Crafts are my passion, Cats are my obsession

My crafting adventures, my cats, my dogs, my opinons - I never did keep a diary as a child, but I'm doing it now!

Thursday, March 01, 2007

What I found and pictures to share

Ok, first, the baby blanket that I've been working on:

The colour on the border close up picture is a little closer to accurate... I forgot to check the camera settings, and didn't notice until I had uploaded that it wasn't on the right one...

I also took pictures this morning of UNBLOCKED snowflakes - I've mentioned before, that the snowflakes are an ongoing crochet along for this year. The group is called, "Snowflakes 88". This year, for the first 11 months of the year, the list mom there posts 8 patterns each month. That way, by Christmas of 2007, if we've been keeping up, we should have 88 snowflakes for our tree. I like the idea - been meaning to make snowflakes for years now. I don't have many patterns of my own for them. So, I've been having fun - to think of doing 88 snowflakes sounds overwhelming, but when you only have to do 8 a month (have to being relative, considering there aren't any watch dogs making sure you do them) and you can think of that as two per week, and snowflakes are usually small and simple, and most often can be completed in an hour or less... well, it makes the whole thing so manageable, that it is fun.

I haven't blocked the snowflakes yet - now that I've made it sound so simple, the truth is that because I was focussing on baby blanket and gifts, that I kind of put off the snowflakes until the last minute.... But, since I plan to stiffen several months' worth at the same time, I am not going to kick myself all over for not blocking this group yet:

Oh, and if anyone wants to join that group:

Ok, so... next topic. What I found....

It kind of snuck up on me - I should have seen the warning signs the first time - but it took until last week to realize and recognize it for what it was:

I found a member of the spinning police!!!!!

Ok, so - for those of you who aren't familiar with the legendary term of "_____ Police" - let me make an analogy here, using - potatoes. Yes, the vegetable.

First - there are different types of potatoes, from the lowly russet, to some fancy coloured potatoes, such as Yukon Gold, and blue potatoes (yes, they are - you peel them, they are purple inside, that turns blue when they cook) In my opinion, the russets taste disgusting - all starch. Regular red potatoes aren't much better, no flavour. Might as well eat cardboard. Yukon Gold have a nice flavour to them. I enjoy them. So - for the analogy part: A "potato snob" would be someone who will only eat Yukon Gold potatoes. They just don't think the others are good enough - they might eat reds, if they had to, when they went to someone else's house for dinner for example, but they'd never buy, cook, or eat them themselves. Some times, people who are "potato snobs" will also tell others that they aren't really eating potatoes if they eat the russets - the lowest of the low.... What does this mean? Ok, you may have heard the term, "Yarn snob". They are the ones who will only knit or crochet with high end or wool yarn. Some won't touch acrylic yarns with a ten foot pole. Others will use it for specific requests or purposes, but only if they have to. And, I've actually run into people online who told me that I wasn't really knitting, because I use Red Heart Acrylic yarn to knit with....

Now, back to the potatoes. There are plenty of ways to cook potatoes. You can boil them, you can fry them, you can bake them. You can mash them after you boil; you can deep fry, pan fry, hash brown cut them; you can bake them in their skins, out of their skins, seasoned, plain, or scalloped. Some people prefer their potatoes cooked one way over another. And that is fine. All the ways to cook potatoes are good - and the fact that some people don't like them cooked one way or the other, or dress them up a little different that someone else, well - that's all good. No one way is better than the other, or more right or wrong than any other. Except for one's own personal taste and preference. Me, I am not fond of boiled or mashed - but any of the other ways are fine with me :) I really like scalloped potatoes, I like baked, I love hashbrowns, I like fries.... Anyway - there are people in the world, who were taught how to make potatoes one way, one way only, and they have never bothered to learn any other way. That's fine... if they are happy. But, when they decide that their way is the only way, and that there way is the only right way, and that everyone else should only do it their way - and if you don't do it their way, that you aren't really cooking potatoes, and you should switch to their way - well, then they get tagged in my book as the "Potato Police", and I start to avoid them, delete their messages without reading them, and generally try to undermine them by encouraging others and supporting others who want to cook potatoes their own way.....

Knitting Police bug me the most.... maybe because I've been knitting for so long, and loving it....

The other ones that bug me, are the ones that decide if you are left handed, you need to learn to knit (or crochet) right handed because it will be easier to conform.... Those ones, I'd love to take and .... um, Ok, I'll be nice.... But I'd sure love to..... Which, by the way, is why I'd never ever ever recommend that stitch n bitch crochet book to anyone who was just learning - the knitting one was done so well, I can't believe the author would take that attitude - if you are left handed, learn to crochet right handed...

So, back to the Spinning Police.

I'm on a few spinning lists - learning different things on each. On one list, this one person - well, I admit, I'm still learning to spin. Slowly... need to devote more time, I know.... BUT - for the longest time, I was limited to books and the net. I mean, I met lots of people online who were willing to help me along, but I didn't know anyone in person, for the hands on stuff that you just can't learn from pictures... Like, the *feel* of the fibre.... think "yarn petting" - anyway - I finally made contact with someone - long story, and we met totally unrelated to craft, but I was talking about knitting, she said, she liked to knit, that was why she bought a farm to raise sheep, I knew what that all meant, and we became good friends - anyway, she became my "spinning mentor" and has herself over 30 years experience. I happened to mention on list something that this lady had told me about, and the "spinning police" person emailed me privately to tell me that what I had said was all wrong and wouldn't work. I took it then as a difference of opinion - no big deal. Well, recently, the same list, someone asked about newbie opinions on some stuff... Favourite fibre, etc. Well, in my answer, I mentioned being gifted of some fibre samples. I mentioned that when I first read stuff in books, it meant little, and really, some of it didn't matter that much for a beginner, but I could see how some would be important later. That I had a long way to go in learning.... Well, when I got the private email from the same person, telling me that I shouldn't use the fibre that I was "gifted", that people who give fibre away usually give away their garbage, that is unspinnable.... I was also told that when I had more knitting experience (over forty years isn't enough?) that I would know better what type of yarn I wanted.... That I needed to understand all the important things right away. And that spinning ability would come with practice. (I thought I'd said that....) Oh, and that it wasn't the fibre's fault that I couldn't spin some of it, it was mine... (that was in response to my mentioning that I had some fibre, that I hadn't been able to spin as well as I could the alpaca. I didn't go into detail of where I'd bought the fibre, or that I had only tried it on the wheel, I hadn't tried to spin it on the drop spindle... I also mentioned that one of my few fibre sources were unable to tell me the breed the roving came from. Oh, and for the record - I didn't know of any/many nearby fibre sources early in my spinning, so someone had generously gifted me some left over (not garbage, but leftover) roving that she'd done some kool aid dyeing on. That stuff spun like a dream!! I also had been gifted by the Yarnfairy (RIP) some sample bags of angora, quiviet,, there was a bunch of them...little ziplock baggies with a sampling of each type - not sure the weight, maybe an ounce of each? um, maybe not even an ounce? Not sure... will have to check one of these days... Anyway - these people who sent me the fibre, I know they wouldn't send garbage... first, they are my friends; second, they want to help and encourage me.)

So.... I finally realized- that this person, who emailed me off list, privately (so that others wouldn't see the comments for what they were?) to tell me that I wasnt' doing things right again, is a member of the "Spinning Police".

I believe I'll be using my delete key a lot more.....


  • At 10:22 AM, Blogger Crzy.Biker.Quilter said…

    Oh I have to tell you those are beautiful and brought back a lot of memories! It is so great to see that not all have forgotten lost artforms. I still crochet, haven't done anything this delicate in a very long time, it makes me want to get back into it in between designing quilt blocks and quilts, and trying to spring clean all at the same time. You do beautiful work!


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