Last Christmas, while cleaning out drawers, I found my old crochet hooks. Hadn’t used them since the 80s when friends from work tried to teach me the art of creating fabric.
In those days I only learned stitches – single crochet, double crochet, yarn over. My friends had projects going. No time during morning break to actually teach me to make anything, just to familiarize me with the various stitches. And to show me how the combination of stitches changed the look and texture of the output. While I enjoyed the process, I wasn’t actually making anything useable. Soon I tucked my needles away where they laid forgotten in a drawer. I moved on to statuary and tole painting. Making Christmas ornaments and a cookie jar satisfied the desire to see a project through to completion.
But last Christmas I dusted my hooks off, bought a skein of yarn and headed for the internet, where my 10-year-old grandson tells me you can learn anything. And he was right. People from all over the world post YouTube tutorials that take their audience step-by-step thru basic configurations to the most intricate designs. And if I have questions they answer my emails and comments.
First I crocheted scarves for my daughters. Christmas gifts. Surprised, they asked for matching hats/caps. My first attempts were lopsided from using the wrong yarn weight . . . and I still struggle with that . . . but the girls were game and championed me on.
When I heard my cousin, who’s lost much of her hair from chemotherapy, needed a cap to combat a freezing Tennessee winter, I cranked them out using the many free patterns available online. The ones she didn’t like I asked her to donate to the Goodwill. For me the joy was in learning new designs, then sharing them with people I love.
So far I’ve crocheted scarves, caps, blankets (the best baby shower presents), and a few sweaters. The scrapes of yarn are mounting, threatening to overtake my sewing room, but I’m not daunted. I’ll find a use for the remnants.
My one fear is that someday everything I own will be covered in a crocheted cozy. Shhh, don’t tell anyone.
Here’s my latest project. A crocheted sweater for a little girl. To date it’s the most complicated pattern I’ve completed. To add a taste of drama to my project, I increased the size from infant to toddler.