Lesson

Chapter 2: Let’s Get Hookin’

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Overview

This chapter will teach you the techniques you need to get started crocheting. You’ll learn how to make the starting knot (slip knot), how to hook and pull the yarn (yarn over), and how to make your first stitch, the chain stitch (ch)!!

What you'll learn

01

The Slip Knot

02

The Yarn Over (yo)

03

The Chain Stitch (ch)

What you'll need

Cotton Yarn

Any color

Crochet Hook

Size G6 / 4.00mm

Abbreviations

ch

Chain Stitch

st

Stitch

yo

Yarn Over

The Lesson

Note:

These boxes are checkboxes

  • (07:45)

These time codes correlate to the video for this lesson

01

The Slip Knot

  • (00:32)

The slip knot is the first step to begin most crocheted projects. Think of it as kind of a mini noose; you can pull one end and it will tighten or close the loop, but when you pull the other end nothing happens. They’re very easy to make, here’s how:

Step 1

Lay the yarn flat.

Step 2

Make a loop with the short end over the long end (the one connected to the ball of yarn).

Step 3

Turn the loop over on itself, making it look a bit like a pretzel.

Step 4

Pull the inside string (the one closest to the long end) up and pull the knot tight.

Done!

Now just tighten the slip knot around the hook, but not too tight.

Note:

You may see abbreviations used in crochet patterns throughout this pattern. Look for abbreviations like (yo). You can find a list of these above.

We’ll go over this more in Chapter 9.

02

The Yarn Over (yo)

  • (01:23)

A yarn over, or ‘yo’, is the term used for how you get the yarn on the hook. How it’s done is pretty much in the name itself; you literally put the yarn around the hook. Make sure to grab the yarn from the back, rather than from the front.

The next step is going to be pulling that yarn through the hole, so you want to make sure you have a good hold on the yarn by keeping it taut with your left (or non-dominate) hand, specifically with your bottom three fingers.

What a yarn over should look like

Notice how the yarn is over the hook rather than the hook being over the yarn. The best technique when starting is to literally put the yarn over the hook with the left hand.

What a yarn over should NOT look like

Notice how the hook is on top of the yarn. This will cause a bunch of problems like awkward stitches and yarn splitting.

Splitting the yarn means grabbing only half of the yarn and splitting it in half. This can lead to weird stitches and over-stretched yarn, and happens more or less often depending on the type of yarn you use.

Splitting the yarn

03

The Chain Stitch (ch)

  • (00:00)

While the chain stitch might not be your
most used stitch, it’s definitely the most important to learn and perfect; this is because it requires the fundamental techniques for all the other stitches.

It also is what lays the base of your piece. Say you want to make a scarf and have it be 12” wide, well the chain stitch is going to be the first thing you make and will dictate all of the rest of the stitches in your piece.

The Chain Stitch (ch)

Basically I’m saying learn how to do chain stitches really well and it will make the rest of your crocheting a lot easier.

Step 1

With your hook in the slip knot, and using your index and thumb to pinch just below the ‘tail’ – yarn over the yarn held with your left (non-dominate) hand.

Step 2

Adjust your grip to be pinching on the knot, or close to the circle, then pull the yarn on that’s hooked through the loop.

Done!

That’s seriously it! Now keep yarning over and pulling through to make more chains!

Chain from the front
Chain from the back

Continue to Project 1...

Okay, so for every chapter, there will be a project to help you practice the technique(s) you just learned. These project will build upon each other chapter to chapter.

This project is super easy, mostly just to get you in the mood for future projects, to get you practicing the chain stitch (ch), and also to show that you already can crochet something!

Continue to Chapter 3...

Unlike the chain stitch, the single crochet (sc) is likely going to be the stitch you use the most. It can be used to make nearly anything: scarves, blankets, but mostly my favorite, amigurumi. It’s relatively easy too, at least once you perfect the chain stitch.

Comments

    1. Amber

      I had a quick question. I’m just starting out and I’m wondering if it matters what yarn I use to learn this? I have an acrylic yarn that is a “3” and says to use a 6/G hook. Would it be easier to use a heavier yarn for this? Thanks

      1. Louie Mensinger Post author

        I think you’ll be fine with that size yarn and hook, but I wouldn’t go any smaller.

        I find it’s easiest to stay somewhere between Worsted Weight (what you have) and Bulky yarn when starting out.

        I would also avoid dark shades of yarn, lighter colored yarn is easier to see what you’re doing.

        Lastly, I would listen to the crochet hook they suggest, but sometimes it can be a little easier to work with a slightly larger crochet hook. Never go smaller than what they suggest though.

        Hope this helps! Sorry for the late reply!
        -Lou

  1. Tonia

    It looks so simple, but keeping the yarn on the hook and drawing it through the loop is such a challenge for me. You really make it look easy!

  2. sanuye ford

    I feel like my chains aren’t the same size when I try to do this. Is there a way to help make them the same size (other than just doing it over and over)?

    1. Synn

      In order to keep each stitch the same size you need to keep an even amount of pull on the yarn while you’re making the stitches. Don’t let the loop loosen while you’re making a stitch, it’ll lead to it coming out lopsided. Keep a good amount of pull on your yarn, but also leave it slightly lax to make crocheting easier.

  3. Crispholic

    I have watched the video and have learned how to do my first chain , It did take me a while and found it bit easier wrapping the yarn around my pointy finger and holding on to the yarn like you showed in your video. I hopefully will learn more now but I do find it hard trying to grip the yarn as this is more diffucult then I thought , I thought it would be like loom banding but I was wrong .

  4. Susan Hendricks

    Great instructions. Thanks.
    It appears that my biggest challenge is going to be mastering the tension. I find it difficult to hang on to the yarn below my pointer finger.
    Practice practice practice!

    1. Louie Mensinger Post author

      Yah tension is definitely the most difficult part of learning to crochet in my opinion. I still struggle with it sometimes and go through phases of crocheting too tightly, and too loosely. It also depends on my mood :b