101DIYDIY 101

How To Crochet: The Basics

by Brett

Design*Sponge / How To Crochet: The Basics

Illustrations by Libby VanderPloeg.

If there’s ever been a winter that makes you want to curl up indoors with a warm and wooly craft project, the winter of 2014 is it. It feels like this cold weather will never end–which makes it the perfect time to batten down the hatches and get crafting! Crochet is a fantastic new handwork skill to try: it requires minimal materials, it’s easy to master, and it’s the perfect activity to make you feel like you’re being at least a little bit productive during your next Netflix binge. Once you get the hang of it, you’ll find yourself flying through scarves, blankets and all manners of warm and wonderful handmade things. Let’s get started! —Brett from Brooklyn Craft Company

Click through for the full (illustrated) how-to after the jump!

What you’ll need:

  • Yarn—I recommend choosing a yarn labeled worsted or bulky weight
  • Crochet Hook— check the label of your yarn for a recommendation on which size hook to use for your yarn


1. Begin by making a slip knot about 6″ from the end of the yarn. (If you’re not familiar with making a slip knot, here’s a video tutorial.)

2. Place the slip knot on your crochet hook, and wrap the yarn (the end attached to the yarn ball, not the 6″ tail) over the hook from back to front. Placing the yarn over the hook in this way is called a “yarn over.”
3. Grab the yarn over with the hook and pull it through the slip knot. You’ve now made one crochet “chain.”
4. Yarn over again…
5. …and pull the yarn through the hook, making another chain.
6. Continue until you’ve made several chains. If you’re making something like a scarf, you may want to make about 20 chains before proceeding to the next step (but you can make as many as you like, depending on how wide you’d like your scarf to be). See how the chain looks like a row of little V’s? You’ll be working into the loops of those V’s as we proceed.
7. Now, stick the tip of the hook into one of the loops of the second V from your hook.
8. With the hook still under that loop of the V, yarn over…
9. …and pull the yarn through that loop of the V. You’ll now have two loops on your hook.
10. Yarn over again…
11. …and pull the yarn through both loops on the hook. You’ll now have one loop left on the hook, and you’ve completed one “single crochet” stitch! Congrats! Now, just keep repeating steps 7-10. For each stitch, insert your hook into the next V on the chain, and complete the single crochet stitch just as you did above.
12. After you’ve worked all the way down the chain, you’ve completed your first row! Your hook will now be at the far left side of your work. The next step is to turn the crocheted piece in your hands so that your hook is back at the top right corner of the piece you’ve made.
13. If you look at the top edge of your work in progress, you’ll again see a row of V’s. For this and each subsequent row, insert your hook under both loops of the V.
After inserting the hook into the V, yarn over and complete each stitch just as you did above.
Continue in this way, turning the work after you complete each row. This will create a strip of single-crochet fabric that will continue to grow as you go–perfect for making a scarf or any square/rectangular object!

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