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!

25 Reasons I LOVE Crochet

Fearless Leader of the CLF said we should all do this, and I (typically) listen to what the Fearless Leader tells us. 🙂

So, here are my 25 reasons I love crochet…..

1. With a bent stick and some string, I can make just about anything.

2. I always have a gift for people that is special and unique.

3. Crochet keeps my fingers active and thereby likely keeping any issues from the fibromyalgia at bay.

4. It’s maintained my sanity when nothing else has. It has helped me through breakups, job stresses and losses, illness in both myself and family and friends, and long nights at work.

5. I can picture something in my head and (usually) make it come to life in fiber.

6. I can shop at Harbor Freight Tools, Lowe’s and the grocery store for new and exciting options for my crochet. I also have been known to get some tools and gadgets from these places.

7. Crochet helps me cope with waiting, whether in a doctor’s office or in a line at Disney World.

8. The rhythmic motion of pulling loops through loops is a form of meditation for me.

9. I have met some of my dearest friends through crochet.

10. It provided a common touch point between me and my soon to be grandmother-in-law which bridges the language gap we have.

11. Crochet has helped me grow as a person and as a creative professional.

12. I’m rarely bored.

13. I’m always learning something new and exciting about crochet.

14. I am part of a bigger community that is linked together like motifs in an afghan. 🙂

15. My family will always be warm and cozy (even though we don’t need that in Florida) as long as I have yarn and a hook.

16. It gives me an outlet for my need to touch things.

17. Crochet reintroduced me to math…and we’re working out our love/hate relationship.

18. Crochet helped me meet John, and gave us something to do on one of our early dates.

19. Crochet gives me an opportunity to buy more bags because I can justify it as needing project bags (there are currently 6 hanging on the back of my studio door…3 have projects in them).

20. I love that I taught my niece the beginning of crochet, and now a few years later she is starting to ask for one on one time to relearn. 🙂

21. I love that with one hobby I can make useful and pretty things for our home and clothing and socks for me and those I love.

22. Crochet has helped me tap into my creativity even more.

23. Crochet provides my income now, allowing me to do what I truly love for a career.

24. Because of my career, I’ve also relearned how to design web pages from scratch, how to do basic bookkeeping, how to take better photographs, and how to edit photographs.

25. I love crochet because it’s just plain fun!

Coming soon….

…another pattern by me in the CLF book!

Just got word today that my pattern I submitted for the CLF’s 2nd book – Crochet in Chains: The CLF All Growed Up – has been accepted.

I’m not going to show you a picture or even tell you what it is (keeping in theme with the “adult” nature of the book, I’m just gonna tease), but I will say that it is a really neat project.

I will say that it might include beads and thread again. 🙂 And that it will make a great gift for yourself or someone else.

The rest of it, you have to wait until the Fearless Leader says I can say more.

This book will be smaller than the last one, and therefore less pricey. Fearless Leader has learned a lot in the publishing of the first book, so fingers crossed this one goes quicker and easier on her! And of course I’ll be posting updates as I get them and I’ll let everyone know when the book is ready!

Now I need to get off my duff and type up my submission for the 3rd book (yes, we have many planned) and get that submitted.

You like me, you really like me!

So the awards ceremony was tonight and I WON!

Best New Designer 2008!!!!

Since there were some technical issues on the show (much love Mary Beth!) I didn’t get to give my acceptance speech so here is my long version…..

First and foremost, a great big thank you goes out to John. Without his love and support (financial, emotional, etc) I would never have been able to do this. He is the one who gave me the ability to leave my job and give a shot to my dream. He agreed that it would be better to try and fail than to always wonder if I could have done it. I love you, darling! He also makes a darn fine webmaster! 😉

Big thanks also go to my family who have given support through the last year or so that I’ve been making a go at this. You’ve listened to my rants and news and cheered at my successes and comforted me through my missteps (not failures).

I want to also thank my three go-to testers who have listened to me complain, tested my crazy ideas, and given me some of the best feedback a gal could get. Dani, Margarita, and Kerry…you ladies have helped more than you sometimes know.

To the Tampa Bay Crochet Group, you guys have listened to my many rants and such and I appreciate that. You’ve cheered me on and some of you have even bought my patterns and I totally appreciate that!

To my non-crocheting friends, you guys have been one of the best publicity teams a gal can get. You’ve passed out cards, shown off my wares, pointed people to my website, etc. It means a lot!

To the Crochet Liberation Front….Oh my…I was BLOWN away when y’all nominated me for the award. That alone was enough for me. To know that you all thought that much of me is amazing. 🙂

Now a few specifics…..

To Drew Emborsky…I don’t know if you remember, but I wrote to you in the summer of 2007 asking how I could go about becoming a designer. You gave me great advice that I followed to a T and it worked. I’ve since passed it forward and given the same advice to other new designers. Thank you so much!

To my mentor, Bendy Carter…I know I haven’t relied on you too much, but the help you have given has been awesome. And I always know that you’re an email away. 🙂

To the crochet community at large for voting for me, thank you!!! As I said in chat tonight for the show, I didn’t realize that I was even known. So this is so very cool. Thank you again!

If you’re interested in hearing the show, it should be available now on Getting Loopy in the archive section. It’s long! But it was so much fun.

Getting Loopy with the Flamies

So tonight is the night.

At 9pm EST on the Getting Loopy Blogtalk Radio show, the 2009 Crochet Awards will be given out. These are known as the Flamies in honor of the Flaming Hook of Justice that the Crochet Liberation Front (the sponsor of the awards) gives out.

If you can’t listen live, go to that link tomorrow and download the archived show. Actually, even if you do listen live, you’ll likely want to go there tomorrow because the show will likely go longer than 45 minutes (and anything over the “live” time gets recorded into the archive show).

And why am I excited? Because I’m up for Best New Designer 2008. I can’t wait to find out if I won!!! Even if I didn’t, it’s an honor to be nominated. Seriously. I know people say that after award shows, but it was for me. I didn’t think I was that well known AT ALL. So to wake up one morning and find out that I was nominated by my fellow CLFers to get this award was an awesome thing. The voting was open to the entire crochet community (and further, I’ll admit, I told everyone to go vote) so if I win, that’s pretty freaking cool.

So we’ll see. Don’t worry, if I did win, there will certainly be a post announcing that. 🙂 Wish me luck!


Winners for the 2009 Flamies Awards (given out by the Crochet Liberation Front) will be announced LIVE on Monday, March 16th at 9pm EST on Getting Loopy. It promises to be a great show!

If you can’t listen live, you can listen to the archived shows once they’re posted (at the same link).

And if you aren’t listening to this show already, you should. It’s a great show and Mary Beth has a lot of great guests. The chat room is usually pretty lively, too, during the show.

But anyway, you should listen on Monday night if you want to hear who won (and remember, I was nominated for Best New Designer). I know I’ll be listening! Can’t wait to hear who won what!! 🙂

In other news, work on the sweater progresses. I *think* I have the math figured out. I had to do it in my own way, but we’ll see if it works. Crocheting the medium sleeve now and if they work, I’ll send it off to a tester for the largest size and then I’ll get it cleaned up and likely self-published. 🙂

It’s an honor to be nominated….

The Crochet Liberation Front has opened voting for the 2009 Crochet Awards. Nominations were made through the Ravelry group, but voting is open to everyone.

You can see a list of all the nominees here at the CLF blog.

And if you scroll down to the section for Best New Designer for 2008 you will see MY name! I’m so incredibly honored. I really am. Wow. To be nominated by my fellow CLFers is an amazing thing. Wow. I actually woke John up early to tell him.

If you’re interested in voting, the link for the voting is here (if my link doesn’t work, go to the CLF link and click through there).

There are a ton of great nominees there. Congrats to all my fellow nominees! 🙂

What I’ve been up to

I know, I’ve been horrible again about posting. But see, it’s hard for me to post when there’s nothing I can show you. I feel bad about not being able to talk openly about what I’m working on, so it’s just easier not to post.

At the end of last week I finished a quick and pretty project for the next CLF book. After a collaborative photo shoot with John, I got it all sent off this morning.

Today has been spent swatching to prepare for other submissions. Once that was done it was time to work on my pattern grading classwork. After some arguments with myself and the calculator I think I finally have it figured out. Not fully, but enough that I feel like I’m caught up.

Well, I’m off to work some more on my classwork before bed.

A justified day off

Today is mine and John’s two year anniversary. So we both took today off and drove down to Naples, FL (about a 2.5 hour drive) and visited the Naples Museum of Art before going to dinner at McCormick’s and Schmick’s (a wonderful seafood place we had gift cards for from Christmas). The day was wonderful and the food was fantastic. I’m still full. I’ll have some cool pictures tomorrow (when I made the reservation I noted it was our anniversary and they had our menus printed with “Happy Anniversary” on them).

In other actual, crochet-related news, I’m currently finishing up a design to submit to the next Crochet Liberation Front book. I may keep shush shush about this one until I hear if the pattern will be taken and then I will likely post preview pics. I’m thrilled with it and can’t wait to show you. 🙂

Oh, and also, Margarita and I now have our airline tickets and hotel reserved for the fall CGOA conference! So excited! It’s real now! We’ll be there from Tuesday night to Sunday afternoon. And we’ll be in the host hotel. Can’t wait! I need to get one project done by then ’cause the leaflet I’m going to be in will be out about a month before the conference and I want to wear my own version. 🙂

Tomorrow I’ll be finishing up that and working on a few other things to send for submissions. Sorry for the lack of posting, but there hasn’t been much that I can write about. Now it’s time for bed. Busy day tomorrow!

It’s here!!!

The mail today brought my contributor copy of the CLF First Ever Book. Woo! I’ve been waiting rather impatiently for this, even more so because Dani got her copy the other day.

See? It’s really real and really here!

And lookie, 4 things have my name on them! In a real, honest to goodness book! Two patterns:

And 2 articles:

This one is about John and how crocheting brought us together. 🙂 Yes, it’s a bit sappy.

This one is a reprint from an earlier post in this blog. 🙂

I’m so freaking excited! I smiled, I cried, I laughed, and I still haven’t read it all yet. There are a lot of great articles and a lot of awesome patterns. And the CLF isn’t done yet!!!

In other news, I finished the hat and scarflette for the trip. Scarflette? Yeah, didn’t have enough yarn to make it very long, but it’ll wrap around my neck and should tuck into my coat just fine. If not, I’ve added a button. Here’s the scarflette:

The pattern is my own Lattice Mesh Scarf, just done a little wider at the base.

And here’s the hat:

I added in another round of increases to make it slouchier than the original pattern called for. The thing I liked best about it was the detail on the back:

The pattern is Ferris Wheel Slouchy Hat by Gleeful Things. Ravelry Link and Regular link.

I will likely make more of that hat, it was so quick and easy to do.

Anyway, that’s all from me. Likely until after the holiday. Tomorrow will be last minute packing and cleaning and then I’ll be offline from Wednesday through Sunday. I don’t know if I’ll have any pictures because my camera is acting up lately (I refreshed my battery pack over the weekend, took no pictures until today, and the battery is dying again….I think it’s just because I’ve had the camera for about 5 years now). I’ll see if I can snag John’s camera to take with me.

Have a wonderful holiday everyone!

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