To practice any art, no matter how well or badly, is a way to make your soul grow. So do it." -- Kurt Vonnegut
Arts and crafts are very therapeutic and not just for fun or as a hobby. Surprisingly crocheting and knitting as a lot of health benefits to the people who crochet or knit. From helping with insomnia, reducing stress, easing depression, the benefits are endless. The good thing about crocheting is that while you are at it, your body and mind has a lot to gain. Relaxed, repetitive motions such as the ones used in crochet and knitting can help calm down the body and the brain.
You can start learning how to crochet at any age. There is no perfect age to start. There are many Nigerians who are passionate about crocheting and even using it as a means to make money. If you search online, you will see several Nigerians on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, TikTok, Snapchat and the likes who are showcasing their love for crotchet.
If you are in Nigeria or any part of the world and you want to learn how to crochet? Then this article is what you need to get started. We'll take you through the basics in our beginners guide to crochet!. This article will take you through everything you need to know so that you can start hooking as soon as possible! We’ve written this beginner guide to crochet in order of things you need to know to learn how to crochet, where to get tutorials, free patterns and of course, why you should learn it.
Reasons To Crochet
Do you need reasons to learn how to crochet?
Well, here are several reasons you should get started today:
- It’s increasingly becoming popular in Nigeria right now. Crochet has seen a resurgence in recent years.
- It is easy to learn: Learning to crochet is easy and fun especially with all the free tutorials and free crochet patterns out there. If you think knitting is easy, well try crocheting. It is so much easier than knitting.
- It’s good for your hands. Crochet can improve your motor skills and your dexterity and can help reduce the risk of arthritis.
- It’s practical and portable. You only need one hook and your yarn(s), meaning that you can easily take your materials with you on the go.
- It is good for the brain: By engaging in cognitive exercises and stimulating your mind, you can slow down or even prevent memory loss. This is why yarn crafting cancan reduces the risk of Alzheimer’s by 30-50%. There is no doubt that crocheting and creative activities are very good for a healthy brain
- It’s social. You can easily create a social bond by sharing your passion for crochet with others on Instagram or a Facebook group. You’ll be surprised at how many people you’ll meet through crochet.
- It is inexpensive to start. As a beginner, the main materials needed are just a hook and a yarn.
- It reduces stress: Studies have shown that crocheting can greatly reduce your levels of cortisol, the stress hormone, and increase the levels of dopamine and serotonin, the happiness hormones.
- It can improve dexterity. Those repetitive moves in crochet are actually great for strengthening the muscles in the hands and wrists, and they are excellent for keeping finger joints flexible.
- It improves your self-esteem. Being able to say “I made that” or receiving a compliment on something you made can give you a huge sense of pride. Crochet allows you to build your confidence, too.
Tools To Get Started
To learn how to crochet, you will need just a single hook, unlike knitting requires two needles.
A crochet hook is a tool consisting of a slender handle with a Hook at one or sometimes both ends, which is used to pull thread or yarn through loops to create crochet stitches. Crochet hooks have a number that defines their diameter. A general rule of thumb is that your yarn and hook should somewhat correspond with each other. Smaller yarn uses a smaller hook and a larger hook is used for bulky yarn.
A crochet needle is made up of:
- A Head
- A shaft
- A handle
A crochet hook can cost anything from ₦300 and above depending on its size and make. You can get them in the supermarkets, your local markets or online. As you gain experience, you’ll be able to tell which diameter you’ll need depending on how tightly-knit you want your project to be.
Choosing The Material
Just like the hook, you need to choose the right material for your project. I recommend you decide what you’re going to make and then buy the crochet hook and the right yarn or thread. Yarn is a textile commonly made of wool, cotton, or acrylic. The type of yarn or crochet thread will depend on your project. A Double Knit weight yarn in acrylic, wool or cotton is what we would recommend as the best yarn for crochet for beginners because they are uniform in thickness plus you can easily undo them if you make a mistake.
As a beginner, it is advised to choose a yarn according to what you are making or as prescribed in the pattern you are working with. The weight of the yarn you choose must suit your particular project.
Other Crochet Tools
- Tape measure
- Stitch markers
- Wool needles
Do not start by buying a lot of crochet material. Buy just what you need so you can see if crochet is for you or not. Once you’ve mastered the basics, the reality is that there is so much wonderful crochet yarn out there that sometimes it can be hard to choose.
Crochet Tutorials Out There
Once you have gotten your basic materials like the hook and yarn, the next step is to learn how to crochet. Before you start your project, you should practise some of the basic crochet techniques.
The below are some of the basic crochet stitches and techniques you should get familiar with before you get started with a crochet project:
- Chain stitch
- Single crochet stitch
- Half double crochet stitch
- Double crochet stitch
- Slip stitch
- Treble stitch
- Surface crochet slip stitches
- Back loop single crochet
- Changing the line
- Increasing or decreasing stitches
- Changing the yarn or thread
- Slip knot
There are plenty of free crochet tutorials you can get started with on the internet. To learn the basics of crochet, there are plenty of tutorials and patterns also available for free online.
There are plenty of YouTube channels, Pinterest tutorials with links and websites like spruce crafts, all free crochet, love craft, the crochet crowd and so on that can show you how to crochet. Similarly, you can use the internet and social media to get in touch with other crocheters. You can talk to them, show off your projects, and get advice.
Where Can I Find Crochet Patterns?
Once you understand what crocheting is all about, the materials you need and of course, mastered some of the stitches, The next thing on your mind is to make a crochet project.
As you’ll have understood, it’s not difficult finding information about crochet online. You just need to work out what you want to make!. A quick search for “crochet patterns” on Google will reveal plenty of results from various websites such as:
- Love crafts: this is a website where you can download a lot of free crochet patterns. If you're looking for a free crochet pattern for a cap, crochet baby booties, baby blankets, scarves, cardigans, shawls, or looking for an inspiration for your next crochet project, then you should have a look at lovecrafts.com.
- The social network Pinterest is also a great site to visit for arts and crafts. Searching for “crochet patterns” there will provide you with a lot of inspiration.
- AllFreeCrochet.com: AllFreeCrochet is a website dedicated to offering the best free crochet patterns, how-tos, tips, and crochet ideas from their team and the crochet community there. They have a blog, eBooks, resources, collections, and a set of well-organised patterns for beginner and advanced crocheters.
- Yanspirations also has a lot of free crochet patterns that you can work with as a beginner or whatever skills level you have.
If you’re looking for ideas, here are some quick and easy items to make:
- Baby blanket
- Retractable tape rule case
- Crochet shawls
- Crochet caps
- Tote bags
- Kitchen towels
- Crochet Coffee Cozy
Crocheting is fun and easy to learn on your own. However, if you need a tutor to learn crochet techniques, feel free to contact any of our crochet tutors on Superprof Nigeria. There are a lot of tutors to choose from regardless of your location anywhere in the world. Many of the tutors offer both home tutorials and online lessons. If you want a one-on-one tutorial for less or can't find a suitable tutor where you live, online tutorials are great because they can be taught from anywhere in the world. All you need is a webcam and a decent internet connection!
If I'm searching for tutors near me, I always use Superprof Nigeria. With over 1000 subjects and 10,000 tutors, you can learn anything you want at any time and even get a tutor to prepare you for your next professional examinations.
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