "how's that knitting project going"? while I dangle a crochet hook in front of him! It has no bearing on him and I leave well enough alone...at least he asked, right?

Crochet is done with one hook as shown on the left. Knitting is done with two or more needles with points on the ends. So now that we have that straight, let's talk about a few more of those silly crochet mistakes and see what we can do to avoid them the next time around! But remember, mistakes are how we learn, and learning and being creative is the core at the core of working with all fibers.

2.We're big on keeping things basic here at DGY and while we love our experts and professional crafters, we really love to encourage our beginners. We know it isn't easy to jump in to a new craft or anything for that matter so I am going to give you another real basic thing to be aware of with crochet. Size does matter!

If you use one of our crochet kits, you don't need to think about size. If you are making something like a scarf, size is not a big issue. However, if you have a pattern that requires a certain size yarn and needle, then you need to follow those directions. Once you are a pro, you can play with fiber and needle size, but for now let's say we are going to use the needles and yarn mentioned  in patterns so that our project comes out the size you anticipate.

Once you really get the hang or crocheting, you can be more adventuresome. An easy idea if you want to play with the size or gauge of something is to remember that if you have a larger needle you are more than likely going to want bulky yarns, too. And generally speaking, larger needles and yarn will give you quicker results in your crochet project!

Loosey Goosey

3.Tension, yes we all have it! We live in a stress filled world and believe it or not, we show it in our fiber tension, too. I tend to knit and crochet tightly though I profess to being a mellow person! I think my inner stress comes out in how I tension my yarn. This is not good at all and don't, I repeat, don't crochet tightly. It makes it difficult to work in the stitches in the next row because you have to wrestle to get your hook in the stitch. Think loose and even with your tension.

A Stitch in Time

4.Does it make sense to pick up a book if you don't know how to read? Would you look under the hood of a car if you have no idea how to change the oil? Well, the same applies for crocheting! If you don't know the abbreviations for some of our patterns, you aren't going to crochet! Here are a few simple abbreviations to get your started with crochet patterns:

ch=chain

sc=single crochet

dc=double crochet 

st=stitch                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         And here are more  crochet abbreviations courtesy of craftyyarncouncil.com. Don't rush into learning lots of abbreviations.Try a few and save the rest for when you are ready for a bigger challenge.

 

5.Here's a very common mistake with crocheting, your project is getting  bigger or smaller as you work it up.Yikes! You may have added a stitch, commonly happening at the end of the row which will make your project larger. Or in reverse, you may have skipped a stitch that you want to crochet in to, making this the incredible shrinking project.

The solution is simple! Keep track of your stitches  by being careful and I sometimes keep a piece of paper so I can keep track of what row I am on, when I changed color, etc. You may think this is boring but just get into the habit of keeping track of your stitches and it  will mean success with your crochet pattern

Another solution is to be sure to end a row or start a row in the correct stitch. 

a. If doing single crochet(sc), you normally chain 1 at the end of the row you have just finished, and then turn and crochet in the first front and back loops, immediately after the chain 1 you just did.

b. If doing double crochet(dc), chain the number of chains called for at the end of a row (usually either 1 or 2 chains), then turn your work and crochet in the second stitch of the new row — in other words, skip the chain(s) you just did, as well as the first stitch after that.

Make No Mistake About It

6.Mistakes happen! Don't beat yourself up over it and I don't care to dwell on what goes wrong for beginners.The only way to learn is by grabbing some fiber and a friend to teach you how to crochet. Yes, it will not be perfect. Yes, there may be some strange designs to start with. 

If you do find yourself with a mistake, just pull the yarn and take out the section with a hole or strange stitches. It's gonna bug you so go ahead and rip the mistake out and start in again.We all do it! And after you rip it out, it's okay to put down your crochet work for today. There is always tomorrow!

Practice makes perfect or so they say! So when you learn to chain, sc, or dc keep at it. The basic stitches will lead to a few more complicated ones but for now repetition is a wonderful thing. If you think it is boring, buy some recycled sari silk(one of my favorites) or some other yarn to make it more interesting! And, just remember once you are good at those stitches and confident with even stitches and rows, you can take on something way cool like this sunburst shawl!

At DGY, we know what it's like to make mistakes. We also know what joy fiber hobbies can bring. And sometimes, mistakes can bring a new, innovative creative feel to your crochet project. So enjoy the process because we all know it's not about the end result, but the journey that makes us happy! We are here for you if you need help! What new thing are you learning about crochet? xo

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  • Nicole Snow