A granny square is a type of crochet project that consists of a square motif made up of smaller, interconnected squares. The squares are typically made using double crochet stitches, and can be joined to create larger projects such as blankets, afghans, and scarves.
Granny squares are popular among crocheters because they are easy to make and can be made in a wide range of colors and patterns.
About Granny Squares and Their History
The name “granny square” comes from the traditional, grandmotherly feel of the pattern, which typically uses bright, cheerful colors arranged in a geometric design.
Granny squares originated in the United States in the late 1800s and quickly became a popular way to use up leftover yarn scraps.
Today, granny squares are still a beloved crochet technique, used in a wide variety of projects from blankets and scarves, to bags and accessories.
Almost every granny square is made with crochet. While you can knit a granny square, it takes much longer to complete, so a large afghan blanket, for example, may take twice as along (and it already takes forever!)
The Basics of Granny Squares
To crochet a granny square, you will need a few basic materials, including yarn and a crochet hook that matches that yarn’s weight.
Any type of yarn can be used, but a medium weight yarn is a good place to start. You will also need a crochet hook in a size that is appropriate for your yarn. A size H 8 (5.5 mm) crochet hook is a good all-purpose size for medium weight yarn.
In terms of technique, a granny square pattern will typically be worked in the round, starting from the center and working outwards. To begin, you will need to make a slip knot and chain a few stitches to form a circle or make a magic circle.
Then, you will work double crochet stitches into the center of the circle, increasing in each round to create the square shape. Granny squares can also be made using other stitches, such as single crochet or half double crochet, but double crochet is the most common.
In terms of color, granny squares are typically made with multiple colors, arranged in a repeating pattern. This can be as simple as using two colors in a striped pattern, or as complex as using multiple colors in a geometric design.
The fun of granny squares is in the endless possibilities for color and pattern!
Stitches In Granny Squares
As mentioned above, the most common stitch used in granny squares is the double crochet stitch.
Other stitches that may be used in granny squares include the single crochet stitch or half double crochet stitch, which creates a tighter, denser fabric, and the treble crochet stitch, which creates a taller, looser stitch.
Some granny squares may also incorporate more advanced stitches or techniques, such as color work or lace patterns.
The types of stitches used in a granny square will depend on the specific pattern and the desired look and feel of the finished project.
Sizes of Granny Squares
When you learn about Granny squares, you’ll find that they are typically square-shaped and range in size from small (around 4 inches across) to large (around 12 inches across). Most granny squares measure in between 4 x 4 inches to 7 x 7 inches.
The size of a granny square can vary depending on the type of yarn and hook size used, as well as the individual crocheter’s tension. To make a specific size of granny square, you can adjust the number of rounds or the type of yarn and hook you use.
Some crocheters also use specific techniques to make their granny squares larger or smaller. For example, crocheting loosely can result in a larger square, while crocheting tightly can result in a much smaller square.
Types of Granny Squares
Granny squares can not only come in different sizes, but styles as well. From the traditional or classic granny square to the three-dimensional one, granny squares can be made in several styles.
Other granny square styles include solid granny squares, ones made with corner-to-corner, and striped squares.
If you are looking to create your first granny square, you’ll want to stick with the classic version first.
Tips for to Crochet a Granny Square
There are a few tips that can help you make crochet granny squares.
- Firstly, it is important to work in the round and to keep track of your stitches and rounds. This can be done by placing a stitch marker in the first stitch of each round, or by counting your stitches as you go.
- Another tip for granny squares is to make sure to properly increase in each round. This is typically done by working three double crochet stitches into each corner space, and two double crochet stitches into each space between the corners. By increasing in this manner, you will create a square shape that grows evenly and smoothly.
- Finally, changing colors in granny squares can add visual interest and depth to your project. To change colors, simply work the last stitch of the old color until there are two loops left on the hook, then yarn over with the new color and complete the stitch.
This will create a seamless color change that is neat and tidy. With practice, changing colors in granny squares will become second nature.
Classic Granny Square Patterns
Use these granny square patterns to create an easy granny square.
Once you learn the basic granny square, you can expand that knowledge into other patterns and projects.
I often find myself finding a pattern for a unique granny square, then turning around and creating a granny square blanket or scarf from it. I enjoy this sort of “meshing” of two separate crochet patterns into one completely new project!
Pattern Ideas for Using Granny Squares
Once, you learn how to make a granny square, you can take a peak below at a few granny square project ideas.
- Granny Square Blanket: Using multiple granny squares, you can create a beautiful, colorful blanket. You can arrange the granny squares in a variety of patterns, from stripes and checkerboards, to more complex geometric designs.
- Granny Square Scarf: A granny square scarf is a fun and stylish way to keep warm in the winter. You can use a single granny square, or multiple squares joined together to create a longer scarf.
- Granny Square Bag: A granny square bag is a unique and eye-catching accessory. You can make a small, clutch-sized bag using a single granny square, or a larger tote bag using multiple squares stitched together.
- Granny Square Pillow: Add a touch of handmade charm to your home with a granny square pillow. You can use a single granny square as the front of the pillow, or create a larger square using multiple granny squares.
- Granny Square Headband: Keep your ears warm in the winter with a granny square headband. You can make a simple headband using a single granny square, or create a more complex design using multiple squares.
These are just a few examples of the many ways you can use granny squares in your crochet projects. With a little creativity, the possibilities are endless!
Common Questions About Granny Squares
What is the easiest granny square to make?
There are many variations of granny squares, but the traditional granny square is often considered to be the easiest one to make, especially for beginners.
How long should it take to crochet a granny square?
The amount of time it takes to crochet a granny square can vary depending on factors such as your level of experience, the size of the square, the thickness of the yarn, and the complexity of the pattern.
However, as a general guideline, a simple 4-inch granny square made with worsted weight yarn and a H (5 mm) crochet hook could take around 20–30 minutes for an experienced crocheter.
When you crochet a granny square, the time can also be affected by things like interruptions, breaks, and the amount of spare time you have. Additionally, if you are new to crocheting or still learning the technique, it may take longer to complete your granny square.