The Classic Granny Square is said to have come from a time when households saved everything and reused it. Sweaters, that were no longer wearable, were carefully unraveled and Grandma would crochet them into squares to make blankets. There is no ‘actual’ proof of this, but I like the theory.
One thing about the Classic Granny Square is that there are many little variations, each claiming to be ‘THE’ correct way to crochet it. I don’t believe there is only one true Granny Square. These came from a time when written patterns were few (if any), and the skill was passed down through generations. So each family would have their own little way of making their Classic Granny Square. I think it’s better to simply enjoy them, rather than say one way is right or wrong.
Back in the 1960s & 1970s the Granny Square had a huge surge in popularity. They were used as building blocks to make anything you could think of (people still joke that there were even underpants). Today, just enjoy making items with a skill that has a long, rich history.
One of the fun things about the Classic Granny Square is that pretty much any yarn and any size hook (that works well with your yarn) can be used. So you could make them with super chunky yarn and a huge hook, or sewing thread and teeny tiny hook. However, you will most often see them made with 4 ply worsted, or 3 ply sport or baby yarn.
Yarn: I’m using Herrschners, Sport Weight, 3 ply Light; Dark Beige and Skipper Blue
Hook: I decided on an E 3.5 mm size hook (it just looked good)
Other: Scissors, yarn needle (to hide ends)
Gauge: Gauge is not important for a Granny Square unless you are sizing for something. To check gauge make a granny square and measure as you go.
When I first learned how to make a granny square I thought it would be a great way to make a baby blanket. That’s when I discovered the natural ‘lean’ of crocheting in the same direction. Making a large granny square will result in the center appearing to lean or twist a little. I believe this is the reason why most crocheters make smaller squares and sew them together. To make a Granny Square that doesn’t lean, see Reversible Granny Square: http://www.moms-crochet.com/reversiblegrannysquare.html
You will find the free PDF Download at the end of the lesson.
Starting the Classic Granny Square seems to have the most differences.
Some say to start with a magic circle, however the magic circle is a later creation than the Classic Granny. I will say it’s a wonderful idea, and you could try it.
Another variation is chaining 3 or 4, and working your first round into the 1st chain stitch. This creates a first ‘stitch’ with the chain, and makes a very tight center.
The way I learned is to chain 4, and join to the first chain with a slip stitch. This is what I’ve done, and is pictured.
Round 1: (Leave about a 2 inch thread.) Chain 4, join to the 1st chain with a slip stitch.
NOTE: The bobby pin you see pictured is my little way of being able to see the exact center of the loop, without pulling it apart and trying to find where my hook goes.
NOTE: Hold your loose end down and crochet around / over it. This hides the first end as you crochet.
After the join, chain 3, do 2 double crochet into the loop you’ve created.
NOTE: In the picture you can see how I use the bobby pin as a guide, to find the center. After the first double crochet you can remove the bobby pin.
Chain 3, 3 double crochet through the center loop. Repeat 2 more times.
At the end chain 3 and slip stitch into the top of the 1st actual stitch (not around the chain). This joins the square to make the first round.
Each time you start a new round, you will be adding 1 cluster of 3 double crochet stitches to each side.
Rnd 2: Sl st into the next stitch, and sl st 1 more around the corner chain. This brings you to the corner.
Ch 3. 2 dc around the corner chain, ch 3, 3 dc around the same corner chain (makes a corner).
Ch 1, 3 dc around the next corner chain, ch 3, 3 dc around the same corner chain. Repeat 2 more times.
At the end ch 1, sl st into the top of the 1st actual stitch (not around the chain).
You should now have 2 clusters of 3 double crochets on each side of your square.
To Begin: Sl st into the next stitch, and sl st 1 more around the corner chain.
First Corner: Ch 3, 2 dc around the corner chain, ch 3, 3 dc around the same corner chain.
Clusters Between Corners (each round will add 1 more cluster of 3 double crochets to each side)
Ch 1, 3 dc around the chain 1 space between clusters. Do this for every side cluster before a corner.
Regular Corners: Ch 1, 3 dc around the next corner chain, ch 3, 3 dc around the same corner chain.
At The End: Ch 1, sl st into the top of the 1st actual stitch.
If This Is Your Last Round: Sl st into the next stitch, and sl st 1 more around the corner chain. Bind off.
Changing color, in the Classic Granny Square, always seemed to be off to me. Maybe it’s my obsessive streak, but I like things to look good when I’m done. I was taught to change color after the last slip stitch around the chain. However, this left one stitch that looked out of place.
Look at the blue corner, with the silver pointer. This shows what the color change looks like when done the way I was taught. You can see the one brown stitch overlapping the blue in the beginning.
In the last brown row, with the blue pointer, I show what I’m going to teach you. It’s all a matter of ‘where’ you do your color change. You can see the color change looks complete with brown where it should be, and blue where it should be.
At the end of the round you are working, slip stitch 1 in the top of the 1st actual stitch (not into your beginning chain). This joins the round.
Then make 1 more slip stitch moving toward the corner. THIS is the place to change color.
Cut your old color and tie on your new color. Leave threads about 2 - 3 inches long.
If you would like you can do a “No Knot” method:
Bring the 2 loose ends up so you crochet over and around them. Ch 3 with your new color and continue making the corner. While you are crocheting your first corner - crochet over and round the loose ends - this hides them.
If you did crochet around your first loose end, all you need to do is snuggle it tight and snip it. That one’s easy.
Did you change colors? Did you crochet around the loose ends? If so all you have to do is snuggle them tight and snip them.
Did you forget to hide your ends while you were crocheting?
Working on the back using your yarn needle, all other loose ends should be carefully brought to the nearest corner.
If you need to go down a row to get there, carefully run your needle through the back of a double crochet stitch.
At the corner bring the thread through all the back sides of the stitches, then snuggle it tight and snip it.
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