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How to Crochet a Granny Square

Updated on August 24, 2017

The One, The Only... The Granny Square!

There are many motifs that fall under the description of "Granny Square," but none are so classic, recognizable, or versatile as the original. The Granny Square motif is often one of the first crochet items a crocheter learns after mastering the chain stitch and double crochet stitch, the two main stitches this motif is comprised of.

Granny Squares can be used to make:

Afghans or Blankets

Scarves or Cowls

Sweaters

Hats

Purses or Bags

Slippers

Embellishments to Quits, Scrapbooks, or whatever else your creative mind can think of!

Photo Credit: Cute Blankets

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From The Purl Bee
From The Purl Bee
From Little Tin Bird
From Little Tin Bird
From Attic 24
From Attic 24
From whip up
From whip up
From Acorn Pies
From Acorn Pies
From The Purl Bee
From The Purl Bee
From Crochet Liberation Front
From Crochet Liberation Front
From Crochet Spot
From Crochet Spot
From Zoom Yummy
From Zoom Yummy
From Wonky Zebra
From Wonky Zebra

Before you start...

These are the Stitches you need to know!

This article does assume you already know the basics on crocheting, like hand placement, how to yarn over, and where to insert your hook. The following is a description of the stitches we will be using to create the granny square, and should be used as a refresher or reference when using the pattern below.

Chain Stitch (ch): Chain stitches are often used in beginner projects to make foundation chains, or in our case, foundation circles. As you continue to advance in crochet, chain stitches are used to create delicate or Lacey motifs and fabrics.

To create a ch: yarn over, pull yarn thru loop on hook

Slip Stitch (sl st): Slip stitches are often used to join rows when working in the round, or to maneuver your crochet hook to a new space to continue work without tying off and starting again.

to create a sl st: insert hook into next stitch, pull up a loop and pull thru loop on hook

Double Crochet (dc): A basic crochet stitch used to create fabric; includes one yarn over and two pull throughs to complete. Twice the height of a single crochet.

to create a dc: yarn over, insert hook in next stitch and pull up a loop, yarn over and draw thru two loop on hook, yarn over again and pull thru two remaining loops on hook

Suggested Yarn and Hook

As a beginner, learning with medium weight yarn and hook helped my hands grasp and get used to a tension I was comfortable with. Everybody is different, so try testing a few different weight yarns and find out what is right for you. I suggest using a worsted weight (about a size 3 or 4 thickness) and use hooks I or J. Usually, the description on the yarn label will tell you what weight it is and what size hook to use. The only times I haven't been able to find this information on the label is with home spun or designer yarn.

All of the following can be found at chain craft stores and often cheaper online. If you have a local yarn store, you might want to stop in and support your local businesses! You can click the links below to check out the different colors available and see what works for you.

Susan Bates Silvalume Crochet Hook Set in Pouch Sizes F, G, H, I, J, K
Susan Bates Silvalume Crochet Hook Set in Pouch Sizes F, G, H, I, J, K

This set is perfect for worsted weight yarns and beginner projects. These hook sizes work well for learning tension and hand movements before you jump into small projects like lace work, or bigger projects using speed hooks.

 
Lion Brand Yarn 601-610 Bonbons Yarn, Brights
Lion Brand Yarn 601-610 Bonbons Yarn, Brights

Don't be intimated by huge skeins of yarn! These tiny balls of yarn come in various color schemes, and are perfect for testing the granny square waters. 8 skeins at 28 yards each.

 

Crochet Shorthand and Diagram Symbols

Explained!

...

Abbreviation Guide

beg = beginning

beg ch = beginning chain

ch = chain

dc = double crochet

nxt = next

nxt sp = next space

sl st = slip stitch

sp = space

st = stitch

This is a diagram of common stitches you will run into. I suggest saving this image for future use. Remember, the only three stitches we are using now include the chain stitch, double crochet, and slip stitch.

This diagram is from The Craft Yarn Council

Here it is: The Pattern! - Let's get started, Ladies and Gents!

The following pattern is written with abbreviations. If you need help with the crochet shorthand, see the abbreviation guide below. The picture above is a pattern diagram to help you. The symbols and the stitches they represent can also be found below.

Ch 4, sl st with 1st ch to form a ring (foundation)

row 1: ch 3 (counts as first dc) 2 dc in ring, *ch 2, 3 dc in ring** repeat from * to ** 3 times, ch 2, sl st into top of beg ch

row 2: sl st to nxt sp, ch 3 (counts as first dc) (2 dc, ch 2, 3 dc) in same sp, *ch 1, (3 dc, ch 2, 3 dc) in nxt sp** repeat from * to ** 3 times, ch 1, sl st into top of beg ch

row 3: sl st to nxt sp, ch 2 (counts as first dc) (2 dc, ch 2, 3 dc) in same sp, * ch 1, 3 dc in nxt sp, ch 1, (3 dc, ch 2, 3 dc) in nxt space** repeat from * to ** 3 times, ch 1, sl st into top of beg ch

row 4: sl st to nxt sp, ch 2 (counts as first dc) (2 dc, ch 2, 3 dc) in same sp, *ch 1, 3 dc in nxt sp** repeat from * to ** twice, ch 1, (3 dc, ch 2, 3 dc) in nxt sp*** repeat from * to *** 3 times

To continue, repeat * to ** from the previous row three times, then in the next row four times, etc etc until you have the size you desire. (Continue with [3 dc, ch 2, 3 dc] in same sp with corner.) It's okay to start small, but you might find that you're enjoying yourself... and before you know it, you'll have a whole blanket done!

Diagram created by: I'd Rather be Crocheting

How did it go?

Was it easier using the pattern or the diagram?

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Don't Stop Now! - Keep Creating with More Granny Square Tips and Styles

How To Crochet:  A Complete Guide for Absolute Beginners
How To Crochet: A Complete Guide for Absolute Beginners

This book is great for the visual learner. With the clear stitch images on where to insert your hook, how to yarn over, and learn basic stitches, this book is perfect for beginners discovering their inner crochet skills.

 
A to Z of Crochet: The Ultimate Guide for the Beginner to Advanced Crocheter
A to Z of Crochet: The Ultimate Guide for the Beginner to Advanced Crocheter

For all levels of learning, this encyclopedia of crochet includes everything you need to know for one stop answers.

 
Granny Square Crochet: 35 contemporary projects using traditional techniques
Granny Square Crochet: 35 contemporary projects using traditional techniques

Continue honing your granny square skills while creating projects like pillows, blankets, scarves, a mug cozy, and dog coat! Learn how versatile this square really is!

 
The Granny Square Book: Timeless Techniques and Fresh Ideas for Crocheting Square by Square
The Granny Square Book: Timeless Techniques and Fresh Ideas for Crocheting Square by Square

Mastered the Granny? Try out these dozens of other motifs to continue creating what you desire! There is also a kindle edition available.

 

Okay, now that we've finished... - let's have some more fun!

The long asked question crocheters and knitters either love to debate, or fear to get involved: What's better, knitting or crocheting?

Personally, I think knitting is easier to learn, but once you have the hang of crochet, you can do anything!

So What do you think? (Remember to be a little nice between all that ferocious!)

What's better, knitting or crocheting?

Have you used the Granny Square before?

What's you're favorite Granny Square project?

Do have any other tips or suggestions for other crochet lovers reading?

Let us know how much you love Granny Squares!

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    • PadmashriSriram profile image

      PadmashriSriram 3 years ago

      Thanks for such a crafty lens.

    • TheCozyDinosaur profile image
      Author

      TheCozyDinosaur 4 years ago

      @RussnJo: Yes, I quickly moved away from granny squares as I learned more about crochet... now I'm all about them.

    • RussnJo profile image

      RussnJo 4 years ago

      Funny that I hadn't worked granny squares for some20 years, then once playing around with them, that's about all I've done for the last couple years . . . love, love, love them!

    • TheCozyDinosaur profile image
      Author

      TheCozyDinosaur 4 years ago

      @delia-delia: It IS knit and crochet season... maybe you will pick it back up :)

    • TheCozyDinosaur profile image
      Author

      TheCozyDinosaur 4 years ago

      @davenjilli lm: Someday I want to have goats! (And bunnies, and sheet, and...) I will have to remember that, it gets quite cold where I live!

    • delia-delia profile image

      Delia 4 years ago

      Very cool instructions...I have not knitted or crocheted in years...this brings back that memory.

    • davenjilli lm profile image

      davenjilli lm 4 years ago

      I usually do the whole project..in face crocheted several baby goat sweaters for my little ones in the spring

    • TheCozyDinosaur profile image
      Author

      TheCozyDinosaur 4 years ago

      @favored: I never would have been able to learn without someone showing me and doing the steps with me... I'm much more of a visual learner. There are lots of videos online that might help. I should add some to this lens!

    • favored profile image

      Fay Favored 4 years ago from USA

      I admire those who can do this kind of work. Haven't been able to pick it up though.

    • TheCozyDinosaur profile image
      Author

      TheCozyDinosaur 4 years ago

      @DawnRae64: The best part of being at an age where all your friends are having kids... I get to back endless amounts of baby blankets! Glad to meet a fellow granny square fan, thanks for stopping by :)

    • DawnRae64 profile image

      Dawn 4 years ago from Maryland, USA

      I love granny squares. My most recent project was a one-square 'granny square' baby blanket for my first grandbaby.