Returning to Crochet: 3 Tips to Refresh Your Skills

By Tameko Barnette – 5 Comments

Whether you’re a novice or an experienced crocheter from way back, you probably have had times in life where you took a break from your all-time favorite craft. There are some die hard crochet fans who have never missed an opportunity to hone their skills. But what about those of us who can get swept up in life, wake up one morning, and realize how long it’s been since we’ve picked up a crochet hook and some yarn? What in the world can we do to return to crochet? Here are a few tips to get you back on the stitching track again.

Tip #1 – Go Back to the Basics. Sit down with your favorite color of yarn and size I or J crochet hook and make a very long chain. Do not spend time counting the chain loops. Just chain. Have fun with it. Then, you can start to single crochet stitch for awhile. Doing this helps you back into the swing of things, so when you tackle that new project, your mind is set to crochet with ease as you read the instructions. No more feeling like a fish out of water for you. You can practice chaining, single crochet stitch, half double crochet stitch, double crochet, and triple crochet stitch to help you get back into the game.

Tip #2 – Grab Some Books. You can go to the library and check out a few crochet books to help you along as well. You can practice with various stitch patterns, such as picot, popcorn stitch, bobble stitch, etc. Just make sure you are not investing too much energy in big projects right off the bat. The idea here is to practice, practice, practice. You’ve been away from crochet for awhile and you want your mind to get acclimated to it again. Make a small swatch gauge for each new stitch pattern to just see if you can do it. Remember…have fun with it.

Tip #3 – Join a Crochet Group. This is a must for anyone who loves to crochet. Crochet groups welcome all comers – new and experienced. Usually there is someone who started the group, who will check on each person attending the meeting to see what type of project they are working on and how they can help. You can learn a lot of tricks of the trade. You can swap patterns and make some new friends. So it’s a win-win for everyone.

Regardless of how long it has been since you have taken on a crochet project, you can use any of these tips at any time to help you get back into your favorite craft.

Do you have any suggestions on how to get back into crochet after taking a long break from it? Please share. We’d love to hear from you.

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  1. Judi Gums says:

    I didn’t do any crocheting for many years, partly because of working and not having enough time at night and mostly because I started getting arthritis in my hands in my later 30’s. I tried it once in a while and it was just to painful. Then I retired and had way to much time on my hands home alone. So I just crochet through the pain and believe it or not it has helped my hands a lot. I started with a small project……made 13 large afghans, one for each of my family members and a close friend. I realized I may not be able to do it for very much longer, so that was the incentive to keep on going with them. Now I can’t seem to sit down and watch TV or anything without yarn and hook in my hand.

    I also joined two crochet groups which keeps my interest and motivation going, I also love seeing what others have been working on. It also gives me a chance to make donation items to help others out.
    Judi G

  2. Tameko says:

    That’s really nice, Judi. Thanks for sharing. Wow, you joined 2 crochet groups. How cool!

  3. Margaret L. says:

    I learned to crochet when I was a kid. My sister & I would crochet dresses for our dolls. I found it much esaier & faster than knitting…& knitting was very boring!
    Over the years I started, stopped, & restarted. But had not been into it in recent years. I am in my 70’s now, & hadn’t been doing much crocheting. Then I started again (dishcloths, etc.) in order not to lose patience with people who were boring me to death 😉 They could talk on forever, and I could listen endlessly without frustration because my mind was occupied with the crocheting while they took forever and a day to get to the point of what they were saying! especially as two individuals just wanted me to listen, but not interject any comments of my own, indeed I usually couldn’t get a word of my own in edgewise anyway. I have arthritis in my hands & was very surprised to discover that crocheting actually helped me with pain (which had been pretty bad this past fall & winter. ). I assume that is because it can be constant gentle exercise, which helps delay the stiffness & pain that would otherwise occur. Also it helped me cope with stress, of which there had been a lot in recent months, & stress makes pain worse. So when the stress would start to build, if I picked up my hook& yarn it really helped me to chill out. I also rediscovered how much I enjoyed crocheting, which I had forgotten. So right now I am working on several small projects, choosing whichever one appeals to me at any given moment. And I AM HAVING FUN!!!!
    Well, that is my comment/reflection for today. Thanks for listening.

  4. Margaret L. says:

    p.s. Rachel, I am thoroughly enjoying this web site. Thank you for starting it. It has also helped me to rediscover my skills, much of which I had forgotten from lack of use.
    Thanks, again. I really enjoy what you have to say, & it really cheers me up if I am feeling down, which I have felt a lot this fall & winter. Thank you.

  5. Barbara L says:

    Hi; I started to crochet many years ago when my mother taught me; I had young children then; after I started work it got forgotten.

    Then one day my friend was having a baby so I decided to buy her a shawl; I was shocked to find that you could not buy what I would call a ‘proper’ shawl but only synthetic material shawls.
    My friend was delighted with her shawl and then other people began to ask me to make them one for their friends; so i ended up making around 7 shawls!

    I would love to join a group; but there really isnt any around my area, i wish there was 🙁 it seemes to be a dying skill which is such a shame; i have been shwoing my grandchildren the basics; i would love to be able to crochet a cardigan and other garments but need the support to do this.

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