|copyright Jenn Grossi
Sweet Pea and Who-Rae’s matching purses
back drop “Family Blanket”
During times of stress I often find myself picking up a crochet project, either a new one or one that is begging to be finished. Winter itself often seems to be a season of crochet.
Describing in words the therapy type of comfort I feel as the yard slips between my fingers with each loop is difficult. However, I am always surprised by how many people describe their yarn projects much the same way. I used to love to watch my mothers fingers fly as she turned out some of the most beautiful things I had seen.
It was not long after that I myself decided that I needed to play with yarn also. My mother kindly bought me book to learn off as she is left handed and I am right, she struggled with guiding me through our combined frustration. She was able to teach me to knit, and as much as I enjoyed knitting, crochet was the yarn art that I clung to. I learned to crochet at a fairly young age, and was crafting a crotchet twin sized quilt, with many tri-colored granny squares while I was in high school.
College brought a lifestyle change, a lot of stress, and a new appreciation of my comfort craft. I created afghans for several of my friends with their favorite colors, some I didn’t care to work with, but still jumped at the opportunity to gift something that I worked and enjoyed so very much.
Towards the end of my time in my beloved college town I started a large comforter, at this time I was desperately depressed and it seemed as though the comforter was growing at alarming speeds.
Meeting Conan drastically changed things around for me. Of course he loves it when I take out my yarn. He knows how much it means to me, and he enjoys watching me do something that he watched his mother do. Oddly enough he finds baskets of yarn in the living room warm and inviting.
Moving back home with Conan, allowed me some time to learn more from my mother who now understood the love I had acquired for our shared interest. Mom taught me a few new stitches, included me in our holiday gifting, and gave me an outlet to share my projects.
Years later, I finally cut the string on my larger comforter that I had started in college. Ironically it was about the same time I had finally cut the strings that sadly tied me to my depression in college. Cutting the strings on a big project seems to be both sad, and joyous at the same time. I keep this comforter, and although at times it reminds me of sadder seasons it also reminds me of perseverance, dedication, and determination to better yourself.
|Copyright Jenn Grossi
Mom’s own Pattern
About this time several of my friends and family members were having babies, and it just so happened that we were too. So my crochet seemed to be focused on baby blankets of all sizes, shapes, colors, thicknesses, and softness’s alike. I also eventually ventured out to create my own pattern for a baby hat and booties.
A couple more years passed and it was again time to start a big project. Conan made a special request and I started out to create a comforter big enough for our king sized bed. The particular stitched he desired lent to an extremely heavy blanket, so just recently I had to cut the string. Although it was cut short, it has become our family snuggle blanket. Spanning the length of the couch and wide enough to cover all of our tootsies, the five of us snuggle under to enjoy movie time together. Although our projects don’t always turn out the way we envision them to be, it is quite exciting to see how sometimes they work out for the better.
I have enjoyed trying new projects like shawls, and backs, purses, diaper bags, towel holders, flowers, and even pillows. With time and experience I am more proud of the projects that I turn out. Although I do on occasion have flops, I know that it is a good learning experience and that next time things will work better. Recently I noticed my favorite yard had started to build quite the box of odds and ends, so it was time to use it up. Who-Rae benefited from a brightly multi-colored rippled blanket. Although again it was not my favorite to create, I learned a bit about the stitch I was using, and Who-Rae sleeps with her price blanket-of-many-colors every night.
Presently I am crafting a bag for Who-Rae as she has decided that she is going to join Sweet Pea’s dance class. We purchases her first set of ballet shoes today, and now she is in need of a bag to carry her gear. Of course a pretty crochet back is exactly what she is in need of!
The thousands of loops that I have looped, and the hundreds of ends that I have tied, has gotten me to where I am now. Although I have a great deal to learn, I have progressed enough to be free to create things that come to mind and free to enjoy my creations. I went through frustrating times with tension, of course knots, running short of yarn inches from the end of a project, purchasing yard that was good on the outside and awful on the inside, and creating projects than in the end I didn’t like enough to give to someone.
Our home has been the same way. We have had challenges, financial shortfalls, disagreements, decisions we were not proud of, and of course friends who left us of worse than we were before they joined our lives. The upside however, is that with the bad come adjustments, re-purposing, true friendships, beautiful days, and lessons learned you never knew that you needed.
Of course the most interesting thing, is when your children express a desire to learn how to play with yarn!