I’ve only made one granny square blanket before, and it was one of my first crochet projects years ago. I didn’t particularly like the slip stitch method it used to join the squares because it created a raised ridge between the squares that was a bit rough/firm.
As a result, I scoured the internet looking for a different method to join my granny hexagons that would lay nice and smooth. I did find one that was just what I was looking for over on Ravelry. It looks nice and simple, and provides a smooth transition from one hex to the next. However, for each stitch, you have to drop the loop on your hook, insert the hook into the stitch you’re joining to and pick up the dropped loop – something I didn’t have the patience for. I wanted to keep a nice flow going as I worked, rather than stopping to drop a loop and then again to pick it back up.
So after some more scouring of the internet, I ended up combining a couple different methods. And oddly enough, it does leave a little bit of a ridge, but I love it! It adds some visual interest, almost like braiding, rather than the more simple version above.
You will be working single crochet around the hexagons, but as you join to a hexagon that already has been edged in sc, you will slip stitch into a sc of the “finished” hex before making each sc along the “new” hexagon being added. It sounds much more complicated than it is, I promise.
The first hexagons to be joined are those that lie along one of the edges of your blanket where a corner points out.
Step 1: Sc around the first (blue hexagon). Starting in a corner, slip stitch to join new yarn, ch 1, sc in corner space, *sc into each of the 8 dc across, (sc, ch 1, sc) into the corner ch-2 spaces, repeat from * around, joining with slip stitch to ch 1. (1 sc into each of the dc and 1 sc from each corner yields 10 sc per side). Cut yarn, weave in tail.
Step 2: Starting in a corner ch-2 space, sc around hexagon 2 (pink) as in hexagon 1 up to the corner where the join with hex 1 will start.( I generally sc around 2 or 3 sides before I start to join to another hexagon) Sc, ch 1 in corner ch-2 space. Insert hook into corner ch-2 space of first hexagon, yarn over and draw up loop through both the ch-2 space and through the loop on hook. Sc into ch-2 space of second (pink) hexagon. Hexagons are now joined at the corner.
Step 3: Insert hook into 1st sc along side of first (blue) hexagon (arrow 1 in pic), yarn over and draw up a loop through the sc and pull through loop on hook as above in joining the corners. Sc into next sc (arrow 2) on second (pink) hexagon. Repeat 7 more times (arrows 3, 4, 5, 6, etc).
Step 4: Insert hook into next st on first hex, draw up loop through both sc and loop on hook, sc into corner ch-2 space of second (pink) hexagon, ch 1, insert hook into corner ch-2 space of first (blue) hex and draw up loop through corner and through loop on hook, sc into corner ch-2 of second hex. The first 2 hexagons are joined. Continue sc around second hexagon, (sc, ch 1, sc) in the corners, and join with slip st to beginning ch 1.
Continue attaching new hexagons in this manner until the first row is complete.
The next row will be joined one hexagon at a time to the first row, starting at the right side. So in the photo, the yellow hexagon was the first of the second row added on. This is because you crochet counterclockwise around, so you will join the yellow to the purple, then to the blue as you go. The process of joining them is the same, except you will be joining 2 or 3 sides of the “new” hexagon to the work, instead of just 1. The only new technique is to join to a corner where 2 hexagons already meet. I did not take photos while joining the second row, but I do have them for the last row of my blanket.
Sc around the first hexagon of the next row to be added up to a corner ch-2 space (I sc 2 sides to start), sc, ch1 into corner ch-2 space of new hex. Join to hexagon at right edge of blanket as before by inserting hook into ch-2 space and drawing up a loop through both the ch-2 space and loop on hook. Join the sides as before up to the corner where 3 hexagons meet. Sc, ch1 into corner of new hexagon.
Insert hook into corner ch-2 space of the “right” hexagon of previous row, draw up a loop through both ch-2 space and loop on hook. Now, rather than sc into new hexagon as before, insert hook into corner ch-2 space of the “left” hexagon of previous row, draw up loop through ch-2 space and loop on hook, and then sc into corner ch-2 of new hexagon.
Join across sides of new hexagon and “left” hexagon as before, then sc around the remaining sides of the new hexagon.
The rest of the hexagons in this row will be joined in the same manner, but will be joined along 3 sides, and have 2 corners that meet with 2 other hexagons.
The even rows are 1 hexagon shorter than the first row. The first hexagon added in all the odd rows will only join along one edge to the previous row. This is due to the staggering of the hexagons.
Whew! That was a long post, but I hope all the pictures and explanations were worth it and made everything crystal clear. And I promise, it really is pretty easy once you do it a couple times. As always, if you have any questions, please let me know!