straw bag

My first crocheted straw bag

I’m a lazy person. I like to do things that I like but not those things that I dislike. I like crocheting but dislike teaching the fundamentals. I like to do challenging project but dislike the monotonous repetition of the same pattern again and again. Take it that I am a complicated person that is quite hard to please.

Because I know what I like and what I dislike, I will not update this blog on things that I find tedious to write but on things that I would love to venture into. But still I want to have this blog includes the complete resources on crocheting starting from beginning to advance.  In order to make things complete, I would like to refer to some good links that I came about on crocheting. For the beginners, you could refer to them to start this wonderful crafting that leads to the journey of life, at least that is so for me.  

To begin with you might want to see the below paragraphs for some reference. For those reader who already know crocheting, it is good to go through it once a while to find out if any new tips you could discover or refine your skill if needed to. 

Crochet How to

http://www.coatsandclark.com/Crafts/Crochet/Howtos/Crochet+Made+Easy+-+video+lessons.htm

The link above show some how to crochet lessons in total of 14 and each come in podcast format.  You can see the demonstration on how to crochet start from basic.

For those intermediate or already know how to do simple crocheting, you may like to review the video for revision once a while. I once posted a Relief Stitches article that make use of front and back posted double crochet which was shown in lesson 14 – Special Stitches.

 For those who like to read rather than watching video, I suggest you subscribe to this free Email letter by Guide to Crochet Tips . The guides provide new tips to those beginners like: Starting a new ball or skein, How to avoid showing knots, How to get the yarn to flow through your fingers, Increasing and decreasing stitches, changing colors, etc.

Purchase material

Depends on where you are located, you may find yarn and crochet material some where nearby your house. If not you can buy it from internet if you do not mind the shipment fees. I would suggest you find a nearby shop for economy purchase. And by looking and touching the yarn, you may have a better feel for the project you will be doing. Once you are familiar with the yarn, you could start to explore which material is good for what project.

I started off by buying all the cheap yarn I could find from cheap sales. The reason being as a beginner I wanted to try out my tension on a cheaper yarn before investing to the good ones. What is the use of investing on a very good yarn and the products turns out to be ugly due to own skill set? Being say that does not mean you should stop investing on good yarn out there. You could be a talented skillful one and who knows your first piece of product came out to be wonderful. So depends on circumstances and be adventurous to try out various kind of yarn on the same project. I often did that and discovered lots of surprises. The products turn out to be quite different using different kind of yarns.

As I started to know more about the quality of the yarn, I began to venture into new materials like string, straw, even thin wire gauze for other kind of products. My latest product was two handbags: one made from straw yarn and the other still left the top to finish was using soft nylon string.

If you are interested in starting crocheting but do not know what are the materials required, you can try some of the following sites:

http://www.lionbrand.com/

http://www.pandayarns.biz/yarn_collection.asp

http://www.spotlight.com.au/living_with_yarn

http://www.knittingplaza.com/cheap_knitting_yarn/1.htm

http://www.selectyarn.com/web%20pages/japanese_yarns.html 

Living in Singapore, I am fortunate to have Spotlight, the major chain of fabric in Australia that I bought most of my project materials there. Recently I have another resource to venture into Japanese yarn. Although it could be more costly as compared to Australian yarn, it has more varieties and better texture due to its super quality. The wide choices of color makes it more attractive too.

Finding Patterns

As a beginner, you need to do more practices to gain your skill. You choose something simple to start with in order not to dampen your enthusiasm for a start. But most important of all, you must like the product that you are making. This keeps you motivated to finish it till the end.

Mile A Minute From Big Book of Crochet

Mile A Minute From Big Book of Crochet

I once started an afghan pattern, the pattern book has already given warning of a difficult level due to its tedious in doing. It even named the product as a mile-a-minute as it take perseverance and patient to finish it, stripe by stripe. The pattern started by making small flower motifs and join each of them in stripes form. The stripes are then joined to form the final pieces. I finally finished it in two months time. What motivated me to finish 18 long stripes of 20 flower motif each was I wanted to see the final product. Instead of using it as an afghan, I converted it into window curtain for my room. I am still hanging it now as shown in the picture.

 my curtainThings that only involve single pattern like single crochet, double crochet and slip stitch are a better choice to start a simple project. Don’t follow my footstep of always want to challenge myself, at least not for your first project. You may want to start a scarf, a simple handbag, a motif table runner, a floor mat, a coaster, a cushion cover, etc that you like to own one. As you slowly gain more experience, you could venture into much more challenging project. Most of the project that you found in magazine or crochet books would list the skill level required to finish the project – beginner, immediate, advance. Some even put down the estimated amount of time to finish the product. If you think you could commit the given time needed then go ahead to do the project you want. If other can do it, so can you.

Doing crochet is so fun for me due to there are some many kind of stitches available and I could experiment by combining each of them to create different projects of different textures. There are times I like the pattern so much that I did using various yarn with different colors to see what would be the outcome. Every product is unique to me.

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