Confidence & Crafting…

Now that I’ve been home a few days, I’ve had a chance to get resettled, catch up on some home and business “things” and also reflect back on the weekend that was to be forever known as “The Portland Experience.”

I took my second and third crochet classes ever in Portland. I’ve never been one of taking classes, having figured out most of what I do through a) trial and error (mostly error), and b) copious volumes of magazines and books. I have to say, I like taking classes, if I had just done that to start with (had I known they existed!) I would have saved myself a great amount of time, frustration and yarn!

I witnessed something rather sad in one of my classes, and I find it so because I’ve felt like the poor person I observed. In fact, I used to feel like she felt an awful lot once upon a life time ago.

There were two of us in the class who crochet for a living, or have crocheted for a living, or at the very least use a hook EVERY SINGLE DAY of the year. This poor person was having a hard time with figuring out how to do the lace, and was feeling slow, behind, and not “as good” as the others in the class.

The truth of the matter, was that I had made just as many mistakes on my learning piece as she had. Her real problem was, a) the yarn she used was rather unforgiving and b) her self confidence.

I can’t count the times, I see messages on or meet handworkers of all stripes (but ESPECIALLY crocheters) who knock themselves and their skills. “Am I doing it right?” “I wish I was as good as you!” “I’ll never be able to do THAT!” It makes me really, really sad to see this. We have so over achieved, and have stupid perfection expectations that we become discouraged when we make errors when we are LEARNING something new!

I made tons of mistakes in my first Broomstick Lace project. I missed a few stitches, had a few less loops in places, it’s not quite the “hour glass” shape described in the pattern, but hell and darn it holds together, and since I’m not entering it into a competition and it’s a learning piece, I don’t care about the mistakes. I learned from them…YES do you HEAR ME!


The world will not cease turning on it’s axis if you make a mistake. And frankly that’s the worst thing that could happen to us, besides the sun going Super Nova on our collective hinneys; and that ain’t gonna happen either.

I still haven’t finished the little bag, which is about four inches high, and four inches wide (ish)…

Why does mine look delicate. Cause I broke the rules, instead of using a worsted weight as called for in the class description. I decided to use a cotton sock yarn that’s fingering weight instead. I know from years of experience that if I want my lace to be “lacey” then I need to use a finer yarn. Especially since the instructions called for a size 19 needle, and as I’m not the proud owner of a needle stash, other than a size 17, 30 and 50 (bought for the purpose of making broomstick), that if I was using a size 17 I’d need finer yarn.
Yarn: It is the beginning and the end of your project. The same pattern worked in different hook sizes and yarns can be amazingly diverse 🙂
So, folks…STOP BEATING YOURSELF UP if you goof, OH WELL…
Fearless Leader says to repeat after me: “What I make is beautiful, including my mistakes. I will learn from them, and be better at what I do because of it.”
You are only a failure if you believe it; I do not believe in the concept of failure. I believe in the concept of learning. The only time you fail is when you never ever try.

4 responses to “Confidence & Crafting…

  1. Alison Friday

    Broom stick I only learnt to the end of last year and I have had a few goes and lets just say still learning, but that’s what I love about crochet is pickling up my 1sts and then seeing how well that I have come on in later projects. Just being brave enough to try something new. The best thing about crochet is unlike knitting, all the stitch never drop off the hook!;-)

  2. Hook on! Currently doing the hourglass, sweating over stitch counts (the loops are so tightly packed on the needle it’s impossible to count until the needle is removed).

    I’m only recently branching out from afghans. I’ve frogged so many rows I do it in my dreams. There are mistakes in nearly every completed project but nobody else notices. I have a theory that enthusiasm masks the imperfections.

  3. OOh broomstick!

    I taught myself the basic stuff, which is hard to do if all the tutes are out there for right-handed folks. Yet, I stuck it out and was able to figure it out. Now if only I can figure out how to do it in the round:)

    Gotta crawl before you can run:)

    • Join the base chain, then work as normal:
      Work the stitches on the needle to half way across, then slip them off the needle, insert the needle through three of the stitches at the end of where you just left off, and keep going 🙂

      Mucho fun!

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