To the untrained eye, the difference between a knitted fabric and a crocheted one may not be super obvious. But to those in the know, knit and crochet are as different as night and day. Or are they? We’ll take a look at some of the common misconceptions about both crafts (does crochet *really* use more yarn?) and help you find reasons to love them both.
Before we dive in, it’s helpful to have a basic understanding of the two crafts. Both involve yarn, but then what?
The Knitty Gritty
Knitting involves working with open stitches — you cast on stitches (meaning you create a series of open loops on one needle), then work through those stitches, pulling more yarn through and creating a new set of open loops. The biggest thing to know is that you work with two needles, and are constantly transferring stitches from one needle to the other as you pull the yarn through.
Hooray for Crochet
Crochet, on the other hand, uses a single hook. You work with one stitch at a time, and each stitch (or loop) is closed off before you move onto the next one. So instead of having a row of active stitches, you have a smooth edge that you work into, pulling up a new stitch and finishing it off before you begin the next.
Get Your Fiber Facts Straight
You’ve probably heard some knit vs. crochet rumors floating around out there, but not all of them are true. Here are some common myths in need of busting.
1. Crochet “Eats Up” Yarn
It may feel that way sometimes, but how much yarn you use depends entirely on the stitch you’re using, the gauge you’re stitching at and the project you’re making. There is no hard and fast rule that crochet uses more yarn.
2. Knitting Is Harder Than Crochet
You may have also heard this one the other way around — regardless, each craft has its own challenges, and the one you think is easier is usually the one you learned first. There’s plenty to be gained by learning how to do both, though, so if you’ve never tried knitting before or are new to crochet, we can help you get started.
Pro Tip: If you’re crossing over from crochet into the world of knitting, try knitting continental style. Holding your yarn in your left hand may feel more like what you’re used to with crochet.
3. You Shouldn’t Crochet Sweaters or Knit Blankets
Let’s avoid any ultimatums when it comes to crafting, shall we? If you want to crochet a sweater, crochet a sweater! Just take the time to work up your gauge swatch to make sure you like the feel and drape of the fabric, then adjust as needed. Similarly, there are some stunning knit blankets out there, so feel free to move beyond the crocheted classics.
4. Hand-Dyed Yarns Are Only for Knitters
It’s common to see a lot of hand-dyed yarns in knitting projects, but crochet looks equally as good in a speckled hand-dye. If you’re venturing into self-striping yarns, just note that the size of your stitch will affect how that stripe pattern works up.
Want to learn more about the differences (and similarities!) between these two crafts? Check out our series Knit Meets Knot below.