Hip to be Square

Hello, folks. I hope mid-February finds you well. Happily, I am coming out of my yarn pause. Not by knitting something new but by learning a new skill: I’ve decided to make good on my effort to start learning crochet.

In early 2017, I took up the hook and tried some rows of single crochet with an old scrappy bit of bright rainbow acrylic yarn – the first skein of yarn I ever bought in high school with which (YES) a garter-stitch belt was made! (and worn). Single-crocheting, I felt confident and even hazarded a hacky sack formation.

Revisiting my first skein of yarn, ever. Bought at the White Rose craft shop in Scarborough, Ontario.

I met my match, however, in the form of the granny square. Despite the tutorials, I couldn’t quite wrap my head around granny square logic. I frequently lost count of my stitches, shells, and chains. Diagrammed patterns confused rather than clarified. After making one too many lopsided square-ish things, I resignedly put down my lone hook and decided crochet just wasn’t for me.

Fast forward 2 years and a month: I catch a glimpse of a granny square garland on Pinterest and feel my crochet-fingers re-ignite and search out that little lone hook, long-hidden under a clattery heap of DPNs. And, what do you know – the first square happened that very night (with 5 more since then!). The stitches suddenly clicked into square-shaped place. Proof that sometimes learning takes place during (lots of) time off.

I am happily waking up to crochet. I like the “verticality” of crochet chains, the way they grow up and outward really fast. I like the smooth, metallic bend of the hook, designed to find its way through stitches easily, but not the other way around. I like that crocheting requires a much lighter hold with the yarn-hand – it eats up yarn quite voraciously, so any clutching or tightening of yarn only results in tight stitches and slowed flow. I like the logic of crochet, too – chains upon chains upon chains, all held together in different configurations. And, I like the toughness of crocheted fabric – it’s thick and solid and feels strong enough to walk on.

I placed my very first successful granny square with my doe doll. I’ve assigned her the important role of Keeper and Guardian of the Granny Squares and, accordingly, Steward of the Crochet Spirit, with the hopes that I don’t lose my crochet verve again. Is that too loopy? (pun intended). Either way, I think she enjoys her new gig.

What are you making this month?

Until next time, looking lightward!

28 thoughts on “Hip to be Square

  1. I applaud you for not giving up on crochet. I keep telling myself that I will get to it someday, so you are motivating me to give it a try. I’ve got it all: the stitches book, the hooks, plenty of scrap yarn to practice. But I just started a Solbein cardigan for the Fringe Association’s Steekalong, so it might wait. Learning to steek is a daunting enough endeavour.
    Nice to see you back with yarn in your hands. Take care.

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    1. Thanks for reading. That cardigan sounds marvelous, and I look forward to seeing the project progress. Ah yes, the seek is quite a challenging feat! Even the thought of it makes my palms a little sweaty, to be honest! With your knitting-genius and know-how, however, I’m sure it will be no time before you’re steeking like a pro, Agnรจs! Looking forward. ๐Ÿ™‚

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    1. Thank you, kindly, Mariss. I have admired your past crochet projects (so beautiful and colourful), so that means a great deal coming from you! I agree, crochet is a great comfort, very soothing, and it’s easy to make quick colour changes. How wonderful to know that you’ve been practicing the skill since childhood; how have I managed to miss it all this time? ๐Ÿ™‚

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  2. Ha! Isn’t it crazy how sometimes the best way to learn is to let something just simmer away in your brain for a while? Well done on conquering the granny square, and Doe Doll is doing such a great job of keeping your finished squares safe! Do you have any plans for them yet?

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    1. Thanks for reading, Helen. Yes, in light of the granny squares, I now wonder what other things I’m learning to do during time off (a reason to take more time off, of course). ๐Ÿ™‚ I think I’ll string them on a garland and festoon some spaces with them; they’re unfortunately too irregular to make an afghan, but we’ll see. xD Cheers!

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    1. Thanks for reading, Melissa. I hear you – when I first started I treated the hook like a needle that held all my stitches. ๐Ÿ˜† It differs quite a bit from knitting, but is soothing and comforting in its own way. Happy Making!

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