I can’t crochet that small – can I?

miniature crochet
© F H Powell 2007

Many people are discouraged by the idea of miniature crochet as soon as they see the tiny hooks and fine yarn. This need not be the case, especially if you are prepared to be patient.

Unless you are used to working with really small hooks and fine threads don’t expect to just be able to pick up miniature crochet and produce a masterpiece with your first attempt.

One of our customers gives the following really good piece of advice:

When I was wanting to move from crocheting in wool – usually double knit; 8 ply – I first of all switched to using cotton to crochet with, then I slowly worked my way from thicker to thinner and getting used to smaller crochet hooks as I went down in thread size until I arrived at #30 thread and a 1.5 mm crochet hook (at least I think that is the size hook I use). If I want to go down further in sizes I know it is just a case of grabbing the hook that will fit the thread.

Annette from New Zealand

Working your first miniature project

Once you are happy with the materials it is then time to select a pattern.

There are a few things to bear in mind:

  • Even if you are a very experienced in human sized crochet, select a very simple pattern.
  • Aim to complete a small item, perhaps a doily, rather than an intricate bedspread for your first attempt.
  • It might be best to try a few rounds/rows of a pattern you have previously worked in full size, rather than use a pattern designed specifically for miniatures. A pattern for a full sized doily can easily become a miniature tablecloth or a full sized snowflake can become a miniature doily.
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    With the pattern selected, now is the time to decide on your hooks and thread/yarn.

  • Decide whether you wish to work with fine thread or perhaps fine wool or acrylic yarn
  • Check that the yarn will not split when you try to crochet with it, by working a short length of chain stitches. This will also help you get a feel for the work.
  • If the hook digs into your finger you may wish to use some protection on that finger, such as a thimble. It’s no fun trying to work with a sore finger.
  • See if the yarn/thread and hook you have selected give a pleasing result, which is suited to the finished item. For example a basket may need to be denser (with smaller stitches) than a lace doily. If your item does not please you, you may need to change the yarn or the hook size.
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    Before you start to crochet your first item, here are a few tips:

  • Work in good light, daylight is best, but if this s not possible position your lamp so you can see the crochet clearly.
  • Use a magnifier if required, this is no time for vanity!
  • It may help to place a cloth of a contrast colour underneath your work (on your lap), this shows up the stitches.
  • Work slowly – if you only complete one round or row in a session, it doesn’t matter. You may be the fastest worker in full sized crochet, but mistakes can be made if you try this in miniature. Don’t try and fit this in to the 5 minutes you have spare, set time aside when you can really concentrate and go at your own pace.
  • Your stitch tension may not be perfect and may vary throughout your first few projects. This is quite normal and is another reason for not starting a large project where this would be more noticeable. Once you become used to the crochet your tension will settle down and you can begin a larger project.
  • Even if you are not happy with the finished result, it may help to keep your very first attempt at miniature crochet, you can look back on this and see how much you have improved.
  • Remember the most important thing is that this is supposed to be an enjoyable experience, so if you become frustrated with your work, it may be best to start something else.