Crochet can be a very relaxing hobby, but there may be times when you need to complete a crochet project quicker than usual. Perhaps you’re making an afghan or baby blanket for a gift occasion rapidly approaching, or you want to crochet a number of items for charity. Here are some tips to crochet an afghan in record time.
Crochet Quickly With a Larger Hook
Using a big crochet hook will give you a larger piece with the same amount of time invested. The space between stitches will be more open when using a worsted weight yarn, but if you don’t like the larger holes in your afghan, you can use two strands of yarn held together. There are many patterns written especially for size P and Q crochet hooks that will give you a beautiful project in a jiffy. Some find working with the large hook to be clumsy, but I know others who tried the larger hook and never went back to a smaller one.
Choose an Easy Pattern
Don’t choose an intricate pattern if you need to get a crochet piece done quickly. Stick with a pattern that you’ve made before with stitches that you’re comfortable with. If time is short, don’t waste it trying to learn new stitches or work with a detailed pattern where you might lose your place, or one that involves a lot of counting.
Single Color Afghans Are Quickest
It takes time to stop and change colors while crocheting, and it also means more finish work with all those ends to weave in when completed. Stick to one color of yarn for your afghan or baby blanket and your crochet time will be well used. This one works up quickly and is more suited to a single color, with just enough detail to make it look like you spent a lot more time than you did.
Light or Bright Colors are Quickest to Crochet
Crocheting at night with black or other dark colors can be difficult; it can be a challenge to see the opening to insert your hook for the next stitch. Good lighting can help, but may provide a shadowing effect, making it tough to see your work. If you crochet mostly in the evening, stick with light and bright colored yarn and your project will go much quicker and with less strain on your eyes, and save the darker colors for when you can crochet in natural light.
Granny Sure is Quick!
Granny squares are a quick take-along project that can be done in just a few minutes, so always keep a tote bag with supplies ready to take with you to crochet while in the car (with someone else driving, of course), or while waiting for appointments, etc. I can usually crochet at least two or three granny squares in the waiting room of the doctor’s office. If you have kids, you can whip out a few squares while sitting at soccer practice or dance lessons.
Granny Doesn’t Need a Coat of Many Colors
While granny squares can be quick to work up, you can make them even quicker with fewer yarn color changes for the same reasons as mentioned above. Instead of making each round a different color, try just two colors, or three at most. Granny squares made of yarn scraps are great, but if you’re pressed for time, making fewer color changes is crucial.
I like to make a five-round granny square using Color A for the first/center round, two rounds of Color B, one round of Color A, then finish with a round or two of Color C (see photo). I prefer to join my granny squares with the flat braid join method which looks like an additional round, so I use the same color as the last round. The photo above was worked in that sequence.
The granny squares here were done with a single color center, followed by two rounds each of two other colors, then joined with the center color using the flat braid join method. That project worked up quickly too.
Is Granny Single?
There’s no rule that says granny squares have to be multi-color, so crocheting solid color granny squares can make quick work of an afghan or baby blanket. You could also use a single color of yarn to crochet the square, working the last round or border in a contrasting color that is also used to join the squares.
Assembly Line Granny
When making multi-color granny squares but using the same colors for each square (as opposed to using random scraps), crocheting in assembly-line fashion makes it go quicker. Make a stack of the first/center round, then add the second color to each of them, then the third, etc. I did this with a recent project and was amazed at how much faster my stack of completed granny squares grew. Henry Ford knew what he was talking about.
Save the Worst for Last
Many people that love crochet hate weaving in the ends. Some find it less tedious if they do it as they go along, whenever they change colors. If I’m working on a project that needs to be done quickly, I don’t stop to weave them while still working on the project, rather find it quicker to whip them in all at once at completion.
– Big hooks
– Simple patterns
– Single (or few) colors
– Avoid dark colored yarn
-Save the worst for last