One-Handed Crochet Tools
It may surprise some of you to know that I suffer from health issues that limit my mobility. These challenges are often temporary and mild, lasting a few hours or days. Occasionally they last much longer and significantly impact my ability to crochet. Because I love to crochet so very much, this was just not acceptable to me! I had to find a work around. Thanks to help from my God and my friends, a solution was at hand!
Rather than focus on the limits of my right hand/arm, I got creative with my left hand (my non-dominant hand). I designed two tools that help me hold my crochet hooks and get stitching! The first device I created was the Handy Assist Device. Below you will find pictures and instructions on how to create your own! The second device was a collaborative effort with myself and a woodcarving artist, and it has many more bells and whistles. Both designs can be used with standard crochet or Tunisian crochet techniques. At the bottom of this article, you will find my TOP 3 TIPS for learning to crochet one-handed.
I hope that the information in this article helps you or someone you love learn to get creative and work around their limitations!
Griffith Assist Device
My absolute favorite tool is the Griffith Assist Device. This tool was created as a collaboration project between myself and my friends at A Family Affair Crafts. The beautiful natural wood base supports a rotating head with holes sized to fit a range of crochet hooks. You can learn more about this unique custom piece by checking out a YouTube video I posted last year: Griffith Assist Device – Crochet One Handed! To order your own custom crochet assist device, contact Jerry Griffith on Facebook through A Family Affair.
Griffith Assist Device
Co-created by Christy Hagan and Jerry Griffith, with A Family Affair of Minco, Oklahoma. Contact via Facebook: A Family Affair
Handy Assist Device
The other tool I use is very basic and easy to reproduce. I wanted to share with you how I created it so that you can create one, too! It does not have the bells and whistles of the Griffith Assist Device, but it will allow anyone to crochet one-handed by stabilizing the crochet hook. Let’s take it one step at a time!
Step 1: Gather your Tools & Supplies
You will need the following to create a Handy Assist Device:
- Block of 2′ by 4′ wood.
- Drill bits
- Standard crochet hook
- Clamp (optional)
Step 2: Drill Your Holes
You will want to choose a drill bit size to best fit the hook size of choice. I used the 7/32 drill bit to accommodate my 5.5mm I/9 standard crochet hook. The 5.5mm is most commonly used with #4 medium weight yarns, such as Red Heart Super Saver yarns.
When starting to drill, you will first go directly down in the wood, then change angles before completing the hole. If your Handy Assist Device will be secured to a table, it will need a lower angle than if you will be holding it on your lap. It may take some trial and error to find the angle best suited to how you will be using your tools.
Be sure to follow all safety recommendations when completing any wood working project, no matter how big or how small. (My husband was kind enough to work the drill for me. Thank you, my love!)
Step 3: Get Stitching!
After you remove the dust from your Handy Assist Device, it is time to get stitching! Insert your crochet hook into the hole. If it is a bit too loose, you can insert a bit of yarn or rubber band into the hole before inserting your hook. This will create the tension necessary to hold your hook securely in place. You will need to rotate your hook to the best position for you. I have seen students successfully using their hooks facing toward them, away from them, and every direction in between. You should use whichever position works best for you to get consistent results.
(Optional) You can secure your Handy Assist Device to a table or chair arm before stitching. I do not always do this, as the nature of my mobility issues allows me to rest my forearm across the block and secure it that way. Make the choice that best fits your needs!
Christy’s TOP 3 TIPS for crochet with one-hand:
#1 – Be Kind To Yourself!
Learning to crochet one handed will have many of the same challenges as learning to crochet with two hands. Even if you have experiencing crocheting with two hands, consider yourself a newbie and be patient developing your new skills.
#2 – Get Creative!
If I had stuck to the rule book of crochet and followed every piece of advice given to me by those with more experience, I would never have developed the skills I needed to be successful in this craft. To work around my limitations, I had to get creative! I don’t use my hook or yarn like most people, but I create beautiful and functional projects. More importantly, I have fun while I do it! Feel free to experiment with different approaches and techniques and get creative with working around your limitations. After all, we’re only truly limited if we choose to be!
#3 – Bunny Hands!
This is the term I use to describe how I hold my yarn. You will notice that I do not wrap my yarn around my hand, as one would typically see when crocheting with two hands. By creating a “bunny hand,” my yarn passes through the bunny ears, or my pointer and middle fingers. By moving my bunny ears, I can wrap the yarn over my crochet hook to prepare for the next stitch. My bunny hands, or my thumb and ring finger, then hold my crochet project and move it up and down the crochet hook as I work.
This article is an original by Christy Hagan of the blog Christy Makes Friends. Please do not steal images or content as your own. If you’d like to share this article, you may provide a link to this post, but please do not reprint it on your website.
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