Looking for a fun and giftable blanket? Try the Easy Shell Stitch Crochet Blanket pattern!
Design Story and Inspiration for This Free Crochet Pattern
I love having an easy crochet project in the car that I can work on without having to think too hard about it. Of course, this is when my husband is driving or when I’m waiting for the kids in the car line!
So I wanted to make another easy blanket pattern with this yarn and I chose this beautiful Sea Coral color.
The stitch I chose is a variation of a solid shell stitch. Instead of a 5-dc shell, I did a shell with 3 dc and a chain space between each. The solid shell was too dense for my liking, but this tiny bit more open shell worked just the way I wanted.
The best part is – this blanket is only a two row repeat with basic crochet stitches, so it’s SUPER easy!!
Yarn Options for Our Shell Stitch Baby Blanket
The yarn I chose for this blanket is Red Heart Super Saver Ombre. It is super affordable, works up beautifully and washes well. Overall it’s a great budget yarn and the color changes are just fantastic.
You can use any worsted weight yarn (category #4) that you like. It doesn’t even have to be a color changing yarn! Use up yarn from your stash, mix and match colors for a striped effect, the choice is up to you!
You can also use different yarn weights, but be aware that this will affect the stitch counts, so if you want your blanket close to the size mine is (around 32″ square), then stick with a medium weight yarn.
How to Customize Our Easy Free Pattern
- Switch to a different weight of yarn (like chunky yarn or lightweight yarn) for a denser or looser blanket texture.
- Use a solid color yarn instead of ombre for a uniform look, or choose a multicolor yarn for a vibrant effect.
- Experiment with different yarn materials such as cotton, acrylic, or wool for varied comfort and appearance.
- Create stripes by changing yarn colors after every few rows.
- Make each shell a different color for a rainbow effect.
- Use gradient yarns to create a smooth color transition effect.
- Adjust the starting chain length to create a smaller or larger blanket.
- Increase or decrease the number of repeating rows to adjust the blanket’s length.
- Add a thicker border with additional rows of stitches.
- Use contrasting colors for the border for a standout look.
- Incorporate decorative stitches in the border for a unique finish.
- Replace some double crochet stitches with treble or half-double crochet for textural contrast.
- Introduce new stitch patterns in between rows for a mixed-stitch blanket design.
- Attach tassels, pom-poms, or fringe to the blanket edges for added style.
- Incorporate beads or other embellishments within the stitches for a decorative touch.
- Create a hood or pockets by adding additional crochet sections.
- Make a matching pillow or cushion cover using the same stitch pattern.
By exploring these customization options, crocheters can add a personal touch and unique flair to their easy shell stitch crochet blankets, making each creation distinct and special.
Easy Shell Stitch Crochet Blanket
What You’ll Need
Yarn: 2 skeins Red Heart Super Saver Ombre, (worsted weight #4), 10 oz skeins
Crochet Hook: US Size K (6.50mm)
Notions: Yarn needle, scissors
Gauge: 14 sts and 8 rows = 4″ in crochet shell stitch pattern
Finished Blanket Size: Approximately 32″ square
Chain Stitch (ch)
Single Crochet Stitch (sc)
Double Crochet Stitch (dc)
Shell Stitch – (dc, ch 1) twice, dc in same stitch or chain
Ch 4 at beginning of row counts as dc, ch 1.
Stitch is a multiple of 6 + 2 if you would like to adjust the size of the blanket.
Easy Shell Stitch Blanket Pattern
Ch 116 (or multiple of 6 + 2).
Row 1: Sc in 2nd ch from hook, *Skip 2 ch, shell in next ch, skip 2 ch, sc in next ch; repeat from * to end; turn.
Row 2: Ch 4 (counts as dc, ch 1), dc in first sc, *skip dc, ch1, sc in middle dc of shell, skip ch1, dc, work shell in sc; rep from *, ending last shell with dc, ch1, dc in last sc; turn.
Row 3: Ch 1, sc in top of last dc, *shell in next sc, sc in middle dc of shell; repeat from * to end, working last sc in 3rd ch of turning ch.
Repeat rows 2-3 until blanket is square, ending with a row 3.
Border: Work row 2 around edge, working a full shell in each corner. Fasten off.
**See video tutorial if you need help!
Tips and Tricks for Crocheting the Easy Shell Stitch Blanket
Embarking on the journey to create an easy shell stitch crochet blanket? Here are some handy tips and tricks to ensure your crocheting process is smooth and enjoyable, and your final product is a masterpiece!
1. Choosing the Right Yarn:
Opt for a medium-weight yarn for the ideal texture and drape. The ombre effect yarn adds a beautiful gradient, but feel free to explore other color options and yarn types based on your preference.
2. Gauge Check:
Before starting, make a small swatch to check your gauge. This step ensures that your blanket will be the size you expect and helps prevent running out of yarn mid-project.
3. Count Your Chains:
Be meticulous in counting your starting chains to ensure you have the correct foundation for your pattern. Remember, the pattern calls for a multiple of 6 + 2 chains.
4. Mark Your Stitches:
Use stitch markers to denote the start or end of a row or to mark pattern repeats. This trick is a lifesaver for keeping track and avoiding mistakes.
5. Mind the Tension:
Keep a consistent tension throughout your work. Too tight will make the blanket stiff, and too loose may make it overly drapey and less warm.
6. Customize with Confidence:
Don’t hesitate to add your personal touch. Alter the size, change colors, or add a unique border. Refer to the customization suggestions for more ideas.
7. Review Each Row:
After completing each row, take a moment to ensure the stitch count and pattern are correct. Catching errors early saves time and frustration later on.
8. Blocking Matters:
Once finished, block your blanket. This step evens out stitches, gives the blanket a professional finish, and helps it retain its shape.
9. Care for Your Creation:
Wash and care for your blanket according to the yarn’s instructions to maintain its beauty and longevity.
10. Seek Support:
If you encounter any challenges, reach out to crochet communities online or local crochet groups. Fellow crocheters often provide valuable insights and solutions.
Final Thoughts on the Easy Shell Stitch Crochet Blanket
I hope you enjoyed this free crochet blanket pattern! It was so much fun to work up and a really nice project to have in the car with me for car line and rides. 😀
I hope you’ll give it a try soon – it just might become your new favorite pattern!