Crochet

I’ve known how to knit for quite a while but have always been fascinated with the amazing things you can make with Crochet. There are the classic and well known Granny Squares turned into amazing blankets and afghans, intricate lace, the wonderful world of Amigurumi and everything else in-between.

Ergonomic Handles are more comfortable to hold
Ergonomic Handles are more comfortable to hold

You can’t start to learn something without the right tools. Recently, I ordered some crochet hooks and a pouch to store them in. There are many different types of crochet hook you can buy, but after some research I decided to buy the Clover Ergonomic Hooks as they looked sturdy with lots of reviews about how great they are compared to their thinner counterparts.

This set features a soft easy grip that is warm to the touch and gives the user the most comfortable finger placement as well as tireless functionality.

The polished Aluminum hook is the perfect shape for smooth crocheting.

Each of the 10 sizes features a different bright and fun colored handle. The sizes are B-2.25mm, C-2.75mm, D-3.25mm, E-3.50mm, F-3.75mm, G-4.00mm, 7-4.50mm, H-5.00mm, I-5.50mm, and J-6.00mm.

Holds 8 crochet hooks safely and securely
Holds 8 crochet hooks safely and securely

Interestingly, the case matched the one I have to store my Knitting Needles (you can find out more about them here), so I was really pleased about that. Obviously a much smaller version to accommodate the size of the hooks and perfect to throw in your bag for crochet-on-the-go.

It’s called the Clover Getaway Case for Soft Touch Crochet Hooks

Lots of room and well made
Lots of room and well made

There is only space for 8 hooks but I have managed to pop the other two on top and fold down the inside flap. Once the pouch is rolled up it holds them all securely, so I haven’t found this to be a problem.

Considering you’ll most likely have a couple of projects on the go anyway, will help solve the storage problem.

The timing of my order was perfect as my Mother-in-Law was visiting and set me up and running on the basics – starting chain and practicing the single crochet stitch (sc) back and forth. I even managed to change color.

However, she couldn’t stay forever so I had to practice on my own and also find some more help. Thank goodness for the wonderful world wide web. You can pretty much find anything you want especially videos to help you learn many things – crochet, luckily for me, being one of them.

I’m part of a knitting/crochet community on Ravelry and someone suggested the best beginner crochet tutorials she had found with really clear instructions were with help from the Crochet Geek. She really explains the stitches well, has slow motion segments in her videos, so you can really following along, and before you know it I’d made my first crochet hat. Considering I’d only been doing crochet three weeks up to that point, I astounded myself. Give it a try…if I can do it you can too!

look at my hat and continue reading

Knitting Needles

Finding the perfect knitting needles is almost as hard as trying to find your favorite yarn. Yarn is available in many colors and weights and you can encounter the same problem when deciding which needle to use. You would think finding two sticks would be simple…but let me tell you it’s not.

Double pointed needles for sock making but you can use circular needles.
Double pointed needles for sock making but you can use circular needles.

I have been knitting on and off for over 30 years or so. I haven’t made anything substantial like a sweater but I have made a few soft toys, a shrug, some fingerless gloves as well as the obligatory scarf or cowl and a lot of washcloths.

Knitting Needles come in a variety of styles and are made out of many different materials such as Wood, Bamboo, Metal and Plastic and you also have to decide whether you are looking for straight, circular, interchangeable and all the other varieties in-between.

I always used to like using metal knitting needles. The yarn would slip off the needle really easily making it fast to knit but if you’re trying metal needles for the first time you may find that they are too slippery and you are dropping and losing stitches from them falling off too easily. Using metal needles gives you the classic clickety-clack noise that is often associated with knitting.

Clover Takumi Complete Knitting Needle Set
Clover Takumi Complete Knitting Needle Set

I also had an odd collection of needles that I would pick up free from magazines that had fancy designs, were see through or came in garish colors as well as my old ones from learning to knit that were too short for anything substantial.

I then made a decision that I wanted a complete set of knitting needles so I could have any size I needed at any time. I also wanted some way to store the needles – they are not the easiest things to put away and you don’t want them warping or getting ruined. After much research I decided I really would like to move away from cold metal knitting needles and have some bamboo needles instead.

find the right needle for your project