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How to Start a Double Crochet Blanket

Blankets are one of the most popular crochet projects. These patterns are usually straightforward and easy to follow, and the resulting fabric is one you will enjoy and use for years to come. That’s why crafters always gravitate to crocheting a blanket, whether they’re beginners or seasoned crocheters.


While blankets seem to be an overwhelming crochet project at first glance, they’re incredibly easy to make. Most use only the basic crochet stitches, whether that’s a single crochet or double crochet stitch.


In this article, we’re going to walk you through how you can get started making a crochet blanket using the double crochet stitch as your foundation. As long as you master this one crochet technique, you can work on this project with ease and confidence.

Understanding Double Crochet Blankets

If you thought crocheting a blanket was complicated, think again. In fact, it’s a project you can successfully complete knowing only the fundamental crochet stitches — the double crochet in particular.


This is one of the first stitch techniques you’ll learn in crochet, but if you haven’t encountered it, here’s how to work a double crochet stitch:


1. Yarn over and insert your hook into the stitch.

2. Yarn over once again and pull the yarn through the stitch (pulling up a loop). At this point, there should be 3 loops on your hook.

3. Yarn over and pull the yarn through the first two loops on your hook.

4. Yarn over the final time and pull through the last two loops on your hook.


The double crochet stitch, when worked in a long chain or row, creates an airy and textured fabric with an interesting visual appearance. It works up quickly because it creates a stitch that’s taller than single crochets, which means it’s a relaxing project that you can do without too much effort.


Most crochet blanket patterns incorporate double crochet stitches, but you can absolutely create a whole blanket of any size using only the double crochet stitch as your foundation. To do that, however, you need to choose the right yarn and hook.


Double crochet blankets typically make use of medium-weight/ worsted-weight acrylic yarn. Although not as smooth as other yarn types and fibers, worsted-weight acrylic yarn creates an interesting texture when double crocheted. It is also easy to work with and comes in a range of colors and designs.


Worsted-weight yarns call for a hook size of J/10 (6 mm). If you choose a different type of yarn for your crochet blanket, refer to the yarn label for the appropriate hook size. Crochet blanket patterns, if you choose to follow one, will also tell you the recommended yarn and hook to use.


Gathering Supplies

To create a double crochet blanket, you can start by gathering the following materials:


Yarn: We recommend using Category 4 medium-weight yarn for your blanket. For a blanket that measures 36 x 48 inches, you’ll need 1300 yards of yarn.

Hook: For Category 4 medium-weight yarn, you need a hook size of J/10 (6 mm) or I/9 (5.5 mm). If you use another type of yarn, refer to the label for the suggested hook size.

Tapestry needle

Scissors


Selecting a Pattern

Working with a pattern can help you get started in crocheting your own blanket. Patterns can familiarize you with the steps to take, as well as give you an idea of your gauge, row and stitch count, etc. Here are some beginner-friendly patterns that you can try.


Yarn: 4 Worsted Weight

Hook Size: Q (16mm)


This pattern guides you in creating a quick and easy throw blanket using the basic double crochet stitch. It yields a finished blanket size of 48 x 61". Feel free to use different yarn colors that reflect your personal style or intended application!


Yarn: 5 Bulky

Hook Size: K-10.5 (6.5 mm)


This pattern creates a blanket that’s brimming with color and detail. It uses Mary Maxim’s bulky weight Aspen yarn to yield a soft blanket that’s safe to machine wash and dry. The blanket incorporates easy double crochet stitches in a crosshatch design to give it visual appeal.


Yarn: 4 Medium Worsted

Hook Size: 7 (4.5 mm)


Double crochet blankets can incorporate as much detail as you want to infuse your own personal style. Use this pattern to create a crochet blanket with heart detailing. It uses double crochet as the stitch foundation and yields a blanket measuring 55 x 64".


Yarn: 6 Super Bulky

Hook Size: N-15 (10 mm)


If you’re looking to make something a little cozier, this pattern uses a heavier-weight super bulky yarn to yield a lush and soft blanket. It uses three complementary colors to add detail and design to the throw, creating a nice blanket that will add color to your couch or bed.


Gauge and Swatching

Gauge refers to the number of stitches and rows per inch in your crochet fabric. It’s important to use the correct gauge when crocheting a blanket so you end up with your intended size. Your pattern will likely specify the gauge you should be using, so you have to make sure that you match it.


Before getting started, we recommend creating a swatch to ensure accurate measurements. To do that, follow these steps:


1. Have the right yarn and hook size. Each weight of yarn will require a different hook size. Make sure to follow the yarn label or pattern instructions to determine what size hook you need for the project.

2. Start chaining stitches. How many stitches you need would depend on your pattern and hook size.

3. Work a few rows of double crochet stitches. Follow the instructions in your pattern and work a couple of rows of double crochets.

4. Measure your swatch. When you’ve completed a few rows, measure your switch’s width and height. Count the number of rows you have both vertically and horizontally, and write the measurements down.

5. Compare. Take a look at your pattern and check if your swatch’s measurements match the pattern’s gauge. If it does, you can proceed with crocheting your blanket. But if it doesn’t, you might need to adjust your hook size depending on the deficit.


If your swatch has fewer stitches and rows than the gauge indicated in your pattern, your stitches are too loose. Use a smaller crochet hook to tighten up your gauge.


If your swatch has more stitches and rows than the pattern, it means your stitches are too tight, and you need to use a larger hook size.


Starting the Foundation Chain

To begin your crochet blanket, you need to work your foundation chain. The chain stitch is used to start most crochet projects.


To create a foundation chain, start with a slip knot. Then, yarn over and pull the yarn through the loop on the hook. There should be 1 loop left on the hook. Keep repeating until you’ve reached the desired length for your blanket.


While chain stitching, you may notice that your chain starts to twist. To minimize this, make it a point to move your left hand constantly, holding the chain as close to the hook as possible.


You also need to maintain good tension so that your stitches don’t end up too tight or too loose. That starts with ensuring you have the right hook size for the yarn you selected. A hook that’s too small will yield tighter stitches, while a hook that’s too large will make loopy and uneven stitches.


While working your foundation chain, hold the yarn and hook with a relaxed grip and gentle tension. Guide the yarn with your fingers to help maintain an even tension as you work. Evaluate your tension periodically and adjust accordingly if you notice your tension isn’t consistent.


Making the First Row

Now that your foundation chain is complete, you can begin working on the first row of double crochet stitches. To do that, follow these steps:


1. Insert your hook into the fourth chain from the hook.

2. Yarn over the hook from back to front.

3. Pull the yarn through the chain stitch. At this point, you’ll have 3 loops on your hook.

4. Yarn over the hook and pull it through the first two loops on the hook. This leaves you with two loops.

5. Yarn over once again and pull it through the last two loops on the hook. You’ve completed your first double crochet stitch.

6. Insert your hook into the next chain stitch of the foundation chain. Repeat steps 2 to 5 to make another double crochet stitch.

7. Repeat the process until you reach the end of the first row.

8. At the end of the first row, you need to create a turning chain so your next row of stitches maintains the appropriate height. For double crochet, the turning chain consists of 3 chains, which means you’ll need to chain 3.


Make sure your turning chains aren’t too loose or tight. Make them the same height as your double crochets so the edges of your blanket remain even.


9. Before proceeding with the next row, turn your work over so that the completed row is facing downward. Then, begin the second row.


Building the Body of the Blanket

To build the body of your crochet blanket, you just need to continue making rows of double crochets, creating turning chains, and flipping your work over every time you reach the end of a row. It’s that easy!


If you want to add more dimension to your stitches, you can also work on increasing or decreasing stitch techniques.

To increase stitches in a row using the double crochet increase technique, work two double crochet stitches into the same stitch. This will create two stitches instead of one, increasing your stitch count.


To decrease stitches using the double crochet decrease, yarn over and insert the hook into the next stitch. Then yarn over once again and pull up a loop. Yarn over and pull through 2 loops on the hook, leaving you with 2 loops on your hook. Yarn over and insert the hook into the next stitch, then yarn over again and pull up a loop. Yarn over and pull through two loops. Then, yarn over and pull through all three loops on the hook.


You can also add more visual interest to your blanket by playing around with color changes and stitch patterns. You can create stripes, color blocking, gradient or ombre effects, or other colorwork techniques by changing yarn colors at different intervals. Or try advanced texture stitch, lace stitch, or combination stitch techniques to add depth to your blanket.


Finishing Touches

After you’ve worked all your rows and achieved your desired blanket size, there are a couple more things to do to make your work look polished and professional. These include cleaning up the edges and borders, weaving in the ends, and blocking.


Edges and Borders

To tidy up your edges, you can create an edging stitch along the sides of your blanket. This can be a series of single crochets, half-double crochets, or slip stitches. You can even add a decorative border using unique stitch patterns such as picots or shells.


Weaving in Ends

Thread your loose yarn ends onto a tapestry needle and insert it under the back loops of nearby stitches. Go back and forth in different directions until you secure the yarn. Trim off the excess.


Blocking

When your project is done, you need to block it before use. Blocking is the process of wetting your project and setting it to shape. Depending on the yarn you’ve used, you can either do wet blocking or steam blocking. Refer to the yarn label and check if your yarn has specific care instructions.


Wet blocking is done for natural fibers or acrylic yarn. To wet block your work, soak your blanket in a mixture of lukewarm water and gentle detergent. Squeeze the excess water out without wringing the fabric. Then lay it flat on a clean towel, pin the ends to your desired shape, and let it air dry.


Steam blocking uses heat to shape the blanket. It’s only safe for some types of yarn, like acrylic or other fiber blends. To steam block, hold a steamer a few inches above your blanket and let the steam penetrate the fibers. Shape and stretch the fabric to your desired shape and dimensions.


Troubleshooting and Tips

While working on your crochet blanket, you might encounter some common issues or mistakes. But don’t worry! All these are easy to troubleshoot and fix. Here are some solutions to help you out:


Uneven tension: If your tension is too tight or too loose, your blanket will look distorted and uneven. Make sure you keep a consistent tension as you work. Hold your yarn and hook with a relaxed grip and assess your tension periodically.

Miscounted stitches: Counting your stitches is crucial to achieving a perfectly-shaped blanket. If you’ve miscounted your stitches, carefully unravel them and count again.

Uneven edges: Uneven edges are the result of fluctuating tension and stitch height. Make sure your turning chains match the height of your double crochets. If you’ve completed your project and want to polish up the edges, add an edging stitch or decorative border.

Crooked shape: If your blanket’s shape is crooked or distorted, unravel the affected rows and rework them. This time, make sure you’re counting and placing stitches correctly.

Yarn ends showing: Use a tapestry needle to weave in the ends. Hide them under nearby stitches securely.


Conclusion

Making a double crochet blanket is easy — all you need are your materials and familiarity with the double crochet stitch technique. As you go, make sure to pay attention to gauge and tension so your project ends up just as you intended.


Remember to make this project yours! Add your personal style and creativity to it, using your favorite color combinations, playing around with stitch patterns and techniques, or adding decorative borders to add visual interest to your cozy crochet blanket.