Thursday, August 8, 2013

On crochet, PDF’s and experiments

The crochet thing got under my skin a bit. I don’t like being unable to do something. So the almost week  that I was at the Craft show I decided to use my train-time and my evenings to play with crochet. It took me a whole morning and a number of slow-motion YouTube videos to ‘master’ the Magic ring.      


From there I farted about trying to learn how to increase and decrease


and then I made a hamster, from a pattern. (Well, you know it was supposed to be a hamster but when I put the eyes in, it looked fishy so I just made the rest up and turned it into a fish)


and then I scoured the internet for easy crochet patterns and started a whale. But I got bored with white so tried to add another colour and then just played with the increase, decrease stuff again.


So then I made a ball and I was pretty happy with it.


So I followed a real pattern and made a mushroom which looks Ok from this angle and took me for-bloody-ever by the way….


and it looks a little bit NQR from this angle.

Verdict : It is possible that I could become someone who crochets. I can see that it could happen BUT hell it’s hard work.  I need to think and count and keep my tongue at just the right angle. I struggle with how many stitches I have or haven’t got and never have the right amount. Why don’t you count the one on the hook? What’s that about? Its there , I can see it !!! It seems so illogical.

I really struggle with hanging onto everything. I have fingers and string everywhere. I’m clenched and cack-handed and awkward and I move like a busted –arse.

It does not flow. It is not Zen.

( and in the ongoing PDF experiment I have now attached a Big Cartel shop to my blog over on the sidebar and some of my patterns are there, available as PDF’s. More to follow. More to think about. My Craftsy shop has PDF’s and free stuff and my Etsy shop has PDF’s and soon soon soon will have some real life toys as well. Yes three shops does seem like overkill but I’ll suck it and see for a while and then decide. Questions? Comments? complaints? Let me know. )

I hope your craftywork is feeling all Zen my bloggy friends.


  1. Look out Jodie, they'll be knitting next, then spinning and weaving, your craft will be out of control!

  2. Love, LOVE LoVe seeing your work in lots of different places. It makes me very happy that more people will find it and fall in love with it all too!
    Your crochet is coming along nicely, It does have the advantage of being a portable craft.

    1. true Sue, I thought it would be awesome on the train, but I am so easily distracted I lose count all the time!

  3. Ah Jodie - you made me laugh!! Not easy to do by the way!! I am having a 'crochet with Karen' on sat (10 aug) for those who want to pick my crochet brain if you are interested. 10.30-2.30 at Sew Special, $20. Fyi now customers can download PDF's straight from your Etsy shop if you have loaded in the file. Xx. K

  4. I love that you're all like a "busted arse" but there you are MAKING THINGS. When I started I was just thrilled to make a square.

  5. Loving the fish. Can see him hanging off a fishing line attached so someone like Rueben .....
    Me, I'm still at dishcloths and am with you re the non-zen thing!
    Maybe I just need lots more practice and lots of chamomile tea and/or a sedative.

  6. Great fish! Crochet blankets much easier for train journeys - no need to keep count because it's all the same, and you get plenty of room as noone wants to sit near the weird person doing crochet....

  7. I was the same, I refused to not be able to crochet so pigheadedly stuck at it until it FINALLY clicked! My husband usually tried to keep away from the crazy lady muttering to herself and swearing a bit too much for someone doing an "old lady" craft! haha

    I find amigurumi much easier than most other crochet and it clicked with me much faster... though I still at times feel cack-handed (doesn't help that I'm a lefty) and I'm sure my Grandma would cringe if she saw my "technique" (I'm using that term very loosely since there is no actual technique to the way I do things! :-P )

  8. best hamsterfish evah! GO Jodie!

    Penny (who has crochet in her DNA after all) says it's the finest of arts. But I'm still not doin it.

    will you make me that pony now?

    also... JOIN RAVELRY

  9. Jodie your my kind of crochter. I love crochet but I don' t know to increase or decrease, don't expect me to count when I'm having a hard enough time to remember the stitch. Your crochet efforts thus far are fantastic, your inspiring me to try more than a rectangle/square.

  10. OK. You crocheted a hamster fish and a bleedin' MUSHROOM? I am pouting slightly at your skillz. I'm doing a kind of mahoosive-doily-that-will-become-a-shawl. I do the tongue thing too. Between you and me though, it has become quite zen. Now I reach for it instead of a lavender bag.

  11. Kudos to you. I couldn't figure out that I needed a turning chain and ended up with a bra for Barbie! You're brilliant. :o) So when you crochet who's minding the shops? :o)

  12. I can do granny squares and simple stuff, but that is it. I did have an excellent crochet book my mother in law gave me (she is excellent at it) but it has gone missing. I do hope it turns up again.
    There are tons of crochet blogs out there with tutorials and stuff. Have a look at Bunny Mummy. She blogs about all sorts of stuff, and occasionally chucks in some crochet stuff as well! :)

  13. As someone who has taught crochet to both kids and adults, I have to say that 75% of it is about getting the left (or right hand if you are a lefty) in the right position and getting a good relaxed tension. Another 20%is about learning the names of the stitches (and they differ b/w UK and US...and having lived in AUS/US/UK I still have to look it up) and the last 5% is deciphering the patter which sometimes looks like a piece if war code. Hang in there, you are doing really well, but work on a comfortable hand hold otherwise it will give you all manner of wrist and hand problems.

  14. You're a funny, funny girl! I can just picture you with hook in hand and tongue hanging out of mouth. I think you should try crocheting something dirty. That might help you with the love, Love!!!

  15. BIG GOLD STAR to you. Isn't utube fantastic. Good luck with the 3 shops it is just the matter of finding what works best for you.

  16. That made me sad...crochet is soo zen for me. My husband likes to watch random movies and feels bad if I leave the room, I zone out into a crochet pattern. Give it time, it gets a lot easier! But good job for your first attempt!

  17. I know exactly what you are talking about - tongue at an angle, hunched up shoulders, cramped grip on the hook, and if you're left-handed like me it's even worse. I have managed to make a little mushroom and a few other things, but had no fun at all so I have decided that I just don't do crochet - I'd much rather have fun quilting!

  18. Don't count, just eyeball it! 3D crochet is very forgiving.
    LOVE your fish with puppy eyes :)

  19. Damn! I would love to learn to crochet to make pretty edgings for things like needle books and such. Hate to hear it is sucky to learn. :(

    Oh well, I already have too little time to devote to sewing...I shouldn't be going off on tangents. ;p

  20. I feel your pain - I've been there and decided it's not the craft for me, well, at least not for the moment.

  21. I've been crocheting for years and still struggle with it at times (knitting is more my thing), so I can really appreciate your frustration!

  22. My new kitties would love that fish you made!

    My mum taught me to crochet when I was very small, by doing granny squares. I hadn't done it for years and picked it up again last year...I find it a lot simpler than knitting. My hands cramp up big time when I knit, but crocheting just seems more natural for me.

    Once you get the hang of the different stitches crochet is a breeze...even though I still need to count my way through a pattern, I find it very calming. That said, I haven't tried a magic ring yet, but am planning on it for my next project.

    As for having string everywhere, I find having it wound over the top of your index finger and then down under your other fingers, over the top of your pinky, and looped around your pinky (which you keep bent a little at the palm to hold onto the string), is the best way to keep a hold of it with the right tension, without getting a terrible ache. Hope that makes sense :)

  23. You don't need to worry about counting with crochet, that's why I like it. OK, so you count how many chains you start with, but them you just go... it's so easy to see how many stitches are already there. Have a go at some free form crochet, or even granny squares and you'll soon be crocheting without looking

  24. This is how I feel about knitting. I can crochet and wrote a simple bird nest basket for a pub - but I can't do knitting. I feel so spastic!! Love the fish! Better for your first try of crochet than my first at knitting!

  25. Relax a little, as previously stated it is totally forgiving.
    Love how you changed tack and made a sweet fishy.
    Enjoy practicing.


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