Crocheting an afghan is a fun, easy way to create a beautiful and functional handmade blanket. Crocheted afghans are ideal for thoughtful presents for someone else, or to keep yourself. Prevent crocheting an afghan from becoming a chore, and speed up the creation process, with a few simple steps, like using easy crochet stitches or bigger yarn.
Simple Stitches and Patterns
Use basic crochet stitches such as single crochet, double crochet and chain to crochet your afghan. Work in the top of each stitch and not around the post of the stitch. Use a simple pattern that does not call for any special stitches like fans or cables. Simply crocheting each row without complex stitches takes less time. Try chaining until you get the width of the afghan you want, turn and single or double crochet in each stitch for each row, until the afghan is the overall size you desire. Crochet Memories suggests, "When working afghans or similar patterns, place a safety pin after a designated number of rows to keep track easily. "
Use an open weave crochet pattern—that is, fewer stitches spaced farther apart—to quickly crochet an afghan. A quick and easy way to make an open pattern is to double crochet, chain four, skip three stitches, double crochet in the next stitch and repeat the pattern until the end of each row. This type of pattern will create open squares. You might also choose an afghan pattern that uses only one yarn color, because switching between yarn colors takes time. Make it easy on yourself and choose a crochet pattern that is specifically written for crocheting afghans fast.
Bigger Yarn and Crochet Hook
Use bigger yarn, such as bulky or super bulky, to increase the size of your afghan quickly. Use a bigger crochet hook, such as a US size 15, when using bulky yarn. The bigger yarn and crochet hook combination will cut down on the time it takes to finish your afghan. Another plus with using bulky yarn is that your afghan will still provide warmth when finished. If you do not have bulky yarn, put two or three strands of yarn together and crochet all the strands as if they were a single strand of yarn.
Metal Crochet Hook
Many people find that using a metal crochet hook is easier. Metal crochet hooks tend to let the yarn slide past and do not catch the yarn quite as easily as other types of crochet hooks, such as bamboo. Some people notice that metal crochet hooks make their hand cold, especially in winter. Or, you may have a metal allergy; keep in mind that crochet hooks are made out of steel and nickel plating or aluminum. Try using a plastic crochet hook instead. Just make sure the plastic crochet hook you choose is well made, without bumps or ridges in the plastic that will catch yarn.