I have had a few customers and friends enquiring about what to do after learning the basics in Crochet, so I thought I would help you out with the next steps.
Once you have learned the basics, my recommendation is to find a great basic pattern, this could be a granny square blanket, cushion, or scarf, a ripple blanket or cushion, or similar. by embarking on a larger project with an easy pattern, you will be able to improve your tension, and general skills, it also gives a wonderful sense of achievement when it is finished!
I would then try and improve your pattern reading skills, still picking only easy patterns.
It is too easy when you start to find something you love, but that is a really complicated pattern, it might look easy but there will be something that you get stuck on…although you may have the perseverance for a while, it is easy to get stuck on a particular part, and then get disheartened. If you practice with lots of different patterns that are still simple, you will gain in confidence. A good stitch dictionary can help you make a start, or a book with lots of different motifs at different levels (one I recommend is 200 Crochet blocks by Jan Eaton link here to my website where I have a few copies at 35% off!) make sure you get this one with the pink cover which has UK terminology.
Once you are happy with the basics, you could experiment with different yarns, and some different techniques, which is why I developed the Next Steps course…now while you can get the basic information from my website, I thought I should elaborate, especially as I will be running this as a 3 day Summer School at Missenden Abbey.
There are basically 5 sessions with extended project time in the last session.
Session 1: Adding texture: this is where you learn the differences between, shells, bobbles, clusters and popcorns – they all add texture in a different way. these are all made with combinations of basic stitches like trebles and double crochets
Session 2: Cables and ribs: here you will start to use post stitches, both simple back and front posts but also how to twist stitches to create brilliant cables. I may also have a cabled cushion cover pattern ready as well as the scarf pattern, designed by me!
Session 3: Lace: this can be a scary area if you are used to working in DK or Aran yarn. We will be using two different yarns, a plain merino lace weight yarn, but also a fluffy kidsilk type with mohair, and another original pattern.
Session 4: Tapestry Crochet: I really like challenging people’s perception of crochet and from a distance this can easily be compared with fairisle, we work in the round on a small phone cover, but I will also have the pattern for christmas baubles available! great fun once you get your head round holding 2 colours at the same time and following a chart!
Session 5: Joining and finishing: the difference between handmade (professional) and homemade. including tips for blocking, but the main focus is on how to join motif squares, with a wide range of different styles including join as you go. (you do have to bring some squares with you to join!)
Throughout the course we will be reading patterns, and charts, and of course I love being able to sort out any crochet questions that you may have.
Of course if you have any questions that you would like me to answer through my blog please ask below in the comments or on my facebook page!