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How to Crochet for Beginners

So, you want to learn how to crochet but you don’t know where to start. In this crochet for beginners guide, we will go over some easy basic crochet stitches, an explanation of knitting vs crochet, and how to crochet a circle so you can learn to crochet for your enjoyment. 

Let’s get started. . .

Crochet vs Knit: What’s the difference? 

The difference between knitting and crochet may be hard to see for those who are inexperienced in the arts. There are striking resemblances, however, they are very different.

Both forms use yarn to produce the products, but knitting is done with two knitting needles and stitches are made with ring-shaped elements known as loops. Crocheting, however, is done by just one hook and the stitches will remind you of little knots.

Knitting is easier to learn because only two stitches are used: the knit stitch and purl stitch. This is a very logical art form – knitters move the stitches from one needle to another and vice versa. The loops remain on the needles, which leads to a very simplified process. The stitches look like straight lines or small V-shaped patterns.

Crochet stitches accumulate and range from very short and small (chain stitches) to very tall and twisted (also known as triple crochet). There are other stitches that are a mix between these two, of which single and double crochet are the most common. The stitches for these are more irregular and lumpy.

Easy Crochet Stitches

Below, we will quickly go over a few basic crochet stitches every beginner should know. First, however, you must make sure that whatever yarn you are using is recommended for the particular crochet hook (needle) you are using. 

For this tutorial, Vinita will be using a 5-ply yarn so the stitches appear large and easy to see and understand. 

How to Make a Slipknot

Most crochet projects are started with a slipknot. It’s just a plain knot, no frills and it’s not difficult. 

Start by wrapping the yarn around two fingers like so:

Loosen the loop around your fingers and pull the working yarn through the loop. That is, pull the loose end of the yarn through this loop you’ve created:

You should end up with something like this:

That’s a slipknot!

How to Chain Stitch

Once you have a slipknot, it is very easy to learn how to chain stitch.

Begin by pushing your needle through the given slipknot loop:

Pull it tight, but not too tight. Only tight enough to where it still easily glides along the needle:

There are two ways to hold the needle while you chain stitch. Either like a pencil or like a cell phone. The more you practice, the better you’ll understand which way feels more comfortable to you.

Now, with everything held tight, overlap the needle over the yarn, hook the yarn on the underneath side, and pull it through your loop like in the series of photos from below:

And voila! You have your first chain:

Repeat the steps until you feel comfortable to move onto your next stitch. You’ll see a chain start to form. Hence the name of the stitch:

How to Single Crochet

Moving onto how to Single Crochet.

All single crochet requires starting with a chain stitch because it is important to start with your needle (hook) following through the second stitch on your chain. Do not count the loop. 

So, from your loop, skip over the first chain in your stitch and simply maneuver your needle through the second chain.

As you can see that the needle is in the loop and we are guiding it toward the second chain in our stitch.

After sliding your needle through the second stitch, it should look like this:

After that, you want to use a similar motion used in your chain stitch, simply move your needle underneath the yarn, hook, and pull through your chain like seen in the photo series below (that is, only through the first loop on your needle):

After you’ve done that, repeat the process except for this time, you will pull the yarn through both loops. That will result in your first single crochet as seen below.

Repeat the process, gradually moving down your chain and creating a single crochet stitch throughout. It should look similar to this:

You can see a full tutorial for how to single crochet in our beginner’s guide here:

How to Half Double Crochet (HDC)

Half Double Crochet, or sometimes referred to as HDC, is very similar to single crochet. However, instead of starting on the second chain on your pattern, you’re actually going to start on the third chain down from your slipknot loop. 

Once done, you’ll make the same movement by yarning over your needle but, after, you’ll only hook the yarn through the first loop on your needle like so:

By pulling the yarn only through the first loop, you’ll then create three loops around your needle as seen above. 

After, you yarn over and hook the yarn again. This time, pull the yarn through all three loops on your needle.

Once done, you can repeat the process. First yarn over, then put your hook through the next chain of your chain stitch. 

Following that step, the entire process is exactly the same to create the next half double crochet.

You can see a full tutorial for how to half double crochet in our beginner’s guide here:

How to Double Crochet

Similar to the single crochet and half double crochet, double crochet also starts with a chain stitch. For this example, you only have to make five or six chain stitches.

In a double crochet, you will start by slipping your needle through the fourth stitch on your chain stitch. That means you skip over the first three stitches in your chain. This is very important.

Notice where the needle is supposed to slip through before starting: 

So, just like in the first two techniques, first, you must yarn over before skipping to the fourth stitch in the chain. Once you’ve done that, you can begin your Double crochet by following the same steps from above. 

Notice, once you begin, you should have three loops around your needle just like so:

You’ll first pull the yarn through the first loop. Then, yarn over again and pull the yarn through the first two loops.

Upon doing that, you’ll see you are left with only two loops around your needle. You’ll then yarn over and pull the next yarn through both loops on the needle.

We realize this is getting a bit complicated, but trust us, it’s much easier to learn through our free courses with Skillshare. We share these same methods precisely and clearly on video here.

Your double crochet should look like this:

You can see a full tutorial for how to double crochet in our beginner’s guide here:

How to Triple Crochet

Next is the triple crochet which is not as commonly used as the single, half double, or double crochet, but still important to learn for convenience’s sake. 

Begin the process the same way we have on every stitch in this guide:

  1. Make a slipknot
  2. Create a chain stitch

If you need help with these again, you can always refer to the instruction at the top of this guide.

Here, you’ll skip the first four stitches on your chain and start working on the fifth stitch. This will make your entire stitch about twice the size of the double crochet. 

Triple crochet is also a little bit different in that at the beginning, you should yarn over your needle twice before starting. In previous stitches, you only ever yarn over once, but triple is a little different. 

It should look like this:

Use the same technique as in previous stitches but this time after yarning over twice, you will start in the fifth stitch of the chain, hook and pull through the first loop, and it will result in four loops around your needle like so:

The next time you yarn over, only pull the yarn through the first two loops:

After that, yarn over and pull the yarn through the next two loops on the needle:

Finally, yarn over again and pull it through the last two loops remaining on the needle. Repeat the process on the next stitch in the chain and soon you’ll have your triple crochet.

Here’s what it should look like in the end:

You can see a full tutorial for how to triple crochet in our beginner’s guide here.

How to Crochet a Circle

We have an excellent guide to show you how to crochet a circle, click on the link/image below. To give you an idea of what it should look like, take a look at this:

More Crochet Fun!

For more on different crochet patterns and how-to guides, feel free to visit other parts of our website like our Top Easy Crochet Patterns for Beginners or How to Crochet a Scarf.

Feel free to leave a comment in the section below or share your crochet artwork in photo form! We love to see how our guides have helped 🙂 

About the Author: Crochet Stitches

Hello, and welcome to our site. We've been passionate about crochet for years and have learned a lot along the way. We hope our tutorials and tips will help you out on your crochet journey. Let's make art together!

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