The 10 Rules That Made Me a BETTER Crocheter & Knitter
The 10 Rules That Made Me a Better Crocheter & Knitter is packed full of practical advice that can help you achieve your goals as well!
We all want to improve our crocheting and knitting skills. Sometimes it feels easy and we bounce from one new skill to the next. But then there are times that we feel stalled and need some new inspiration.
These are the 10 rules that made me a better crocheter and knitter.
I’ve counted down from number 10 all the way to my number 1 rule (it’s all the way at the bottom if you’re the kind that likes to read the last chapter first, lol).
The 10 Rules That Made Me a Better Crocheter & Knitter
Always Learning a New Skill
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This is a fundamental rule that I live by.
Learning a new skill adds to my knowledge base, but it also gets me excited about crocheting and knitting.
There are definitely times when I need to let all those new skills sink in and I need to just crochet and knit for the joy of it.
But there are also seasons in which learning something new makes me excited and energized.
Right now I’m working on a new class from Knitography Farm. Patricia is a traditional Norwegian knitting expert and her classes are the best.
I’m super interested in stranded knitting and traditional practices. Although I’m not Norwegian, I love learning about how people have been knitting for centuries.
Patricia is an American who has lived in Norway for decades and has immersed herself in traditional Norwegian knitting.
Her online courses are jam packed with information and I’m a much better knitter for taking her classes.
So far I’ve taken these courses:
- Stranded Knitting
- Selbu Sock
The current class that I’ve just begun is the Kofte class. It’s for those who are comfortable with stranded knitting and are ready to learn the skills to make what we Americans would call a cardigan.
It’s a gorgeous project that is going to stretch my skills.
One of my favorite things about Norwegian knitting, which also happens to be the most challenging for me, is gauge swatching.
It’s been a skill that has terrified me for quite some time.
But with Norwegian knitting you always swatch with purpose. So instead of just making a gauge swatch that you can’t use, you make something practical.
For the Selbu sock class we made a little mug rug and for the Kofte class we are making a beautiful pair of wrist warmers.
What’s wonderful is that it is easier than ever to learn something new. There are classes online so that you can learn from the comforts of your own home. But also check your local yarn shops and craft stores to find in-person classes as well.
Never stop learning.
Never Make Projects I’m Not Excited About
The next rule that has made me a better crocheter and knitter is that I never make projects that I’m not excited about.
This may seem a bit selfish, but hear me out.
Nothing is worse that picking up your yarn for a project that is uninteresting.
That doesn’t mean that every project I make has to be complicated. Complicated doesn’t equal interesting in my book.
One of the favorite projects I’ve ever made was a granny stripe blanket that I made when my son was in the hospital for a week.
I enjoyed the repetitive motion of it and the blanket turned out absolutely gorgeous.
Having projects that are personally exciting makes me more motivated to learn the skills I need to know to finish them.
Weave in My Ends Right Away
You may wonder how weaving in my ends right away makes me a better crocheter and knitter.
The reason is that when I weave in those ends right away, I am more likely to finish the project in a reasonable amount of time.
Leaving a lot of ends to weave in would leave me feeling very disheartened. I know my own personality and if I had to weave in dozens of ends at the end of a project, I would likely procrastinate and never get it done.
My point is to find those little things in your own crocheting and knitting journey that help you to make progress and move forward.
Take My Time Choosing Colors for A Project
Choosing colors can make or break a project, in my opinion.
I can have THE cutest pattern, but if I choose the wrong colors two things will happen.
Number one, I won’t be motivated to work on the project.
Having gorgeous colors to crochet and knit with is a big motivator for me.
Number two, when I’ve spent hours working on a project and I don’t like the final outcome, I can feel discouraged. Being discouraged doesn’t motivate me to keep crocheting and knitting.
Taking a little extra time to choose those colors has proven to be very beneficial for me.
Finish 99% of the Projects I Start
Because I don’t choose projects I don’t love, I finish 99% of all the projects I start.
That’s not to say that I haven’t finished a project, because I have.
Having unfinished projects make me feel guilty and sad. I think about all that wasted time and money and it makes me not want to pick up my needles and hook.
There have been projects that I’ve been tempted not to finish, but when I’ve pushed myself to complete them, I feel so much better.
I’ve typically learned something valuable about that project.
For example, I almost didn’t finish one knitted bunny. I was so frustrated about how the legs were knit that I put it in time out for several days and wasn’t sure I would finish it.
Thankfully I got over my anger and frustration and picked it back up. I was determined to finish it no matter what and I’m so glad I did.
Buy the Right Yarn for the Project
Since we are crocheters and/or knitters yarn choosing the right yarn is critical.
There are so many wonderful yarns out there, but not every great yarn is good for a specific project.
What works for amigurumi may not work well for a super drapey sweater.
Price also makes no difference when it comes to choosing yarns as well. Just because something costs more doesn’t mean it will work better for a project. I’ve learned that lesson the hard way.
Now I take that extra time to choose the right yarns for a specific project.
If you need help choosing yarns for your next amigurumi project check out my post:
How to Test Yarn for Amigurumi Here
Finding Other Crocheters & Knitters That Inspire Me
Finding crocheting and knitting inspiration is one of my favorite rules to follow. Nothing motivates me more than seeing an amazing project that someone else is working on.
First of all, I am able to find incredible patterns that I probably would never have found on my own.
Second, I find so much inspiration from other makers, whether it’s an adorable amigurumi doll or a fair isle sweater.
But make sure to check out the last rule I follow, because being inspired by others can also lead to one very bad habit.
Having the Right Tools for the Job
There’s nothing more frustrating than trying to crochet or knit without the necessary tools.
One of the first things I do when I decide to make a pattern is to make sure I have the right tools.
I used to be a person that tried to get with having the bare minimums when it comes to crochet and knitting notions.
My mindset was that those things were just frills and I didn’t need them.
In some ways I was right. We don’t need fancy stitch markers (although they are fun to have) or decorative crochet hooks (even though I really want one from FoxJam Hooks).
But we do need stitch markers even if it’s just a piece of contrasting yarn and we need proper size crochet hooks and knitting needles even if they are simple and utilitarian.
I also realized that having the right tools usually was a one time purchase. And I try to take care of what I have so that I don’t have to buy them again.
Making Time for Crocheting & Knitting (Almost) Every Day
The most obvious way that I’ve gotten better at crocheting and knitting is through practice.
I make time just about every day to spend some time crocheting or knitting.
Some days I literally only have ten minutes and others I have a couple of hours.
I do make sure to take days off because when I didn’t I ended up with a nasty case of tendinitis in my elbow from a receptive motion injury from crocheting non stop for hours, days at a time.
Read More About How to Stop Pain from Crocheting & Knitting Here
Comparison is the Thief of Joy
The biggest thing that has helped me to become a better crocheter and knitter is to not compare myself to others.
Comparison is the thief of joy. It sucks all the excitement and motivation right out of us.
Ask me how I know.
I used to spend a good amount of time comparing my crocheting and knitting projects to others. I felt bad about myself because I couldn’t knit a gorgeous fair isle sweater.
Beating myself up for not being able to create the things that others seemed to do so easily began to make me lose my love of crocheting and knitting.
I once heard the phrase, “Don’t compare your beginning to someone else’s middle.”
That made so much sense to me. Many times I was comparing myself to someone who had been crocheting or knitting for decades. They had spend countless hours perfecting their skills.
Now I (try) to compare where I am now with where I was a year ago.
That has completely changed my mindset.
I can see that I’ve made a lot of progress in a year’s time. Not only did I learn new things, but I made a lot of crocheting and knitting patterns.
10 Rules That Made Me a Better Crocheter & Knitter
I hope that you found some of my rules helpful for your situation. Please share what has helped you to improve your crocheting and knitting skills with me! I love learning new tips!