I just don't get it

For years, I’ve heard people say that knitting is much harder to do than crochet. I picked up knitting like a duck to water, but I can’t crochet to save my life. My mother can crochet without even looking at her hands. She’s tried time and time again to teach me, but I just can’t do it. :wall:
Is there some ancient crochet secret that you only get if you can do a chain stitch? lol
I’d love to learn, so that I can do decorative borders on blankets, and I’ve seen some beautiful lace patterns.
Can anyone recommend a book for beginners or offer some tips?

Thank you!

How about a few videos to get you going? I have made some on my site for beginners which you can check out here. Just look down the list to the heading that says “Learn to Crochet Video Tutorials” and start at the beginning.

While you are there, make sure you sign up for my Winter Giveaway. You’ll find a link to it towards the top of my sidebar.

Hope this helps!


I agree… video is about the best… I think that crochet is something that just “hits” you all of a sudden… it takes practice, but I can whip up things more than twice as fast in crochet… I believe it’s the whole “one needle thing”… I am a “thrower” in knit and that slows me down a bit… but both are something I do every day of my life… since I was 14… good luck… I’m off to check out the video… I love them!! bj

“I could tell you, but then I’d have to kill you.” :roflhard:

[U][SIZE=“5”]Knitting is the same:[/SIZE][/U]

Knitting was hard for me because I kept a tight tension on the yarn, casting on was teadious, and keeping the stitches on the needle was a challenge. Casting (binding) off is still my weakness. :nails: And then you must do something with each and every stitch. The rows are all the same size, there is only two stitches (no, really just one! A purl is just how to do a knit from the back side.) How can you knit so many different patterns using just a knit or a purl!

Well, I’ve learned there are stitch variations: YO, KBL, M1, etc. Well, I’ve read about more stitches than I’ve actually done.
Knitting is smooth, and rows are the same height throughout the fabric. You just need to count stitches for width and rows for length of your fabric.

Knitting is laying bricks. Side by side. Same size and shape. On and on…


Crochet [COLOR=“Blue”][I][SIZE=“4”]is[/SIZE][/I][/COLOR] different. Each stitch is complete. You get to choose where to connect the next stitch, because each new stitch binds off the previous one.

Crochet is freedom. Freedom to be adventurous! A chain is nothing more than one slip knot made through the loop of another slip knot. You have a larger variety of stitches in crochet, and each changes the texture of the fabric.

Crochet is working with knots of different heights and shapes. Like taking irregular stones and building a wall. Crochet is stone masonry. Shape the stone to fit and fill the next gap in your work. Crochet is texture, each stitche has width and height(or length). Rows can be short or tall or both mixed together.

What knitting and crochet have in common is the fiber and using one or more loops to make more stitches.

Crochet is beautiful lace and doilies, afghans, and grannie squares. Crochet is big and bold or fine and delicate. Crochet fits a mood or follows a fancy.

You start easy enough. You tie a knot. Then you pull a loop of your strand through your knot and make your second chain. Try it with a soft rope, like clothes line or a shoe lace. Work it with your fingers. See what new shape you can make, then find the name for it. “Oh, that’s a harringbone-half-double-crochet.”

Crochet is discovery, discovering how the rope or yarn loops and passes over, around, through, and back again. Crochet is an exploration of what is in the yarn, yearning to me formed into a warm blanket or a cosy set of slippers.

Crochet is a game of twister with a hook and some yarn.

Lean back and explore the twists and turns. Enjoy the art of creating beauty.

Crochet. :slight_smile:

–Jack :guyknitting:

[SIZE=“1”]Ah, well, back to knitting this scarf.

…this is the scarf that never ends, it just goes on and on my friend, some fellow started knitting it not knowing what it was, and now he keeps on knitting it forever just because…[/SIZE] :wink:

For both knitting and crochet: there are nearly as many ways to perform the motions as there are knitters and crocheters.

There is a group of people I not infrequently gather with - seven or eight of us crochet (about the same number knit - but in different combinations) and even though two of us TAUGHT several of the others to crochet - we all hold the hook and thread differently and have different styles of making the same stitches.

But the results are very very similar.

You don’t really say what your problem is.
If you would perhaps someone could offer a tip that would click for you.

Without knowing the problem all I could figure is you’re trying to do it exactly like your mother. Don’t worry about making the motions the same, only worry about the end results.
My sister picks up with her hook. I wrap with my left. My great niece does some sort of motion that is very much like English knitting.

Another thing could be the style of hook. Some people do better with Boye style, some do better with Bates style.

Nice explanation…

Try this:http://www.nexstitch.com/ maybe it’ll help…

Knitting is SO much harder and slower for me. Crochet I picked up effortlessly. I learned from this book but that was before the time of You Tube and online tutorials, or at least before I knew of them. Having someone teach you in person is ideal but when you can’t have that, the videos are the next best thing. The hook style certainly made a difference for me. Before I knew there were 2 different kinds, I’d tried a Boye hook and wound up tossing it thru a window. LOL To this day I’ll toss a Boye hook thru a window in favor of a Susan Bates. I hold the hook and yarn differently than my mother or Grandmother but the results are the same.

I learned from the Stitch & Bitch: The Happy Hooker. There’s some great explanations in there. Just keep trying! You might need to hold the yarn and/or hook different than how your mother does.

Do you knit conitnental or english? If you knit english it may be a little different crocheting. Maybe try crocheting left handed?

Just some suggestions!

Do you know what part you’re having problems with?

I learned to crochet from diagrams like these:

They were in a ‘How-to…’ booklet from Patons though, since it was the dark ages before computers and the Internet. There are lots of sites with diagrams and video now, so look around and you’ll be a pro before you know it.

I’ve been crocheting for 30 years, but only knitting for about the last 7 or so. I picked up knitting pretty quick, but crocheting is faster. But I don’t think that is just me; I think crochet just goes quicker. Crochet uses more yarn than knitting, which means more $ and a heavier end product. So I often use crochet for afghans, and edgings, and then knitting for other things. I’ve crocheted myself sweaters, and while they weren’t bad, and looked great, I do prefer knitting sweaters. Just my preference. Also, there are two different ways to hold a crochet hook (both of which are perfectly fine); one is to hold it like a pencil, and the other is to hold it like a piece of chalk. You could experiment and see if one way or the other just feels better to you and is easier for you. :slight_smile: Keep trying! :slight_smile: Crochet makes wonderful embellishments, reverse crochet (also called the crab stitch) is great for finishing edges, as are crocheted laces.

theres also the book : I TAUGHT MYSELF CROCHET … which happens to be a very good book, with very good pictures and it is now printed for left or right handed crocheters … nice patterns in it for you to practice on too.

Wow, I was just about to post this same thread!!! Glad there are others out there like me!!! I too have had a tough time learning to crochet… I have tried about 50 times to teach myself, but its still all greek to me, and like you, I have always heard knitting is alot harder to learn than crochet, so it aggravates me that I taught myself to knit in a few hours but can’t quite get crochet. But I have also heard its harder to learn crochet if you already knit, so maybe thats it? I may have to check out some of the sites and books suggested here and try my hand again at it… Thanks!

I think OffJumpsJack has it bang on the mark!!

I have to say this in addition. Having been a crocheter for 28 years, and learning to knit two years ago took having an open mind about it…telling myself this (knitting) is going to be a new discovery, telling myself that once I learn it, I [B][I][U]will[/U][/I][/B] love it. I think people (not saying you) sometimes take on a new task with negative thoughts lingering in their minds and that, in my opinion, just sets them up for failure.

I also want to add that because I was a crocheter first, I found that the Continental method of knitting was much easier for me because you hold the yarn in your left hand…don’t know how that will help someone going from knitting to crochet, but I felt compelled to make that comment.

And I have to agree with Mike who pointed out the lack of detail as to what is giving you trouble. Is it the chain stitich? Vocabulary? Notation methods?

I love to knit but my first love, well I married her, but my first love of yarn craft is crochet. It [[I]crochet[/I]] isn’t knitting. [[I]The languages are different because they have different needs.[/I]] Maybe that’s part of the problem? [[I]Even[/I]] if you can switch between English and Continental or manage cable needles and DPNs or have mastered two-handed Fair Isle doesn’t mean you [[I]should expect to be able to[/I]] pick up a hook and crochet [[I]like a duck to water[/I]]. [[I]If yoiu think of knitting is a duck swimming, then think of crochet as a duck flying.[/I]]

[[I]The[/I]] bigest difference, I think, is that you need to know two things before each new stitch: First is the type of stitch, and Second is where [[I]what stitch[/I]] to [[I]work into[/I]].

A chain is most often only your starting foundation. If you have a completed knit project you only need your working yarn in one loop and the above two points of information. What stitch do you want to make and where do you want to put it.

The “Where” question is just as easy as picking up a stitch on a finished knit edge (slevage, CO or BO). The crochet pattern will tell you both the what and where.

Keep in mind that you are not going to soar the skies of crochet in your first attempt. Swimming and flying use different muscles (patterns at least) and those patterns must be learned. Slowly perhaps, but don’t get frustrated with that.

I guess that you mom was showing you how to crochet and that’d be like a video if she was sitting beside you or you were looking over her shoulder. If that wasn’t helpful then perhaps your learning style is not visual. Tactile is another style of learning that does well with manipulations or using your hands (my DW is a teacher of exceptional children) but I don’t claim to know all the learning styles.

[li][B][U]NexStitch[/U][/B] has videos of traditional crochet and also Tunisian crochet (commonly call Afghan stitch).
[/li][li][B][U]Woolcrafting[/U][/B] has written instructions with pictures of the basic crochet stitches.
[/li][li][B][U]Crochet 911[/U][/B] may be helpful with more general information, instructions, and pictures.

Good luck. Crossed Fingers

And seriously, try using a rope or cord and just your fingers to start with a slip knot and make a chain. If your learning style is tactile, feeling the rope or cord weave around itself should help.

–Jack :guyknitting: [/COLOR]

Knittenchick, I have the exact same problem. As a matter of fact though, when my girls were little I did crochet a poncho for each of them, at a class at my Church. I have forgotten how over the years. My problem is I can do a chain, but I don’t know how to turn to go back on the next row. I am definitely going to watch the video mentioned, and hopefully I can pick it up again.

I completely agree…having attempted to teach a knitter how to crochet, I didn’t really know how to explain this to them. This makes complete sense.

man, you are a poet . I like both But right I am a better crocheter than a knitter(been doing it longer) since I was a kid. My mother and grandmother both crocheted.

to Jack again I just learned how to continential knitting with the videos on this site. It is great !!! It uses the" crochet" way of hplding the yarn and moving the hands.