I love the crochet granny square but sometimes what you need is a circle. Here is my tutorial for how to crochet a granny circle. I used this technique to crochet the first part of my crochet circle shrug shown above.
Make a foundation chain of four stitches. Close with a slip stitch to make a ring.
Chain three (counts as first double crochet). Working into the center of the ring: 1 dc, [ch 1, 2 dc] 5 times, ch 1, sl st to top of chain three.
Chain three (counts as first double crochet). Work the following into the same ch1 space next to the chain three: 1 dc, ch 1, dc2tog, ch 1.
Working into the next ch1 space: dc2tog, ch1,dc2tog, ch1.
Repeat Step Four around the round and sl st to top of chain three (created in step two) to close the round.
Chain three (counts as first double crochet). Work 2dc into same space (creating the first cluster of 3 dc; this is where you begin to see a pattern similar to when you crochet a granny square).
Ch 1, 3 dc into next space and repeat all the way around to the end where you will sl st into the top of the first chain three to close the space.
Repeat steps six and seven. There is no increase in this round.
(Now there will be an increase; you can think of increases as somewhat similar to the corners in a granny square). Chain three (counts as first double crochet). Working into the same space: 2dc, ch 1, 3 dc.
Working into the next space: ch 1, 3dc, ch 1, 3 dc. Repeat this all the way around to the end where you will join with a sl st to the top of the ch 3 to close the round.
Growing the Circle Bigger
If you want to keep growing your circle you will continue with two or three rows that do not have increases (in other words, repeat step eight two or three times) and then an increase row. BUT, your increase row will not be an exact repeat of steps 9 and 10. Instead, each time that you increase, you will grow the space between the double clusters by doing a single cluster between them. Remember, these are working similarly to the corners of a granny square so in each larger round you’ll need more 3dc clusters between those “corners”.
For example, in your next increase, you will Ch 3 (counts as first dc) and then working into the same space you will do 2 dc, ch 1, 3dc to create the first increase cluster (two clusters next to each other in the same space with a ch 1 separating them. Then in the next space you will do 3 dc (a normal cluster like you’d make in a granny square). Then in the next space you’d repeat the double cluster by doing 3 dc, ch 1, 3 dc into the space. Then you’d repeat the single cluster of 3 dc all the way around.
The next time that you wanted to increase, you would do something similar but instead you would have two single clusters of 3 dc in the two spaces between the increases. (So you would do the increase, next space would be 3 dc, next space would be 3dc, next space would be the increase, etc., all the way around.) Then the next increase round would have three single clusters of 3 dc in the three spaces between each increase.
This is a reprint of an article that I originally published on the Crochet Today blog.