The 1st Crochet Course at the Tollgate Cafe

Mittens made by one of the students after only 2 lessons

Yesterday saw the last lesson of the first crochet course at the Tollgate Cafe. I was said to say good bye to my first group, but hopefully we will meet again. Here is the story and some of the makes that the lovely ladies created. I have to admit their crochet skills are much better than my photo taking, so not all products were documented. I promise to do better next time.

We started 6 weeks ago, with 6 complete novices (and Kate the owner of the Cafe). The first lesson was a gentle introduction and we learnt several basic stitches, including the chain, double, treble and half treble. We made an easy flower and practised crocheting in rows. At the end of the lesson I gave them a homework. To get some cotton yarn and make a dishcloth using the stitches they had just learnt. And they laughed at me! Couple days letter I received an e-mail asking me how and where to best source the cotton yarn. And two weeks later, at the next lesson, they were all in a completion who made the biggest, the best and most practical dishcloth.

Homework dishcloth. Great for practising basic crochet stitches

And since they practised so well, moving onto granny square, the skill for our lesson no.2, was very easy. We learnt how to make a ring, the slip stitch, how to make a basic granny square, how to finish it of to get the best results when crocheting several grannies together and how to crochet them together. They were given an easy to follow pattern, as normal patterns can be quite scary for beginners. No homework this week. I knew that they would practise anyway.

Granny square
Granny squares including colour changes

Lesson 3 were flowers. We made several different flowers, some rather complicated, you know those where you have to crochet to the back of the petal … 🙂 And we started to practise reading  ‘normal’ crochet patterns.  We have also agreed that the last lesson should have Easter theme as we are only couple of weeks away from Easter.

Flowers from lesson 3

So after searching Pinterest, Ravelry and lots of books, I have found a nice and easy egg cosy and a egg shaped ‘granny’. I had, what I though was, a great plan for the lesson. We will start with learning how to crochet a circle, learn how to decrease, then make the egg cosy, learn the magic ring, how to do a double treble and make the egg shape granny. I have also given them a pattern to follow which was quite complicated.

Prep for lesson 4 – Easter

And while the ladies were busy hooking I was going to talk to them about the course, what was good and what can be done better. Ah, there was a flaw in this plan. Any idea what one needs to do when crocheting circles? Oh, yes. Count! A lot! So nobody wanted to talk to me, they were all busy counting. Recently I have seen a joke which says something on those lines: ‘crocheting is like being a magician. You wave a stick, mumble to yourselves and magic happens’. It was a lot like that yesterday. A lots of magic definitely happened. They all came to the class with something they made since the last lesson. And it was beautiful. We had mittens, basket and granny square cushion. And all this after only 3 lesson. Some very talented ladies.

Our egg cosies with present from Kate

Luckily Kate always serves us a lovely cuppa and even lovelier cake. So there was my chance to talk to the ladies about the course. What did they think? They thought that it was great fun, they have learnt a lot, everything was well explained and demonstrated, they were given lots of individual attention which made it the right speed for them. They like the patterns (which they could keep) as they had something to go back to, a reminder after the lesson. And most importantly they would like to do more! Thank you ladies. Me too 🙂

Flowers and granny square cushion cover Made by one of the students after 3 lesson
Basket made by one of the ladies


2 thoughts on “The 1st Crochet Course at the Tollgate Cafe”

  1. I really enjoyed our classes and am sad we have come to the end of our course. Thank you for being such a patient and calm teacher and for finally helping me crack the “magic circle”! I hope there may be some classes later in the year for not-quite-beginners. 🙂 Deb of the Tollgate Three

    1. Thank you Deb. It was real pleasure teaching you. I hope there will be more too. I will talk to Kate. In the meanwhile if you ever come across anything you would to learn let me know, it’ll give me something for the next course. Petra (the homework assigner) 🙂

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