Being a pattern designer is great, and I absolutely love the freedom I have to make whatever I need or want. I have learned so much over the years and I am still learning so much more.
But there comes a time when you need to crochet without having to design. Here are five reasons why I think this is so:
- It changes your perspective. You may "forget" how to follow instructions since you've been giving them so long. It's good to switch seats sometimes.
- It exposes you to other styles of pattern writing. This is a big one for me because when I was first learning to write patterns I was working for someone else and they wanted it very specific and detailed. Many people, however, are not so specific and it is good to acquaint oneself with the differences every now and then.
- It helps you continue learning. I may be a professional, but I still have so much to learn about crocheting. I believe that if you are going to teach then you need to keep learning yourself.
- It makes room for connecting with other crocheters.
- It's relaxing and good to crochet without an agenda. I have to remind myself that not everything I do needs to have an agenda or a deadline. It's good to just have fun!
So while mildly pondering this at the beginning of the week I ran across Crafty Queens' crochet pattern, Mountain Pillow, and I knew this was where I wanted to start.
|Photo credit Carmen of Crafty Queens|
Click here for Crafty Queens' pattern!
I had already decided to take a break this week and not start my next crochet project. I spent so much time last week finishing up the Maui Beach Tote for Crochet Spot that I hardly got a weekend break. I was feeling it in my wrist and in my motivation.
Carmen of Crafty Queens uses a brand of yarn called Sheepjes that is super bulky. I thought I had some super bulky but when I gathered my supplies I realized I didn't have the colors I wanted. I thought I would have to scrap my plans until I got the idea to use two strands of yarn held together. I have plenty of medium weight yarn, and I do not use it as much as other weights, so I was quite pleased to be able to use it for this project.
I rummaged through my yarn stash and came up with a bi-color pattern, beige and ivory for the top of the mountain, and mocha and chocolate for the rest. I chose hook size L/8.00mm since my gauge was smaller due to the yarn, and started right away.
Carmen's color charts for the mountain tops is super fun and easy. I haven't worked with color changes like that for a long time. But coincidentally, my own mountain pillow from many years back (Mountain Scenery Mini Pillow) was worked in similar manner, just without a color chart.
|Photo credit Carmen of Crafty Queens|
I decided to start at the beginning and make the first mountain, what Carmen calls the Smalle Berg.
Really quickly, I just want to say that I greatly appreciate how she writes her blog in English as well as her native tongue. Seeing as how I know very little Dutch, this comes in handy greatly.
My multi-colored mountain is a might more flamboyant in spirit than her's but I am pleased just the same with how it turned out.
Carmen gives instructions on how to make the pillow covers removable, which is something that I have really wanted to start incorporating into my pillow designing. However, I decided to forgo that part and make it all together this time. So instead of the lovely rustic buttons she used, I have a simple single crochet seam.
I stuffed it generously, believe me. My motto when it comes to stuffing pillows is, if you feel like it's full enough, add more.
This might not be the most optimal setup I could have used but nothing is more inviting than a cozy pillow and blanket on a swing with a good book. (By the way, I talk more about this antique Nancy Drew treasure in the post, Nancy Drew, Legendary Sleuth).
It's about time I made myself a pillow. If you look back over my history, I have made quite a few pillows this year:
But I didn't keep even one of them for myself, although the Mrs. Tiggy-Winkle pillow is floating around the family living room. (By the way, my family has rudely renamed her Mrs. Beasley). The one's that I have are ancient things I made when I was still learning the ropes. This one will be a pleasant new addition. Now that I think about it, maybe it's time to throw away...
Next week I start a project that mixes crocheting with gardening, so I'm not sure when I will get the time to crochet the other two sizes Carmen offers. But believe me, it's on the list. And I mean a literal list. I have a list of all the projects my contemporaries have made that I want to someday get around to.
So what do you think? Have you made many pillows? Have you made Carmen's Mountain Pillows before? Don't forget to check out Carmen's blog, Crafty Queens and her long list of free crochet patterns!