Crochet at Cama – Oct. 16-20, 2011

I’m so happy because it’s almost time for the Crochet Liberation Front’s Crochet at Cama retreat!

Have you not heard of this? Well, let me share with you….

This page has all the information for the retreat. It’s four fun filled days in Cama Beach Park in Washington State.

Wanna know what’s awesome about this retreat? Well, here’s a quickie summary from the site:

Your retreat experience includes:

  • Breakfast each morning (Gluten Free Options available)
  • Goody Bag (yarn, patterns, coupons, hooks, and a special gift from Fearless Leader!)
  • Sunday Evening Yarn Tasting
  • Monday Afternoon Private Party at Pinch Knitter Yarn in Stanwood, WA
  • Tuesday Afternoon Tea Tasting and yarn party (on site)
  • Wednesday Afternoon Tour of local alpaca farm and site of future fiber mill
  • Afternoon break out sessions and discussion groups
  • Group Project: Hats for Center for Wooden Boats
  • Self Care opportunities: massage (one day only, day tba), meditation, nature walks, guided tours of the facility, Tuesday Tea Tasting with Tobi!
  • Evening Programs include: Guest Speaker, Prize Drawings and Games.
  • Wednesday evening potluck BBQ, use up the rest of your food, we provide the chicken for BBQ!
  • You have the choice of taking any and all classes at the retreat, or none at all. We have set up the fee structure to reflect these options. If you have questions please contact Laurie Wheeler.

Ok, if that doesn’t do it for you, maybe this will…. I’m teaching three classes at the retreat!

  • Monday: Advanced Felting…Already know how to felt basic items but want to do more? Want to play with textures in felting? This is the class for you. We will go over how textured stitches felt while doing hand felting in class.
  • Tuesday: Intro to Amigurumi…In love with all the little crocheted figures and toys that are flooding the market right now? Unsure as to how to go about making them? Have no fear! If you can single crochet, you can make amigurumi. In this class we’ll go over the basics of reading various amigurumi patterns (symbols, Japanese style, and written instructions), how to make your own without a pattern, tips to have a successful amigurumi, and we’ll make the basic amigurumi shape.
  • Wednesday: Design Your Own Filet…Love the look of filet but don’t want to work in thread? Love filet but can’t find the design you’re looking for? This is the class for you. We’ll go over how to do filet crochet and how easy it is to draw your own designs. You can work in either yarn or thread, depending on your skill level, needs, and desires. We’ll discuss tips to make all materials work for you.

These are going to be really fun and information packed classes. Also, at this time, it’ll be the last time (for the indefinite future) I’ll be teaching at a national level (short of teaching online). Yep, you read that right. At this point in time and for the foreseeable future, this will be the last time I’m traveling to teach. I just can’t do it anymore, so I figured I’d go out with a bang. If you want to take a class with me in person, get thee to the Crochet at Cama retreat (or move to Central Florida for when I teach local classes). 🙂

The photos from last year are awesome. I’m so excited to be going this year. And, Fearless Leader just announced that after this year, the retreats will be every other year. So, don’t sit there saying you’ll go next year. Go this year! The cabins are really inexpensive and it’s going to be so much fun.

I hope to see you there!

Book Review: Inside the Creative Studio

Last week I was lucky to be able to get a review copy of Inside the Creative Studio from Interweave. Let me tell you, this is a book you want.

I dropped EVERYTHING once I cracked it open. This book is so full of inspirational eye candy it’s amazing. So many different artists opened up their studios for photos and floor plans and interviews. I read about everything from tiny closet studios to whole barn studios. And yes, I did mention floor plans. Every studio featured showed the floor plan as well. To this former interior design student, it made my heart sing. Photos of the space are one thing, but to see how the arrangement actually works is another.

The book is also chock full of tips and information. Storage tips (including thinking outside the box on what you can use to hold the bits and baubles of a crafting life), lighting tips, color scheme tips, etc. I read this book in two sittings, and will likely read it over a few more times.

This is a great book, whether you’re a full time crafter or just looking for a space for your creative hobbies. Any type of crafter can find inspiration in this book. Even for non-crafting things. I’m already getting ideas to help with redesigning an office space. I’m getting other ideas, too, for when I ultimately move out of this space. This book is good for that, to sit and plan and dream of what is possible.

As many of my long time readers know, I’ve had a lot of incarnations on studio space. I started out with a whole bedroom to myself for my studio and now I’m squeezing studio space into a 225 square foot room (with my bedroom and living area). And even that space has changed since I moved here over a year ago.

Remember this chaos?

And how it then moved to this, slightly less chaotic spot?

Added to that since has been the addition of my bulletin board for inspiration space to the left of the table/desk on the wall.

And yes, that’s the bulk of my stash (save for sock yarn which lives in its own container) under the table.

Speaking of stash, Interweave is having a huge contest. Here’s the details!

Join the Stash Bash Flickr Group!

We want to see crafters’ stash photos! Anyone who joins the Stash Bash Flickr Group and uploads a photo of his/her stash will automatically be entered into a drawing to win some great prizes. One winner selected at random from all the uploaded entries to this Flickr pool will win his/her choice of 5 NEW BOOKS from Interweave Books’ 2011 collections – choose from among 35+ new books published this year! Five additional winners selected at random will win copies of either INSIDE THE CREATIVE STUDIO: Inspiration and Ideas for Your Art and Craft Space by Cate Coulacos Prato (available in October) or THE CRAFTER’S GUIDE TO TAKING GREAT PHOTOS by Heidi Adnum (available in November). Winners will be selected on September 17, the day after our September Stash Busters Sale.

We’re encouraging crafters to join the Stash Bash and upload photos of their craft collections. All stashes apply: books, magazines, yarn, fabric, fiber, paper, beads, dyeing and paint supplies, brushes, glitter, stamps, you name it! We’d love to see some pretty close-ups, or interesting photos of how our readers organize your space.

Not on You can also tweet photos of your stash using hashtag #stashbash to be entered to win the giveaway.

Throughout Stash Bash, over at, people will find store-wide discounts and exclusive savings on 3000+ products now through 9/16, plus free shipping in the U.S. on orders over $100 (and 50% off shipping internationally).

Put this book on your wish list! You’ll be happy you did!

Lots of patterns

Somehow I let a month go by without posting. My apologies. I kept thinking it’d only been a week or two.

Things have been pretty busy here, just not on the designing front. I spent a week housesitting for my sister, another week on a mini vacation, and the time between was spent wandering around trying to get life figured out. Vague? Yes. 🙂

Anyway, in the mean time I’ve had a few patterns I designed last year come out. So this post will be photo and info heavy!

Those of you who were reading me last summer may remember the panic and craziness of the “super huge project” that I was working on. Well, now it’s been revealed! I was designing a bunch of amigurumi for Caron Yarns. They’re now starting to be published on The Caron Notebook (Caron’s blog), so I want to share them with you here.

First up was a cute Ice Cream Cone and Ice Cream Sandwich!

Photo copyright Caron Yarns and used with permission.

Ice Cream Sandwich and Ice Cream Cone Amigurumi

Ravelry Link / Pattern Link

That was followed with the little Baseball Amigurumi. My parents are huge baseball fans and so of course I had to design one of these.

Photo copyright Caron Yarns and used with permission.

Baseball Amigurumi

Ravelry Link / Pattern Link

And the one that came out this last week is perfect for back to school. I knew when I started the project that I wanted to make a boy and girl doll. It took until the end of the project before I figured out exactly how I wanted to do that. And here they are…

Photo copyright Caron Yarns and used with permission.

Back to School Amigurumis

Ravelry Link / Pattern Link

I’ve also had a couple of patterns come out through Coats & Clark / Red Heart. Told you it’s been a busy couple of weeks!

Just in time for winter crocheting (we’re still in the 80s-90s, so someone tell me what that’s like).

This one is great because it uses one skein of each color of the new Red Heart with Love solids. This yarn was fabulous to work with. You could make them using the school colors for your little boy (or even for a girl, it is a unisex design). Have fun with this one!

Photo copyright Coats and Clark and used with permission.

Hat and Scarf for Boy

Ravelry Link / Pattern Link

And the last one that I’ve been waiting with baited breath to show y’all! The Lace Pendant Necklace.

This is a very quick and simple motif attached to a chain by jump rings. So light and pretty and perfect for finishing off any outfit. The bamboo thread is fabulous to work with. One ball will get you a lot of necklaces, so they’re perfect for gift giving.

Photo copyright Coats and Clark and used with permission.

Lace Pendant Necklace

Ravelry Link / Pattern Link

Okay, that’s me getting caught up. Right now I’ve got a few designs on the hook that I’m trying to get finished up, as well as finishing up lesson plans and handouts for the Crochet Liberation Front’s Crochet @ Cama retreat next month. I’m teaching three classes there and I can’t wait. We just booked our flights for the trip so now I have to get my lessons done. 🙂

Happy crocheting everyone!

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