I decided to post this piece from my website to my blog:
“That’s that new-fangled yarn!” “You can’t see your stitches!” These are the phrases both my grandmothers have used to describe the micro-fibers and unusual yarns, from around the world, that I specialize in. I grinned of course, and replied right back, “But Grandma, if you really know how to crochet, you don’t need to see your stitches!” Lol! Well they had no argument there. But no matter – as far as they were concerned, too much time, to difficult to use and too different. Fine for me to use it, but even as seasoned crochet masters they would NOT.
It’s true. When I teach crochet, I never recommend what my grandmothers call “that new-fangled yarn!” It’s NOT very forgiving at all. And if you’re new to hooking (or knitting), it just is not the yarn to learn on. Mis-stitch and you’ll likely scrap the lot, if you’re not well skilled at handling a multitude of yarns and textures.
However, “That 70’s Yarn” as I call it, is the perfect learning yarn. As grandmother pointed out, you can easily see your stitches in “That 70’s Yarn.” It’s perfect for learning tension, stitch consistency and gauge. Practice makes perfect and “That 70’s Type Yarn” is the best to practice with. But for all practicality and end product use, I don’t like it for much else. Great for making spider webs and anything requiring a lot of structure and even durability in the rain! But not great for the skin.
Super el-cheap-o “one pounder” yarn is far from what I ever use in my products for men or women. (Except, as I said, for spider webs.) And I refuse to use anything scratchy against the skin, even if it is “natural.” If it’s going to be against your skin, as a purse, blanket or article of clothing, it should be SOFT! No compromises! No passing scratchy stuff off as acceptable just because “it’s natural.” This is such an issue to me that when it comes to hats, I look at it this way: It should be soft enough against the skin to be comfortable to anyone going through chemotherapy. Think about it – when you’ve had hair and then suddenly don’t, your skin can be extremely sensitive to what you wear!
Crochet got a negative rep from 60’s and 70’s negative memories of crocheted vases and painful clothing some of us were forced to wear, along with a variety of marketing techniques targeted at various audiences. There are still people who hear the word “crochet” and the only thing they can visualize is unfortunately a very limited slice of the whole art! Not anymore! It’s my goal to help “make the case” for crochet and it’s potential to make a high quality and lovelier piece of work. As well as promoting crochet as ART itself. Much of that funky yarn that traditionalists hate I love. If it’s not soft against the skin, I don’t use it against the skin. Which also means my tastes tend to be higher quality and more expensive. I am admittedly, a yarn/(don’t forget chocolate)/crochet/hook SNOB. All in good humor!
So, before you look and wonder, the proof of the difference is in the touch.
I dare you!