Free crochet pattern! If you’re looking for a fun project, why not try your hand at creating a scrappy and cozy afghan blanket using the classic shell stitch? In this blog post, I’ll guide you through the process with a step-by-step tutorial and for this easy shell blanket pattern.
It’s winter time and that means crocheting another afghan to add to my cozy blankets collection. There is nothing cozier than curling up on the sofa with a soft, comfy blanket covering you while working on a crochet project. Just a girl, some yarn, a crochet hook and something good on tv. Who could ask for anything more?
Let me tell you about a new easy crochet stitch afghan blanket pattern I’ve been working on. It’s just a simple shell stitch design but it’s a statement piece. This shell blanket was worked up with yarn from my stash. Lot’s of color but with one neutral mixed in to mellow it out a bit. When changing yarn colors, leave a long yarn tail to make weaving easier.
It’s also a beginner-friendly pattern using a combination of single crochet stitch and dc stitches, finished with a shell border that creates a ruffled edge. So easy, it’s a one row pattern repeat for the entire blanket until you get to the border and you don’t even need to count. You always skip a stitch then crochet in a stitch, always the top center of the shell stitch. If you can remember that, then you don’t need to count stitches. You do need to be aware of where you are placing your stitches. Only pay attention to the count with you complete the foundation chain and foundation row.
You can use any yarn you like, I’m using number 4 worsted weight yarn and lots of beautiful shell stitches. The shell pattern has lots of texture and can be done in different colors or one solid color. Run it through the wash on cold gentle cycle and dry on medium. It will be one of your favorite cozy blankets, promise! Finished size of the blanket is 59″ x 76″. I’m in love and a sucker for lots of color. Because I used yarn from my stash, it’s hard to give the total amount of yarn used for this but I would guess it to be around 3 or 4 one pound skeins.
I also found it best to weave in the tails as I worked. Doing about 8 tails every time I decided to take care of them. This process worked well and there was only the last few tails to weave in when done.
I shopped for yarn when I made the Crochet Rectangle Rug and am using the softest of those yarn colors for this blanket. It’s a mix of Caron One Pound and Red Heart .
ABSOLUTE BEGINNERS – CHECK THIS OUT
Hey, are you an absolute beginner and want know how to learn how to crochet? Then you have to check out How To Learn How To Crochet Guide For Beginners. This is jam packed with all the info on how to learn how to crochet and get your crochet journey off to a great start. Seriously, you should hop over when you’re done here and check it out!
Crochet Shell Afghan Free Pattern – Stitch Tutorial
Materials: Before we jump into the pattern, let’s gather our materials. For this project, you’ll need:
- Yarn: This project is a great way to use up scrap yarn from your stash. You can use any yarn you choose, combine different brands of yarn because it doesn’t really matter. Choose your favorite colors in the same weight category. Worsted weight yarn 4 ply is a good choice.
- Crochet Hook: Select your crochet hook size that matches the yarn weight you’ve chosen. Recommended size: 5.00 mm crochet hook.
- Scissors: For changing colors of yarn only when you run out of a color.
- Yarn Needle: For weaving in ends.
- Single crochet – Insert hook into stitch, yarn over, and pull up a loop.
- Double crochet – Yarn over and insert the hook into stitch. Yarn over and draw yarn through, pulling up a loop. Yarn over and pull yarn through the first two loops on the hook. Yarn over and pull yarn through the last two loops on the hook.
ABBREVIATIONS (United States Terms):
- CH: chain
- SC: single crochet
- DC: double crochet
- ST(S): stitch(es)
- CH SP: Chain space
Foundation Chain (Red Heart Scarlet): Chain stitch 120 single crochet stitches, turn.
Foundation Row (Red Heart Scarlet): SC in all sts beginning in 1st st from hook, CH 1, turn.
Repeat of Row: SC in the first st, skip the next st, 5 double crochet stitches in next stitch, skip 1 st, sc next stitch. Repeat until end of the row, making sure to place 3 double crochet stitches in last CH. CH 1 and turn at the end of each row. When changing colors, do so in the last stitch of last row for that color.
Here are the colors used and the corresponding row numbers:
- Foundation Chain, Scarlet
- Foundation Row, Scarlet
- 2 – 9 Scarlet
- 10 – 17 Baby Pink
- 18 – 24 Off White
- 25 – 27 Pale Plum
- 28 – 30 Grass Green
- 31 – 33 Paddy Green
- 34 – 41 Sky Blue
- 42 – 49 Midnight Blue
- 50 – 57 Off White
- 58 – 60 Lemon
- 61 – 63 Bright Yellow
- 64 – 66 White
- 67 – 69 Scarlet
- 70 – 74 Cherry Red
- 75 – 82 Baby Pink
- 83 – 90 Off White
- 91 – 93 Pale Plum
- 94 – 96 Grass Green
- 97 – 99 Forest Green
- 100 – 107 Sky Blue
- 108 – 115 Midnight Blue
- 116 – 123 Off White
- 124 – 126 Lemon
- 127 – 129 Bright Yellow
- 130 – 132 White
- 133 – 140 Cherry Red
- Border, Off White
Round 1: Start off with a SC border around the entire blanket by placing SC sts around all four sides, working 3 single crochet stitches in each corner st to keep it flat and neat. Rounds 2: Double crochet in each st around entire blanket, working 3 double crochet stitches in each corner stitfch.
Round 3: Double crochet in the back chain only of each double crochet stitch around entire blanket, working 3 double crochet stitches in each corner in the back CH only. Round 4: SC in first st, skip 1 st, 7 DC sts in next stitch, skip 1 st, sc next stitch. Repeat around entire blanket, do not place extra sts in the corners. Fasten off and weave in tails.
SEW NIKKI FREE CROCHET PATTERNS & TUTORIALS
Here are some free crochet patterns and tutorials if you need more inspiration!
- How To Learn How To Crochet: Guide For Beginners
- 6 Hour Crochet Baby Blanket – Hill Baby Blanket (Moss Stitch)
- How to Crochet an Easy Granny Square For Beginners
- Easy Granny Stitch Crochet Blanket – Free Pattern
- Granny Square Blanket Using Join-As-You-Go Method
- How to Make Crochet Baby Blanket From Start to Finish
- Free One Piece Crochet Afghan Pattern – Bobble Afghan
- How to Crochet an Easy Granny Square for Beginners
- Vintage Vibes Rectangle Crochet Rug Tutorial and Free Pattern
- How to Make Baby Blanket – Striped Baby Blanket Free Pattern
- The Top 40 Free Crochet Pattern Websites and Blogs
- Chunky Baby Blanket Crochet Pattern (Bobble Blanket)
- How To Make Candy Cane Pillow – Crochet Pillow Patterns
- Americana Pillow – Easy Crochet Pillow Free Pattern
- Modern Crochet Pillow Cover Pattern (Free and Easy)
- How To Make Crochet Pillow Cover – Lumbar Crochet Pillow
- Easy Crochet Purse (Cell Phone Bag Free Pattern)
- How to Crochet an Easy Granny Square For Beginners
Crochet Shell Stitch – Tips and Variations
If you mess up on a shell stitch but your already on the next row and don’t want to rip up an entire row, here is my advice. My blanket had two shells that were incorrect, one had 6 DC sts and the other only had 4. Just work in one of the middle stitches, no need to rip out your entire row. You won’t even notice it when all is said and done. It’s your call but that’s a simple fix if only on a few.
Shell Blanket Color Options
Here is a picture of a shell stitch baby blanket made during COVID for my niece Charlotte. It used three yarn colors and changed every row. It’s also a pretty look but there were a lot of tails to weave in.
The other one is blocks of color in wide stripes. You can see how different the blanket looks the more color changes you make. Unfortunately, I don’t have a free crochet baby blanket pattern for either of these but there are more free patterns listed above.
Here’s another shell stitch border option with a secondary border made by slip stitching around the shell border. It’s a cool border and adds a statement. Give it a try on your next shell stitch border. Please note that you do a basic shell stitch, then a single crochet in the next stitch, then immediately into a shell stitch, etc. There are no skipped stitches in between the shell and SC stitch.
Always wash your blanket according to the yarn manufacturers washing instructions. The yarns used in this blanket wash up fine in warm or cold water by themselves or thrown in the wash with your regular items. Tumble dry med with a few fabric softener sheet for maximum softness. If using yarn with bright color dye’s, consider washing with cold water on gentle cycle with those color catcher sheet from Shout. If any of the yarn colors bleed or run in the wash, the sheets will catch it and save your crochet or quilting project.
The shell stitch is a beautiful stitch and doesn’t require a lot of thinking while working it up plus the pattern is a one-row repeat which is the best! Makes the perfect size throw for an adult.
ABOUT SEW NIKKI
If this is your first time stopping by, welcome! My name is Nikki. I’m a crochet pattern designer and weekend quilter with a super small sewing space. I taught myself how to sew and quilt by watching YouTube videos! My blog has How-To’s, Free Patterns and Pattern Reviews. Read more about me here.
I really hope you try this easy shell stitch blanket pattern. This blanket looks wonderful with variegated yarn (barely any tails to weave) and in different yarn weights. My free blanket pattern with the color changes really shows off the the beautiful shell stitch texture and how it pops out on both sides. Feel free to share your creations on social media and inspire others to try this scrappy and happy project.
Stay connected so you know when I share free patterns and tutorials, always showing you the entire process from start to finish. If you have any questions or feedback on the free pattern, please leave a comment below. Stay tuned for more crochet free patterns and tutorials!
Want to learn how to quilt? Then check out this post, How to Learn How to Quilt: Beginner Quilting Guide.
Sew, quilt, crochet and repeat!