Crocheting is a relaxing and fun activity, but making the same basic pattern over and over can get exhausting. Most people start out with basic scarves and move onto crocheting in a round to make hats. However, there are more complicated and popular patterns that make great projects, are fun and leave you with a sense of accomplishment as well as a finished product. With just a crochet needle, yarn and a pattern you can work on a popular crocheted project pattern whenever you have the time.
Crochet stuffed animals (also done by knitting) are often called by their Japanese name, "Amigurumi." These projects make great gifts because they're cute, cuddly and are relatively simple. You can even make a crochet stuffed bear, the most popular of stuffed animals. Crocheting stuffed animals is great for all ages because everyone loves cute things and some of the simplest crochet patterns are the cutest.
Afghans are great gifts making them a very popular thing to crochet. These can be made with the most basic of crochet stitches for beginners or complicated patterns and lace edges for the experienced crocheters. There are patterns available for baby afghans made from soft yarns with a thin shell pattern for warmer seasons as well as larger patterns made for adults. Crochet afghans make excellent wedding gifts or college graduation gifts as well because of the versatility of them. Some of the popularity of afghans is due to their ability to be both decorative elements in a household as well as warm additions to bedding in the winter.
Sweaters are a popular thing to crochet because they can be used for a good part of the year and don't take up useless space. There are many sweater patterns available both in yarn stores and online. Some of the online ones are free. For sweaters you will need to be very careful to use the right size needle, yarn size and stitch gauge. You need to be more careful when making clothes than things like afghans or stuffed animals because they need to be made to actually fit someone whereas non-clothing patterns can be bigger or smaller than originally intended and still look right and be useful.
The popularity of yarn based crafts has brought back the trend of homemade items such as socks and gloves. Crochet versions of these items instead of store bought ones make great fits and also interesting fashion statements. Brightly colored socks and gloves paired with basic wardrobe pieces make unique and personal fashion statements. There are a number of patterns available for crocheting socks and gloves from basic tube socks and gloves that only cover the palms and wrists to foot shaped socks with textured ankles and gloves that go from finger to elbow. These are smaller projects that don't take as much time as something like a sweater but still have functionality unlike some projects that just end up collecting dust in your home.