Friday, March 30, 2012

Basic Crocheted Square Pattern

This is a generic crocheted square that can be made any size by varying how many rounds you make. It's not as open and lacy as a traditional granny square which makes it more suitable for things with a denser texture. I used it for the straps on a bag I made.

Finished Basic Granny Square (3 rounds)

Instructions on how to crochet a basic granny square:

Keep a smaller hook nearby to use when weaving in ends and attaching new colors to your work. It seems to be easier, especially through the many stitches around the ring.
Work your ends in as you go. It seems like an almost insurmountable task if you wait until all your squares are finished. And it's just nicer to work on neat tidy squares without all sorts of strings dangling.

Start with a sliding ring. Interweave has a nice visual tutorial with good pictures of this prcess on the crochet me website.

Basic Granny Square - Round 1
Round 1: Ch 4, 3 dc in loop, [1 trc in loop, 3 dc in loop] 3 times, join to 4th ch of beg ch 4. Fasten off.

Basic Granny Square - Round 2

Round 2: Join new color at one of the trc. Ch 3, 1 trc and 1 dc in same st as joining, [(1 dc in next 3 dc), (1dc, 1trc, 1dc in next trc)] 3 times, 1 dc in next 3 dc. Join to 3rd ch of beg ch 3. Fasten off.

Basic Granny Square - Round 3

Round 3 and subsequent rounds: Join a new color at one of the trc. Ch 3, 1 trc and 1 dc in same st as joining. For rest of round, 1 dc in each dc and 1 dc, 1 trc, 1 dc in each trc. Join to 3rd ch of beg ch 3. Fasten off. 

I've made this square as large as 12 rounds. It's a good one to use on "Babette" style blankets and scarves. (I've got a diagram for different sized squares made into a blanket here.)

No matter how carefully I stitch I find my squares curl and and are uneven. A few minutes of blocking makes assembly much easier. I pin the squares (at about every inch) onto a Quilter's Board and float over them with a steam iron, not actually touching the squares with the iron, just letting the steam float down onto them. They'll be dry in an hour or so & ready to much more easily assemble. (Especially if you've faithfully woven those ends in all along!)

Basic Granny Square - blocking
I've found I use my Quilter's board constantly. They come in a few different sizes, have a handy carry handle and are a perfect size to pop onto the kitchen counter for quick pressing or blocking.

This is my favorite one.
It's 14" x 22" and has a rulered cutting surface on the back to use with rotary cutters or x-acto knives.

A slightly smaller (about 14 1/2" x 15 1/2") and cheaper option is this one, which is also great to take to classes and workshops.

I've got a couple of each as I always seem to have about 5 projects going on at a time.

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