I didn’t even pick up a set of knitting needles or crochet hooks until I was nearly 50 years old. And it’s a good thing!!! My personality leans a bit to the obsessive side when it comes to these crafts. Now that I’m older (sigh), I have the time and resources to dedicate to them. When my children were young, I obsessed over them. No need now. They’re old enough to have their own passions to obsess over.
Here’s just a few things I’ve learned in my short time as a fiber enthusiast:
- Don’t be a yarn snob. All fibers have a use. You’ll learn over time how and when to use those lusciously soft (cashmere, mohair, alpaca) extremely expensive yarns as well as the ever so versatile & affordable acrylic.
- All patterns deserve a chance. Some more than others, but designers inherently put time and resources into developing a pattern. It’s a driving human need to share our creativity. A well written, concise pattern is worth it’s weight in Vicuña.
- Research the tools of the trade. For the beginner, yes, an off the craft store shelf set of needles or hooks are perfect to learn with. Once you feel comfortable, do some research. Check out the forum threads on Ravelry for advice on the perfect interchangable needles or those great ergonomic hooks. All those tools have a wide spectrum of prices and with good information you’ll get the best products for your budget.
- Join a guild or local club. Creating with friends and like minded individuals is always more fun. I don’t have that option, as our community is quite small and in south Texas…well, quilting is Queen! And that’s okay. I’ve found online communities that help with questions, sharing and overall camaraderie.
- And lastly…RAVELRY. Probably the single most used resource I have. What a great community! A giant database of creative knowledge. Find free & paid patterns, read the forums for support and sharing, get advise on an array of topics via their blog and get the scoop on new yarns. Even set up your own pattern store.
I won’t go into the amazing health benefits of knitting & crochet. But my opinion is it’s better than mediation & yoga together! Maybe for the next blog topic.
For now…pick up those projects, pour a cup of your favorite beverage and enjoy your day.