Archive for June, 2010
I am in the process of starting a needlework group in my community. Years ago, I belonged to a similar group in the Philippines. Gosh, I still cherish the memories of those Thursday mornings when we would gather together at each others’ homes to stitch and chat. It was a unique opportunity – one that enabled me to form lasting friendships while sharing my love of crochet with others. Also, it was in this group that I learned to hand quilt and embroider – two priceless gifts.
So, with that in mind, it has long been a goal of mine to start a another group in my current neighborhood – to provide a comfortable setting where woman can come together on a regular basis to simply stitch and discuss whatever is on their minds.
As the first meeting quickly approaches, I have been thinking a lot lately about the role that crochet has played in my life over the years. After all, I have been making things with yarn or thread and hook in hand since 1979…..ooh, how scary is that!
I have come to the conclusion that there is an unparalleled connection among needlers that transcends time. When I crochet, not only am I connected to my fellow needlers on Ravelry or those ladies from my stitching group in the Philippines, I feel a unique sisterhood with women from all walks of life and who have graced this Earth throughout the ages. As I stitch, I feel an incredible bond with…..
- Quaker women from the 17th century who embroidered elaborate tapestries.
- African American slave women who created beautiful quilts out of their masters’ scraps. These were often used to mark the path of the Underground Railroad.
- Civil War heroines who knitted countless numbers of socks for Union and Confederate soldiers alike.
- Victorian women who perfected the art of lace-making with dignity and poise.
- Irish women who supported their families during the potato famine with the creation of amazing crochet lace.
- Pioneer women who filled their hope chests with handmade creations to decorate their homes and clothe their future children.
- Paraguayan women who grace the nooks and crannies of this hidden oasis selling their colorful nanduti art.
- Indian women who embroider elaborate scenes on their saris, telling stories for generations to come.
- Japanese women who continue to hand sew intricate silk kimonos and pass on the gift of Japanese embroidery.
This list could go on and on. But, I wanted to share my current inspiration. I think of these women with ever stitch that I make. And, I am so thankful that along the way they bothered to share their needle artistry with others so that today a new generation of women can pass the legacy onward.
The madness has quieted a bit and I am relatively back to normal. I found some much needed hook time last night and I am anxious to get a few more rows done on the dance shrug tonight as well.
I am resisting the urge to over-schedule my kiddos this summer. The plan is to read and relax as much as possible. There will still be swim team, dance and piano lessons but the pace will be much sl…..ow……er. Hopefully, this will translate into more crocheting for mom.
This week has already started with a bang….and I am not talking about a good bang either. I knew that if I did not finish the dance shrug by Sunday that I would probably not be able to touch it for an entire week. The last two weeks of June are always a nightmare for me…..school ends, swim season heats up, and the dance production rehearsals are in full swing……Will my kids remember how I turned into a crazy woman every June dropping them off and picking them up all across town? Will they one day say thank you AND really understand the weight of my sacrifice?…sigh….Incidentally, I witnessed the most amazing thing last night at my daughter’s rehearsal – a woman who should receive the “dance mom of the year” award, for sure. Her daughter is connected to a breathing tube and this mom went on stage with her and carried her breathing tank to and fro while the little dear danced…..I cried thinking of the mom making this little girl’s dream come true. She probably always wanted to take ballet and this was the only way the doctor would sign-off on it…..Now, why was I complaining again?
Anyway, I need to crochet more than ever these days…..just to remain calm and mentally capable……I am going to try to squeeze in a few rows tonight……hopefully…..keeping my fingers crossed on that matter…..
I did finish the latest issue of Interweave Crochet. I am in love the Marilyn Twin Set and have added it to my queue.
The Moonglow Vee is amazing too. It can actually be downloaded free right now on the CrochetMe website!
A lovely little treat was waiting in the mailbox for me this afternoon – the Summer 2010 issue of Interweave Crochet! I refuse to open it yet because I want to savor each page, each pattern…..I have this awful habit of daydreaming and drooling over every issue. And, since I have to get some work done this weekend for my “day job,” I am saving the issue as a special incentive for getting it all completed….I’ll let you know which patterns I add to my endless queue tomorrow.
On the dance shrug front….I finished the body and hope to tackle the second sleeve tomorrow….I am getting there!
Well, I’ve been busy today! As you can see, the majority of the body is done….YEAH! Only 7 more rows to go on the body portion…..doing the “happy dance”. Fortunately, both my daughters had a monster-long dance rehearsal this afternoon so I had plenty of “free” time to crochet. Looks like I will probably finish by Sunday…….
Yesterday was miserable…..and, on top of it all, I found no time to crochet. So, alas, I have no progress to report on the dance shrug :(.
Well, as promised here is my “accountability” report for the second dance shrug. The first sleeve is done and the shoulder is in place! Tomorrow’s goal is to complete the body portion…so, stay tuned :).
I just finished watching the most wonderful movie – Bright Star – which is about John Keates and his muse, Fanny Brawne. Okay, if you don’t know by now…I am a hopeless romantic and I love great literature, REAL literature. The movie was so well done but it got me to thinking – why does it seem like so many truly talented folks die very young? It is as if they are imbued with so much God-given talent that their lives, their mere bodies, can not possibly contain it all. They are consumed by their talent. Yet, it makes me sad to think about all of the wonderful gifts, things of true beauty, that we have missed out on because men and women like Keates die well before their prime. As Keates himself wrote….
A thing of beauty is a joy for ever:
Its loveliness increases; it will never
Pass into nothingness; but still will keep
A bower quiet for us, and a sleep
Full of sweet dreams, and health, and quiet breathing.
Well, in crochet news…..I am determined to finish the second of 2 dance shrugs for my daughter and her best friend. My goal was to have them finished by this week. It is a very easy pattern….I just need to crank it out. Unfortunately or fortunately, rather, I got sidetracked with the romantic poets and I did not make any progress. Here is where I am to date. My thought is that I will post a few lines on my progress each day in order to keep myself accountable…..and on task! (FYI – the first shrug is done.)
I received a wonderful little treat in the mail this weekend and I can’t resist sharing…..Can you guess what it is? Ooh….weee….I am so excited :)!
Here’s a little hint…..
Okay, okay…..I will end the suspense…..
Well, in case you are wondering, I bought this set of hand-carved, 15″ tunisian crochet hooks from Turn of the Century. Bill, the artist, is absolutely amazing! Check his stuff out, you won’t be disappointed!
I have been involved in a discussion on Ravelry about LYS’s not treating crocheter’s kindly and as valued customers. I wanted to share a wonderful article written by Joshua McKiernan (aka Fibear0627) that was recently published in the Crochet Insider. Some of you will be able to relate! Honestly, in today’s economy why would anyone turn away a paying customer?….I don’t get it!