What Is Crochet?
Crochet, or crocheting, is an art that involves the use of yarn or thread for creating different forms of fabric.
The word crochet was derived from a French word, which means hook. Crocheting primarily makes full use of a crochet hook. This process is performed in the same manner as knitting and involves the pulling of yarn into other loops. However, in crocheting, only one loop remains active, and a crochet hook is mainly used, instead of a knitting needle.
I have recently dipped my fingers into Crochet’s work, as I feel inspired when I see the lovely things that can be made, but I must say for me knitting is far easier. Crochet is much faster though, once you get the hang of it, and I also imagine that it is easier to learn to do than knitting is.
Crochet Hooks, just like knitting needles come in many different sizes and can perform a range of specific tasks. Some steel hooks have sizes ranging from .04 to 3.5 mm in size and are commonly used for completing more delicate and finer crocheting tasks.
Aluminum or plastic crochet hooks range from 2.5 to 19 mm.
Some artisan-made hooks, which are made from wood, are even decorated with beads or even precious stones.
Individual crocheters begin their work by creating what is called a test swatch, and whenever there’s a discrepancy, they adjust this through using either a smaller or larger hook.
In the United States, this is called a gauge, which refers to the end result of the adjustments. Crocheters in the United Kingdom refer to this as tension, which refers to the crafter’s grip on the yarn.
Other Standard Crocheting Materials Used
While a standard crocheting process involves the use of yarn and thread, some materials may also be needed to guide the crocheter towards perfecting the process.
You could also need cardboard cutouts, which are used to produce fringe, tassels and other materials. A tape measure is used to accurately measure crochet work, and a pompon circle is utilized for making pompons. Plastic rings are also used for doing other specialized crocheting tasks.
The History of Crocheting
While historians have theorized that crocheting began in South America, Asia as well as in the Arabian Peninsula, there has yet been no concrete evidence to fully backing up this claim.
The Industrial Revolution though is credited with spurring the development of crocheting. As the price of cotton became cheaper, and machine-spun cotton became easily available in Europe, more and more people delved into crocheting, and this became a popular tool for producing clothing and other items.
The invention of the cotton gin in the United States, as well as the development of the spinning jenny, made crocheting a favored technique for churning out cotton fabrics.
While the price of cotton thread continued to drop, crocheted laces continued to become popular, because crocheting was considered to be a much faster technique, and it was easier to teach to students as well.
With the drop in global cotton prices, crocheting became a booming cottage industry. It supported communities from France to Ireland, allowing women to earn extra income from churning out clothes and other household items. Crochet also allowed families to stave off hunger during wars and famines. The emerging middle class, who regarded these as affordable imitations of much fancier designs, also prized the completed crochet items.
Modern Trends In Crocheting
With the advent of the 19th Century, the appetite for strong Victorian-era colors began to fade away. Newer designs featured the use of white and pale threads, which were used for churning out fancy bags, purses, and other household items.
The newer crochet designs also featured brightly elaborate colors and were elaborately beaded as well. During the1960’s and 1970s, the world experienced a revitalized interest in home crafts, and more and more people began to show interest in crocheting.
More crochet designers crafted potholders, purses, and other items, and the patterns featured thicker threads and yards and incorporated a wide array of sharper and much bolder colors.
These days, it’s normal to find people crocheting fabrics and clothing, and then donating these items to hospitals, homeless shelters, nursing homes, and other charities.
Products You Can Use To Get Started In Crochet
Here are some great crochet items that you can purchase online for a fraction of the cost of your local craft store in most cases.
If you do buy from any of these links, I will get a small commission at no extra cost to you.
BCMRUN 14 pcs Multicolor Aluminum Crochet Hooks Knitting Needles Craft Yarn 2-10mm
- Material: Aluminum, size: 15cm ( 5.9″ ), color: Multi color.
- 14 pcs aluminum crochet hooks.
- Package include:1 set of 14 sizes crochet hooks.
Katech Crochet Hooks Kit with Case, 85-Piece Crochet Hooks Set, Ergonomic Crochet Hooks Knitting Needles Weave Yarn Kits DIY Hand Knitting Art Tools for Beginners and Experienced Crochet Lovers
- The crochet hooks set (85-piece) includes 9 x Crochet Hooks (2.0-6.0mm), 12 x Aluminum Alloy Crochet Hooks (2.0-8.0mm), 14 x Plastic Ring Markers, 20 x Locking Stitch Makers, 6 x Plastic Yarn Needles, 6 x Sewing Needles, 4 x Needles Point Protectors, 3 x Plastic Bow Shape Needles, 2 x Sweater Pins, 2 x Row Counter, 2 x Yarn Threaders, 1 x Measure Ruler, 1 x Tape Measure, 1 x Yarn Remover Tool, 1 x Scissors, 1 x Case.
- The case can help you store all crochet hooks and accessories neatly, stay organized, never lose anything again. Perfect for travel or crocheting everywhere, like the airport, a park, a train, on a boat or at home.
- Plastic stitch markers can hook into the knitted or crocheted stitches quickly and will not slip out easily.
- These crochets have marked sizes and different colors, convenient to distinguish and find the correct size. A perfect Christmas/New Year/Valentine’s Day/Mother’s Day/Birthday/Anniversary gift for your family or friends.
4M Easy-to-do Crochet Kit – DIY Arts & Crafts Yarn Gift for Kids & Teens, Boys & Girls
- The Crochet Art Kit is a perfect beginner set to teach the fundamentals of crocheting.
- The kit includes two (2) crochet hooks, one (1) plastic needle and seven (7) colors of yarn.
- This kit contains enough materials to create three of the following items: coaster, handbag, placemat or belt.
- Includes a 14-page instruction book.
- Recommended for ages 8 years and up.
- Challenge your child’s imagination with 4M toys and kits.
- 4M educational toys cover a wide range of educational subjects and include science kits, arts and crafts kits, robotics kits, and more.
Disney Frozen Crochet [Box Set] (Crochet Kits)
A beautiful crochet kit that you will love making for that special little girl in your life. This kit has everything you need to make 12 cuddly characters from Frozen. Note that this one is not for a beginner.
If you have any other views to add to my ‘what is crochet article,’ please feel free to comment below.