Hyponotising crochet hand movements

Speeding up my crochet technique

I’ve been crocheting for about 12 years now. Until recently, I had a really ham – fisted technique. I would hold the hook in my fist like a toothbrush, which led to a split second delay between stitches as I dragged the wool back over the hook.

It took about a week to implement the change, and hold the crochet hook pencil-style from now on. I was a lot slower during Learning Week™, as the new style was a motion I needed to consciously adopt. Starting out, I would automatically move the hook back into the original position all the time. It would take me awhile to notice, then need to switch back to the new style I was trying to learn….over and over! 

After a few days it became second nature. And I have noticeably sped up. To celebrate, I made a gif of how fast I have become!

It has taken years to admit that this style was slowing me down. I taught myself to crochet so I used the hand placement that felt natural, but that decision turned out to be counter-productive in the long run.

Because of the amount of crochet stitches I do making clothes, every quarter-second adds up! Once I had taken a more objective look at my hand placement and style, and roughly calculated how much extra time each piece takes, it was easier to admit I had been wrong, and want to change.

Thanks for reading! Appreciate it. Xx

Related;

Check out the Etsy shop for mushroom lighter holders, or contact me directly for commissioned pieces in custom colours!

I also chainmail jewellery occasionally!

Support independent fashion and stand in solidarity with sustainable clothes-making here.

Posted in Crafternoons, Crochet & Knitting, Experiments, How-to, Research, Textiles, Works in progress | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Dancewear on Depop

Crop tops, shag coats, jewellery

I’ve been on Depop with my wearable art and vintage pieces for awhile now. 5 stars so far, baby! I am more than happy to ship internationally if you need. I can also bundle things together in the same parcel to save on postage, please ask and I will see what I can do.

For a bit of background: in the past I have worked in the parcel delivery and logistics industry so every parcel I send comes with a tracking code that I share with the buyer. If you are a customer, I will try to help you locate your parcel if it is floating around a depo somewhere on the planet. I genuinely care about what I have made as well as the recipient, I want us to both be happy and have a good outcome. I always work with customers to ensure that the receiver gets what they ordered in the end.

On Depop you’ll find one-of-a-kind, vintage jewellery and unique pieces of wearable wool art. Everything I crochet and every jacket I shag is a once-off original piece that shall never be repeated. When you buy something from me, there is a good chance that you will have the only one of its kind on earth.

My work is functional, wearable art. A painting on a wall can only be shown to as many people as you can fit in your house. My crochet ‘paintings’ can be shown to everyone you meet and works with your body to elevate you to the status of a fierce, unapologetic and living work of art.

All the materials I use are responsibly sourced, made with sustainable and slow fashion practices in mind. I aim for total transparency in my making processes, so if you have any questions about my artistic practices please contact me for any information you need.

The shopfront is here. I am contactable through Depop, Instagram or email, whichever you prefer.

Contact me directly here if you have any further questions, requests for bespoke colours or custom crochet work!

Related;

I also have an Etsy shopfront if you would prefer to order through Etsy.

If you want to show solidarity with the slow fashion movement, here’s a small way to help support sustainable arts practices and spread the message of ethical fashion every day! You can kick me a few dollars for the time spent developing unique crochet patterns through PayPal, every cent helps an independent artist focus and lean into their practice more totally.

Posted in Crochet & Knitting, Festival Wear, Textiles | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Beautiful, professional photos of my crop tops and jewellery 💖

I got some of my works photographed!

I’ve recently travelled to Australia with some of my works and they have been photographed in a beautiful studio, modelled by a talented lady who knows what they are doing!

That bit of extra effort (a nice studio, editing) really shows off the stitchwork! I am impressed by how they have turned out. My biggest takeaway from this is that I should spend more time taking photos. But then, that takes away from the time I can spend making things? There’s only so many hours in the day, and I still need some of them for sleeping.

I wonder if the work-life-balance thoughts will be something that I ever achieve a state of equilibrium on.

Credits:

DINO is a photographer based in Mackay, Queensland. Contact them here.

Lauren is the model, you can reach them directly here.

You can find more of my work available for purchase here and here.

Croptops

Related:

More crochet for festivals, raves, parties, that PLUR lifestyle!

Contact me through this link if you have something a little more custom or bespoke in mind…

I have developed all the above patterns using crochet skills I have been teaching myself from books such as The Reader’s Digest Complete Guide to Needlework. Teaching yourself a skill and being able to use in practically takes a lot of resources. Can you help support the creation of beautiful and functional things?

Posted in Collaboration, Crochet & Knitting, Festival Wear, Photography, Queensland, Textiles, Travelling | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

A tiny hot pink shag coat

Microfashion is macrocuteness!

After creating the base, it’s time to add the shag in all the pinks! This part isn’t particularly hard, but a bit of a grind. It is what it is, something that needs to be worked on until it is done.

When I remember to do so, I find that taking photos really breaks up the monotony. I do need to remember to stretch more, and sit up straighter, otherwise I end up with a very sore neck from being hunched over so long…

Like the weaving in step, I am leaving all the trimming until the end. It is been filed under ‘finishing touches’.

Everyone in the house was disappointed to learn that I wasn’t leaving the fringing at this point as a castanet-dancer style of dress or coat. It was pretty cute but I was determined to see this though to the end. The child will look like an extremely fluffy pink duckling and it will be hilarious and cute!

So here’s the jacket complete (just need to weave in the ends, give everything a trim and make tassel cords to tie it closed in the middle)

As usual, I added more shag into the shoulders as I find they can look a bit holey (or thin) from being the point that stretches the most, and the place that the most weight pulls on.

And now for the fashion show!

Last finishing touches added…aaaaaaand we are done!

Oooooooohhhh it is so fluffy! I used a smaller net stitch and it has made a much denser shag over the whole piece.

Related;

2019 has been a great year to get shagged hey!?

Other ways to utilise shag techniques to make versatile (and sturdy) functional rug art!

You can support the creation of new patterns and designs here, and thank you so much! Every penny counts and goes straight back into the studio, gives me more time to dedicate on putting more beauty into the world and helps to keep the lights on.

Posted in Crafternoons, Crochet & Knitting, Festival Wear, How-to, Re-use, Rugging, Textiles, Works in progress | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Up all night shagging

Wind the wool and cut the wool and knot the wool…

Finishing up an extremely dense coat for a special birthday, the big 3.0! Here’s a silent video of the technique in action…

All the wools used in this coat have been sustainably sourced and/or donated to me secondhand! Love me some socially and environmentally conscious fashion making.

While I have been endlessly knotting-and-repeating, I have also been stuffing around with my camera to break up the monotony of making the shag. This includes a couple of cheeky GIFs of the work, front and back!

Frontside:

Backside:

Thanks for reading! Just publishing a brief post today because I need to keep working, these jackets will not shag themselves! Pardon the puns, but I have to keep myself amused working alone long into the night…

Related;

So many shaggy coats created, so much colour, so much love!

Other festival-ly wearable art and found object crocheted jewellery.

Support the site and show some love for what I do here (only if you are able!)

Posted in Crafternoons, Crochet & Knitting, How-to, Rugging, Textiles, Works in progress | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Microfashion versions of festival favourites

Crocheted clothing, but small

I have been commissioned to make a shag jacket, for a three year old! I am excited to be able to make something so quickly because the wearer will be so small. Maximum one week turnaround!

I have started by laying out the base;

After attaching the shoulder pieces, I have ended up making a vest. I will work the net stitch for the sleeves directly into the armholes of this.

I have made the sleeves approximately half-length, expecting that they will end up three-quarter. There are two reasons for this;

  1. As I add the shag the weight of the wool will lengthen the base naturally so the sleeves will stretch out a bit.
  2. I am taking into account that the wearer will be turning three soon. They are still learning how to feed themselves, wash their hands etc. The shorter the sleeves, the less they can be dragged through soup, slobbered on by dogs or covered in cobwebs. It is hard to plan for whatever bizarre adventures a three-year-old may take this coat on, but hopefully I have anticipated some of them!

After completing the base using some of my leftover white-and-pastel ombre wool, the netting needs a little bit of reinforcement for the weight of the wool that will to be added. Bearing in mind that the shag will be made with many shades of pink, I have chosen some complimentary purple and magenta wool to crochet a hem around the sleeves, front, bottom and neckline…

Please excuse the messy edges! I won’t be weaving anything in until I have finished making the shag. I believe this saves more time doing them all in one big push at the end, as opposed to doing them one-at-a-time, having to look for my sewing needle throughout.

Now with the base complete, I can start cutting the lengths of wool to make the shag! Even though this coat is quite small I expect I will use at least a dozen balls of wool from the stash. That is no issue, I love going to op shops and hunting down new(ish) wool for the stash…

Related;

I have been shagging coats and making unique and eye-catching jackets for awhile now, you can check out the archives here to see what other sizes, colours and styles I have been making!

Many years ago, (before I started leaning into wearables) I used this technique to make hard-wearing fairy-ring themed rugs from recycled fabrics, instead of wool.

If you liked this how-to and what I make, you can show your support for independent creators, unique pieces of wearable art and sustainable slow fashion here.

Posted in Crochet & Knitting, Festival Wear, How-to, Textiles, Works in progress | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Illusive festival weekend

Summer season is wrapping up…

…but we still have one to go! Welcome to the Illusive festival gif dance! Thanks for bearing with me while I work through the extremely-busy-but-not-especially-crochet-creative summer festival season.

This shaggy vest was finished long ago, I made it for my nephew’s birthday! They are tall for their age but I expect they will need a few years to grow into this. It will start as something with a train and then as the kid lengthens, it will become some kind of wizards’ cloak, a long vest, finally a short vest, and will likely be nicked at some point by their fashion-forward little sister.

I expect they will both outgrow it before it falls apart, and in the event they both outgrow it, it’ll probably end up being framed, both because it is art and for the sweet baby memories. I will also leave room open in my heart for it to be worn into the ground by an army of nieces, nephews and cousins and then, at least a decade from now, a cat gives birth on it. We are not a fast fashion family.

It has been a wild ride through the last few months, but I won’t be taking time off. It is now winding up for the harvest season. Picking during the day, crocheting during the night! Yahooooooooooo.

I can still be contacted directly for custom crochet and bespoke wearables! I will get back to you fast as possible with timeframes and prices. Use the winter to jump the queue and get yourself and the squad set up with one of a kind, bizarre and bespoke woolly wonders!

Related;

You may have missed the Illusive festival this year around, but keep this link in handy for 2020…

More shaggy jackets than you can shake a stick at!

Check out the Depop shop for vintage treasures and wearable art.

I would also like to thank everyone for their solidarity and support over the last few months. Spiritual, physical and monetary, it has been wonderfully uplifting! If you believe in sustainable fashion made with love and accountability, you can further support the practice here.


Posted in Crafternoons, Crochet & Knitting, Festival Wear, Textiles, Works in progress | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment