Who Taught You To Crochet?

By Rachel Choi – 72 Comments

I run into many people that are self taught crocheters and some that are taught by family or friends. I’ve always wondered if one way was better than the other, but I guess it all depends on the person since we all have different learning styles.

As for me, I was taught by my mom! When I was younger I asked my mom to teach me to crochet after I saw one of my friends doing it. She taught me the basics, like the foundation chain, single crochet and double crochet (thanks mom!). According to her, I was really bad at making my chains. But now that I know the basics, I learn more from the internet and books. I like being able to learn from all sorts of places and people. So I guess you can say that I’m 50/50, half taught by family and half taught by books and the internet.

What about you? Who taught you to crochet?

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72 Comments

  1. Sarah G says:

    I’m fairly certain that my Grandma taught me at one point when I was younger, but I never stuck with it or even made an actual FO. I took classes a few years ago at a craft studio near me (RIP Spark Crafts!) with a friend (who’s Grandma had taught her ages ago) and even then it took a few years for the obsession to really set it.

  2. Stacey Mancilla says:

    My Nina was he one who taught me to crochet. She and my grandma were just learning to make scarfs and I had gone to my grandmas house he day they were working on them and I asked my Nina if she could show me how to do it. I practiced in the scarfs she was making and she said I could keep it and he hook I was using :-)
    now I mostly use the Internet for ideas on things to make. Or the little patten ideas they have at michaels in the yarn section.

  3. Margaret Garland says:

    I never knew anyone who crocheted when I was young. Or didn’t notice them if I did. I am also left-handed and had enough trouble with being taught to knit back then by teachers who were all right-handed.

    I found a small green booklet at Woolworth’s on how to crochet. It had black & white pictures in it but they were clear and easy to figure out. Also the instructions were clear and didn’t assume the beginner knew anything at all. I would look at the picture and reverse it in my mind in order to do it left-handedly. It took some trial and error (mostly error; lots of trial), but I finally got the hang of it. I’ve never tackled clothing other than than making a couple of the old vests that were popular back in the 70’s. You can see them being worn by hippies in old movies.

    I took up quilting in my late 30’s & abandoned yarn work for the most part. Then, I developed hand tremors & had to give up quilting. Thus, I re-discovered the pleasure of working with yarn.

    I have a mania for knitting and crocheting hats. Currently, I am crocheting the Basic Baby Cocoon in LBY’s Cupcake yarn in Persimmon & Lemon Drop.

  4. Deb H. says:

    My grandmother taught me to crochet when I was in the fourth grade. That was over 20 years ago! I remember her telling people that I “took to it like a duck to water”. I’m so thankful that she taught me before she passed away. I think of her every time I pick up a hook! Now I use the internet for patterns and learning new stitches. I’ve been making a lot of hats and scarves lately!

  5. Elizabeth says:

    My grandma taught me to chain and double crochet but that was the only thing she knew how to crochet so i had to learn everything else on the internet—thank god for youtube :p

  6. Caitlin says:

    I’m the same as you Rachel! My mom showed me the basics (chains and single crochet) and thought that my chains were uneven. I learned everything else from crochet books and the internet and I’m proud to say my chains are much better.

  7. Denisse says:

    You know I was and wasn’t exactly to crochet, my mom taught me how to make chains, and double crochets but she didn’t knwo exactly how to crochet because those stitches were the only she knew, also she taught me how do make dollies but like the yarn was very very small i didn’t think that was really crochet. Well that was like when i was 8 or 9 years old, after a few yearslike when i was 12 i don;t know why I got interested again by ”crochet” so I started searching on the internet to see what i could learn and I found a great youtube web page that had a lot of videos of patterns so I saw those videos, the first thing I made was a little baby sockand it was really cute.
    Till know i’m still learning, besides that i’m just almost 14 years old.

  8. Bananas says:

    My mommie taught me but she said that I would always crochet too tight, so I stoppped and about 4 yrs ago I retaught myself agian but this time I learned how to read patterns and sorta’ memorize the abbriviations and the symbols

  9. Allison says:

    My mother taught me as a child. She made me crochet large granny square afghans. I did two single bed and two double bed size blankets. I can tell you after that i could never forget how to crochet and even when i did not crochet for a period of about 4 years, i just picked up the hook and could go. Now my mother has been dead for about 8 years and i am so grateful for the connections offered that wool and hook.

  10. Cindy says:

    Being the only person in my family and circle of friends who wanted to learn how to knit, I had to learn everything I know about knitting and crocheting online. Youtube videos taught me how to read patterns and do everything. I’ve been knitting since I was 13, but it got boring because I didn’t know how to make anything other than a scarf, so I learned how to crochet when I was 16. I am now 18 years old, and I’ve taken up knitting again and proud to say I can make socks, slippers, beanies, scarves, etc. with needles or a hook.

  11. Trisha says:

    My mom sort of taught me when I was little, but all I learned to do was a very long chain. This summer at camp, one of the adult leaders crocheted during her free time and produced several hats every day. I was amazed and thought, “I could do that!” She even taught some of the children how to crochet. Then I ran across a book called “I Taught Myself Crochet”, bought it and a few skeins of yarn, and made a very crooked scarf for my daughter! It was so fun! My sister-in-laws made fun of me, but I persevered. Now I’ve made scarves for all my 4 kids, a few hats, and now I’m working on a blanket. Still not very good, but I’m enjoying this new pasttime.

  12. Ingeborg says:

    Hi there!
    I learned to crochet at secondary school when I was about 6 years old. Since then i’m hooked LOL! I remember all the drawers filled with wool and how much I wanted all the skeins in them. There my addiction for yarns began.
    Have a great day!

  13. Anna says:

    My mom and, later, my aunt tried to teach me when I was a kid. It didn’t click at all. I finally taught myself out of a book. That was about 16 years ago, when my first daughter was just a baby. Someone gave me a crocheted baby blanket she’d made that wouldn’t lie flat. Drove me nuts. I learned how to crochet, figured out where the mistake was, unravelled and re-made it. *L*

  14. Alicia says:

    Hello Rachel, I recently came across your site and I love it! My story is very similar to yours. My mom taught me when I was in elementary school. I’m also left handed and mom is right handed, so I had to do the whole “mirror” thing when she was teaching me. I then found a flash card thing at a book store that had different stitches and I went off from there. I had to teach myself how to read the instructions, and I read the diagrams on the instructions backwards. Then I branched out from just using the stitches to looking for different patterns from the internet and places where they have the free project sheets. sometimes I like to make up my own stuff, or replicate some of the things I already have (i.e. someone made butterflies out of crochet, and my mom didn’t know how to do it, so I was able to look at it, see what they did and I copied it)

  15. LuAnne says:

    I learned how to knit when I was 9 or 10 in 4-H. Then, when I was in high school (back in the early 70’s — OUCH! Has it really been that long?) my grandmother made me a long filet crochet olive green vest. I ABSOLUTELY loved it & wore it forever. She taught me the basic stitches & I learned from craft mags from then on. When I was broke & raising 3 kids on my own, Aunt Mary’s (Caron Yarn outlet store) helped me afford yarn to make afghans, mittens, & scarves for my family. Doilies always scared me, until a new neighbor in the 90’s gave me a few of her Magic Crochet & Decorative Crochet mags. I’ve been doing more thread crochet ever since. We just got t newa Hobby Lobby in the area and have been trying out new threads, cords & yarns. This past year I’ve been doing socks,purses & shoppin totes. Not to good with the linings yet – never was a good seamstress.

  16. Judi says:

    I think my Mom must have taught me the basics when i was really young. She knew only the basics of knitting and crocheting and could only make a scarf or simple hat. It wasn’t really her thing. Any further knowledge I gained must have come from patterns and how-to book. I remember knitting argyle socks for my older brother when he was in college. They were all the rage in the 50’s. Made a gorgeous sweater for my father back in the 60’s but eventually I stopped knitting altogether and stuck with crochet. Gave up embroidery also which I did a lot of back in the 50’s & 60’s. Have stayed with crochet ever since. Haven’t gotten into the new techniques–felting, tunisian and the newer yarns. I’m just a traditional crocheter.

  17. Bookworm says:

    Self-taught mainly. I got interested because I went to a panel on amigurumi at an anime convention. They attempted to teach the basics, but I really didn’t learn anything. So I’d say I’m more self-taught with a slight, very poor, introduction from the people running the panel.

  18. Angela says:

    My grandmother first introduced me to crocheting. She was much more patient than I was. I learned to chain and that was about it. Picked crocheting up again when I took my daughter to take crochet lessons at Ben Franklin’s Crafts. The instructors kept encourgaging me to try crocheting for myself again. I resisted them for about 3 weeks and then I thougth, hmmm, why not? Needless to say, I am now hooked on crocheting! Thanks to all of those encourgaging crocheters out there. I am now encouraging others to try this wonderful art for themselves and have sucessfully gotten others addicted to yarn and crocheting.

  19. Rose says:

    My mom also taught me how to crochet (the basics). I’m not certain how she learned herself though! She said she just looked at blankets and figured it out that way- I’m certain there’s more to it than that.

  20. Tx Grammy says:

    When my husband was stationed in Germany over 38 years ago – i had to find something to do or go nuts! So I bought a how to crochet book, hook and thread and went to work. The yarn choices were slim at the PX and I chose an orange veragated color – believe it or not I still have that first project! There have been many, many, since then. I came home from Germany with a new passion and a new son and have never looked back! In fact I actually taught my Mom and my Grandmother to crochet which was really cool!

  21. Nanny says:

    My grandma taught me the basics (I still have and use the crochet hook she bought me) but I don’t remember doing much crocheting when I knew how to do it, then when I was grown up I started again on patterns from books etc., though I did more knitting then.

  22. Susan says:

    When I was 8 years old my next-door neighbor taught me how to do granny squares — she wanted help. I then started creating other things from that concept, although I thought that was all there was to it. In my teens I found books on the subject and bought 1 or 2 which increased my knowledge. Now, 50 years later, I find the Internet has so many resources for new stitches, new concepts, I am crocheting constantly and creating on others’ patterns.

  23. brittany says:

    i am a self taught knitter and crocheter. checked out a bunch of books from my library. got interested into crocheting and knitting because of the fun with yarn club at the library now im the head teen knitter/crocheter in the club and i also volunteer to teach others too. the club is a great way to meet teens who also crochet and knit in my local area. im always learning new patterns and i make new friends every meeting.

  24. Angie says:

    My grandmother taught me to crochet when I was in high school. I am left-handed and she sat across from me and I ‘mirrored’ what she did. She was very patient. I still have the first ‘glass gloves’ that she had me make and have made sets of them over the years as gifts. As was mentioned above, I think of her when I crochet and know that I’m enjoying a craft because of her. That was almost 50 years ago.

  25. NoOn says:

    My Mama, I was like 9 or 10. I had home-economics in school and we had 3-month course but I was really bad, so bad all my assignments were done by mom but when summer came I told her to teach me and voilaaa ;)

  26. Cami says:

    I became interested when I heard Sister Diane describing the process on the Craftypod podcast. I was never before interested in yarn, but somehow she made it sound interesting. So I asked my mom for some crochet hooks, bought some yarn, and took out a book from the library.

    Unfortunately, I started with some fun fur I found at the dollar store. Not the best stitch definition. Also, my chains were very tight. I didn´t know what they meant about “the loop” either. To me, there were three loops!!

    So, I asked someone at work to show me. She taught me double crochet and from there I was off. I made some freeform items but I didn´t know how to read patterns. So, I did every exercise in _Stitch N Bitch Crochet: The Happy Hooker_ by Debbie Stoller and I was soon comfortable enough to follow a pattern. That was about 2 years ago. I love crochet´s portablility.

    On another note- I am bothered when people say they “taught themselves” when they learned from a book or a video. What do you all think about that? I think that teaching oneself means figuring something out, not reading about it, or watching videos, then learning from them. But maybe that´s just the picky English teacher in me… haha. Have fun, everyone!

  27. Lil says:

    My Po-Po taught me 40 years ago, but I don’t have any finished projects from those days. Three months ago, I picked up my Po-Po’s crochet hook and it was like riding a bicycle. I guess you never forget. I taught myself to read a pattern and love to amigurumi! Yay, kawaii!

  28. Donna C says:

    My Granny taught me to crochet a pansy when I was 5. I remember it as plain as it if were yesterday – I was watching her make pansies on a doily and asked her to teach me. She gave me a hook, a ball of thread and showed me step by step, and I made my own little pansy! I was so proud of it I showed everyone who came in the house. Granted, I put down the hook and didn’t pick it up for about 10 years, but when I did, I taught myself to make just about anything crochet! I love it, it’s one of the most satisfying crafts I do.

  29. Julia Walsh says:

    Hi I was taught by my Auntie Peggy, she was brilliant, so patient with me, as I was only 9 yrs old. We were living with her and her family as my parents were loking for a new house.

    Auntie Peggy was the UK rep for Knitting machnes she was so very clever, knitting, crochet anything thing she put her hand to. Unfortunatly she died last year and is very sadly missed by us all, but I thank her so much for teaching me to crochet all those years ago.

  30. Suzanne says:

    My ex-mother-in-law taught me how to crochet after my baby died. She said I needed to keep my mind and hands busy. I am so grateful to her for being there for me. The first thing she had me make was a grannie square afghan for a friend who was expecting, then she taught me how to make a ripple afghan for my baby. I have been crocheting since!

    She passed away last spring at age 92 and I really miss her friendship!

  31. Tamara says:

    My mom was always really into crocheting – she taught me to crochet when I was younger but I never stuck with it. The only thing I ever made was a cover for a square Kleenex box. Then a couple of years ago I thought maybe I should take it up again and try to make my mother something for Christmas. I bought a book called “I Taught Myself to Crochet”; it came with a bunch of hooks and stitch counters and a few easy patterns. It took me another year to actually do anything with it and then another year still to really get into it. I found it was very easy to learn from the book since I had learned the basics already so long ago – it was more like a refresher course. Now I refer to the book when necessary for help with some stitches, but find most of my patterns on the internet.

  32. T W says:

    My grandmother taught me how to make granny squares about 30 years ago and I was able to figure the rest out on my own. She once told me that she wished she had something to leave for each of her grandchildren and great-grandchildren when she left this Earth. I proudly told her that she’d given me the best gift I’ve ever received when she taught me how to crochet! She’s been gone now 12 1/2 years and I still think of her often while crocheting, even though I rarely do granny squares (they have to be sewn together and I don’t really care for sewing). I think the hardest part in learning from her was that she was right-handed and I’m left handed. I even inherited the last afghan she started and at first wondered how I’d ever be able to finish it. A dear friend gently said, “It’s finished now” and I had to agree. So now it sits in a plastic carrier (also given to me by my grandmother) in the living room as one of my most prized possessions.

  33. aero_simmy says:

    I initially learned to make chains (both with a hook and with my finger or a pen) from Ms. Simone, an older lady who worked at the extended day at my elementary school. That was back when I was between 6 and 8. I somehow managed to make a (lop-sided) scarf at one point back then, but then it got put aside for a while. I picked it up again last semester and taught myself from a book I found at B&N for a class project (it has zombies and ninjas and other awesome things right up my alley). Now I seem to have gotten myself stuck on crocheting, particularly amigurumi things.

  34. Vera Unwin says:

    I am in the UK. I am nearly 84yrs old and my mother who died nearly 1Oyrs ago at the age of nearly 104 taught me to crochet. Or at least I watched her do it, copied her, made mistakes and
    then she corrected. She was crocheting up to the age of nearly 102 with my help in laboriously
    reading the pattern, and she laboriously performing the stitches. She had macular degeneration and was registered blind. So you can imagine how long a few chain took to complete.
    She regularly attended the eye clinic.
    but there was nothing they could do. She had the Talking Books for the Blind and that is how she obtained some level of interest, also she loved hearing the Psalms read on the tapes – those were her favourite. .
    At the age of about 101 she completed a very fine doily for the Eye Surgeon which he framed and
    had placed on the wall of his hospital clinic. He was proud of her as was I. | love your website.
    Sincerely -Vera

  35. em says:

    I completely learned from books, I started knitting at age 9, then a year later crochet & I liked that a whole lot better. I’m now 15

  36. Amy says:

    I taught myself to crochet by watching youtube this summer! I’d always been a keen knitter and my Grandma taught me how to do that when I was little so I could make squares for blankets for a brownie challenge. My favourite great Aunt crocheted all the time when I was little and I still have the bedspread she made me for my christening on my bed, I was always fascinated when I watched her and so my mum kept telling me she would teach me how to crochet for years but never got round to it. Although I’ve only been crocheting since June last year my Mum said I have now far surpassed her skills and wants me to show her things! I’m now trying to convince my 14 year old daughter to learn but she’s not really that bothered. I need to find some very cool teen patterns that won’t overwhelm her I think.

  37. Maria says:

    My mom taught me to crochet. She started with the chain and I practiced until my stitches were even. I guess she wanted me to work on the tension but I didn’t know that at that time. She was a great crocheter. Made things without patterns so she really could not teach me how to read a pattern. As I got older, I started reading crochet books and diagrams. At that time my favorit magazine with Magic Crochet where I learded to read diagrams and make lots of things on my own. The rest is history – I’m greatful to my mom for teaching me the art and inspiring me to continue crocheting as well as other crafts of needle works. Now she can no longer crochet because of her hands and I wish I could help her find something to do that she can enjoy now. Well, I can go on and on but I won’t because it sadens me. Thank you for your Crochet Spot Rachel and for letting us share!!!

  38. Marla says:

    My sister in law came by, shortly after her wedding to my BIL (we hadn’t met yet since we live so far away) and she was crocheting them a huge blanket. I was intrigued and asked her to show me, she was the first person who ever took the time to show me, and now I’m hooked!! I still use that Boye J hook she taught me with!!

  39. Kelly B says:

    My mother tried to teach me when I was little. There wasn’t any patience for either of us. 23 years later, I taught myself.

  40. Jenefer says:

    When I was about 6 years old and I got Chicken Pox and couldn’t go to school. My grandmother kept me for my mom. Her Avon lady was coming over and she wanted to keep me occupied. so she taught me how to make a chain.
    I didn’t learn how to turn or any thing else until I was in my early 20’s. A girl I worked with taught me how to do the rest.

  41. mammabarb says:

    I am a self taught crocheter many years ago a friend of my sister told me if I went out and boht the yarn and hooks she would teach me how to crochet I was so excited I went right out and bought yarn,hooks and patterns.Came home called her and she said oh thats good but I don’t have the patients to teach anyone, I got so upset I sat on the floor with my yarn,hook and a pattern and i read and crocheted
    ,pulled out started over a zillion times lol. i worked hour after hour crocheting and tearing it out for an entire week all my waking free hours I I tried so hard,and I have been crocheting ever since, many many years later..

  42. Jeanne says:

    My piano teacher taught me to crochet. She crocheted beautiful work while giving me lessons and when I told her I would like to learn she said sure. She was right handed and I was left handed. She sat me in front of her, handed me a hook and ball of yarn. She first taught me to chain. When I mastered it, she said “now go home and chain the entire ball of yarn.” I did came back the following week and showed it to her. I was so proud until she told me to tear it out….Then she did the same thing with single, double, and triple crochet….Then she told me I knew enough to read a pattern and the rest is history. I enjoy making gifts for friends. I think of Mrs. Arntzen everytime a finish a project.

  43. Karen says:

    My ex mother-in-law taught me more than 20 years ago. The only pattern she knew for aphgans was the wave! I’m grateful that she taught me the basics, and the internet taught me the rest! Although, it’s been a lot of hard work to figure it out myself. but the results are so rewarding, I’m glad I did!!!

  44. Denise says:

    My grandmother taught me when I was about 6-7 years old (now I’m 36). I hadn’t crocheted since I was a teenager I’m guessing and really had the desire to try it again. I tried knitting but didn’t do well with the tension (it was HORRIBLE!) That was about 10 years ago. Now I’ve been crocheting for about 3 months and absolutely love it! I’ve gotten books from the library, got the Crocheting for Dummies (great book for self-learners!) and I’m starting with simple, useful projects. I’ve made Rachel’s Easy Drawstring Bag 3 times! With each time it gets better. :)

  45. Rita_K says:

    I guess I would have to say that my mom taught me the basics, een though I am left-handed, and I could not figure out what she was doing by watching her. She kind of told me what to do, and I just played it by ear.

  46. Vera says:

    My Mom taught me how to crochet the basics and I learnt how to crochet roses at a young age. The rest I learnt from a very old BOOK( Can you believe it!) I now use the internet if I’m stuck. I usually approach evrything in life with this motto: How difficult can it be? so crocheting was not too difficult. Now my friends are coming for lessons!

  47. Karen says:

    Both my Grandma and Mom showed me how to crochet, knit and cross stitch. I picked up on crocheting and cross stitch, but not knitting so much. I didn’t do any of them for the longest time and picked it up again about 12 years ago and really glad I did. They taught me the basics and I picked up the rest (and still do) from patterns and the internet.

  48. Carina says:

    A neighbour taught me to crochet when I was 12 and following her guidelines I did my first piece!A coat with a nice hood for my 1 year old baby brother, and I was soooo happy and satisfied with it!!
    But then I got interested in other things such as birds and all the animals I coud get home.
    It was not since I was in my thirties that I got interested in crochet again and started to buy every book and magazine I could, and I taught myself how to crochet(or better, I reminded myself how to do it!)Since then I´ve been learning from every source available,friends,magazines, books,but mainly the internet.There´s sooo much information on the web and so many patterns to try!!
    Now I can say I´m a crochetaholic, does the word exist?,jajaja!!

  49. Chris T. says:

    My mom has crocheted for years, but never had the patience to teach me. About 7 years ago My best friend learned how to crochet from a friend of hers, and decided that I needed to learn too! She taught me how to make a chain, and how to single crochet. It was like I was meant to crochet! From there I bought every book I could, and now, my mom calls me for crochet advice!!

  50. Megan says:

    I saw one of my mom’s friends doing it and I ask what she was doing and she told me so I asked my mom if she could by me the supplies and I would learn. She got me this book and at first I was so confused then I finally got it. LAte on my aunt who I didn’t know crocheted showed me some more advanced ways so I guess I am both.

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