While I was out running errands this past weekend I decided to knock #2 off my list of 13 Goals for 2013, Find a hobby that I love. So I swung into Michaels Arts & Crafts and after aimlessly walking up and down the knitting and crocheting isles for what felt like forever, I decided to go with crocheting. I ended up grabbing this “I taught myself crochet” book and two skeins of yarn.
Optimistically I sat down on Saturday with my yarn and my book. I have to be honest, I am highly let down with the book. Had I not used my 40% off coupon on this book and only paid 5 bucks for it, I totally would have returned it. The very first instructions was to make a slip knot. Great. Except I have no idea how on earth to make a slip knot!
After searching the web I did finally figure out how to make one (turns out it is super easy), so I continued reading the book, and I attempted to learn what to do next. I got as far as making a chain, that is where it all turned into a foreign language. The book was very difficult to follow. I put the book down and hit the internet, and actually found a TON of very helpful websites, either via the help of friends or Pins on Pinterest and learned a stitch or two. Bottom line: If you get the urge to learn how to crochet do NOT buy one of these lame books. They are a complete waste of time and money. I will share some of the great resources that I have found and save you some time!
First is Craftyminx’s Crochet School, which in my opinion was the very best place I have found yet. The Crochet school walks you through 23 lessons (each including videos), that start from the beginning, explaining each step with great detail. I know whenever I went to the craft store I had zero idea what I was doing, or where to even begin. To be honest I was feeling slightly overwhelmed. This website reassured me that I could do it.
Craftyminx has everything from helping choosing a crochet hook, all the way to reading patterns. I was actually watching one of the videos and looked over to John and said “I would have totally paid for this”. I meant it too, her lessons are so easy to understand as well as super thorough. Luckily for us though, the lessons ARE free.
I also found Crochet Ever After thanks to a friend on Instagram. I think this site is perfect for once you have gotten your feet a little wet with crocheting (still beginner but you have some idea whats going on). Crochet Ever After has video and photo tutorials which are easy to follow and understand.
She has a good variety of free patterns, but also has some paid patterns in her shop as well, that are affordable, and pretty darn adorable! She even has a really cute blog that has a good amount of inspiration. It certainly is a site that even if you are a seasoned crochet veteran you would probably still enjoy!
Crafts for Kidlets is like the others listed above. It also has a few good instructional videos . I do realize that it is a site meant for crafts for kids, however if you are like me and have a hard time catching onto things quickly then these videos might just be up your alley. Or if you are planning on teaching your kids to crochet like I am (my kids have taken a real interest in learning).
There is five separate posts, one for each lesson. The first one is of course crocheting 101, and the last is finishing up you project. Literally every step you need from start to finish. Not quite as detailed as the lessons from Craftyminx, but still a pretty good starting point.
TipNut also has quite a few step by step instructions. Some of the videos are double of each set. For example there is a few versions of the chain stitch video, so if you do not understand the first version surely one of the other versions might work better for you. This site even teaches you how to read patterns. If you have not looked at a crochet pattern yet, do so, and I promise you will need this guide to make sense of things!
While you are on this site be sure to browse a little, this site is known for having some really terrific tutorials.
The Crochet Decoder app is also a pretty useful too! It has a vast list of abbreviations and their meanings (whew, there is a TON of them so this would be an excellent reference to have). The app also has hooks and what yarn to pair with them, crochet symbols, and the one I like the most is stitches section that has pictures of each stitch. Personally my memory is terrible so this app is a perfect reference app to help me keep up with the many many crocheting terms.
Also: I have a couple promo code for this app, so if you are interested do not be shy- email / tweet / Facebook me and I will send one over your way.
(This app company also makes quite a few other pretty cool reference type apps, I highly encourage you to give their site a quick look)
Last but certainly not least, my Pinterest Crochet board. I will be updating this board daily (yes, I am slightly the Pinterest addict). That means I will have some of the greatest patterns, tutorials, and anything else crochet related on there. You really wont want to miss it.
Thats it for now. Right now I am actually going to continue to work on that blanket for my 10 year old (per his request). It turns out crocheting a blanket takes quite a while… who knew.