Crochet, knitting, embroidery, cross stitch what's your creative fix?

Home Forums DIYs Sewing and Needlework Crochet, knitting, embroidery, cross stitch what's your creative fix?

This topic contains 46 replies, has 21 voices, and was last updated by  Crow Bar 3 months, 1 week ago.

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  • #1093


    I crochet for the most part. My daughter is getting me into knitting, but I am not a fan. I know how to do embroidery (hate French knots) and cross stitch, but I haven’t done them in a very long time. I am currently working on a thread bag for grocery shopping to help in skipping the plastic bags. My daughter has already knitted about 6 of them. I also use looms for my yarn and beading. My eyes are not happy with the whole beading idea anymore so I have to buy some reading glasses to finish up a bracelet my husband asked me to make him eons ago. His birthday is in one month, that is my deadline!

  • #1100

    Wolphene Howlett

    Hi CrazyMe! I’m in pretty much the same boat as you, having the stuff for these multiple crafts but not using them lately. I gave up on trying to hang on to those loops of yarn spring-loaded on my knitting needles; I’ll probably have to break down and buy one of those sets of needles that are connected by a long strand at the back end of the needles. Crocheting is easier, at least to me. I stopped with my beadwork until I can buy either a new magnifier lamp or the tiny bolt assembly that broke on mine. My reading glasses don’t like to stay on my nose when I’m looking down constantly with the stitching or beadwork, thus, the magnifying lamp. Hope you finish your bracelet project with a couple of days to spare!

  • #1102


    You know I didn’t even think about magnifying lamps! That would take care of both my horrible house lighting and my old age blindness ๐Ÿ™‚ The lighting in this house is so bad I have to go outside to see the actual pattern for blankets I am making.

    HA I just looked online and a place literally across the street from me has two for under $40, one that clamps on the desk and one for the table! If it works it will be so worth the money! Will find out Monday ๐Ÿ™‚

  • #1231

    Wolphene Howlett

    I am so glad you found something useful so close to home! I have Season Affected Disorder, meaning I get really depressed when the grey, dreary days of winter come. My doctor suggested that I kept bright lights on daily to relieve it. Ha! I asked him if he was going to foot the larger electric bill for me? My solution was to find the brightest, whitest paint and painted the walls and ceiling. Then I found some light bulbs that give off full-spectrum lighting, GE Reveal bulbs, for mostly areas where I’m working or reading. They help a lot with seeing the true colors of my projects. LED lights are used for other areas and those are on dimmer switches, so I can control the power usage better. Some mirrors in strategic spots and shiny metal foil in other spots helps where both can increase the light reflecting. Works great for me, I can see better when I’m working or reading and (bonus!) the houseplants seem to love it, too. I dunno… maybe my plants have the same SAD disorder that I have?!

    • #1303


      It worked!!! I can see! I can really, really see ๐Ÿ™‚ Thank you again Wolphene for mentioning the magnifying light. I bought a desk light from Harbor Freight Tools for $25.

    • #2239

      Wolphene, in our house we call it Seasonal Defective Disorder! My sweet DIL bought me a Happy Light for Christmas years ago. It does help. Trying to get out on sunny days helps too if’n I don’t freeze my butt off. God I hate winter…..

  • #1255


    ๐Ÿ™‚ Wolphene I would love to be able to get some serious lighting in this house I am sure it would help a lot. Our living room was built to be lit by lamp only, or from the windows. Since our living room’s main windows’ face the street, they are covered for privacy issues. That cuts most usable light and they are a pain to get to since there is so much stuff in here. I am using a worthless lamp and a 2 ft strip light right now. My bedroom is blackout central since my husband works 3rd shift and my kitchen is too cramped to cook in most of the time so no crafting there. I will look into those lights, we usually buy the Family Dollar specials.

  • #1313


    Crochet is my main craft skill. I love making afghans. I can knit but don’t prefer it. I also love to needle felt, embroider and do tri-loom weaving. I do all sorts of little things here and there like working with clay, quilting, sewing and the like when the urge strikes. One craft leads to the other!

  • #1318


    I have never head of tri-looms before, looks interesting. I have used long looms and circular ones but never a triangle. Thinking one day of buying a heddle loom and learning to weave and spin our own yarn. First I need to get more room to put my stuff.

  • #1319


    Lately, it has been crochet. I have to keep my hands busy when I have downtime (watching Netflix with the family). Otherwise, I’m on the computer working and have no idea at all what has happened on whatever we’re supposed to be watching together. In the past it was cross stitch and beading. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • #1357


    I need to ditch the electronics for a few days and finish up and few things,and start a few more. I am thinking about doing something with crossstitch after the new year.

  • #1394


    crazy me-I really enjoy the tri looms-would love to get one of the massive 7 ft ones but that is a way off as they are a wee bit pricey!
    I used to have FL Cracker wooly sheep and I sheered and carded and combed and spun then crocheted using the wool yarn and it was one of the coolest, most satisfying processes. I highly recommend sheep. We have goats now but I am seriously considering doing the wool sheep again. Awesome critters!

    Daisy I am the same way with having to keep my hands busy. Crochet is safer than needle felting though, haha! I don’t recommend needle felting while watching tv, those needles are unforgiving and it is easy to stab yourself ๐Ÿ™‚

  • #1412


    Iโ€™m a quilter and a poor knitter. I have dabbled in cross stitch too. I would like to make time for soap making and although I have the supplies I have not set aside the time to do it.

  • #1417


    I spend a lot of time patching up the kids’ hand-me-downs.

    I’m hoping to make cross-stitch ornaments as gifts for Christmas. I enjoy cross-stitch I just don’t get around to it all that often.

  • #1464

    Valerie Stonecypher

    Crochet fanatic here. As a child misbehaving while being babysat by Grandma, I totally took to the endless chain of colored yarn she made me do as a punishment and have since (decades down the line) probably crocheted the equivalent of a chain around the world several times. ๐Ÿ™‚

    I’ve completed hundreds of hats, dozens and dozens of afghans, uncounted doilies, placemats, rugs, etc. With the wealth of free patterns on the Internet, I’ve always got something going that’s new and stimulating. I’m currently on a pair of slipper boots and determined to finish them, as I am allergic to crocheting anything I have to do two of, heh.

    Probably the oddest pattern I did, at the request of a friend:

    And a tip for those of you wondering how to feed your yarn Jones without going broke: ask everybody you know if they have yarn stashes and/or afghans they want to get rid of. Just unravel the afghans for usable yarn.

    Prepping-wise, I feel good knowing I can crochet footwear, gloves, hats, scarves, and blankets if needed.

  • #1539

    Jade Jasmine

    I love to crochet and knit but I only got into knitting because I went on a crusade for the seamless sock. I quilt a bit, too. I do embroider and cross stitch as well. I’ve crochet several grocery bags and keep them in a cold bag in the car. I don’t really do much thread and yarn work any time of the year but the winter. I’m too busy outside.

  • #1648


    Valerie-Yes! My great grandmother used to babysit me when I was real little and she would keep me busy by handing me a hook and yarn and that is how I got started as well. I got real good at eyeballing something and copying it without a pattern. Yay for old grandmas with little patience haha!

  • #1672

    Valerie Stonecypher

    Ha, Aeronwy, at least we learned something from our bad behavior! (Let’s see — if I really make Grandma mad, maybe she’ll teach me to drive…)

    Could you please elaborate on how you eyeball a pattern and copy it? I am so stoked about that! I have created many patterns on my own but it was mainly hit or miss, not what you’re describing. I’d love to know more.

  • #1713

    Wolphene Howlett

    Crazy Me said:
    Wolphene I would love to be able to get some serious lighting in this house I am sure it would help a lot. Our living room was built to be lit by lamp only, or from the windows. Since our living roomโ€™s main windowsโ€™ face the street, they are covered for privacy issues. That cuts most usable light and they are a pain to get to since there is so much stuff in here. I am using a worthless lamp and a 2 ft strip light right now. My bedroom is blackout central since my husband works 3rd shift and my kitchen is too cramped to cook in most of the time so no crafting there. I will look into those lights, we usually buy the Family Dollar specials.

    Hi Crazy Me, just a thought… For improved lighting,it might help to put up a second curtain rod between your present street-side curtains and the window. Then add some lace fabric to keep closed so the light can come in without the pedestrians or traffic being able to see inside your home. Pressure poles can work well with the lighter fabrics, too. You can put the pressure poles at any convenient heighth and even have a gap between the rod and the top of the window so you can get direct light without anyone being tall enough to look in. Most pressure poles can be twisted to shorten or lengthen them, just measure your window width to be able to find a rod length close to your window width. I really hope this helps and if I get too wordy, just tell me that you’ll take it from here! *smiles*

  • #1736


    Never too wordy Wolphine ๐Ÿ™‚ I like the idea of the extra layer. It won’t work on these windows but I can use that idea in a few other places.

  • #1757


    Valerie-I guess I am a visual learner, as there are just a finite amount of stitch styles I just see what basic stitch is being used and try to copy it that way. I usually have to take stuff apart a time or two but I figure it out eventually. I think it also comes from that fact that my family wouldn’t buy me a lot of hooks or yarn (I took apart a lot of old stuff to reuse and the bulk of my yarn I used for a while was after my great grandmother died I was given her hefty yarn stash) and never pattern books so I had to get truly ‘crafty’ ๐Ÿ™‚ I wish I could explain it better!

  • #1765

    Valerie Stonecypher

    You are creative and gifted to think outside the box that way. I think I will try your method on some mandala pictures I found online. If I enlarge them enough, I should be able to figure out each round of stitches and make a reasonable count to try for a copy. Thanks for answering!

  • #2147


    I love that idea Wolphene. I have been wanting to try it for a while.

  • #2240

    Oh, and I like crochet and cross-stictch. Right now I am working on crocheted cat toys. Last year I gave my Daughter crocheted chicken hoods and scarves for a joke. My Granddaughters dressed the chickens and then posted on FB. One hen in particular likes to dress up.

  • #2251

    Indigo Rhyme

    My current craft love is crocheting. I like doing blankets more than anything else, so Project Linus is getting the results of a lot of my relaxation time. There’s a women’s shelter near me that’s going to get some love at holiday time, too.

    I do know how to quilt, but my sister is a nationally-ranked quilter, so I never felt like my work could compare with hers. She has no clue about crochet, though, so we’re even.

  • #2260


    I am finally in the final stages of my thread bag, would help if I had more than 10 minutes here and there but it’s happening. I’m doing something not thready when this is done! I got a tote bag that I really love that is disintegrating and I’m thinking about replicating it in yarn. Maybe make a bag for my bag, just use the old bag as the liner for the new bag.

  • #2266


    I’m a knitter, although I’ve been less than productive in the last few years. I have taught myself to use a drop spindle, which is fun, and I have a spinning wheel that I haven’t had the time to learn. Mom has two spinning wheels and a floor loom that she’s giving me; at 90, she doesn’t do much in the way of crafts any more. My biggest problem is time. With work (teaching) and grad school for the second time, it feels like my life is spent only in teaching and learning for other people, not doing.

  • #2270


    I want to learn to use a drop spindle and spinning, but no room and no spare money. I totally understand the time but congratulations of school part 2. I have debated on going back but I wouldn’t be able to give my full attention to it, or even a fraction. I have online language courses I have bought and have yet to get into.

  • #2293

    Lavender Field

    I was raised by three wonderful women, my mother and her mother and sister. They all did needle arts of of some kind. My grandmother was the most productive being an expert in sewing, knitting, crochet, needlepoint, quilting and doll making. She taught me many of those skills. I started making my own clothes at thirteen. I made my first doll at 18. I have tried almost everything that has to do with needle and thread. Now days I concentrate on soft sculpture dolls and bead work.
    I sometimes like to say I have a pedigree. I’m a fourth generation seamstress, a third generation doll maker, and third generation jewelry maker.

  • #2327


    Sounds like you are very lucky and blessed Lavender.

    My grandmother taught me to chain stitch, we were opposite hands and she really didn’t have the patience for teaching me beyond that, but it was enough to start. I’m pretty sure she started me on cross stitch. My best friends mother taught me a few more crochet stitches and from there I have been self taught. I got my basics of machine sewing in Home Ec, but I never really got too excited about it.

    I started with seed beads after getting scammed in a work-from-home job offer. I never got any money but I still got my earrings I made (and they rejected). I have kept one pair because 1) they are pretty and 2) they remind me not to fall for scams anymore.

  • #2479

    Alberta Mama

    I’m a knitter not a crocheter. I just like 2 needles better than 1. Right now I’m working on dish cloths. I love making them so I’m doing a couple small batches for Christmas gifts. I also do crossstitch, embroidery, needlepoint, and a small hand sewing projects as I’m not a big fan of the machine. I’m hoping to learn to knit socks soon

  • #2606

    Roz Proverbs

    I’m a crocheter most of the time. Also sew and do needlework, we just moved and when I was going through the anxiety of everything going through I crocheted 8 dish clothes for the new to me kitchen. By mid-year I had made 4 sets of Christmas presents of kitchen crocheted items and crocheted a Mommy/Baby Afghan, for the baby but sized so Mom can stay warm under it also.
    As soon as the remainder of house is set up I will have time to unpack my library and craft room, I have 50 boxes of books to unpack and lost track of my craft totes. I’m excited because this will be the first time in my life I have my own room to work in.

  • #2907

    Red Carnation

    I like to cross-stitch and have not done it in ages. It’s time to find the supplies again!

  • #3005


    I found a ton of stuff at the thrift store for cross stitch, which ended up costing me a lot more money when my daughter found out she liked cross stitch a lot.

  • #3031

    Valerie Stonecypher

    I can’t resist sharing with all you crocheters some reasons why you never have to feel ashamed of a project that doesn’t work out right:

    men's crochet pants

  • #3033


    nnnnoooooooo just no! I get a good laugh at the full suits, my husband just gives me that don’t you dare think about it look ๐Ÿ™‚

  • #3037


    Hahahahahahaha…I want to make that and proudly present it to my kids and guilt them into wearing it.

  • #3039

    Valerie Stonecypher

    Daisy, you will really blow me away if you get one of their BOYFRIENDS to wear it. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • #3044

    Osito Arelano

    It started with sewing. Then came knitting. Then I forced myself to learn crochet because I was terrible at it and refused to let it win. Then I tried shuttle tatting (which was an utter failure the first time), so I moved to needle tatting. Once I got that down I went back to shuttle tatting and it’s much easier now. Now I am learning shuttle tatting with beads and super tiny thread.

    bonus points on shuttle tatting, it’s not too far from learning to make fishing nets.

    Next on the list is learning needle lace. I’ve tried it before, and failed, but I will try again.

  • #3076


    I have watched needle lace being made online, so amazing. My daughter is thinking about tatting, she’d probably be great at it. Not sure I have the patience or the time since my crafting moments come in 10 minute spurts.

    I remember watching my dad make crab nets as a kid, shuttle tatting I could probably do.

  • #3874

    Ellen Jay

    I grew up crocheting, knitting and cross-stitch/needlepoint/embroidery as well as sewing crafts and clothes – it’s just what we did growing up and I couldn’t afford a lot of clothing. Then, cheap clothes arrived in the US, and it was easier for me to buy than make :(. I still crochet, but my hands start to hurt and I need to take more breaks. I always say ‘when I retire’ and hope that my eyes and body make it that far! Too many years in front of a computer..

  • #3922


    I feel your pain Ellen Jay, my hands are going to be upset with me this week.ย  It will be worth it in the end though ๐Ÿ™‚

  • #7464


    I do most needlework but not cross stitch or tatting.ย  I prefer crochet to knitting.ย  My sister makes me knitted socks and I do her mending since we live nearby.ย  I used to have a husky that shed like crazy so I saved a lot of hair and a friend was going to spin it for me then she moved and it never got done,

  • #8681

    Crochet 30 yrs ago, now knitting and enjoying it. Tried doing my own spinning, but just havent got the knack. Can play musical instruments and have good hand eye coordination, am bidextrous, but no go with spinning. Have to hire someone to do it for me. I like the slippery feel of mohair, but practice a pattern with cheap acryllic yarn first.

  • #19801

    Susan Trujillo

    Knitting is so valuable for socks, gloves, hats , scarves and sweaters. Wool is very forgiving and perfect for cold seasons. All are very fun to do.

  • #19810

    Crow Bar

    That is a skill I need to pick up.

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