About 4 weeks ago, I gave up my resistance to crochet, bought Debbie Stoller's new book, The Happy Hooker (and here's the link to the NPR story), and became an instant convert. I LOVE crochet! I know there is a long-standing feud between crochet and knitting (knitting is hip and cool, crochet is dorky), but I don't really see the point in comparing them in order to shine one or the other in a negative light. And now that I've learned the basic elements of crochet, I am quite proud delighted to say that I'm a happy hooker (read Stoller's book to hear which came first, the prostitute or the crafter). My new-found exuberance for this fiber art should be apparent by the numerous pictures of my very first crochet project, the Cold Shoulders Capelet, from The Happy Hooker. I went against my own advice and chose a project with mohair. Mohair complicates beginners hands by making the stitches harder to see clearly. I always caution new knitters against using novelty yarns of any kind for their first projects for this reason, and here I found myself loving this project so much, I just couldn't resist. While it slowed me down at first, I soon got the hang of it. I'm glad I went with this project, as it's fast become one of my favorite hand-made items. More crochet (and knitting) to come later.
2 of the 7 members of my stitch n' bitch are awaiting the arrival of new babies. When we found out Jill and Melissa were pregnant, we decided to knit up squares (2 squares each person for each blanket) and then put them together and present them to the expectant moms as a surprise. We even tricked Jill and Melissa into knitting squares for their own blankets by convincing them they were knitting for the other woman. Once everyone knit their squares, I gathered the pieces and sewed them together. I was a little worried at first, I'll admit. There were a lot of different colors going on in each blanket, and I was concerned that the end result would not be pleasing to the eye. After rearranging the squares again and again, Drew's keen eye for color and pattern stepped in and helped settle me on the final layout which I ended up really liking. The moms-to-be seemed genuinely surprised and happy with their baby blankets. Good job everyone!