Updated: Aug 25
The Granny Stitch
The Granny Stitch at its basic is a cluster of three triple crochets (or double crochets if you're using US terms) that are grouped together to form a pattern. Depending on what you're making, the group of three stitches can have no chains between or 1 or more chains to spread out the stitches. There's no hard and fast rule on how many chains you need in between the stitch groups and each person has their own preference based on experience or crochet style. If you're just doing rows of Granny stitches, the
groups of Granny stitches in the next row are placed into the gap or chains spaces between the groups of stitches on the previous row.
One of the first patterns someone new to crochet should try is the Granny square. These are generally small motifs that can be used to create bigger items, anything from blankets to bags to jackets.
You can even keep adding rows to the square until it is large enough for a big one piece blanket.
To make a Granny square you first start with either a magic circle or chain 4.
If you're not familiar with the magic circle (or struggle with it like most of us!) then check out the Magic Circle tutorial from Bella Coco.
If you're chaining 4, slip stitch into the first chain to create a circle as shown below.
Note: Chain 3 always counts as a stitch
Row 1: Chain 3 , 2 triple crochet (these 3 stitches are now your first Granny cluster), chain 2, 3 triple crochet, chain 2, 3 triple crochet, chain 2, 3 triple crochet, chain 2 and after that last chain 2, slip stitch into the top chain of your first chain 3
Note: Every alternating row will start with the end part of a granny cluster. By chaining 4, the first 3 chains count as the final triple crochet for the last cluster that you will do on this row and the chain 1 is the chain between your first cluster and the last cluster.
Row 2: Chain 4, *3 Triple crochets into the corner 2chain space, chain2, 3 triple crochets into same 2chain space, chain 1*, repeat ** until you get to the last corner, 3 triple crochets into the corner 2chain space, chain 2, 2 triple crochets, slip stitch into the 3rd chain of the chain 4 you started with.
Note: You will see that in the two corner clusters there is 2 chains between them and only 1 chain joining the two corner sections. This will follow for all the rows you make, chain 2 in between the corners clusters, or peaks, and chain 1 between all the side clusters.
Row 3: Chain 3, 2 triple crochets, chain 1, *3 Triple crochets into the corner 2chain space, chain2, 3 triple crochets into same 2chain space, chain 1, 3 Triple crochets into the chain 1 space, chain 1*, repeat ** until the end, slip stitch into the chain 3 from the start.
Note: you will see the pattern coming through now, always doing 2 clusters in the corner with 2 chains between and always doing the 1 chain between the clusters on the side. And with each row, there will be an extra cluster added onto each side resulting in a lot more chain 1 spaces each time but still having just the corner chain 2 spaces.
Row 4: Chain 4, *3 Triple crochets into the corner 2chain space, chain2, 3 triple crochets into same 2chain space, chain 1, 3 Triple crochets into the chain 1 space, chain 1, 3 Triple crochets into the chain 1 space, chain 1*, repeat ** until you get to the last corner, 3 triple crochets into the corner 2chain space, chain 2, 2 triple crochets, slip stitch into the 3rd chain of the chain 4 you started with.
Continue each row as Row 2 and Row 3.
Once you've mastered the Granny square, you can get adventurous and try a hexagon shape instead. These have become popular recently for creating fabulous cardigans, made by piecing two large hexagons together. The hexagon follows the same principle as the square where each side has Granny clusters with one chain in between and each peak has two Granny clusters with two chains between.
For the hexagon, your first round will have 6 granny clusters resulting in a motif that has 6 sides.
Joining Squares together opens up so many possibilities to create amazing shapes and colours. From retro jackets and market bags to Stuffed toys, the options are wonderful.
For a simple granny square market bag, check out my How To: Granny Square Bag.
The thing to remember with lots of colour changes and individual shapes is all the ends to sew in before you're finished!
I hope you have fun creating some lovely items!