I Want To Travel The World And Meet Other Women Through Crochet!


OK, that’s not a pick up line.

Really.  I’m serious.

But I’ve never traveled before.  Wanna help?  Do read on.

Anyone who’s ever met me, or even simply read my post Cro-pocalypse: The Rise of Crochet, can tell how passionate I am about the art of crochet.  Even when you don’t crochet and never thought you’d like it, hang out with me sometime and let me share.  It’s a transformative experience.  By the end I’ll have you seeing magic and fireflies and wondering if you should look in the backyard of your own craft for them too. 😉

But it’s not just the art of making crochet fabric that I find exhilarating.  It’s the crochet hooks and hands holding them.  I love to sit down over coffee, tea and hooks with crocheters anywhere I travel.  We chat, I ask questions and I study their methods, hands and hooks and stories.  Why?  Because each of these facets are unique.

A crochet hook in it’s most simplistic state is simply a stick with a crook on the end.  And yet, the shapes vary so widely across the world.

I’ve heard that there are crochet hooks made out of bicycle spokes in Peru, that are crochet hooks on one end and knitting needles on the other.  And the artists who use them will actually flip their tools back and forth between crochet and knit – all within the same project!

Fascinating!  I want to see this!

There’s an entirely different kind of crochet hook used in a Scandinavian country I can’t remember the name of.  It’s only a couple inches long, made from a long piece of hammered coiled metal that forms a thumb pad for holding, while the hook part itself looks somewhat like a fishing hook, except it’s not sharp.  And they make socks with it!

I have to see this! 

I want to sit down and crochet with these artisans and study how they use these widely different tools!  How do they hold their hooks and yarn and position their hands?  And what is their muscle memory background?  How does this muscle history affect the technique and look that they achieve in their crochet?

Crochet is one of those arts that is present in some form on every continent and in every culture in the world.  And yet, we have barely scratched the surface in comparing notes.  And why is that?  I mean, Japan has some crazy beautiful techniques.  And there’s Croatia, which is equally graceful and entirely different!  Not to mention South America!

There’s something here.

The shapes of our hooks are part of what dictates what we are actually able to do in crochet.  I talk about hook shapes a lot, because for some reason, we don’t enough.  And yet, obviously we need to.  Once given voice, we crocheters hunger to.  Once given permission to explore the possibilities, we can’t wait to hear how someone else works with a hook and learn from that.

Just take a look at the Twitter discussion we had around the world on the matter just a month ago today.  You can read about that here: Did You Miss Out On This #Crochet Goodness?

My phone was literally blowing up from the activity!  I decided to write a blog post about the Twitter chat so my other peeps (who are not on Twitter) could also chime in and be heard.  Later that post was featured on BlogHer’s front page and people commented on how fascinating the discussion was, even though they themselves didn’t crochet.

My yarny-crafting brethren – there’s a story in here somewhere!  And I want to make it happen.

It’s why I wrote the articles for Interweave Crochet magazine.

It’s why I make videos and want to run experiments with crochet hooks.  And I want to take those crochet hook experiments abroad.  I say we all have a madness, and this just happens to be one of mine.

And yet…

I’m the little girl from Oklahoma, who made it to Texas, but has never left the contiguous United States.

Ever.

Well, OK there was that customs place on the Canadian border in MN, but that doesn’t count.  (Though when I was a kid, candy bars written in French and English seemed very cool.)

So here’s the deal guys.

I’ve been talking about this forever.  And you’ve been encouraging me to do it forever.  And an opportunity to cut my teeth on world travel fell into my lap.  It’s my daughter’s high school trip to Spain.  And the last stop is Barcelona – not only known for art, but it’s fiber art! 😀

Granted, it’s just an educational tour for my daughter’s AP Spanish class, but it’s for 10 days and the structure and the group will be a great way for me to get my feet wet as a world travel nOOb.  Plus I’ll have the benefit of going with three very well traveled teachers I trust.  I’ve volunteered to help as an extra chaperone and we’ve been raising money and getting ready all year.  We leave in just a few months.  I even hope to arrange a meetup with Ravelry friends whom I’ve never seen while I’m there.  It’s be great!  Keep your fingers crossed for me!

Wanna help me out and join me for my maiden journey?

Instead of buying me coffee or sharing a ball of yarn, would you contribute to my travel campaign and help me get to Spain instead?  After falling down the stairs this summer and breaking my ankle, my initial plans were set back a bit.  I’m doing better now and I’m going to make it, but would love your help to secure my spot on the tour.

What am I going to do with this experience?  Well, I’m going to study and write and learn of course.  I’m going to take pictures and talk crochet with anyone who will let me.  I’m going to be awakened, even if only a little, in the way that only travel can do.  And I’m going to try to keep up with the AP students who speak more Spanish than I ever could!

But more than anything, this is me literally putting my money where my mouth is.  I’m making a commitment towards what I’ve been talking about for years.  I’m traveling the world for crochet.  I’m going to find that story.  And I’m bringing  it home.  Help me do it?

Stay tuned!


If you enjoyed this article, you might also like:

Ergonomics In Crochet Hook Design And The Hands That Use Them

My Crochet Hook Experiment Will Be At Round Rock Mini-Maker Faire! Tomorrow!

What Gripes Me (Crochet Hook Shapes) – Crochet Ruminations

Crochet Hook Engineering – Types of Tools – Crochet Hook Challenge

Crochet Holding Positions For Hooks – A Tutorial

Did You Miss Out On This #Crochet Goodness?

Juicy Crochet News: Catch Me In Print!


36 Comments

Filed under Artist Information & Notes, Crochet Community, Crochet Hooks

36 responses to “I Want To Travel The World And Meet Other Women Through Crochet!

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  2. Pingback: Cro-pocalypse: The Rise of Crochet | Aberrant Crochet (TM)

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  4. Victoria

    If you make it to Ireland / Northern Ireland one day, I’ll hook you up (pun intended) with some Irish Crochet people. And, you’ll visit, of course.

  5. Sanderella's Crochet

    Your awsome! Your going to have fun, learn, become an expert, and write one fantastic book!

    • Thanks Sanderella! That really makes me smile!😀 That’s my goal and with all the support, how can I not? Right?😀

      • Sanderella's Crochet

        You will do quite well. I enjoy your posts, will love the book! I assume your writing one…..or will! Sandy

        • Book and/or film. Depending on just how far I can take this idea I guess! I honestly don’t know for sure where this is leading me, but it’s leading me somewhere. The biggest thing is that in order to actually do it, in order to actually travel like that, I’m going to need to find a grant, some video help, etc.. Will have to see what doors and windows open up as I take each step. For now, the first step is taking the educational tour and breaking the ice!

          • Sanderella's Crochet

            Well you certainly have a good idea going there, I was going to suggest…a story in your local newspaper? Get the word out in your community too! There maybe someone within that circle that would like to help you out there! I have a good friend that traveled to Spain with her son, a school project…and she speaks Dutch and Spanish…stated she would have been totally snubbed had she not been able to speak the language. Stated in restaurants, shops…the people were a bit snooty…Do you speak any Spanish? If not, maybe a travel companion that does would be helpful….

            • I don’t speak Spanish, but this is an educational tour for my daughter’s AP Spanish class. Almost everyone else in the group will be able to speak it pretty well. I took French in school, but don’t remember much of it. So it will be interesting!:)

              I like your idea on the newspaper! I’ll think on that.

              • Sanderella's Crochet

                Yes do because when my sister and her husband started an alpaca ranch they had someone from the paper in our community come out and they did a nice story/interview and…pictures! If you could get on a talk show…that would be really nice….Ellen! She may even send you!

                • LOL! I love it, but I have no idea how I could possibly get on a talk show of any kind, much less Ellen. :) “Now Ellen, I’d love to come on your show and talk about crochet hooks. No really. No, not yarn, just hooks. Oh and hands. Yeah, that’s right. Please hear me out. Your producers will want to hear me out too….” Oh, I don’t know. Maybe eventually. :)

                  First baby step first, I shall think on writing the local newspaper. And I shall get my ass to Spain.

                  • Sanderella's Crochet

                    Lol!! Actually, I think you could pull it off quite well!

                    • Oh I can talk, it’s the getting there part! 😉

                    • Sanderella's Crochet

                      I think they provide travel arrangements!

                    • No, I mean being considered and getting noticed in the first place. That sort of thing doesn’t just happen, unless you happen to catch a producer’s attention or something. When Maker Faire was in Austin, I used to think I had a chance of catching that kind of notice, but not anymore.

                    • Sanderella's Crochet

                      Oh. Well, I guess just keep blogging and talking when your out, your a super blogger…How about holding a seminar???

                    • hmmm… I hadn’t thought of that. I’ve had some people ask me to talk about social media management. And I thought about getting back into something like Toast Masters. I actually love teaching and public speaking. Just hadn’t thought about using my crochet side for it…. Will have to think…. Your ideas are very good food for thought! Love the stimulation discussion brings out!

                    • Sanderella's Crochet

                      Toast Masters is an excellent group and also I just thought about something else…adult ed classes…check with the school Dist in your area, others about teaching a class! Offer lectures to get paid as a speaker…how about the various Crochet groups, charge a little fee…go to your library, a restaurant, banquet hall….put an ad in the paper stating the subject of your lecture…you can make alot of money that way!

                    • Sanderella – you are so much fun! Love the ideas. My brain is giving me this picture: Julia, in the ring corner, sipping some water, polishing her hooks, nodding her head as she listens. Sanderella hands her a towel, gives her a pep talk and slap her on the back. “Now get out there and make some magic!” 😉 LOL!

                    • Sanderella's Crochet

                      What a mind! You will make magic! I don’t like to slam anyone, because those in the crafting community sort of stick together….but Sara Duggan has two books out telling people how to run a business…and I am saying….if she can do it, so can you because….your smart, have the gift to speak to people, your mind, your offering substance and education, something unique….blended with travel, pictures, interviews etc….you should have no problem.

                    • Thanks for your encouragement and belief Sandy.:) And for taking the time to help a fellow out.

                    • Sanderella's Crochet

                      Your welcome, you should have some ideas to kick around now! Happy Thanksgiving! Sandy:)

                    • Happy Thanksgiving to you too!😉

                    • Sanderella's Crochet

                      Oh Thank you!

                    • Sanderella's Crochet

                      😉

                    • Sanderella's Crochet

                      No problem, I am behind with my blogging, and I am so sorry, need to catch up!! Merry Christmas, Sandy

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