How to Crochet a Blanket

How to crochet a blanket
Lucy Lambriex/ Moment Open/ Getty Images

The following crochet blanket instructions are written with the assumption that you already know the basics of how to crochet. If you aren't there yet, no problem! We'll teach you how to crochet, for free! Be sure to visit our page of basic crochet stitches, and also our page of free crochet videos. If you are left-handed, check out this page: learning how to crochet left-handed.

If you already know how to crochet, the following instructions will help you learn how to crochet a blanket.

Decisions, Decisions!

If you want to crochet a blanket, there are several decisions you'll need to make before you get started.

One of the first decisions you'll make: do you want to design your own blanket, or do you want to use a ready-made blanket pattern?

Hopefully, you can find a pattern you like online, but if not you can always buy a crochet pattern book that has nice blanket patterns. If you'd like help selecting a book, be sure to check out our book reviews and recommendations.

Once you've settled on a pattern, the rest is easy; just follow the instructions in the pattern – if you like.

I say "if you like" because you might like to use the pattern as a starting point; you can, and should, feel free to make changes to the pattern. Change the colors if you want to; feel free to use a different edging than the one the designer used. You could make your blanket bigger or smaller than the size suggested in the pattern. For that matter, you can make whatever changes you think are necessary so that your blanket will turn out exactly the way you want it.

Designing Your Own Blankets

There are many different ways to crochet a blanket. Let's explore some of the most popular blanket styles you could choose.

One-Piece Blankets

One easy way to crochet an afghan (short version): Crochet an afghan-sized square or rectangle in the crochet stitch of your choice. Add a border or edging. Voila! You have a blanket.

Granny Square Afghans

A granny square afghan would be a wonderful first crochet project. Granny squares are easy to crochet, and there are numerous design possibilities to keep the crocheting interesting.

Giant Granny Square Afghans: Some granny squares can be expanded infinitely by repeating the last round until the square is as large as you want it to be. This is one possibility for a one-piece style afghan, although there are many other possibilities you could consider.

Pieced Granny Square Afghans: You can also design an afghan using numerous small granny squares that will be joined together. You can find lots of free granny square patterns right here on our website; help yourself!

The joining process can be more creative than you might think; the join you choose will greatly affect the look of the finished afghan. If you would like to see a variety of different options for joining – some decorative, some that nearly disappear into the afghan -- be sure to check out this list of ways to join granny squares.

After you join the squares, you'll probably want to add an edging to complete your granny afghan.

Need inspiration? Check out this list of granny afghans.

Afghans Made From Other Crocheted Squares

Not every crocheted square is a granny square. You can make gorgeous afghans out of filet crochet squares, tapestry crochet squares, or just about any other type of crocheted square. For constructing the blanket, you'll use the same basic method: crochet the squares, join them together, and add an edging. Want to check out some free patterns? See these: free crochet patterns for afghan squares.

Afghans Made From Motifs

You could also join other types of shapes to create your afghan: hexagons, triangles, etc.

Afghans Crocheted in Panels or Strips

Instead of crocheting smaller squares or motifs, you could choose to make larger strips or panels and then piece those together to make an afghan or blanket.

More Decisions: Colors and Fibers

You'll need to decide on which fibers and colors to use, and select the yarn you'll use to crochet your blanket. All of this is easy enough if you are going to work with a pattern and you like the colors and fibers the designer selected; however, you need not feel obligated to commit yourself to those choices. You might wish to crochet small swatches of the stitch used, testing out different color combinations to see how they will work. That's optional, but it's a process that helps me greatly when I am preparing to crochet a blanket.

Acrylic is the most popular fiber for crocheting blankets; wool is also a good choice. There are other possibilities, but those are my personal favorites.

Stitches and Stitch Patterns

The stitch or stitch pattern you choose will make a huge difference in the appearance of the finished blanket. If you want a lacy looking blanket, choose a lacy stitch pattern; if you want a warm, solid blanket, you could choose a basic stitch such as single crochetdouble crochet, half double crochet or afghan stitch. Note that you will need a long afghan hook for afghan stitch; for crocheting a large blanket-sized piece, you'd probably want to use an afghan hook with a flexible extension at the end. Otherwise, you'd have to make the afghan in panels or squares.

There are so many possibilities for stitches that I couldn't begin to cover them all in this brief article, so I will refer you to more resources that are at your disposal:

  • Darla Sims' valuable stitch dictionary called Triple Play Pattern Stitches; this is one of my favorite crochet books, and I return to it often for inspiration. Many of the crochet stitches featured in the book would make lovely blankets and afghans, although there are limitless ways you could use them.

Those are the basics and, hopefully, that information will help get you started with crocheting your blanket. Happy crocheting! 

Watch Now: Joining Crochet Pieces