A Week of Fun, Learning, and Terrific Memories…All in the Name of Crochet

ScannedImageI cannot believe that I have already been home from the Knit &Crochet Show for over a week! I basically only just unpacked all of my supplies.

I had a great time while I was there, I took some fabulous classes, talked with some fabulous people, met even more fabulous people, and had a fabulous time (in case you hadn’t realized, crocheters are fabulous)!


Jennifer Ryan and myself in the middle of some of her yarn bombing.

I love when new things happen and they instantly become occurrences that should continue always, an example of this was the “Yarn Bombing” of the Radisson Hotel in downtown Manchester, NH. Jennifer Ryan (a fellow crochet designer), spear headed this undertaking and it left everyone wondering why it had not happened before now. There were little yarn motifs and decorations almost everywhere you turned. It definitely had a fun feeling.


A few of my students at the Make & Take of “Cented Flowers”, they were such a fun bunch!

This was the first year I was actually up in front of the room giving some instruction. I moderated the Professional Think Tank, where professionals in the crochet industry, and those striving to be were able to share ideas and ask questions that were relative to their careers. I also helped co-teach the CGOA Master’s Day, with Susan Lowman and Jane Rimmer. We helped those interested in completing the Master’s of Advanced Stitches and Techniques Program with guidance of common mistakes, and overall how to approach their work as a Master. Then I presented a make & take Project and had 18 students learn my “Cented Flowers”, they were created with Designing Vashti Lotus yarn, in white, and green (celebration colors for the conference), with dimes in the center, of 2 flowers 9so there was 20 cents for the 20th anniversary celebration…yes I probably over thought this project), but I had fun teaching it.

I also took some great classes.

I took Shuttle Tatting from Susan Lowman, and what I learned in that class…how I can appreciate the skill and nimble fingers it takes to create these delicate pieces. I practiced for w6 hours, but all I had to show for it was some short threads, and a souvenir butterfly, that Susan made for everyone in class. There were a couple of people that picked it up very quickly, and my hats off to them, I think Lindsey Stephens has already gone home and made a couple of book marks!

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Just some general fun with Margaret Hubert, myself, Vashti Braha and Marcy Smith

I was also fortunate to get into Vashti Braha’s Star Stitch Class. I always love taking her classes; she goes so in depth into the ins-&-outs of the stitch and what makes it work, she takes you to the very limit of what that technique has to offer. There is always an “Awe Ha” moment in her class, and this one was no exception. It helped me to look at this stitch that I considered “old & dense” in the past, as one that has some real possibilities to create gorgeous fabric.

I also to a very interesting class by Dora Orhenstien, it was about tension in crochet and how to adjust it. It opened my mind up to a different way of thinking. Usually you find that if your stitches are not coming out correctly that you are either pulling loops up to high, or not high enough, but this class caused you to take into account how your tension can effect various advanced as well as basic stitches. It is something that I never considered before and was really enlightening.

I wrapped up my classes with a Sunday morning class with Karen Whooley on Venetian Lace. I admit I was a little distracted during this class with issues at home, but still Karen presented a well planned class, that gave a complete history and understanding of this different lace style. It opened my eyes, historically speaking. In understanding different approaches to lace throughout Europe and she had beautiful samples that her grandmother had created. A fascinating class, I definitely enjoyed it.

It was a very enjoyable time and I always love the experience I have when I attend, this time was no different.

Where the Crocheters Are


Guests at CGOA Conference Dinner in Indianapolis 2013

ScannedImageI never really think to pull out my camera, so I’m probably an abnormality in this day and age, which is why I didn’t get more photos of all the wonderful things I saw. Last week I was in Indianapolis last week attending the Crochet Guild of America (CGOA) Summer Chain Link Conference (sometime known as the Knit and Crochet Show), and had a wonderful time. There are always so many inspiring people that have a love for crochet (most of which are not published designers, or national teachers, not that those aren’t inspiring as well).


Margaret Hubert and Nancy Smith- 2 great women that inspire crochet

If you have never attended a national conference, I recommend that you at least investigate going someday. If you are like me, you have looked at the cost and asked yourself, “Really, I think I could learn that from a book/video, so why spend that, to go there?” A very valid question, but what you get from the conference cannot really be measured in dollars. Granted attending a conference has launched my crochet career, but even if it hadn’t I would probably still attend, as the camaraderie of fellow crocheters is enough to encourage you to attempt new things and improve your hobby/craft in ways you could never anticipate. There is nothing like walking through a hotel lobby and seeing groups of crocheters seated in various clusters chatting and stitching away. I can’t think of anywhere I’ve felt so at home.

Some are fortunate enough to have this experience in their local community through crochet guilds or stitch clubs, at least at meetings and events that they sponsor. The conference is just a really large version of this, not to mention the teachers have many years of teaching experience and years of expertise, they have forgotten more then I will ever learn.


Fun Night at the Conference in Indianapolis 2013, Show & Share

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My first pattern signing!! Thanks to Crochetville.com, Amy Shelton, Tammy Hildebrand, and Ellen Gormley for all the support.

Well I could probably go on for a while about how much I love these conferences, but if you are interested in experiencing one for yourself, join me October 2-6 in Concord (just outside Charlotte), NC (click here for more information), or if you would like to create a crochet community in your town, investigate the support the CGOA can provide in helping you.