Blog Book Tour, Tidying Up, New Projects

What a fun month Crochet Scarves has had on the blog book tour! I'll include the links to August's tour stops at the end of this post.

One review that brought tears to my eyes was from Kim Guzman, who is a designer, Tunisian crochet expert, teacher, blogger...and someone whose approach I really respect. Kim is always kind to crocheters who are making her projects (even when they ask her ridiculous questions that she shouldn't have to deal with). She explains things well and has always been super helpful in discussions about Tunisian terms. She has a few new books and classes of her own, so please check them out.

Here's a brief excerpt from her review:

This book shouldn’t have been called Crochet Scarves. It should have been called Learn Just About Any Technique in Crochet With Amazing Photography and Extreme Close Up Tutorials and Use Those Newly-Learned Techniques to Create A Beautiful Scarf Because a Scarf is A Perfect Way to Learn and Practice Them. You think that title is too long? Then, you haven’t seen the book.

What a wonderful endorsement from an industry luminary!

The winner for the most unusual blog book tour stop, though, has to be Kathryn Vercillo at Crochet Concupiscence. She crocheted scarves for a month and kept a diary of her experience! It is so interesting to read her insights about her yarn choices, pattern selections, and how she felt while she was making the scarves. And it is great to see her projects take shape.

A huge thank-you to all of the bloggers who participated.

With Crochet Scarves getting settled into yarn shops, bookstores, craft stores, and online sites, it was a good time to do a major office/studio cleanout. I try to do this regularly, but I still accumulate way too much stuff. Yesterday I got rid of two bags of papers to recycle, two stacks of books to donate to the next used book sale, and one wastebasket full of trash. I went through all of my desk drawers; reorganized magazines, leaflets, booklets, and patterns on the bookshelves; ripped out a couple of UFOs that were never going to be FOs; wove in ends and steam-blocked almost-finished items; and got some pictures and a print ready for framing.

(Still to be done: a complete tour through my 12 file drawers, with the goal of emptying at least 4 drawers so a cabinet can move out of here. Lest you think I am really on top of this, let me confess that I have had this goal for several years. If I ever really do it, I will reward myself with a nice upholstered chair perfect to crochet in. Meanwhile, I console myself knowing that the longer it takes me, the longer I don't have to spend money on new seating.)

I've designed another shawl for Lakeside Cliffs.

This one uses the yarns in the Stimulus Package from Dyelot Yarn, colorway "Beverly." The yarns range from smooth to mohair to curlicue.

My first idea for the shawl didn't work out, so I had to do a lot of careful ripping out before I could try this version. It's a variation on a chevron pattern, and I think the long stitches in the mohair and curly yarn came out very cool-looking. Next I'll write up the pattern and send the whole package to MyCrochetKits so they have a sample as well as the pattern.

The opportunity for a photo session, combined with the studio tidying, encouraged me to have some items photographed for my etsy shop. I've been slow to populate the store, but I have a lot of lovelies that could use a good home! Now that I have pictures, I can increase my etsy presence and let people know that I'm selling my samples. I hope to finish that this week.



Also on my to-do list: learn to use iContact so I can send my first newsletter to those who have subscribed (thanks to all five of you!) and encourage new subscribers; submit design proposals to five places; follow up with my local JoAnn Fabric to see about a book-signing and maybe teaching a class; do close-up photography of crocheted items; solidify my schedule for September and October.

I submitted a teaching proposal to TNNA for the February show in Long Beach. Several years ago I taught a class (the same class twice at the same show). All of the ratings I received were "10," the highest grade possible. One woman even wrote that it was the best class she had taken in all her years attending TNNA. So it makes perfect sense that when I submitted future teaching proposals, every single one of them has been turned down! I know, the decision isn't based solely on whether the instructor does a good job: popularity of the craft, number of people who would be interested in attending, and other factors count, too. Trying to find something that appeals to the decision-makers has obviously eluded me until now. I actually gave up attending the designer/teacher meetings at TNNA because this question, "What kind of classes are you looking for?" came up again and again and there was never a satisfactory answer--my time is better spent on the show floor or comparing notes with other designers. Anyway, we'll see if I have better luck this time.


I expect to be blogging more frequently now that I'm in "back to school" mode!





Here are the lists of blog book tour stops in August:

Robyn Chachula's blog:

Mary Olivier's blog--in France!

Eurona Tilley's blog:

Donna Hulka's blog at Crochetville:

Kim Guzman's blog:

Dora Ohrenstein's blog:

Kathryn Vercillo's blog: