I may not have been formally taught how to crochet, however, I did teach myself. I have made all kinds of projects and have learned so many techniques and stitches along the way. I love the versatility of crochet. From hats and scarves to stuffed animals the variety of patterns always holds my interest. Like I said I taught myself how to crochet and albeit may sound incredibly daunting, the basics are really easy to learn. I heard a saying once, “It takes a minute to learn, a lifetime to master”. I think it was for a game called Othello, not sure.
So to start you must master the chain. Then I found that it was really useful to learn what all the stitch diagrams meant. After trying a plethora of stitches: single, half-double, double, treble things became much easier. I did this for a long time. It wasn’t until I felt comfortable and confident enough that I ventured into more complex stitches. The bobble stitch, fan stitch, picot stitch Once you’ve practiced enough, the stitches become second nature to you.
Ravelry, Craftsy, and Pinterest are all places where you can find instructions, tutorials, and patterns. Be sure to check out all the valuable resources there. There are a lot of free patterns out there on the web, however, we do need to support our fellow artists by purchasing patterns too. I also want to mention all the yarn shops out there. There are retail stores and stores on the internet to buy yarn. I happen to be a very tactile person, so not only do I have to see the color and texture of the yarn, I have to touch it. With all of the Mom and Pop stores closing these days, I try to patron these locations and help our fellow Artists keep their businesses going. If you have never gone to a yarn shop that sells specialty yarns, do yourself a favor and go! Hand dyed Alpaca yarn, wool yarns, self-striping yarns, the list does on and on. So much yarn, so little enough time! You know when you are a crocheter or knitter because you will buy yarn even if you don’t need it, rationalizing that you will find a use for it!
Whenever I find myself overwhelmed with thoughts, my mind wandering, I turn to crochet because it draws my attention and my focus on the stitches. My hands are moving in repetitions and I become centered. It’s very therapeutic.
I started making blankets, and different scarves. Then I came across a style called amigurumi, small stuffed shapes. I made a manatee, a stuffed pineapple pin cushion. I usually start my crochet projects in the summer so I have time to get them ready for gifts for the holidays. (They take me a long time because I am usually working several projects at a time.)
This is a great art form, craft, and has many facets in textile art. Give crochet a try, it’s fun and you too will be buying yarn with a future project in mind. Leave a comment, or share your favorite places to find patterns and yarn. I encourage everyone to post a picture of your work. Please follow and like, and as always have an artful day.