Wychbury Ave’s Happy Hookers: learning how to hook

What better way to build community and start a revolution at the same time than with tea and yarn? Our grandmothers had it right from the start and we would do well to get back to their way of thinking, so last October I started up a beginner’s crocheting workshop. The trend of making, baking and creating to sustain ourselves is becoming more and more popular, and learning how to create your own clothing and accessories is a great place to start.

I taught myself how to crochet a few years back using the Stitch’ ‘N’ Bitch Crochet: The Happy Hooker book. It’s written very clearly with detailed instructions and pictures to help you get knotty in no time! A great book, but it would have been even better if I had  had someone to help me through the ins and outs of crocheting. Where do I put the hook? How many times do I yarn over? In which direction? And what does hdc2tog actually mean? I wanted to encourage my friends to become self-sufficient and to pick up a hobby that is both practical and fulfilling.

This first crochet workshop began in October with four weeks to learn the
basics of crocheting and to complete a project. Working out of my small craft room, we had a group of 7 women who were either brand new to crocheting or who had learned in the past but had since forgotten. A great learning opportunity for all of us.

Everyone came in, got cozy and grabbed a mug of tea. A few ch, sc, & hdc
later and we were on our way to…a swatch! A crooked, uneven swatch of skipped stitches and poorly placed hooks. They were beautiful.

Nearly ready to begin a project, the ladies picked from a selection of patterns that I provided. Here are some easy crochet patterns that are great for beginners.

11150987_985383918152177_3951112203024889683_nThe first crochet Washcloth of the 3 makes a nice unique pattern. These are great as facecloths and are almost too nice to use for dishes.

The Owl Toque Pattern from Repeat Crafter Me makes a good basic toque. It can be made with or without the animal embellishments and you can choose to include or leave off the earflaps.

Mollie in progress.jpg

The Mollie Infinity Scarf from Ravelry makes a beautiful cozy crocheted scarf with all single crochet stitches. It can take some time, but it’s a great project for mastering basic crochet and it yields an impressive result.Mollie scarf.jpgFrom these patterns, the ladies chose to make toques and scarves. Lesson #1 when starting your first project? Choose a light coloured yarn. No black, no brown, no forest green. Figuring out where to put your hook can be challenging enough, don’t make it harder on yourself. After a little stumbling, everyone had a solid start on their masterpieces, and by our last session some were even working on their third project!

Polar Bear Hat.jpg

By the end of this first beginner’s crocheting workshop, we had built a lovely little community of happy hookers. Grannies everywhere would be proud, and with hooks in hand, our generation is giving crochet a fresh start.

If you live in or around Victoria, BC, you too can take part in a Happy Hookers workshop. Check out my Wychbury Ave Facebook page for more information on the next beginner crocheting workshop and the first intermediate crocheting workshop that both begin in January 2016.




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