I’ve been feeling very drawn to crochet lately. It started when Jude’s only winter hat got left behind in his cubby at daycare during one of the interminable school shutdowns in January. I needed a new one fast and had no desire to go shopping for one, so I pulled out some leftover yarn and looked up a free pattern and had a new hat for him in two days.
It was fun and satisfying and suddenly I was searching Instagram for crochet accounts and discovering all kinds of new designers and coming up with all kinds of ideas for things I could try making. I taught myself the basics of crochet right around the same time I started knitting, but I didn’t do anything with it because I found it really difficult. Then several years later, I stumbled on just the right series of video tutorials (I cannot remember for the life of me who made them) and it clicked and I’ve made the occasional project since then. But it’s never something I’ve done enough to feel like I can get into a good rhythm or to feel like I was ever advancing my skills. So I decided it might be fun to try a new crochet project each month and just see where it takes me.
So far, I’ve made the hat for Jude in January, started a fingering-weight cowl in February that’s going to take me awhile to finish, and then made two different toys in March. The first was this little blue bunny for Silas to take to school with him for naptime. The bunny’s head and tail are stuffed but his body is unstuffed and crocheted at a more relaxed gauge so it is kind of a stuffy/blanket hybrid, which I thought was really cute. I found that designer for that pattern on Instagram, and her account led me to the second pattern I made—this little stuffed hippo.
Both projects are made with Bernat Blanket, which is a plush, fuzzy super-bulky yarn sold at most big box stores (I got mine from JoAnn’s). I have a pretty limited range of yarns that I tend to order online for knitting projects, so looking at crochet patterns has me exploring a whole new range of yarn offerings and it’s just kind of fun to see what is available and play around with stuff I wouldn’t otherwise have used. Crochet also has me seeing a whole new range of possibilities in my yarn stash, which is primarily made up of leftover yarns from past projects. The cowl I’m making is actually a color-blocked cowl from a selection of single-ply fingering weight yarns I have laying around but haven’t been sure what to do with.
I’ve been knitting for a long time (almost 20 years now), and I feel a bit bored with it at the moment. I was listening to a couple of Seamwork Radio episodes recently where Sarai and Haley were talking about ways to fall back in love with sewing when you’ve been doing it for a long time. It’s got me thinking through some ideas for ways I can rekindle the joy in knitting. But I think the appeal of crochet is related to that desire to rediscover the joy in fiber arts—it’s giving me the joy of learning new things and experimenting, and it’s helping me see and experience yarn in new ways.
Hat—Unlimited Hat Pattern from Kristin Holloway Designs in Cascade 220 Superwash in Aporto
Bunny—Honey Bunny Pattern from Mama Made Minis in Bernat Blanket in Dusty Blue and Antique White. (I made the smaller of the two sizes.)
Hippo—Hallie the Hippo Pattern from My Dear Knot in Bernat Blanket in Blush Pink