Monday, February 16

confessions of a hooker

You remember when I asked the advice of y'all, about what craft I should take up? And you remember how the majority suggested knitting?

Ye-eeees?

Well, I came to realise that you were not being helpful at all. In fact, I now know that the knitting suggestion was made to drive me insane (okay, further insane) and then to see me blog it all out and provide for you all some merriment.

In the words of Joe Pesci, am I here to amuse you?

So I practiced and practiced and while it was all quite cool, to learn to knit, I wasn't fully enjoying it. My initial desire was to learn a new craft, as a skill and to create, but also as a meditative and soothing practice.

Knitting . Is. Not. That. Practice.

Okay, sure, perhaps after years. WHATEVER.

Sooooo, I confess. I went behind your backs - that's right, while you were all blogging away yourselves - and ordered hooks, and yarn, and I waited. Finally they arrived a few days ago and I crocheted/crochayed(?) this on my very first try:



But I noticed holes on the edges:

So I went on ravelry (great place!), and showed them and it got cleared up - apparently I was not hooking under both threads. Those horizontal lines were a giveaway. But it turns out what i was doing is a technique in it's own right, so that I learnt two-for-one so to speak. Cool.

After the right way of doing a sc(single stitch), the piece looked entirely different.

And that indent on the left isn't a mistake, I was experimenting.

Okay, but here's the clincher.

I'm hoooked. H-O-O-K-E-D.

I LOVE this craft. I mean, yes, it's about a gazillion times easier than knitting, and this is essential when one is looking for a soothing craft. But what has really sealed the love affair is the way it all feels in my hands. As a hands only weaver, this is like somewhere inbetween weaving and knitting. Whilst knitting, I felt disconnected from the yarn. With crochet, I feel right there with it. And that level of sensual connection I relish.

If you are craft-challenged, crochet is a great choice. If I can do it anyone can.

And the fact that I can eventually crochet up a hat without friggin three needles or circular needles is too delightful for words.

I can't stop hooking! The practice piece above is growing by the second.
Now I'm trying to pull all the techniques together to crochet up a simple scarf with that scrumptious alpaca yarn. Happy Hooker book is on its way too. The Knit Witch videos and the ones at howcast have been a help - recommended. Also, about.com for made-for-dummies photos and instructions. And of course, ravelry has lots of sources listed and other hookers ready to help.

SO, let it be known from here on end, I, Mon, will never, ever, ever ask for your opinions again. Okay, never, ever, ever, after this one - is Tunisian method better?

And don't go too far, I have more questions....

what? *blink*

21 comments:

  1. Love it!. I am going there for a check out. I love to knit but i am hopless at casting on and off. Thanks for the links and happy knitting lovely...heheh..xx

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  2. **looks smug**

    I love to crochet. Just be aware that American terms for stitches and british differ.. so single crochet in american is double crochet in british... but the Happy Hooker has a table in it listing the differences.

    And you so want to have a go at amigurumi, you can already do the double crochet - very nicely I might add so you're half way there and it will teach you to crochet in the round nicely and decreasing and increasing.

    This site has free crochet patterns (in US terminology) http://www.crochetpatterncentral.com/

    Oh and your first attempt where you were crocheting in the just the back or front loops - that is a handy technique for producing ribbing for sleeves, and when, say, you crochet a teddy and maybe want to add a skirt, if you do one row using only the back hoops you then have a nice row of "dashes" to crochet into to say, create a nice skirt.

    Do you know how to do the treble yet (that's double crochet in US terms).. it is sooo easy; do your chain stitches, yarn round hook and place hook in 4th chain from hook, yarn round hook, pull the yarn through the stitch so you have 3 hoops on your hook. Yarn round hook again, bring through 2 hoops, yarn round hook again and bring through the last 2 hoops.... and there you go a treble stitch!

    Fantastic for crocheting a scarf in because its a nice quick stitch to work.

    Joxy.

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  3. Oh btw tunisian or afghan stitch does really require an extra long hook and produces a very tight knit piece of crochet that is excellent for working onto and doing cross stitch patterns.

    Its a cross between knitting and crocheting really but is still easy to do.

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  4. http://rosehip.wordpress.com/rare-fruits-sampler-afghan/

    Yes me again - but I thought you would like to see what can be done with the afghan stitch :)

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  5. Whoa! It's easier than knitting?

    If only I had known this years ago. It looks so confoundingly (it's a kind of word) tricky. I've been too intimidated. But I love, love crochet. It's a beautiful art-craft. Imagine a gorgeous crocheted blanket, or beanie, or...tea cosy. Drool, slather...I'm getting a bit excited now.

    Ok, I'll check out those links and assess the situation.

    But first I have to finish the knitting project I started weeks ago, (had to down tools during the heat).

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  6. Joxy - thanks so much fr the advice and links (yeah, you should look smug, - you're on my Will Not Assasinate for recommending Knitting List).
    I'm working on the double now, but am confounded with the US v Brit terms, argh.... study study...

    Doc - 'easier' doesn't even begin to decribe it. If you've done knitting and can do it (or some parts of it) even remotely okay, you'll be fine with crochet.

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  7. LMAO! And there I thought I was going against the trend for starting to crochet...!

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  8. Carin - I've been dying to tell you after you mentioned your projects. :)

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  9. Good on ya! That's how I felt about knitting until I started giving up the idea of ever making anything besides a scarf. Now it is a meditation, but we have far too many scarves! On your recommendation, perhaps I'll try crochet. I'd love to make a hat or something that isn't just a bloody rectangle/square :-)

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  10. Ok now I've stopped laughing so hysterically (!), I can say I agree with you on the meditative and sensual aspects of crocheting.

    Oh, and I guessed that much lol You've been dropping hints left, right and centre :)

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  11. haha...what's funny is that I started crocheting years ago and just couldn't get it - too hard for me. But knitting is fun (although frustrating at times) and I get it faster than I did crocheting.

    I'm weird like that....

    Glad you are enjoying yourself and your new craft!

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  12. Good for you Mon. Be your own authority. In the words of Joseph Campbell, "follow your bliss."

    Bless

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  13. Yay Mon, glad you found something that speaks to you. I like crocheting too. My Grandma taught me and I use her technique (when I actually do it). Enjoy yourself!!

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  14. CK - that's totally weird. Knitting is more technical. weirdo! lol

    hey nettlejuice, yay, bliss is good.

    Sara - I'm envious of those having grandmas who teach them such things. Very groovy.

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  15. Confession: I crochet much more often than I knit! It's quicker and more "mindless" for me, so I can make my kids' winter hats or blankets or whatever in odd moments when I can't pay attention to a complicated pattern. I also love how easy it is to make three-dimensional shapes, like amigurumi.

    However...knitting seems to usually make a flatter texture, which I like better for sweaters and such.

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  16. I love crocheting too! My kindergarten teacher got me hooked (pardon the pun) and I've been doing it ever since then.

    Wendy

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  17. ok-I admit it! I am creatively challenged! I can't even remember the last time I attempted to do any kind of craft. However, once we are moved and settled in my plan is to change all that. I keep reading such wonderful craft stories I figure there must be something to this craft thing!

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  18. Hah! So there you have it! I always thought that crochet was for people from the 70's and Nanna's. Or am I thinking of macrame? Possibly. If I ever got two seconds to call my own I might try it though I am drawn to knitting more than this. Incidentally, can I be a Holistic Mamma?

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  19. Ooh, the dirty confessions come out!

    Mama1 - heck yes, nothing like bein creative, or having a soothing practice to do of the evenin'

    Kat - I already added you to the blogroll :)

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  20. Yay! Well done you! I'm pleased you're enjoying the crochet - there seems to be a lot of crochet love going on in the blogs I read at the moment - great stuff! I find it sooo much easier than knitting and you're right, it's totally addictive. Looking forward to seeing future creations! :)

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  21. i'm so glad you've found your passion, but i must ask, is it really easier? because for hte life of me, i don't get it. crocheting and me...we don't like eachother.

    but hooooray! for you. crochet away.

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