Tag Archives: hats

A time to contemplate the season…


Originally uploaded by HoosierLadyB

After the post Thanksgiving consumer fest that is Black Friday thru today Cyber Monday, it’s easy to get lost in the sea of shopping bags and receipts. The news will tell you it’s you helping the economy, and the commercials tell you that you have to have it…that you can’t live without it…but how much of what is bought is personal?

In these very difficult economic times with huge amounts of joblessness so many families around the country are being impacted in tragic ways. It’s not about stuff, it’s about simply not having enough to live. It’s not about how much we have, it’s about having enough to survive cold winters, with full tummies and warm hands are feet. As much as it is a strain on parents and grandparents, imagine being a child; imagine being a hungry and cold child…

That is exactly what our dear CLF Member HoosierLady did; Then  thinking of her community has crocheted (at last count) 55 original hats in child to adult small sizes and five hat/scarf sets to be donated to a local charity in her home town. You can read her story in the project notes posted on Ravelry.


If you’re not on Ravelry, let me just sum up how bad the situation is in her area, Elkhart , Indiana.

* 60% of the children in the school district qualify for the free lunch program
*30% of them qualify for the reduced lunch program

When she found out about this in August, she put her hook into action, When I read through her project notes, I couldn’t help but swell with pride to have such a wonderful member in our group. After all, this is the season of giving, of showing love and compassion for our fellow humans.

She isn’t alone, so many of our crocheters make hats, scarves, blankets and more for so many charities. We know how important it is to give just a little (or a lot) of our time and love to help someone else make it through their holiday season, or heck even just their day.

If you know of any great charities in your area, please list them here in the comment section.

BTW I think my favorite hat is the pupppy dog one! Who ever gets that hat will be one lucky kid!

This hat Sets Our Picot Free!


This is a fabulous hat! Made by CLF Member Rubyshoecreations using the Lattice Hat pattern from Rheatheylia. I love the surface crochet lattices, and saw some other versions of the hat on Ravelry.com as well. With fall approaching I ask you, can we make enough hats? No, no we cannot. Hats are fabulous accessories and in my un-humble opinion you can never have too many of them!

Congratulations Rubyshoecreations, you are hereby awarded the CLF Set My Picot Free award for making a fabulous hat!

I would also like to remind all of our readers to go to the CLF Website to sign up for the retreat! We’re getting close to the deadline for the early bird special to expire! Only $75 for a four-day retreat folks! We’ve got a yarn tasting planned for Monday October 18, Guest Speakers in the evenings, activities in the afternoons including a Dye Workshop specifically with crochet in mind, as well as morning classes that you must pre-register for!

You can get your buddies together to room in the warm and cozy cabins, and we’ve got so much fun planned, it will be a true CLF experience! Liberating, Community Building and Crochet like you have never crocheted before!

Picot Freeing Beret!


Originally uploaded by mortaine

Ok, this blog post is combining two goals in one! YAY… 

First of all, I want to say that my 3rd issue of Handknit Heros arrived in the mail and I’m thrilled to see it! CLF Member Mortaine is the owner and evil genius behind the hip and edgy comic. Crochet aficionados fear not the name “Handknit” one of the superheros in this comic is indeed a hookster like us! 

My kids (teens) adore the comic, and the patterns are well written for both knit and crochet. Yes, that’s right I can read the knitting patterns even if I can’t knit. I really like the diagrams in the last issue, they are well done. 

This leads me to the Set My Picot Free award, which goes to none other than Mortaine! CLF Member extraordinaire, a true handworking super hero. I urge you to look at her projects page on ravelry because she does it all! I particularly love this hat, but also her tatting efforts (gorgeous!). 

Mortaine, (aka Stephanie), you Set All our Picot Free with this cute and fun beret/tam. Love it! 

Baby it’s Cold Outside…

Wowsies! After a blazing summer with only 5 full rainy days, October has become rather chilly here in the great Northwest! It’s so cold at night we’ve actually starting building a fire, which I LOVE! It’s cozy, and homey, and of course that makes me break out the hooks and yarn.

Other than working on a project for a magainze (which I can’t say anything about yet, but when it comes out I will), I am also making a large  “hammock” for my niece’s stuffed animal collection. It’s very princessy! I really want to get that finished because I have a burning desire to break out the wool and make myself some slipper socks. My feet are freezing, and all my old woolies are dead…yes, dead. Held fondly in my heart in memorium, but I wore the little blighters out, and have not had a chance to make new ones…EGADS what was I thinking?

I also need new hats. The cute fashion hats I made this summer, just don’t cut it in this chilly weather. So after the project is over, and the hammock is made, I shall definately make myself some yummy hats and slippers too!

Other than that? If you are going to Rheinbeck look for my little helpers, they will have CLF tote bags to identify themselves and have some awexomse postcards to boot! Ask them for a postcard they have plenty!

I’ll have some of those in Portland too! So if you come by Twisted on Friday October 30th, or Saturday October 31st you can nab one then 🙂

Creativity knows no bounds…

I’m of two minds about rules.

On the one hand I am at heart an academic, I love to study and learning the rules to any given matter is exhilarating to me. To delve as deep as possible into the knowledge base of a matter is intoxicating; I adore knowing things. Even better, I am fueled by using that knowledge, and better yet? Passing that knowledge on to others.

On the other hand, I have this rebellious streak. Once I learn as much as humanly possible about a subject, I MUST test the waters and see how strictly those rules must be obeyed. Why are those rules there? What else could be done to improve upon a standard set long before I (little jackanape that I am) came along?

When it comes to crochet, I was taught a set of rules by older relatives, who themselves were taught rules by others. No one questioned those rules, either due to respect of age or skill. I didn’t start questioning the creative rules until less than a decade ago. Until then for me crochet was lace, all manner of lace, and the occasional novelty item. Yet, deep inside of me was that little girl who broke the rules, but once mind you, asking how to crochet a sweater. She got told, “Oh no, you knit sweaters. If you want to make a sweater you have to learn to knit.” 

The rule was, crochet was lace.

Part of me still sees crochet that way, the part of me that has crocheted so much lace over the years, that invariably most of my projects have some kind of lace like element. My hands and fingers know lace, lace and I are friends. I KNOW lace, and it knows me. Then I broke the rules…I made a crocheted sweater. Heck it was just a blankie with sleeves!  It wasn’t hard, there was no mystery to it, and it was and is comfy, and pretty in an organically hippie kinda way. Not everyone’s cup of tea, but on a cold and damp September morning it sure feels good.

Often being of two minds on various issues, I long ago sought to integrate my thinking. It doesn’t have to be rules or no rules. I still hold by learning as much technical knowledge as possible, because it makes breaking the rules that much better!

So when I taught my own daughter to crochet four years ago, I didn’t tell her crochet was only for lace. When she asked what could and couldn’t be done, I asked her what she thought. When she wanted to know how to hold her hook and yarn we found a way that was comfortable for her. Then, when it came to what fibers can and can’t do, I told her the basic information, then handed her scads of small balls of my hand-spun in every fiber imaginable for her to play with…Oh the results were amazing. Watching her freely create, and only imbibing her with the rules of the craft when she asked for them, or when she was having more trial and error than necessary to that fragile beginners ego, I gained a new sense of my own creativity.

Today she still likes “Mom” to make most of her things, but she has made her fair share of projects…these fingerless gloves she made herself are some of my favorites.

Sara made these up as she crocheted along



She made them in the winter months when we were snowed in, they aren’t “matching”, they are her “funk-tional” gloves…


Brother kindly models sister's hat.

Brother kindly models sister's hat.

The hats she and her brother are wearing were also made by her, she learned a few things about hats in making them…she was so proud when she finally understood the shaping from the crown, without needing me to tell her “one more time” how to decrease, but not “too much”.

She ignored my “rules” about color changing, and did her own thing, which ended up showing on the one hat, but not the other. Live and learn…sometimes being creative and learning the rules, requires trial and error.


My favorites are still the gloves (and they are her favorites too!): I like that in those gloves I see the rules and breaking the rules…and her creativity will only blossom further, we do not know it’s bounds…

Of course, do any of us? Do we really know the bounds of our creativity?

If you know a few of the rules in crochet, see how many you can purposely break today and let your creativity flow!