How to Make Your Own Beginner Crochet Kit: The Essential Materials


You are starting out in crochet and want to put together a kit so that you can jump right in to a project. When looking for that answer, you may find many pre-made kits for beginners with a pattern, yarn, and a hook. But what if you want to make a kit yourself? Where should you start?


Beginner’s Crochet Kit Materials

  1. Yarn
  2. Crochet hook
  3. Scissors
  4. Darning (yarn) needle (optional)
  5. Measuring tape (optional)
  6. Stitch markers (I use bobby pins) (optional)

So now you have your shopping list. But when you look them up there are thousands of options. Which type of yarn fiber should you choose? What crochet hook size and brand should you get? What is the benefit of adding the optional materials? Well, keep reading to dive deeper into each tool!

Yarn

Yarn is the first of the two absolutely necessary tools for crocheting. As you expand your crochet knowledge and repertoire, you will likely have a love affair with yarn and have a hard time resisting purchasing a wide variety of yarn for your stash even if you don’t have a plan for it!

That being said, as a beginner to crochet, you should follow a few rules when purchasing yarn for your first few projects. The following are the features you should look for, and why.

Fiber type: Acrylic

There are a wide variety of materials that yarn can be made of: acrylic, cotton, wool, blends of the above, silk, etc. It can be tempting to go for a specialty yarn because, let’s face it, there are some amazing ones out there.

To start with though, you should stick to acrylic or acrylic blends.

They are less expensive which is good because your first few projects may not end up exactly perfect, so you don’t want to purchase a very expensive yarn for a project you may not be super happy with or to just practice a variety of stitches to then rip back out.

Acrylic yarns are also typically durable. This is important because, again, you are probably going to practice a variety of stitches and then rip them back out and use the same yarn again. You want a durable yarn that will not fray, break, or tangle when doing this.

They are many other benefits of acrylic yarns, so you will likely continue to use them as you become more experienced depending on the project you are making. Most of my projects are still made with acrylic yarns for a variety of reasons, but as a beginner, the most important features of acrylic yarns are the cost and the durability.

My favorite acrylic yarn to use is only available at Hobby Lobby: I Love This Yarn. It is soft and high quality, but still inexpensive. (Also, always check the current coupons for Hobby Lobby when purchasing!)

Weight/Size: 4-Worsted Weight

Yarn comes in a variety of thicknesses or “weights”. It is measured with a number scale from 1 to 7 which will be specified on the packaging of the yarn with standardized symbols (see picture to the right).

Yarn comes in a variety of thicknesses or “weights”. It is measured with a number scale from 1 to 7 which will be specified on the packaging of the yarn with standardized symbols (see picture to the right).

When starting crocheting, starting with a medium weight (worsted weight, Aran, 4) yarn is best. (Yes, it has many names which is confusing at times, just look for the 4!) This weight of yarn is thick enough that you can easily see what your stitches look like, but not so thick that it gets clunky to work with.

With very thick yarns, you can easily see your stitches which is beneficial, but they are harder to manipulate and will make your hands sore faster, which as a beginner can be frustrating and make you want to quit. Also, you will want to build up your hand strength before venturing into bulkier yarns.

Color: Light Colored

This is solely recommended because it is easier to see the holes/gaps in the stitches when working with light-colored yarn. As a beginner, the easier it is to see, the less frustrated you will become and the more likely to actually continue your newfound hobby.

Do yourself a favor and pick a light-colored yarn. It doesn’t have to be white, but don’t go with black or navy blue or dark purple. Stick with light and bright.

Pattern: Solid

Keeping to a solid pattern is recommended for the same reason as sticking with a light color. You will be able to see your stitches much easier with a solid colored yarn versus a variegated, gradient, patterned, striped, etc. yarn.

Again, for now, stick to the basics! You will have plenty of time to venture out as you gain experience, and build up that yarn stash!

Crochet Hooks

Crochet hooks are the second of the absolutely necessary tools for crocheting. They come in various sizes, styles, and materials. They can be made of metal, wood, or plastic. They can have ergonomic or regular handles. They range from very small sizes to crochet delicate lace to very large to crochet super chunky yarns.

Material

As a beginner, you will want to stick with metal hooks that are made of aluminum. They tend to glide smoother through the yarn and will result in less frustration when you are just learning to crochet. The other materials have their place and some people prefer them as they become more experienced, but most people stay with metal throughout their whole crochet “career.”

Style

If you are looking for something more basic to start crocheting, you will want to stick with crochet hooks with regular handles. They are much less expensive, but can still be high quality if you choose the correct brands. I recommend Susan Bates Silvalume Crochet Hooks. These hooks are high quality and have a smooth finish that will not snag your yarn.

If you struggle with hand or wrist pain, you may want to invest in hooks with ergonomic handles. These are more expensive but will help to reduce the risk of pain with your new hobby. I recommend Clover Amour Crochet Hooks. These are somewhat pricey, so you may want to purchase a single hook to make sure that you like it before you invest in the whole pack.

Side note: If you start with regular hooks and develop some pain, you may just need to take more breaks and build up the time you spend crocheting more slowly. You don’t necessarily need to jump straight to ergonomic handles.

Size

Crochet hooks come in a multitude of sizes. Each pattern will have a hook size that it calls for. You will also see a hook size recommendation on the yarn packaging. Generally, as a beginner, you will want to stick with a hook that is the “middle of the road” in terms of size.

I recommend starting with a Size I (5.5 mm) hook. Many worsted weight yarns (medium weight) recommend this size of hook. It is comfortable to hold without being very small or large. It creates stitches that are large enough to easily see where to insert the hook. You will be able to gently glide through the stitches without forcing the hook.

When purchasing hooks, you can purchase a single hook in the size that you want, but I do recommend purchasing this six-pack of aluminum hooks from Amazon, Susan Bates Silvalume Crochet Hooks. They are inexpensive, and by having the whole pack you can make many different projects as you learn. Also, purchasing each hook individually will result in a higher cost overall because a single hook will cost around $5, and the pack of six only costs around $10.

If you plan to go straight to ergonomic hooks and do not want to invest in the full set, you can purchase just the size I (5.5 mm) hook at Amazon.

Scissors

You will need something to cut your yarn. You can purchase special scissors for yarn, but it is not really necessary. Any scissors will do. You will find it best to work with sharper scissors; if you use dull scissors the yarn will fray and make it harder to work in the ends and could look messy.

You can use any sewing scissors or even sharp nail clippers to cut your yarn. For traveling with my crochet, I use nail clippers because they are small and you won’t have any difficulty with airport security like you might with scissors (though scissors less than 4″ in blade length are currently allowed on planes).

Darning (Yarn) Needle (Optional)

A darning needle is a large gauge needle with a large eye to make it easy to thread your yarn through. In crochet, it is used for weaving in the ends of your yarn after you finish a project or change colors. You will have about 6 inches of yarn leftover that needs to be weaved through the stitches to secure it. Similarly, you use a darning needle to sew together pieces of crochet, such as granny squares or to add embellishments to your work.

You can weave in ends with a crochet hook, but in my experience, this takes longer and can be more frustrating. You can also “sew” your pieces together with a crochet hook, but again, it takes longer. I also find using the needle results in a “cleaner” finish, but this may just be because I am impatient and rush it when I am using the crochet hook.

Darning needles can be metal or plastic. They can be straight or have a curved end. I have not really found a preference for one style over the others, they all work fine in my opinion. They are very inexpensive, with a two-pack being two to four dollars at any major craft store. Because they are cheap and save frustration (at the end of a project when you are ready to be done and just enjoy the finished product), I highly recommend the purchase, though they are technically optional.

Measuring Tape

A measuring tape is essential if you are working from a pattern where the size of the project matters (e.g. clothing, a specific size blanket like a queen-sized comforter, etc.) Patterns will specify a gauge swatch that you should make to test if your stitches are the same size as the pattern writer’s stitches were. (This is called tension.)

I recommend a sewing measuring tape, such as this one from Hobby Lobby or this one from Amazon. They are flexible, small, and inexpensive. They are easier to store and manipulate when working with fabrics/yarns.

Stitch Markers

Stitch markers are just what they sound like. They mark a specific stitch. The reason you want to do that when crocheting is so that you ensure you have the right number of stitches in each round or row, and that you are putting your hook into the right spot for your first or last stitch. This will keep your project from growing or shrinking due to added or missed stitches.

You can purchase specially made stitch markers from Amazon, any craft store, or even fancy ones on Etsy that have different shapes. Personally, though, I use bobby pins. They are cheap, I already have them on hand, and they work just as well, if not better than, the plastic stitch markers. Many of the plastic ones are cheap and break easily. With bobby pins, they are metal and don’t break, and if they do bend on you, just grab a new one.

If you are going to purchase stitch markers, make sure they are ones for crocheting, not just knitting. Crochet stitch markers open like a safety pin so you can insert it into the stitch; knitting stitch markers slide onto the knitting needle and do not open.

Also, I recommend purchasing metal stitch markers because they are more durable. These from Etsy are a good option, they are inexpensive, yet have great reviews!.

Other Tools to Consider

Classes/Courses

As you start your crochet hobby, you will need to learn from someone or something. Many people learn to crochet from a friend or family member, but you can also learn from in-person or online courses, YouTube videos, or books.

In my opinion, learning in person is best because you get real-time feedback to correct mistakes and for tips/tricks.

Check out my Recommend Tools page for the classes that I recommend in person or online if you are interested in taking a class!

Patterns/Books

You can purchase books that will help to teach you to crochet and ones that are full of patterns. Learning to crochet from a book can be challenging if you are a kinesthetic, visual, or auditory learner. Some books are better than others for visual learners with the pictures they provide, but books are best for people who learn by reading descriptions. Just know that they are an option if you want to add them to your kit.

The pattern books available range for all skills levels and all types of projects. They are nice if you want a variety of patterns in a convenient location.

You can also find individual patterns online for free or for sale. Ravelry.com has a huge selection of patterns, some free and some paid. Also, yarn brand websites, like Lionbrand.com, offer many free patterns as well.

As you learn your basic crochet stitches, you will likely want to work from a pattern to expand your skills and variety of work, so you’ll definitely want to add some patterns to your “crochet kit.” Most of the patterns I have I save digitally as a PDF that I can pull up on my phone or table to work from versus having a hard copy actually in my crochet kit.

Yarn Tote/Organizer

As you continue to crochet, you will develop that love of yarn I mentioned above. You will also start working on projects with a variety of colors (most likely). When using various skeins of yarn for a single project, it can get nice and tangled very quickly.

A nice solution to yarn storage issues is to get a yarn tote. I recommend two specific totes, one more expensive (Teamoy Yarn Tote Organizer) and one more “budget” (BeCraftee Best Yarn Bag), both available on Amazon.

You can check out my Recommend Tools page to see why I recommend these products.

Hook Case

A crochet hook (and other tools) case is a nice addition to your starter kit. It helps to keep all of your tools organized and easily accessible. There are many options available, but these two from Amazon are reasonably priced and have great reviews: Damero Crochet Hook Case and Teamoy Crochet Hook Case.

You can also make your own crochet hook case. There are many sewing patterns for them or you can crochet one. You can follow a pattern or you can wing it and come up with something custom for you.

Either one you choose, a purchased case or a homemade one, will help to make your hobby more organized, and if you are anything like me, keeping your things organized will actually help you to enjoy your hobby more.


I hope that this information points you in the right direction to successfully begin your crochet hobby! If you think of any other questions about building your own beginner’s crochet kit, drop me a comment, and I will answer the best I can!


Now it is time for YOU to get Crafty with Ashy! Show me your crochet kits in the comments!!


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