I learned how to crochet in a high school crafts class, a couple years
before I learned to knit. The woman teaching the class had never
crocheted a single item from a pattern, but could figure out how to
crochet pretty much anything she wanted to. Learning from someone with
a free crocheting mindset has had plenty of advantages, like not being
afraid to ignore a pattern and strike out on my own. The disadvantage
is that my crochet (and to a lesser extent, my knitting) technique is
pretty shoddy.

I’m embarrassingly ignorant at times, and usually I don’t figure out
the "right" way to do things until someone points out what I’m doing
"wrong" and corrects me, or if I stumble across the "right" thing to do
in a book. I think it’s important not to get too hung up on technique- if what you do is working for you, and you’re happy with the results of your work, great! On the other hand, it never hurts to be open to learning the "correct" techniques, and most of the time I’ve found that doing things the "correct" way does work better for me.

Today’s example: crocheting through both loops.


See this? I’ve always crocheted through just one loop. Front loop, back loop… whatever. I couldn’t tell the difference and I never understood what instructions meant when they said "Crochet through front loop only." Actually, one of the reasons I developed a preference for knitting is that it seems so much easier to tell the front loop from the back!

After doing a little research I found out that not only did I not understand the difference between front and back loops- the "single crochet" I’d been doing since high school was not really a single crochet at all! More of a half crochet/slip stitch thing! A few minutes of browsing the internet and flipping through crochet books was all it took to figure it out, and while of course it is a preferential thing, I think my crochet through both loops is much more attractive than what I was doing before.


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