Tips on Understanding Crochet Instructions

Crochet instructions are in fact easy to understand. You will get familiarised once you start reading the patterns, abbreviations and instructions regularly. You should always remember to give more attention when you come across periods and commas (punctuation and pauses).

The basic element in better understanding the crochet patterns lies in your understanding the style and the abbreviations used in the instructions. A consoling hint is that you need not memorize the abbreviations and the related meanings as you can always refer to the list in case of need.

Most of the instructions make use of parentheses ( ) and asterisks (*) while explaining the patterns. These parentheses or asterisks convey the meaning of repetition.

For instance, when you come across an instruction that reads “repeat from *”, you need to examine and look back at the instruction of the row that you are currently working on and then locate the asterisk (*). Carry out the crochet instructions from that asterisk (*) point.

Such “repeat” instructions also come with conditions for repeating the crochet instructions for a specified number of times. In such case, you need to go back, locate the asterisk (*) and then carry out the crochet instructions following it, for that many number of times mentioned.

The general rule that is followed is that only one asterisk (*) in a row is given and the “repeats” will take you to the row ending so that there will not be any supplementary instructions required to be carried out. You may also come across a pattern with an instructions such as “single asterisk (*)”, both at the start and the end of the “repeat”; and in such situation, you are supposed to stop repeating the crochet work at that particular point.

Some times a “double asterisk (**)” is used to indicate the end point where in you will stop the repeat. For example, if you come across an instruction such as “repeat from * to **”, Then you need to search backward for locating that single asterisk (*), carry out all the crochet instructions following the single asterisk (*) till you encounter the “double asterisks (**)”; then you need to stop and begin to crochet from the point where you stopped or left off before making the repeat.

A “work even” instruction normally indicate that you should continue to work on the same stitch without increasing or decreasing any stitches.

For understanding the crochet better, you can bear the following points in your mind:

• Any crochet pattern is normally worked in rounds or rows. In certain cases you may have a mixture of both rounds and rows also.

• All crochet patters are categorised based on the difficulty levels such as advanced, intermediate, easy or beginner. You can choose the pattern based on your comfort level. It is always better to go in for beginner’s level initially and move on to more complex patterns later once you gain confidence.

• You should make a point to keep counting the stitches as you progress as any pattern is governed by the specific number of stitches on each round or row as required by the pattern.

• You also should verify your gauge at frequent intervals. To gain a control over the measurement, you can do a sample crochet of about 4 X 4 inches size in the pattern and measure with the gauge. Do corrections by changing the hook size if you find the pattern either big or smaller than that of the standard pattern.

• Enrolling in a crochet class can be very helpful when you are beginning to learn crochet.

Your mind set plays a very valid role in making you successful in crocheting. Never get disappointed with your initial failures; try to learn from the failures and perfect your understanding the art of crochet!


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