Left Handed Crochet for Beginners
Left Handed Crochet
Why Learn Left Handed Crochet For Beginners
Getting Your Crochet in a Tangle!
Being a left handed person who has just had to teach herself crochet I feel I have something to share with others like myself.
Having received an amigurumi animal for Christmas and falling in love with it I wanted to learn to crochet them for myself. My sister tried to teach me, but only having learnt a few months before she struggled to reverse everything.
And I struggled to understand even the basics like the chain.
Being left handed and English made matters even worse as not only did you have to learn the reverse everything you had to convert most of the pattern terms as well.
Finally my sister gave up with the words "you'll have to go on YouTube, they have lessons."
So off to YouTube I went to teach myself crochet.
Below are some of the things I have been learning.
Making Things Easier on Yourself
- Use video it is so much easier to follow.
- Use a larger hook around 4mm to 6mm (US sizes G6 to J10)
- Keep to US or UK etc to start with to avoid confusion
- Use larger yarn, (Double knit or larger, but not too large, double to Aran)
- Get a smoother yarn and nothing too fancy or bumpy.
- Make things with lighter colours - this makes it easier to see when you are learning.
- Have decent lighting
- Find a tutor or two you like on YouTube (I found Crochet Guru and Planet June to be clear and easy to follow, but you may prefer someone else)
- Watch and RE WATCH the videos. You may do one stitch for a while and forget another one. Don't be afraid to go back over it to double check you are doing it correctly. Not only will you revise what you have learned you may pick up more detail next time.
Simple Left Handed Beginners Crochet Scarf
The Main Stitches
I have included the left handed version of the main stitches here. There are many more. Some you may use many you may never need, or not for some time.
A lot of them are on You Tube Videos a simple Left Handed Crochet, (name of stitch) should get you many of them.
- Slip Stitch (often not considered a stitch)
- Single Crochet (US)
- Double Crochet (US)
- Treble Crochet (US)
Other Useful stitches
- Magic Ring (very useful for Amigurumi Animals)
- Half double
- Half treble
- extended single
A Yarn Stash
Learning Basic Abbreviations
The terms make no difference regardless of your dominant hand. I thought I would include some on the basics here though as a guide.
The terms used on this page are US and not UK. The reason being a lot of sites on-line use US terms for the patterns. You can get conversion charts from US to UK and other countries but It can get confusing.
Also a lot of the tutorials are using US terms.
You need to know this because some of the abbreviations are the same but have different meanings. For instance if you are following a UK pattern or tutorial and are learning about DC (double crochet) the stitch is not the same as the US DC which is the UK treble.
So until you gain confidence keep to either/or on the terms and check.
Basic Crochet Abbreviations (US)
Note: For each part of the page stitch instructions I have included one of my favourite video tutorials as it is so much clearer than a series of photos or any written explanation. In addition I have included tips from what I have learnt that I suspect a seasoned crocheter has long forgotten.
How to Tie a Left Handed Slip Knot
Learning to Hold the Yarn
There are several ways you can hold yarn. I have only included one. If you find it doesn't work for you, you may want to try a different method.
In crochet the hook does all the work, everything else should stay relatively still while your hook moved about. Hmm, I say should. My sister kept moaning at me because I almost knitted moving the yarn, and depending on what I am doing I still do.
If you do this do not worry, it is quite common for beginners to move the yarn and not the hook. As you learn, you will improve.
How to Hold the Yarn
Starting A Chain
How to Make a Crochet Chain and Count it
Once you have secured your yarn to your hook using a slip knot you can start your chain. Firstly put yarn over putting your hook to the back and pick up your yarn. Take your yarn through the loop or slip knot.
Tip: Try to keep your stitches as even as possible by popping your loops up the shaft of your hook (I did this without realising that I was meant to and it really does help).
If you learn to do this now it will become a habit and you are more likely to become a neat crocheter. Note, don't do this too tightly though as when it comes to the next row you will have difficulty in getting your hook through the holes. The video explains and shows how to get the best size stitches really well.
Left Handed Crochet for Beginners Part 1 - Make a Chain
Single Crochet Stitch
Left Handed Single Crochet Stitch (SC)
With a single crochet stitch (SC) you put your hook through the loop then pick up the yarn as previously shown. You then pull the yarn through the loop. You should now have 2 loops on your hook. Now you yarn over (YO) and pull the yarn through the other 2 loops. This should leave one remaining loop on your hook.
The stitch is now done. Go to the next chain (or loop) and repeat this until you get to the end or for as many times at the pattern says to do it.
Learning Left Handed Single Crochet
Left Handed Double Crochet (DC)
Left Handed Double Crochet (DC)
The double crochet (DC) is double the length of the single crochet and created slightly differently. With the double crochet you put your yarn over (YO) BEFORE you put your hook through the chain (loop).
Once you have put your yarn over you put you hook through the yarn the same way as before and pull the yarn through. You should now have 3 strands of yarn on your hook. You then yarn over again creating the 4th strand.
Pull this through the first 2 loops already on your hook. You should again have 2 loops. Then you put your yarn over again and pull it through your remaining two hooks.
Left Handed Crochet Double Crochet Stitch (US)
Oh this so gave me a headache when I started. I went through many pages on-line as the sizes and the terms seemed to vary from site to site. Once again I came across the crochet pond divide between the US and UK terms.
In the end I phoned the on line company to make sure that the size was right.
Mistake: In spite of all this when I went to shop locally, I knew I wanted Aran yarn and so asked for Aran. Later, my sister told me in the UK when you ask for Aran you get just that! Where as it can also be a term for how thick it is. Argh! I wanted acrylic Aran size ply 10 (apparently this varies too) and was directed to actual Aran Wool (expensive).
Don't worry too much about the size variation between countries or charts as it is negligible.
Video Use for Crochet Poll
Do you find videos help you to learn how to crochet?
Where to Find Patterns
- AllFreeCrochet.com - Free Crochet Patterns, Crochet Projects, Tips, Video, How-To Crochet and More
All Free Crochet is a website dedicated to the best free crochet patterns, tutorials, tips and articles on crochet. Find all varieties and skills levels, from easy to crochet afghan patterns to complex Tunisian crochet patterns.
- Ravelry Crochet and Knitting Site
Ravelry has thousands of members and thousand of patterns, many Free and some paid for. It is very popular. It is a great place to start as you can see others projects.
- Amigurumi To Go
This is the place to go if you love those crochet animals. There are some great patterns complete with Video Tutorials which is a great help for beginners.