What does it mean? Crochet terms and abbreviations

I expect that some of you are new here!  welcome to the wonderful world of yarn!

It can be quite overwhlming when you start your crochet (or knitting) journey, all the terms and language is quite different - so I thought I would start with the basics here, don't worry the more you learn and the sooner you get into a stitch group the more support you will get!

  • Amigurumi - Japanese for knitted toy.  In Japan the term for crochet means to knit with one hook, so this is a crocheted stuffed toy.
  • Ball of yarn - Usually referring to a commercial brand which will be made into a ball by machine and be a regular shape..
  • Cake of yarn - when you wind a skein of yarn with a yarn winder, you will have a cake of yarn which can be started from the middle or the outside.
  • Blocking - Hard Block - When after wetting your piece, you pin and stretch the fabric tightly, to make sure that parts like ripples are well defined.
  • Blocking - Soft Block - when you do not need to hard block, you can wet your piece, and stretch gently out with your fingers to even out the fabric without needing pins.
  • LYS - Local Yarn Shop - a physical shop where you can purchase Yarn!
  • Pooling - when a yarn is made into a fabric, and then creates sections of the same colour together,  eg 2 or 3 colours on one skein in blocks, will create this effect, some people like it, some don’t!
  • Skein - most hand-dyed yarns come in a skein which when un-twisted is a large loop of many strands of yarn.  Do not use yarn straight from the skein, as you will get a big mess!  You will need to wind it into a cake or ball.
  • Stash Dive - Your stash is the yarn you have collected from various visits to yarn shops and shows.  To stash dive is to look in your collection to find yarns that you would like to use for a project.
  • Wool - when you get to the hand-dyed yarn you will find a whole new world to explore - most dyers name the breeds of sheep of the yarn they use, and each breeds wool has its own characteristics.  I like to use Merino because it is soft, but have also used Blue-Faced Leicester. 
  • Yarn - I use this instead of saying wool.  As yarn is available in many varieties from Acrylic to Yak, yarn is a more general term.
  • Yarnie - used to refer to a person interested in fibre crafts - spinners, weavers, crocheters and knitters.

Any more terms you have come across that are confusing - send me an email and I will answer and add more to this list!