Friday, 3 November 2017

A little catch-up is in order!

Oh, yes, indeed...a little catch -up is in order, especially seeing as I completely missed an October Blog Opportunity! Somehow, in all the excitement of working The Amanzi Block into a Throw sized piece, I lost a month! Of course, my eldest son, Nick, arrived home for a three-month break from working in THE BIG APPLE. Funny how things work. I never imagined one of my children living and working abroad ( although it's common here in South Africa for Nestlings to fly very far from the nest ) and I always wanted to visit New York City! And now, vicariously, and a generation later I am, through Nick! Life is full of surprises.

Finally, The Amanzi Throw is completed. Well timed I think, just on the cusp of Spring and Summer. I can truly say that I crocheted in a house, I crocheted on a step, I crocheted in a yard and crocheted in a car, I crocheted here, and crocheted there and pretty much crocheted everywhere! And many of you crocheted along with me. Part Five aka The Final Rounds was released two Fridays ago and so, slowly but surely. completed Amanzi Throws are beginning to appear. As I have come to expect, the colourways are mind-blowingly beautiful!

credit: Emma Sharpe

      credit: Cindy van der Schee

credit: Sandra Salas

credit: Marianne Jacoby

I struggled through the final parts with dreadful hayfever and if you only knew the myriad stops and starts, just so I could sneeze, cough or blow my nose, in-between crocheting, photo-taking and videoing... it's actually miraculous I managed to finish ahead of schedule! But I am nothing if not determined. My father always complained that I was as stubborn as a Donkey. I take it as a compliment now. Tenacious is my middle name!

Many of you lovelies have sent me private messages bemoaning your post-Amanzi blues. Yes, it is a thing with all creative work that we throw ourselves into, heart and soul. Crochet is an active meditation, keeping us engaged in the present ( mind * fullness )  especially if the pattern requires our full attention. Thus, it takes us elsewhere, away from the troubles and challenges of our usual routines or daily expectations and responsibilities. Handwork so easily serves us, rewards us, and transforms us too! It's no wonder we feel a little anchorless until our hands are once again hooked back to shore by beautiful yarn and just the right pattern.

With this in mind, OF COURSE I am already working on a new pattern!! Although many designs are in a large wicker basket on top of my cupboard all impatiently awaiting their final fruition. All I need now is another 24 hours in my day and two more pairs of arms!  I'm one of the few people I know who does not crochet at night. My day begins at 4am and by 8:30pm I am already in crochetdreamland. I'm hoping to release this newbie mid-November.

This October, in fact, was my 1- full- year- of- crochet- patterns anniversary! I released my first free pattern in October 2016, and then went on the design another 13 free patterns before releasing 2 paid patterns. Looking back it's a pretty full schedule of crochet-work! Nevermind all the designs that never made it to Ravelry! And crikey, what a year it's been! I was approached by Furls and Interweave to submit designs and  *famous crochet designers * have left me encouraging and congratulatory messages! *faints* My patterns have shot to #1 on Ravelry and have been featured on a slew of websites! Whooohoooo! I can't thank those Admins enough for the fantastic exposure this has afforded me. You need to know that I. AM. NOT. USED. TO. THIS. SORT. OF ATTENTION!! Quite frankly I'm thrilled, but from under the duvet cover...if you understand my meaning?

And then most importantly, besides learning a heck of a lot of new stitches/techniques...through this magical year, there are the many new friends I have had the pleasure of meeting, not in the flesh but over our crochet hooks and continents apart! This has become my joy, moreso even than pattern creating. Crochet really does transcend so many usual barriers we encounter in ordinary life that keeps us inevitably very disconnected from our fellow Earthlings. Isn't Crochet marvellous?

Take care, fellow Yarnies! Keep those hooks warm and that lovely yarn close! See you in Crochetland!



  1. Beautiful work Jen. I am enjoying making Amanzi even with a MILLION puffs lol and look forward to your new creations. keeping my hook warm !!
    xx denise

  2. You're pattern is beautiful Jen and you deserve all the attention - even if you're not used to it! Keep up the good work!! We'd love to see you over on Instagram - you'd be a real hit there!! I can see a book in your future...with a launch in the Big Apple,maybe? ?!!
    Best wishes,
    Tina xx

  3. Oh Jen, it has been a real treat to have gotten to know your work this last year, but even more to get to know you!

    My friend from the other side of this globe, this has been a very, very special year. Let's hope the next one will be just as filled with crochet (and other beautiful) adventures!


    1. Awww, likewise, dear Cindy! Your help has been invaluable, but your friendship moreso. Here's to many more years connecting in Crochetland. :D xxx

  4. I really appreciate your professional approach.These are pieces of very useful information that will be of great use for me in future.


  5. Is there a way i can get the yarn & colors that EmmaSharpe used? They are all so beautiful, just pink is my favorite color. You all do beautiful work!