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Crochet Tips and Tricks

Category Crochet
Crochet is a very versatile handicraft that can be used to create beautiful clothing, linens, toys, and more. Whether you are a beginner or an experienced craftsperson, there is always a new tip that might prove to be useful. This is a guide about crochet tips and tricks.
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By 16 found this helpful
September 14, 2011

I usually have a half dozen or so crochet projects going all at once, and sometimes don't recall the size hook I was using. I've started keeping the plastic bread closing tabs and writing the hook size on it and attaching it to my project during construction. Should I stop that project for a while and pick it up again later, the correct hook size is noted right there; no guess work!
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By Maile from Onalaska

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September 23, 2015

Last winter, I decided to start crocheting again. I first learned how to crochet from a neighbor when I was a girl, but she was only able to teach me several stitches. I have never been able to read a pattern or make some of the delicate stitches that I have seen on some of the creations. My basic stitch consisted of single and double crochet. I could only do blankets. Sad, but true.

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So my search lead to me to Hancock Fabric. I was able to purchase some skeins more on clearance, but found that the colors that I wanted and the yarn I liked cost more than I was willing to spend. Plus, I wanted to make items for my grandchildren and nieces. It was a little too much for my wallet. Having been out the game for so long, I did not realize how expensive yarn and hooks had become. Thank God for thrift shops. There I found my salvation and at the right price. Skeins for 50 cents, hooks for a quarter. I was in crochet heaven.

Armed with my yarn balls, hooks, I headed over to YouTube and started crocheting. Here is what I also learned about getting your yarn from the thrift shop.

  1. You are at the mercy of the color they have. I will mix colors and threads to get the right effect. I have on occasion dyed yarn, but for the most part, I use what they have.

  2. I find a lot of the yarn already in balls which I like, but you have to be careful. Sometimes, you might get two different colors in one ball and will not find out until you are almost through with your project.

  3. Take the smell test. I can't tell you how many times I have brought home a skein and I was wondering where that smell is coming from.

  4. I use a mesh bag to hand wash my yarn. My yarn tangles too much in the washer. No matter how many times I wash, smoke will not dissipate. I wash one skein at time. Dawn works best for me.

  5. I also buy knitting needles to hold my yarn balls together. I can usually get those for 2 for a quarter. I do know how to knit, but I like crochet better.

  6. My hooks run from 25 to 50 cents. I love the aluminum hooks the best. The larger size hooks I have to buy at the store. I use the 40% off coupons from Michaels, Jo-Ann Fabrics or Hobby Lobby. Michaels has the best prices and take competitors coupons.

  7. If you continue to buy yarn through out the year, you will get some interesting threads, yarns, and textures.

  8. If you are lucky enough to get a skein intact, keep the wrap it comes in. It has valuable information, weight of the yarn, needle size, wash instructions, etc.
This year, I will be experimenting with home décor. I have already purchased jute, string and larger size hooks. My projects will include puffs, baskets. Wish me well.

Source: I picked up this tip from how to make hook grips. https://youtu.be/9Kucd1ulH0U

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September 14, 2014

Recently, I did a project where I had to count stitches to make sure the chains were all the same length. Well, they sure weren't. I often have to compete with visiting kids and their video games, radios, videos, dogs...you name. It is hard to find quiet.

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When I realized the project would literally have to be started over, I came up with a system that has really helped. I hope it helps you too.

With some dollar store clothes pins and an old jar (cup, soup can, etc.). I marked one side of the pins with 10, some with 20 and 25 on the backs, then 50 and 75 on each side of 1 then 100.

My chain was to be 200 long, so when I reached say 25, I put that pin on the jar. Then when I did that again, I would take off the 25 and put up 50. When I got to 100, I took the 50 down. When I got to 150, I put the 50 back up on the right side of the 100. When I got to 200, I took them all down.

I know you can purchase stitch markers but that requires you stop and put something, even a little length of yarn in a stitch. I find this distracts me less and I can keep my hand on my hook, and my mind on the task at hand.

Hope this helps you as much as it does me.
PBP

Source: Nope just frustration!

Link: N/A

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February 10, 2010

I retired and have to keep busy, so I crochet, knit, and embroider. I was always looking for my scissors, or crochet hook. I crocheted a 12 inch granny square out of leftover yard. I folded it in half, and closed the ends, forming a big pocket.

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By 3 found this helpful
April 1, 2009

When crocheting things like a bed spread, you can buy tobacco string and use it like crochet thread. It comes on a cone and a lot cheaper then the crochet thread.

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By 4 found this helpful
September 8, 2013

I had heard of using the tags/closures for bread packages to mark your projects while knitting or crocheting, but came upon another use for the little white tags while crocheting.

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By 4 found this helpful
June 6, 2016

When you want to make an afghan with a different color in each square, but your stash doesn't stretch to that goal, you might want to try this.

Stretching Your Yarn Stash

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May 18, 20051 found this helpful

My mother is in her eighties, and was crocheting an afghan of cats. The pattern consisted of about 8 rows, each one different, and then a repeat of these 8 rows. She kept getting lost in the pattern, so I took index cards and printed each row of the pattern on a separate index card.

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March 28, 20061 found this helpful

Just today after about 45 years of crocheting! I was at the end of a row and was starting to pull the yarn up so it wouldn't easily pull out until I got back to working on my pineapple afghan that I was making; I saw my "clover" plastic safety pin that I use to mark stitches when knitting . . .

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By 1 found this helpful
August 19, 2009

Whenever I know I'm going someplace (like the doctor's appt I have today!) I always take a small carry-all with me that has a small amount of yarn and a crochet hook. If I need a pattern, I copy it on my scanner and print it out to take with me.

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March 22, 20161 found this helpful

When working on a crochet pattern you will need to know a variety of crochet stitch abbreviations to follow the instructions. This is a guide about basic crochet abbreviations chart.

Crochet hook resting on striped crocheted blanket

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By 1 found this helpful
December 3, 2015

I like to work on multiple projects when crocheting and would use the same hook for whatever I was working on. When I went back to the project I would forget what size hook I was using. I started using bread ties and wrote the crochet hook size on the tie and attached it to the afghan I was working on.

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July 11, 20061 found this helpful

When making something where you have bought more than one skein of a given color, save one of the papers wrapped around the skein, and write on it near the color name...

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April 3, 20060 found this helpful

Another readers tip reminded me of this, when putting my crocheting down, I enlarge the loop that was on the needle and tie a loose knot with the yarn hanging off the needle. Keeps me from losing stitches when moving the item around.

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March 23, 20051 found this helpful

I make a lot of crocheted doilies and when it comes time to block them I use the cardboard from cakes that I have purchased and saved. This cardboard has a shiny surface on one side so the doilies do not stick.

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August 25, 2009

In a knitting blog, I read about acrylic yarn being a low-cost option. Well, it is - and to make it more interesting in small projects you can mix it with other yarns, even wool ones.

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June 24, 20160 found this helpful

This is a guide about crocheting with one hand. Crocheting with only one hand can be a real challenge, but it is potentially possible.

Close up image of crochet

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June 24, 20160 found this helpful

Knowing how to read a crochet pattern and the meanings of the abbreviations will help make your project move along faster and easier. This is a guide about understanding crochet patterns and abbreviations.

Crocheted hippo baby hat next two three colors of yarn and a crochet hook

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By 0 found this helpful
August 26, 2014

I was making a hat using the cluster stitch, and I was worried that I would not have enough yarn. The regular cluster stitch uses 3 yarn overs then pull through 4 loops. We'll I left off 1 of the yarn overs and pulled through 3 loops.

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Questions

Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.

By 0 found this helpful
November 28, 2007

Need some help from crocheters please! I've just started to crochet so I don't do complicated stuff. Just finished making a round rag rug which wasn't difficult BUT the whole thing has buckled and looks frilly round the edges. I've undone it and tried working looser but that didn't work so I undid it again and tried working tighter but still no joy! please could anyone tell me what I'm doing wrong? It's so disheartening when you are new to a craft and you try so hard to get it right and nothing works! I love my new craft but if I'm incapable of doing a simple round, then I may as well give up, which would be a shame! Any suggestions, please? I got the pattern from Yarn Lovers Room on the internet. It said it was easy, so if I cant do an easy pattern, then I cant do crochet!

Cettina from Malta, Europe

Answers

By guest (Guest Post)
November 29, 20070 found this helpful

It doesn't have anything to do with how tight or loose you crochet, it has to do with the number of stitches that were added as you went along. You might be having trouble counting your stitches. That was an issue for me when I first started crocheting. Be sure that you aren't adding a stitch every time you start a new round, by forgetting to count the beginning chain of the round as the first stitch. Example, you start the round by chaining 2, which counts as your first double crochet. Make sure that you go into the NEXT stitch unless the pattern specifically says to stitch in the same stitch as the chain, or the same stitch as joining. I've been crocheting since I was about 10 years old, and I am now 31.

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By guest (Guest Post)
December 3, 20070 found this helpful

Sounds like you are adding stitches as you do the rounds, try putting some kind of marker on the round that you start with, and move it when to get to the area with the marker on it, you can use a chunk of another different color rag for your rug,or a piece of yarn , use anything for a marker and be sure to count when you mark.

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December 4, 20070 found this helpful

Please don't give up! Crocheting is such a relaxing occupation, and you'll find that you can make many gifts that way, also. Good luck, and God bless you.

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December 4, 20070 found this helpful

thanks for the tips. i know i shdnt get so upset but i sent the text in after battling for HOURS trying to get it right. yes, its a relaxing occupation which i need in my very stressful life but i do like to get a reasonable result for all my hard work! i'll undo it again and check about the stitches. funny that, it only started to buckle and frill when i got towards the last few rows. before that, it was fine. and i was working exactly the same way. i'll count my stitches again.

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December 5, 20070 found this helpful

i usually use a very large safety pin as a marker. pattern says to increase one stitch in every four as u go along. i was working twice into the same stitch for my increase. ive counted my stitches as i was undoing it (again!) and ive worked the increases properly. one increase in every four. i really dont want to do it again to get the same awful result that i had before. have i been doing something else wrong? any suggestions? PLEASE?

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By guest (Guest Post)
December 10, 20070 found this helpful

You have been having the same trouble that a lot of beginners have. don't give up and you will never be sorry. I am a male who was always a jock and now a spectator jock that has been enjoying this craft for about 28 years now. I have made several things from fine table cloths to dolls and afghans for my children and grandchildren and you will do the same and be just fine and you will learn your own Tricks. Good Luck and don't be arfraid to ask for help.

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December 11, 20070 found this helpful

thanks ronnie. a bit of support and encouragement helps a lot. ok, so i'll stay away from rounds for now until i get alittle more confident. i can do a square even an oval, no prob. ill try AGAIN later with a round. tks again.

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By guest (Guest Post)
September 27, 20080 found this helpful

If your work is starting to "ruffle", as I call it, you have added too many stitches to those rounds. Try decreasing your stitches here and there until it comes out right.

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Anonymous
July 31, 20110 found this helpful

I find it easier to relax and not make anything tight unless it calls for it. Just keep practicing and soon you will be a master. :)

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Anonymous
February 17, 20160 found this helpful

Since i recently learned to work in the round without joining, i know how you feel. What i figured out was that in some places i was increasing or decreasing by a stitch or more by accident. On doing some research, i figured out that if i simply marked the stitch that began my round from the first row and moved it as i added rows, i kept my place better. By using a stitch marker, it helped me to see immediately that i'd added stitches or hadn't done enough. i made my own stitch markers by picking up lever back earrings and adding bead trim to it. It makes it pretty and functional too and gives a little weight to it so that it doesn't get lost in the fabric of what one is crocheting. i hope this helps. Good luck!

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October 19, 20110 found this helpful

The pattern reads "work shell of 1dc, ch1, 1dc" in next stitch. I am confused as to into what stitch I am crocheting the last dc.

By Rita S.

Answers

October 19, 20110 found this helpful

"work shell of 1dc, ch1, 1dc"

This means that you do "1dc, ch1, 1dc" all in the same stitch.

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October 19, 20110 found this helpful

Both double stitches go in the same place (in the same stitch).

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October 19, 20110 found this helpful

The pattern might tell you right before or after the shell instructions. Usually there is a chain one space in the preceding row that lines up with your shell. Don't be afraid to try it out. You can always pull the stitches out and put them somewhere else until you find the way that lays flat. Good luck!

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October 20, 20110 found this helpful

Absolutely right. In the next stitch work 1 dc ch 1 1 dc. These three steps are what is going to create your shell look, that's why they must be in the same stitch.

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By 0 found this helpful
August 18, 2016

Does anyone know if there is a tutorial, and where I could find it, when a crochet pattern calls for doing dcfp 2 rows down?

Answers

August 21, 20160 found this helpful

If you google "crochet dcfp" it should take you to sites with the instructions or check youtube.
All dcfp means is double crochet front post and 2 rows down means to double crochet around the front post on the 2nd row down from the row you are working on.

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Anonymous
August 21, 20160 found this helpful

I did look on youtube and I googled but I didn't find a video that would show how it's done. I just wanted to make sure I was doing it right because when I tried it, it just didn't seem right. Thanks so much for replying to my question.

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By 0 found this helpful
December 8, 2009

How do you cast off from a U stitch on an afghan?

By Wizzo49

Answers

December 8, 20090 found this helpful

Found this which might help!

http://www.yout  ch?v=FgLYwCgF63E

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December 14, 20090 found this helpful

I don't know what a U stitch is, but I was always taught to cast off "in pattern"....so whatever you would do if you were going to knit that row, you cast off the same way. Hope that helps. I'm just a newbie knitter.

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By 0 found this helpful
February 8, 2016

Can I cut back on yarn on a crochet pattern by using a smaller hook? I am making a stuffed rabbit for toddler. Even if it turns out small that's OK.

Thanks.

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December 25, 20130 found this helpful

What does "spc' stand for in crochet?

By Tina

Answers

December 27, 20130 found this helpful

SPC stands for "space"

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December 19, 20130 found this helpful

I have been stitching an absolutely gorgeous afghan by Terry Kimbrough. I am not understanding how the edging instructions translate. The sentence is [sc, ch7, (sc, ch5) twice] in corner ch5 sp. Does this mean repeat everything in brackets and parentheses twice or just what is parentheses? Help please.

By Susan

Answers

December 20, 20130 found this helpful

I played with the directions to see what it looks like both ways. I would conclude the directions mean to do all twice; otherwise, there is only one long petal while all others remain same size and it looks odd. But if you are making squares to join together, then the one longer chain loop is probably to join the other squares with. If it isn't a square to join with others, then I would create all as a repeat inside the [brackets/parenthesis) two times which gives a floral pattern and a fuller one.
This is the best I can do for you w/o seeing the pattern/directions. Hope it helps you.

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January 5, 20150 found this helpful

I'm making a crocheted baby bunting with side overlapping panels about 30 '' in height. What is the best way to fasten it closed, zipper, ties, etc.?

By Ruth A.

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May 8, 20140 found this helpful

I'm trying to make a beanie and I'm having trouble following the pattern:

Here is one row of the pattern: 1 dcfp around next dcfp. 1 dc
in next dc. 1 dcfp around next dcfp. 2 dc in
next dc.

I know how to do both stitches, but I'm getting confused as to where to enter the hook for the next stitch. Anyone could help me ? I tried to look for videos, but can't find any :(

Many thanks!

By Magali

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Related Content
In This Guide
Crafting Tools
Crafting Tips and Tricks
Categories
Crafts CrochetAugust 16, 2013
Guides
Close up image of crochet
Crocheting With One Hand
Cutting Fabric Straight With Scissors
Cutting Fabric Straight With Scissors
Crocheted hippo baby hat next two three colors of yarn and a crochet hook
Understanding Crochet Patterns and Abbreviations
Crochet hook resting on striped crocheted blanket
Basic Crochet Abbreviations Chart
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