This review is a part of the Hookin’ Up Project, a sort of pay-it-forward review system that creates a sort of blog chain in which each blogger reviews the next day’s blogger. Yesterday I was reviewed by the Crazy Crochet Ladies (I swear it made me blush), so today I get to review tomorrow’s blog, Twisted Strands.
I’d been following Twisted Strands for about a month before I signed up for the Hookin’ Up Project because Julie (also known as dnadiva on Ravelry) is also participating in Work In Progress Wednesdays, so I was excited to be able to review a familiar blog that I knew was filled with lots of crocheted lovelies.
Twisted Strands has introduced me to the concept of “knooking”, which is making knitted fabric with a crochet hook that has a cord attached to it. Unlike tunesian crochet in which you can somewhat mimic knitted fabric, knooking is an ACTUAL knitted fabric on both sides of the work. If you look at basic projects you may not be impressed, but check out some of the swatches that Julie has made, such as this one:
HOLY CRAP THOSE ARE CABLES. Those are TRUE KNITTED CABLES. I am completely flabbergasted by Julie’s knooking prowess! And I first saw it in her blog. Simply amazing.
But that’s enough rambling out of me, because I also sent Julia some interview questions and she was kind enough to respond!
When did you learn to crochet, and why?
I taught myself to crochet about 20 years ago, I’m not sure what spurred my interest, but I bought some hooks and yarn and I found it enjoyable. Once I had kids, crafting went by the wayside for about a dozen years. But about 3 years ago I felt like I was in a huge rut in my life and really needed to do something creative. I was inspired by a crocheter friend to pick up a hook again, and I’m so happy I did! Crochet has been the perfect thing to fill my creative void. It relaxes me, I have fun making things, and I’ve made lots of friends online and in real life because of my crochet!
What project are you most proud of?
Shortly after I took up crochet again, I heard of a new charity project called Knit-a-Square. They were asking for donations of 8-inch knit and crocheted squares, to be sewn into blankets for AIDS orphans in South Africa. The project really touched me, and it was also perfect for me as a newbie crocheter, because I could practice lots of different stitch patterns while making squares, and I’m doing something good for someone else at the same time. I’ve sent about 200 squares to the project so far, and I’ve even seen a couple of the squares that I made in pictures on the Knit-a-Square website, which makes me feel wonderful. They need lots more people to make squares for them, the website is http://www.knit-a-square.com.
What do you enjoy crocheting the most?
Blanket squares! It’s certainly what I do the most of. I think what I mostly like is variety. I haven’t made anything larger than a baby blanket, because I like small quick projects the best. I really love trying all kinds of different stitches and patterns. I just made my very first necklace using wire and bead crochet, and I had so much fun doing it, I want to try alot more jewelry. And I like tunisian crochet and “knooking”, which is knitting with a crochet hook. I think I have crochet ADD sometimes.
Tell me all about your favorite yarn to work with!
I mostly use your average run-of-the-mill yarns, nothing very fancy or expensive. My favorite “workhorse” yarn is I Love This Yarn acrylic by Hobby Lobby. We just got our first Hobby Lobby store in my area a few months ago, and I’m in love! I also like Paton’s Silk Bamboo yarn, and Lion Brand Homespun is really soft, but not the most crochet-friendly yarn around.
As I mentioned once before, you can find Julie over at her blog Twisted Strands. You can also find her on Ravelry as dnadiva, lurking about in the groups for Oddballs and Crochet Liberation Front. Don’t forget to visit her blog tomorrow for a new crochet blog review!