Crochet Hacks: 50+ Mind-Blowing Tips & Tricks From Pros


Crochet Hacks: 50+ Mind-Blowing Tips & Tricks From Pros

This page goes beyond crochet tips and tricks for beginners - it includes mind-blowing hacks you've never thought of for yarn, hooks, patterns, and more.

Crochet Hacks

Shhh, you're about to learn all our best crochet secrets on this page. That's right, this page is full of the most mind-blowing crochet hacks you've ever seen and most you've never even thought of before.

As a scrappy crafter, I've come up with a few unique ideas here and there to save me money, time, and frustration over the years and I thought I would share them with you!

Plus, I thought I'd enlist our amazing readers to see what they had to offer. Boy, did they deliver! I asked the followers on our AllFreeCrochet Facebook page as well as our Facebook community group and received so many unique hacks I'm going to share with you below. We're also sharing a lot of tips and suggestions as we go through all of our hacks.

Many of these ideas are also knitting hacks and helpful for any fiber artist. We're sharing yarn hacks, crochet hook hacks, crochet supply hacks, pattern hacks, and more.

Take a look we're sure you'll leave with so many more ideas as well as inspiration to improve your crocheting time.

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Crochet Yarn Hacks (Knitting, Too!)

There are so many crochet hints and tips for yarn and many of these work for knitters and other fiber artists, too! There are hacks for storing yarn, creating your own DIY yarn bowls, holders, and other fun and clever ideas you're going to love.

Let's start with yarn holders because there are so many creative ideas we crocheters have come up with to help us work with ease.

Instead of spending money on yarn bowls and holders, check out these creative and thrifty ideas that will save you money and work just as well.

Below, check out my DIY yarn bowl. It involves only two things and cost me nothing because everything was already in my home. All you need is a binder clip and a bowl from your kitchen.

DIY Yarn Bowl

Other yarn holders ideas include various upcycles and items you probably already have, just make sure they are clean and dry before using for yarn:

- Old teapots

- Cleaning wipes containers (pictured below)

- Ice cream containers
Pro Tip: The containers with handles work well for travel!

- Iced tea dispensers

- Toilet paper holder (pictured below)

- Fabric cubes (pictured below)

- Laundry baskets
Pro Tip: From our Facebook follower Deb LF: "I use the Bernat Blanket yarn a lot. So I toss that lg. yarn ball in a small plastic laundry/utility basket and set on the floor and pull it from there while I crochet. Works great. When I'm not working on my project, I toss it all in the basket to tuck it away."

- Toilet paper holders (pictured below)

- Snack tubs

- Sealable plastic food storage bags (pictured below)

- Coffee containers

- Reusable water bottles (pictured below)

- Buckets (pictured below)

- Reusable food containers (pictured below)

- Shopping bags
Pro Tip: Our Facebook follower Frieda JT provided a bonus hack: Have two colors of yarn that you're using for your project? Thread one yarn piece through one handle hole, the other through the second handle hole.

Want to see some of these yarn hacks in action?

A cleaning wipe container is perfect because the wipes come out one at a time and the hole is cut strategically to allow it. Perfect for your piece of yarn as you can see in the image below.

Wipes Container Turned Yarn Holder

Leona N from our Facebook page provided the image below and says, "I bought a container from dollar tree. I used the flip open part of an empty baby wipes pack and glued-on lid. Cut a hole and I can feed my yarn through. Yarn stays free from dust and if the project is small I can store it in the container. I also take it with me to places."

Reusable Food Container Yarn Holder

A sippable water bottle is also a brilliant hack for a DIY yarn holder while crocheting! In the image below, you can see how easily the yarn fits in the bottle (though not every skein will fit in the size you might have already). It's also made for travel, which is perfect for when you want to crochet on the go!

Yarn Hack: Water Bottle Yarn Holder

Our Facebook follower Jackie R provided the image below and says, "If you have several skeins of the same yarn for a project. Stand them on end in a fabric cube. Center pulls easy and they stay in place. Plus an area to store your project."

Fabric Cube Yarn Holder

On our Facebook page, Sharon H provided the image below and shared her brilliant hack: "I recently finished a tablecloth using #10 thread. I like using a paper towel holder my dad had made to hold the spare balls of thread while putting the ball I'm using hooked on the top to make it easier for the thread to unwind without the ball traveling."

Paper Towel Roll Yarn Holder

Similarly, you can use toilet paper roll holders as yarn holders! Jessica G. has this one shown below set up with yarn and says, "$10 well spent." We agree!

Toilet Paper Roll Yarn Holder

Additional Yarn Hacks

We're not done with our yarn hacks yet. We have a few more for you.

Sealable food storage bags come in handy as a yarn holder since the seal can be left partially open for your working yarn to be let through. They are also great for yarn storage! Put your yarn or even your yarn, supplies, and pattern in the bag and seal it. It can be stored and keep clean and safe from pet hair, dust, and debris.

Nicola R from our Facebook page shared the image below and says, "IKEA sells some pretty durable resealable food bags. The one for fish is large enough to keep most projects in with their hook for storage when not working on them.

Keeps the pet hairs off and keeps the right size hook with it. Plus you can see without opening it what is inside. Then you can reuse it again and again for your next projects."

Yarn in a Food Storage Bag

Vicky M from our Facebook page has a unique way to track your yarn usage. She says, "I always use a scale for the weight of my yarn after I finish a piece of my project or even before I start so I always know if I will have enough to complete it." How clever is that?

Have scratchy acrylic yarn? You can soften it! Read how with our guide, How to Soften Acrylic Yarn.

Can't find the yarn you need? We have tons of tips for substituting yarn the right way on this page of Yarn Substitutions (Tips for Swapping).

You can also use snapping hair clips/barrettes to hold the end piece of yarn on a skein or to hold it in place on an unfinished project that you have to put down, as mentioned by Lorena Ann D on our Facebook post. As you can see in the image below, it's an easy and inexpensive yarn hack that you're definitely going to use from now on!

Yarn Hack: Hair Clip to Hold Yarn End

Janet HB commented on our Facebook page that she holds cakes of yarn in place with nylons. It can be used for any yarn, from cakes to skeins to hanks to scraps. How clever! You can see it holding a skein tightly in place in the image below.

Nylon to Hold Yarn

Lastly, don't forget that you can re-wind yarn if it's tangled or not releasing easily. We have a few tutorials to walk you through untangling, starting skeins, and winding:

1. How to Untangle Yarn

2. How to Start a Skein of Yarn

3. How To Wind a Center-Pull Ball of Yarn By Hand

4. How to Wind a Hank of Yarn (or Skein)

5. How to Wind a Yarn Ball Tutorial - From our sister site AllFreeCrochetAfghanPatterns. Plus, watch the video tutorial below:

Crochet Hook Hacks

First, choosing a crochet hook can be a hack because using the wrong one might slow you down, cause pain, or cause other problems depending on type and quality.

We suggest testing out different hooks: Ergonomic (shown below), light up, plastic, wood, metal. Read our guide, How to Choose a Crochet Hook, for more tips.

Ergonomic Crochet Hooks

Not loving hand pain from your metal hook? There are also crochet handle add-ons to purchase. Some people even DIY their own crochet hook handles using polymer clay. You can find an easy Funky Polymer Clay Crochet Hook Handles tutorial on FaveCrafts (shown below).

DIY Funky Polymer Clay Crochet Hook Handles

More hacks include using pencil grips or rubber bands can help ease pain and allow you to turn or move your hook more easily.

Facebook follower Leigh L provided the image below and says, "No matter what kind of store-bought grip I get for my hooks, I HAVE to have at least 3 small or 1 large rubber band wrapped around my hook. The way I crochet it helps me 'turn' my hook by rolling it across my thumb and lets me crochet pretty fast."

Hook Hack: Rubber Bands Wrapped on Hook

How you hold your hook matters, too! There is no set rule for how to hold your hook but the two most common are pencil and knife grip. Test different ways to hold your hook and choose what works best for you and causes the least amount of pain over time. When you give the different grips a chance before choosing one, you might find that a certain grip might feel more natural to you than the one you thought.

By the way, if you are wondering if crochet hook size matters, it does! Here's a guide full of info and hacks: Does Crochet Hook Size Matter?

Another important hack is learning how to measure a crochet hook manually. If your hook doesn't have a size shown or it's rubbed off, then you need to know what your hook size is and we know how to do it. Read through our guide, How to Measure a Crochet Hook.

How to Measure a Crochet Hook

Additional Yarn Hacks

A member of our Facebook group has an awesome hack for storing her hooks. Sharon E provided the image below and says, "Utilizing a paint brush holder as my hook holder to keep my frequently used hooks all in one place."

Paint Brush Holder for Crochet Hooks

Is your hook squeaking? Rub the hook through your hair to stop the squeaking. Really!

Sweaty hands? Using 100% cotton gloves can help keep your hook and yarn from getting ruined.

Another hack is to focus on the tension in your hands as often as possible. It's best to keep them relaxed to avoid hand pain. Concerned about discomfort while crocheting? Read our two guides packed with hacks, tips, and guidance for pain-free crochet:

1. Crocheting Pain: How to Avoid Wrist and Hand Pain

2. Crocheting with Arthritis: A Guide to Pain-Free Hooking

One more awesome comfort hack from our Facebook follower Maggie P. She provided the image below and says, "I put a knitting needle rubber tip on the end of my aluminum and steel hooks so the palm of my hand doesn’t get sore. (I hold my hooks like a knife)."

Knitting Cap/Tip on Crochet Hook

Crochet Supply Hacks

Jan O provided the image below and says, "I Love this for my projects! Holds everything: yarn, hooks, scissors, tape measure, etc.! I work thru the holes in the hooks so my yarn is in my control!" How clever are those clips? Brilliant crochet hack right there.

Crochet Hack Bag for Supplies

Instead of buying new filling for amigurumi (or other crochet items that need filling) reuse the stuffing from inexpensive pillows or cushions instead of buying new fiber filling.

In need of stitch markers or don't want to spend money on the real thing? You can use so many items in your home as DIY stitch markers! The easiest and most common is to use safety pins. As you can see in the image below, the left shows store-bought markers and the right shows good old safety pins.

Safety Pins as Stitch Markers

Want to learn what else can be used as a stitch marker? Scraps of yarn, ribbon, and many other household items. Check out How to Use Stitch Markers to learn more. Plus, our friends at AllFreeKnitting have a chart showing all the homemade stitch marker options, shown below.

Homemade Stitch Markers

Additional Supply Hacks

You never know when you're going to need to write something down. Always keep a notepad and non-inky pen in your project bag.

As mentioned above, a good idea is to keep your project supplies in sealable plastic bags - pattern, yarn, hook, notes, markers, scissors (in a case), so that everything is in one place and ready to go or travel when you are.

Vanessa H from our Facebook page suggested small tags can be used for writing the hook size and attaching it to your unfinished project if you need the hook for something else. As a bonus hack, we think bread tags would work quite well for this!

Pill bottles, as shown below, can be used to hold yarn needles, stitch markers, and other small notions and supplies whether you're on the go or simply want them all contained in one place. It's also small enough to put anywhere!

Pill Bottle Supply Holder

One of our Facebook followers, Kristina S has quite the setup with lots of hacks. She provided the image below and says, "I use a ToolBag from Wm, pockets for hooks and work. Wm Rx bottle for needles and stitch markers.

I live where socks used to be made, they used foot-long thread spindles (spool), a local thrift shop sold them. A baker’s cool rack on the bottom of the ToolBag, w spindles through the grid. (Tape to hold them) Yarn spins freely. My carpal tunnel syndrome requires the adaptor for the crochet hook (left photo), I'm making a twiddle muff."

Supply Hacks

Another super creative crochet hack is from our Facebook follower and her husband, Amy and Bruce B. Amy provided the image below and says, "Our ideas merged together. My Artbin Yarn Drum inside a new, clean bucket...and he bought a new bucket organizer for me that goes in the bucket."

Supply Hacks

Magazine or chair organizers to hold your supplies while working (or for when you return to work). You can even crochet one! One of our favorites is the Crochet Organizer Caddy from Red Heart.

Crochet Organizer Caddy from Red Heart

Elena H from our Facebook page provided the image below and says, "I have this type of hook for crochet, I also use compression gloves that help a lot, reduce pain, and at night when I cannot use natural light from my garden I use the necklace with light."

Supply Hacks

Another cool crochet hack comes from Donna W who provided this image below and says, "Never buy a needle threader again. A little bit of an old envelope works best but they are free and easily replaced if you lose it." This works for any sewing or yarn needle!

DIY Needle Threader Hack

Planning on getting on an airplane anytime soon? To avoid the pair of scissors needed for crochet to be taken by TSA, take nail clippers instead! And be better prepared for crocheting while traveling by reading through our guide, Can I Take a Crochet Hook on a Plane?

Lastly for crochet supply hacks, don't forget about downloadable charts, PDFs, and more! These will certainly make things easier and are often full of the info you need when you need it.

We have a lot on this site and there are plenty out there when searching the internet. Whatever you need, you should be able to find it and it will make your life easier. If you can't, let us know in the comments!

Here are some of our most popular guides with infographic and chart downloads:

Crochet Hacks for Stitches, Patterns, and More

Our last section today focuses on crochet hacks for techniques, the process of working, specific stitches, and patterns. Let's dig in, shall we? We'll start with the general hacks and suggestions to make everything simpler for you while crocheting.

The first one is tough but it will make your crochet life easier: Choose a project, THEN buy the yarn. We also suggest trying to buy all the yarn for a project at once and getting an extra skein is smart since dye lots change, yarn gets discontinued, etc.

Always do a gauge swatch - you can also make something out of the swatches later! Read our helpful guide, What is Gauge in Crochet?

Practice with a lightweight yarn in a solid light color that allows you to see your stitches and fully understand the process and look.

If you are struggling, email the designer or ask a community (such as ours). Most likely, there is someone who can help to save you frustration and mistakes.

Save your printed patterns! Here's a brilliant crochet hack: Use a binder to hold patterns and notes and use clear sleeves and dry erase markers to make notes "on" the pattern without actually writing on the paper.

Also, use sticky notes to keep your place on the pattern.

Write down the information you might forget. Memo pads, notebooks, phone notes, or a doc that has all your crochet info is going to be so helpful later.

Count, count, count! It will save you time and frustration later, believe us. Need help? Read our guides on How to Count Crochet Stitches and How to Count Crochet Rows.

How to Count Crochet Stitches

Now, onto more specific technique hacks:

Leave a long tail to sew in with a needle for more secure finished pieces.

Most crocheters swear this saves tons of grief at the end: Crochet over ends as you work. No weaving at the end!

Need to assemble granny squares? Did you know there are multiple ways to do it? Our hack is to practice these three main methods and see what you like best before diving into that entire granny square afghan you need to put together. Learn them all on this page, How to Assemble Your Granny Squares.

How to Assemble Your Granny Squares

People swear by Russian joins, which is a unique technique that you definitely need to learn before you start your next project! Learn How to Do a Russian Join.

The magic circle/magic ring is also a favorite technique that completely changed crocheting in the round for many crocheters. Don't know how to do it? Check out How to Crochet the Magic Circle.

How to Crochet the Magic Circle

Learn how to do standing stitches to eliminate the turning chain and avoid the slip stitch.

Anything "invisible" is going to be a good hack, right? Crocheters love using invisible joins, like in the image below for the Join Crochet Hexagons With Invisible Seams tutorial from Make and Do Crew.

How to Join Crochet Hexagons With Invisible Seams

Along with joining, the invisible increase and invisible decrease are both nice hacks for making your crochet piece look cleaner and more professional.

Here's a clever crochet hack: After chaining, turn it over and crochet in the bumps to create a better foundation.

According to Pia from Stitches n Scraps, "Slip knots are entirely unnecessary! They're essentially just tight chains that you don't work into, and you don't need them to start your work. Instead, just put a twisted loop on your hook and start chaining. When you work back, work into every chain." See the full tutorial here: How to Crochet Without a Slip Knot.

How to Crochet Without a Slip Knot

One last hack that we love from our Facebook follower Lori MC. She says, "I’ve bought myself a pretty scrapbook and take pictures of the work and the person to whom I have given the project. Then I add pattern and pattern authors and location of patterns, and yarns used. It helps me to know who’s received what items. Plus it’s fun memories!"

What a great idea to keep you organized and to remind you of everything you've crocheted along the way.

Happy crocheting!

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Have any hacks you'd like to share?
Let us know in the comments!

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The DIY stitch markers chart is so cute!


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