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I’ve been teaching the younger high school girls how to crochet.  I’ve done this before with previous groups of kids and always with very limited success.  I never understood why success was so limited until I realized that the projects we were starting on, although simple and straightfoward, were too big for them.  A crocheted (or knitted) scarf is pretty easy to make, but it would take us weeks to make one because novice crocheters don’t stitch very fast.  Also, making 1293871293872 single crochets is kind of boring.

So, enter the granny square.  I never thought granny squares were very useful or interesting.  Ok, so you can use up bits of yarn making a granny square, but now you have…a square.  Yay.

But I recently realiezd that in ye olden days, kids were taught how to crochet with granny squares.  They’re actually really good teaching tools because each one only takes about 15-30 minutes to make and you learn a few different stitches.  That could possibly be a bad thing because now you have to keep track of all these stitches BUT they repeat in a pattern, so you get to practice each one.

In our case, we didn’t do a square motif because…a square isn’t very interesting.  Well, a few squares put together can be interesting, but we’re talking about each person making one square.  It’s really not that interesting.  Or useful.  So I found a hexagon motif instead that looks pretty good only using one color.  I guess it’s a granny hexagon?  I don’t think they’re called granny hexagons.

ANYWAY, here’s Yaris modeling our crocheted hexagon motif.

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Were you aware that Yaris is vain and likes to look pretty?  Well, she is and she does.

Actually, the first hexagon I attempted (the red one) ended up…a pentagon.  I guess I had miscounted my stitches in the beginning.  I also had started with a magic ring.  I got rid of that when I taught the girls.

Their first attempts also missed the hexagon mark.  One of them ended up with a septagon.  That was pretty impressive.  I had started it for her and made sure she had the proper number of stitches and somehow she managed to add another petal.  The other girl ended up with a pentagon, like my first attempt.  I’m not sure how that happened either, because I also make sure she had the proper number of starting stitches.  Hmm…

In the end, it didn’t matter too much.  Their final result looked a lot like what they should have gotten, so they still had that sense of accomplishment.  They also had the desire to try again and make it correctly the second time.  And that’s what I was looking for.

Here’s Yaris modeling again.

WP_20130206_19_34_46_SmartShootTo make her flower, I layered that red pentagon I made the first time over a correctly crocheted green hexagon, and then I tied it to her collar.  You can’t see it that well, but it does look like a flower.  Actually, right now it looks like a very furry flower because I haven’t brushed Yaris in awhile and she’s shedding like crazy.  She probably doesn’t feel pretty right now and is quite grumpy with me.

And here is the pattern for the hexagon.  I modified it from a motif I found in this book, which I own in Kindle format and encourage you to get so you can make more than just this hexagon, so that it would be easier for the girls to start the pattern and follow through with it.

Rnd 1: Ch 2, 12 sc in first ch, join with slst to first sc (12 sc).
Rnd 2: Ch 1, *[sc, ch 5, sc, ch 1] in same sc, skip next sc, repeat another 5 times from * (6 sets total), join with slst to first sc.
Rnd 3: Ch 1, *[sc, hdc, 4 dc, hdc, sc] in ch-5 space, repeat another 5 times from * (6 sets total), join with slst to first sc.  Fasten off.

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To purposely make more or less petals, you can alter the number of single crochets in round 1.  Or you can do weird stuff, like we all did in our first attempt, and get something totally not a hexagon.

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2 Comments

  1. For a small project you could make those coffee mug and treat mats like you made before (looks like tiny placemats). But they need not be rectangular so as to incorporate a variety of stitches. And since they’re not too big, they might be good as a beginner project. Then in the end you will have produced something with an intended purpose.

    • I had thought about that, and it is a very good idea, but I don’t think it would work too well with the yarn I have. It’s mostly synthetic and novelty (extra furry) stuff. It would make…an interesting mug rug, though.


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