Thursday, August 23, 2012

Let's Talk Yarn

Confession, yarn makes me happy and a yarn shop makes me even more happy. I could spend hours walking around looking at the different colors, feeling the different textures and browsing the millions of patterns while picturing what B would look like in a crocheted cowl while on the motorcycle. By the way, he turned that one down about a year ago.

First I want to explain what I like to do. I crochet.... not knit and despite the opinions and ranting of some, THEY ARE NOT THE SAME. You either like to crochet or you like to knit. I've rarely found someone who likes to do both but there are many, like myself, who have learned to do both. 

I began crocheting at 10 when my mother taught me how to do the basic chain stitch. I would spend many nights sitting on the couch making 5 foot chains for my cat, Gizmo, to chase around the house. As the year went by, I had learned how to make my chains into small square pieces that were eventually used for pot holders. My small pot holders evolved into bigger pot holders and soon I had crocheted my first blanket for my niece, Amanda.

I got out of crocheting at the end of high school and through my early years of college. I attended UGA and marched in the Redcoat Band, met B and realized I wanted to be a nurse. After I transfered out and was accepted to nursing school, stress started to set in.  I was introduced to and was soon engulfed in crocheting again. And as to my surprise, I realized it was the perfect stress reliever for my studies.

To understand both, you first need to know the basic difference between the two which is the tools that are needed to do  a stitch.

These are knitting needles.

These are crochet hooks. 

Both sets come in different sizes, shapes, colors, contours, etc. Crochet uses one tool and knitting requires two. Needles come in number sizes while hooks come in letter sizes.

The possibilities of what you can make are endless. For example, these two colors of yarn, crocheted together....

Made this hat for B.

I don't have a lot of pictures of my projects. Sometimes when I'm finished, I'm so tired of looking at it that I don't want to take any pictures. But I will say that one my my favorite yarns I've used recently is this one...

This one is made from 100% alpaca yarn is is probably the softest thing I've ever felt.... besides baby's skin..... and Boo when she's fresh out of the shower. 

* Important note: DO NOT WASH 100% WOOL... unless you plan to felt your project* (felting will come way later in the blogging world)

I'm also in love with this yarn...

I'm almost certain it would make an amazing scarf this fall but I don't think my N hook is even big enough to handle this chunky monkey.

These are some of the pattern books in my collection. I usually go here to get my patterns but Wal-Mart also offers these $5 books. They're perfect for an intermediate crochet project and what is so great is that the book teaches you about 6 different stitches and then has you make different projects with them.

One of the best books is at the top left. That book has patterns to make dishcloths that are super cute and easy. The yarn used for that is 100% cotton and can be found at Wal-Mart and Hobby Lobby whereas some of the other yarns (like Chunky Money) can only be found at specialty yarn shops.

*Warning: Visiting specialty yarn shops will cause you to have strange urges to touch all of the yarn. You may also find that money mysteriously vanishes from your bank account after visiting such a store*

The last tool in my arsenal is my yarn rack.

My mom and I saw a man knitting with a rack similar to this one at a fall festival last year so we came home and made ourselves some. My rack can hold three different yarns but we've made some that only hold one or two. I love my rack because I don't have to waste time pulling the yarn out of the skein in between stitches. Instead I just keep crocheting and let the yarn roll itself out.

I want to just lay in the middle so I can feel them all at one time.

I got into crocheting because my mother taught me but anyone can do it. Many specialty shops will offer certain days where beginners can come in and be taught how to knit or crochet for free. I will warn you that most shops knit and will make fun of you if you say you crochet. But I don't care, I'm a rebel.... I guess..... or they're just snots. Crocheting and knitting both are very stress free crafts and are both something you can do while carrying on a conversation or watching t.v.

Either way, I hope this post has helped you decide if you'd like to try something new.

Happy hooking!!


1 comment:

  1. My Mom knits and I crochet...well, I can do one pattern. She actually has to call me before walking into a yarn store so I can talk her through it-"No, only need one more to finish that sweater"
    It might be time for a yarn intervention