"The ordinary acts we practice every day at home are of more importance to the soul than their simplicity might suggest."

Thomas Moore

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

The gentle art of crotch-et...

Okay, I shouldn't call crochet 'crotch-et' but the truth of the matter is that this is what Blossom and I have always called it. 
It's not said in a derogatory tone, but with a lovingly familiar air such as one might call their precious toddler 'munchkin'. Know what I mean?

Blossom is naturally good at crochet, I am not.

2007: 
By age 13 Blossom could create teeny tiny one inch granny squares from Perle #12 cotton...


...and then she lost interest. 

She gave her squares to me when she moved her craft focus to beading and soon I'll be using them in a simple project you and I can make - but that's a blog post for another day.
Back to crotch-et, um, sorry, CROCHET.

2012:  
My kind of crochet is simple lines of treble (I think) to create face washers. Once I even got adventurous and added a row of single and double crochet (I think) around the outside edge...


Before losing my rather nice yellow crochet hook I made four face washers in varying bright cotton yarns and promptly gave them all away. Unable to find the lost crochet hook after turning the house upside down and inside out, I lamented not keeping one face washer for myself but chose to put aside any more crochet hours and simply mourned my loss for the next few years.

But on my bookshelf stood a constant reminder that I truly adored crochet and would one day indulge again. 
Kath Kidston's 'Crochet' is actually a tin in the shape of a book and once opened reveals a promise to the hopeful crotch-et crochet apprentice that she can create something rather cheery in no time at all!
Armed with a how-to book, pattern, crochet hook and six delightfully gelato-ish balls of yarn, the mastery of this craft is to be hers (apparently)...


 And why, you ask, do I have this sudden rush of crochet-thought? Why have I pulled my 4 year old and never-used Cath Kidston tin of yarn off the shelf?

Answer: I was doing the weekly grocery shop.
My eye had caught the current Better Homes & Gardens magazine at the supermarket checkout.
I rarely buy this magazine but I saw that crochet rug on the cover and inside were more delicious crochet things, and well...a spark ignited and I had to have it.

 I mean, these are gorgeous things to make, right?
You can see why this issue had to come home with me, yeh?
Driving home in the car my thoughts turned to colour choice, how big to make the rug, what yarn to use and where to get it...


...but then reality knocks on the slightly dehydrated brain cells and I asked myself, 
"What in the world are you thinking?! You cannot do this, silly girl. What a waste of money it will be to buy yarn that will never be used because it will be too hard, take too long, and remain a barely attempted UFO forever."
Good advice to self.

I pack the groceries away, brew a coffee, slice a thick piece of Amish Cinnamon Cake, and examine the crochet pages of the magazine.
Yes, this is way beyond me at the moment.

So I open my favourite gentle domestic tome, Jane Brocket's "The Gentle Art of Domesticity", to see what she has to say about the gentle art of domestic crochet...
 

...and my spirit lifts.

So I take the Kath Kidston "Crochet" tin from the bookshelf and decide to begin at the beginning.
One afternoon a week I will gather yarn and hook and choose a good audio book to pop in the stereo.
From there a journey shall be explored, a craft shall be learned properly, and finally I shall know what a treble and a double chain really are.
 Delightful.
Not overwhelming at all, I'm thinking.






I should confess that I have been admiring from afar a few beautiful crochet-esque blogs for years.
If you'd like eye candy, inspiration, crochet-alongs or patterns (because you're already accomplished with hook and yarn)  here's a few of my faves:

Lucy @ Attic 24 


Vanessa @ Coco Rose Diaries
she stopped blogging on new year's eve but there's still so much to see here



  Annette @ My Rose Valley


Anazard 



 If you'd like even more inspiration visit my Crochet Dreamin' Pinterest Board HERE because it's loaded with sumptuous handmade temptation.

News:
 Today I'm spending time with my sweet Blossom-girl, and I guess it's okay to tell you now that she's in the 'mothering way'...3 months along in fact.
Am I excited? YES!!
Is she? YES! YES! YES!

She's going to be the most wonderful mummy ever, I'm sure.
Prayers for a safe, healthy and happy pregnancy with an armful of baby joy in six months time would be much appreciated. 

gelato-yarn love,

41 comments:

Jacqueline said...

Whoo Hoo. Congrats to Blossom and for you Grandma.

Melody said...

Hi wonderful. I adore crochet, hence my new header. But I think I'm doomed to never be able to do it...I've done three classes with different tutors and I still can't crochet-et

Ondrea said...

Congrats on Blossom's adventure of motherhood and a big hug to you. I started crocheting properly a couple of years ago making ripple baby blankets for the women's refuge. Last year I did the crochet-along with Spice of Life blog and made the lovely blanket while learning many different crochet stitches. Now I am trying out crocheted hexies. I was always a knitter but I now prefer crocheting as it is more rythmic and meditative , easy to unpull and redo when necessary, and grows far more quickly. Have fun.

Bilko Parker said...

Congratulations to Blossom and her partner, prayers all goes well.
A very talented lady like you Jenny will have NO problems learning crochet, I find Youtube to be an excellent teacher for most stitches. Just so you know Aust and the USA have slightly different terms for the various crochet stitches. You can do a search and there are heaps of comparison sites on the web. Take care and enjoy the journey, Guida.

Maria said...

Are there some little pitter patter of tiny feet on the way... How exciting !!!

Hmm! When I saw the gorgeous crotch-eting in the Better Homes and Garden I was very tempted but I know that crotch-ending is beyond me , good luck......

Nanna Chel said...

Good on you, Jenny. It is never too late to learn something new. I too am trying to improve my crochet and knitting skills. YouTube tutorials are a great help.

Congratulations to Blossom. I can well imagine how happy you both must be.

Julie said...

Beautiful Jenny ... it made me smile so much because I have that very same Cath Kidston tin full of coloured wool etc ... which I bought because I loved the tin so much. I have never done a single thing with it apart from admire it on my shelf. My friend Shirley tried to teach me to crochet & when she got home that day she didnt know whether to take two panadol or a stiff drink !!!!!!!!
That is such exciting news about Blossom - she will make the very bestest Mum I am sure. You have two new grandbabies to look forward to now :-) How wonderful x x

Tania said...

I love crochet too, and I like to get busy and make some of my own work occasionally. There are so many pretty patterns and yarn out there these days, no longer just a plain granny square.

CONGRATULATIONS on your exciting news. My new grand baby is due any day now :)

Wishing you a lovely day,

xTania

Pam in IL said...

Congratulations on your growing family!

I've been really enjoying crochet lately! I'm not sure if BH&G magazine is the same here in the US or not, but I'm going to look for it, lol. Another favorite blog of mine is Moogleblog.com. I joined a few crochet groups on facebook and boy, they sure are creative and inspiring groups!

I'm looking forward to seeing your crochet progress -- and I have no doubt that you'll be able to master it!

Lline said...

Congrats on the newest addition to the Elefantz family. Blossom is going to be a great mom. And you Jenny, it's time for you to watch your beautiful Blossom blossom into the wonderful mom you know she will be. How can she not with someone like you to watch and learn from? I know you and Blossom are going to be thinking more about baby's room type crafts. Can't wait to see whatever you two come up with and are willing to share.
Crocheting is something I also enjoy. As has been said above You Tube has a great many videos to help. I like Mikey on the Crochet Crowd the best. He's from Canada so you will need conversion charts (easy to find on the web)to work things out. Sometimes I don't really listen as much as watch what he is doing and succeed. There are several more on the web that I find I am able to follow along with. If you want a list I'll gladly send you some of my favorites to watch. They make shawls, afghans, bags, hot pads & other kitchen stuff, and of course baby things, etc. All the ones I have tried are fairly easy I think.

Christine M said...

That is so exciting, Jenny. Congratulations to Blossom and her partner. Have fun with your crocheting. I haven't done any in over 20 years and could only do granny squares! Hugs, Christine xxx

Leeanne said...

Congratulations Granny! awesome, exciting news! Love the crochet projects. I watched Youtube video's to learn how.

cucki said...

Yippee congrats to dear blossom and you sweet granny -hugs
I love crochet so much..it's such fun to make something with a hook :)
Happy hooking x

Águeda said...

I make crochet from childhood. My granny learn to my. Crochet is a reflexion moment, a rest moment with my hands working. As our time fregar los platos, but more pleasingt :) You and your family are in my prayers.

Peg - Happy In Quilting said...

Huge congratulations to you all xxxxx

Sharon said...

I thought I knew all about love - that was, until my gorgeous grand daughter arrived two years ago and her birth took the word love to a whole other level...

Sharon said...

What I meant to say before I clicked the publish button... Congratulations to Blossom and her partner, may her pregnancy be a smooth passage to motherhood... And Jenny I can't crochet either but I too am going to have a go this year.. I have been seduced by all my friends and their magic hooks... I love the colourful orbs they hook together.... Have fun and enjoy your extended nana role :)

Selina B said...

congratulations to you & Blossom!
perhaps she may decide to get back into crochet now she has a new little one on the way? a gorgeous cot or pram blanket (or both) to welcome her/him in?

i follow some of those blogs too, love Attic24s crochet blankets too! so very cheerful!

thanx for sharing

Wendy said...

Good luck with your crochet journey. One thing to bear in mind is that Kath will use British crochet terms which are different to US crochet terms!
Congrats to Blossom. My hope that it will happen for me is fading.

Allie-oops Designs said...

I am cracking up over this post - Jenny dear, my mom and I ALWAYS called crochet "crotch-et"!!!!!!! She'd pick up her yarn and hook and say she was feeling crotchety today. I'd beg her to teach me, but she was left-handed and said she couldn't - so I taught myself. I LOVED to crochet. I used to do Fisherman's style, like the knitting, with cables and popcorns and basketweaves - that was my fave - that and making flowers. I'll have to take a pic of the ONE afghan I kept for myself, lol. I had to quit as it bothered my wrist so bad, which is when I picked up quilting! If I was there I'd sit right down with you, brew a pot and have some lessons. You're really going to enjoy this journey!
So excited about Blossom, is she going to find out the gender? Give her a hug for me!!! "Aunt Allie" is praying for a safe, healthy pregnancy and baby for her!

Victoria said...

Your blogs always have a lot of impact but this one sure had a big surprise in it! You must be excited beyond measure. The waiting time can be so much fun. Shopping will take on a new meaning! Wow!

Brenda said...

I always have some sort of crochet blanket in the making. This year I have moved to a CAL that has really stretched my abilities and I am try to finish for my oldest artist daughter. There are always some sort of CAL going on in blogland, as many as the QAL's. Which I have found to keep me in some sort of want to do it all. When will I ever finish or even start everything I want to do? I know it is impossible and have been trying to put the breaks on. You my friend give make me think every time I visit you that I need to be more practical in my choices I make. Right now I am trying to be a finisher, but of course your BOM that you have posted and the new Splendid Sampler are calling my name along with a couple of CAL. Oh Boy!

Cheryl's Teapots2Quilting said...

Congrats to Blossom! I don't have a clue how to crochet, but, I do love spool pin doilies, that others make, for my sewing machines.

Terry said...

Congratulations on the impending bundle of joy! We're expecting our first grandbaby around August 6! :0)

Debra said...

Congratulations on the new addition to your family. With all of your talents, I am certain that you will become proficient in the art and craft of crochet. Just think of all the sweet baby items you can make!

Brenda said...

Good Morning Jenny! Congratulations on being a Grandma again! My prayers pretty much always include you and your family, but special prayers will go out today. Our family found out that my Niece is expecting; this will be the first baby in our immediate family since my brothers last son was born, he is now 21. So my sewing machine and I are creating smoke with all of the projects and speed at which I am getting them done. LOL. I used to crochet, but developed corpal tunnel in one of hands between the thumb and wrist. Crocheting caused so much pain and swelling that I had to make a choice of giving it up or surgery and I chose giving it up. But you are right, there are so many fabulous items to create and with all of the gorgeous new colors available that is an added bonus for learning. I truly hope that you have a wonderful time learning and creating projects. Have a fantastic creative day!

Robin in New Jersey said...

Congratulations to the whole family! Babies are so precious! It will be lovely for you to have a grandbaby close by to love on. Prayers for Blossom to feel well and have a beautiful pregnancy.

Phil Pogson said...

Many of the ladies in our home love crochet especially in winter - they produce the most amazing work (I think). There is nothing more satisfying than sitting around the fire on a blustery winters evening with crochet going on.

barb's creations said...

All I can say Jenny is just go slow and enjoy yourself once you pick up the rhythm of the various stitches you'll be fine...just be aware that UK and US stitch terminologys are different when choosing a pattern( like buying books )the Better homes and Gardens pattern will be the UK version I saw this one as well but as I have so many blankets on the go at the moment I resisted buying it but will look with great interest how yours progresses when you start on it, good luck and just shoot me an email if you get stuck :) Barb.

Sharon - creativity and family said...

Welcome back to the crochet boat Jenny, I think crochet is the most relaxing of the creative things I do. I always have a 'no brain' crochet project on the go.
Huge congrats to Blossom. I shall be praying for her. So exciting for you. x

shirley flavell said...

Oh Jenny such wonderful news for you all and so exciting. Congratulations to Blossom. Re your venture towards crochet. You will love it. Don't try making too large a project at first. I have made cushion covers and blankets from both Attic 24 and Anarzard ideas.I am crocheting a lovely shabby chic slouch bag at the moment and really enjoying it. I must also finish an all white crochet lap rug from an idea from Anarzard. I used to crochet it while visiting my Mother in the rest home and stay with her for a few hours. She has since died but I want to finish it for me now. Hugs Shirley P.S. I tried to teach Julie from my threadbear cottage. What a giggle. Didn't quite take that stiff drink she thought I might take.I hope she may try again.

Anonymous said...

I think you might enjoy Yellow, Pink and Sparkly...

http://yellowpinkandsparkly.blogspot.ca/p/free-crochet-patterns.html

:)


B from Canada

cq4fun said...

And she's close by, the best part of it all! So are you going to crochet a little baby blanket? I know an incredibly easy pattern - so easy, that I've remembered it for 40+ years! I like crochet, but I don't do it very often any more because the repetitive motion hurts my right wrist if I do very much. Best of lucky with your afternoons. I look forward to seeing what you do, and what you make with Blossom's squares!

Jusmom1 said...

Oh. My. Goodness! What WONDERFUL news! Congrats to all !! By the way...my aunt and I have always called it crotch-et! My poor grandmother used to pretend to be so "ashamed" of the way we said it, but there was always a slight grin to her mouth and twinkle in her eye! Thank you for such FUN memories!!!

B from Canada said...

Crocheting, cuteness and babies....

Mother and Baby Fox
http://craftyiscool.blogspot.ca/2014/05/free-mother-and-baby-fox-pattern.html

awwwwww


B from Canada

Angie in SoCal said...

Of course! Prayers for a safe, healthy and happy pregnancy with an armful of baby joy in six months time. How wonderful for all.

Baa. xxx said...

Yay! for Blossom. You know I don't crochet either. I remember a bit when I was young but not for years and years. I would like to do one of those quilts with squares that are attached by crochet. They look lovely!

Anonymous said...


Congratulations on the wonderful baby news for Blossom and her partner, exciting time for your family Nana Jenny, two babies to look forward to this year. Lots of creative joy for you too. Wishing all the best for Blossom for a happy healthy pregnancy so special her being close by to her Mum and Dad. I also saw that magazine and the crochet pictures drew me in, I too went to lessons some 40 years ago, had 3 lessons then the teacher went on leave and I did not return, I was a challenge as recall being constantly told I was holding the hook like I was knitting. Anyway I learnt the basic chain dc and treble and like yourself could do a face washer and have created my own pattern in towel tops many years ago as I have not been able to follow a pattern nor could I do a granny square, I also made some treble small shoulder bags and some crochet hook rolls a couple of years ago. I have purchased books to try and learn more and the colourful items in the magazine are inspiring as well as the sites you quoted, thank you for sharing. My sister is self taught being left handed and does beautiful crochet following patterns (she sat opposite the teacher and learnt from watching). I am thinking it would be great to try and further my crochet skills, everything in the magazine looks so colourful and lovely. A friend crocheted a bunting for me for my granddaughter's room, I just have to chain stitch it together, I should be able to manage that much. All the best with your own crochet endeavours Jenny and thank you for sharing. Judithann :-)

Winifred said...

Congratulations to you both, well all the family really.

I'm in the midst of a crocheting spell making blankets. I've been guilty of starting things & abandoning them too but I've started making things with deadlines, Christmas, birthday etc & that really spurs me on. The last one was a mermaid's tail a Christmas present for my granddaughter Lauren. Sadly it was such a rush I forgot to take a photo. Next is a pretty daisy throw for grandniece Ella.

I could never get the hang of crochet until I was pregnant & saw that the nicest baby matinee coats were crochet. That really motivated me. I bought a pattern book with instructions, 4 ply wool & a crochet hook when I left work & off I went. I've used the same patterns for over forty years. So happy baby crochet-ing!

Createology said...

I do love to crochet and used to make oodles of lovely gifts. Now I rarely crochet and I am not certain why. I was crocheting those uber popular button flowers but now they sit in a bin doing nothing. Maybe I shall be inspired to pick u yarn and my hooks once again. How very blessed Blossom is to be having a baby. All good healthy happy thoughts dear...

stitchesoftime.com said...

How very exciting for you and Blossom and what wonderful news. And what a great opportunity to make baby things!