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Creativity and Community (And Crochet??)

One of the great things about living in the Ann Arbor area is all the creativity that is focused here. I love that I know and get to spend time with so many creative people, including some who make their living from sewing/quilting/designing.   I’m a lucky duck and I get to spend time with Jenna and Rae and Karen and Emily and Debbie and Lynn and Brenda.

One of the downsides to living in Ann Arbor is that it is a college town, so people move in for a few years (to teach, to earn a masters degree, to work a PostDoc) and then they move out.  Recently, my dear friend Cat finished her PhD and moved away to a research job in another state.


On the same day that Cat’s absence really struck me, I was ogling the little cardigans that my friend Emily had made for her daughters.  These are crocheted using The Classic Cardigan pattern from HollandDesigns.

Matching sweaters at the farmers market this morning. Yes, SWEATERS in August. #whatthewhat #annarborfarmersmarket #visitannarbor #crochet

Emily rarely updates her blog, but its worth following for those times when she does (RAINBOW KITTY PARTIES).  Her Instagram (emmmylizzzy) is used more often and is a constant stream of adorableness.

Looking at these adorable sweaters, it struck me:  Cat and I should take a Craftsy crochet class together. And I can learn to crochet, and then I can try to make one of those little sweaters!  And then hopefully figure out how to make it a big sweater (Emily thinks we can figure this out).

I'm learning to crochet!

Cat and I have taken advantage of the big sale Craftsy has going, and we’ve signed up for this introductory crochet class:  Crochet Lab with Vickie Howell  It was just $9.99 with the sale!!

Prices are good through this Saturday 9/21/2013.


I’ve also checked everything in my Craftsy wishlist to see *how* on sale it is and have bought one more class for when I finish the photography and crochet classes I’m currently taking.

One of the things I love about Craftsy is that you don’t have to take the class on a particular schedule and you will always have access to the classes you’ve bought, so you can take advantage of sales without having to immediately commit a lot of time to a class.

This is the other class I purchased:  Free Motion Quilting a Sampler with Leah Day.

Online Quilting Class

Quilting is my “growth area” that I’m focusing on right now. I’ve been using Leah’s personal website to learn, but I’m getting to the point where fundamentals are in place and a sustained look would be useful. I love Leah’s way of teaching. She’s very clear and very good about explaining exactly what she’s done with her workspace and her machine and her hands in order to set herself up for quilting success.  I daresay I’ve gotten quilt proficient at quilting a square spiral (see below)…but that’s not always going to be the best design for my quilts.

The Flyer Quilt - quilting in progress

I do think it’s working very nicely on The Flyer Quilt.  I put it on point to go with the directionality of the patchwork.

I was considering taking a free-motion quilting class at my local shop, but it is scheduled for the week before my wedding (early November) and somehow I think I might not be so clear-headed and sponge-brained that week!  I think I’ll probably take an in-person class sometime in 2014, but for right now, I’m going to learn from the Internet (I love the Internet!)

Quick questions about the Internet, do you have a favorite way to video chat?  I need to figure out how Cat and I will crochet together.  Strangely, I’ve not been one to video chat until now, so I’m not sure if Skype is the cheapest and most-straightforward way to go or if I need to look into other options?

*Craftsy links are affiliate links.  I’m required by law to let you know this, but I’m also happy to let you know because there’s no shame in getting a cut of the action while telling people about products you believe in!

This Post Has 14 Comments

  1. Yay Craftsy!

    I happily use Skype, the free version. Amanda Jean and I used it throughout the book process and still do. Also chat with my family this way. Amanda and I will do exactly as you were saying – chat and create at the same time.

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