Archive for March, 2008


Soapbox Alert!

If you are easily offended by the rants of an irate hooker, close the page NOW!!!

I have grown weary of folks who are not only resistant to but, also, simply refuse to pay for patterns. Mind you: these are often the same people who think nothing of downing truckloads of fast food or forking over $50 for a carton of cigarettes. How in the name of all that is holy can we designers be expected to be motivated to produce and be rewarded for our work if the masses of tightwads expect us to work for nothing? Before anyone gets their knickers in a knot, I realize and acknowledge that their are plenty of worthwhile, usable patterns available out there which are offered free of charge by worthy designers. I, myself, took advantage of this generosity when I was first learning the craft. But, I daresay, those designers did not depend on crochet to pay the bills. And, by and large, the patterns offered little or no challenge for the experienced crocheter and hardly contributed to the development of high fashion.

I have spent the better part of the last two years honing my craft as a designer and cultivating a following. I have spent countless hours working up my offerings and countless more hours slaving over the details of pattern writing, an experience made even more tedious considering the wide range of sizes I ALWAYS offer. Since branching out into designing for plus sizes, the job has become even more challenging and time-consuming. Yet, according the attitudes of many, I am not supposed to be compensated for my efforts.

A recent experience has convinced me that I cannot and WILL not again give anything away. I spent the  past six months participating in and contributing to an online group of crocheters. As an act of good will, upon joining the group I offered, free of charge to anyone who requested, a copy of my Hooded Ruana pattern. I responded to over 200 requests for the pattern. I normally charge $5.00 per pattern. You can do the math to determine the value of my offer. I set a time limit to my offer, stating, unequivocally, that I would not extend my offer. Can you imagine my frustration and, evenutally, rage when I started receiving abusive emails when I would not reinstate my offer after the deadline? And, most recently, in response to a request for patterns for a Crochet-Along, I offered my Hoodie pattern at a reduced price. Well, as my sainted mother frequently said, “No good deed ever goes unpunished!” For my efforts I was treated to a barrage of complaints and demands, some actually requesting I redesign the sweater to their specifications. Of course I was expected to do the extra work gratis. Why not? I was practically giving away the pattern already!

I’m done. I will continue, on occasion, to provide the members of my mailing list with free offers in appreciation for their loyalty. But that’s it! I’d rather quit designing altogether than to again be subjected to such ungrateful, selfish and unthinking behavior. It’s just not worth the effort.


Hoodie Plus Sizes Done

Finally, finally, finally. I have lost what little hair I had left on my head over this pattern. I’ve decided that, rather than trudge on to the men’s version, I will, instead, work on a men’s basket weave pullover, thinking that there well may be a bigger market for that. I’ll come back to the hoodie. I just need a break.

Well, we finally got the monster’s hair cut…long overdue. Some of you already know Toto, the real master of my domain. For those who need an introduction, here he is in all his pre-clipped splendor:

and after:


Happy Saturday, Everyone! Don’t forget to adjust your clocks FORWARD tonight.


Thank you, Charles

I received a warm and humbling message from a fellow Ravelry-ite this morning. Charles is a knitter, but erstwhile crocheter, who gave up hooking when it became apparent to him that doilies just were not his “thing” and nothing else crocheted seemed appealing. Since hearing my February 22 interview with Marly, and seeing my Gatsby sweater, he has changed his mind. In his words:

“For the most part, non textile people don’t recognize texture, and fine details like post stitches,etc, all they see is a sweater. The only thing they may remember/know about crochet is the doily/afgan “look” or general surface structure in a very vague way and so what they see doesn’t concur with what they remember about crochet.

What you’ve done is create a whole new look to sweaters done by crochet. You’ve redefined what the overall textural look is, upclose and from a distance. It doesn’t look like the 70s stuff, it doesn’t even look like the crochet that’s on the runways these days. There is no point of reference because you’re breaking new ground, and that’s exciting. I think the ‘looks like knitting’ reference is people saying.. I don’t recognize this…it’s not crochet, it’s not knitting…texturally, it looks more like knitting than it does the crochet that I know/remember. So if most people are saying it with a neutral tone…it’s a compliment. Now if there is a knitter who says it…the underlying intent of the comment could be construed as and insult, but that’s just because of the pre-existing undercurrent of disdain that some knitters have for crochet. I can see why you reserve the right to determine if the comment is a complement or a dig, though because so many knitters have been so down on crochet.

Now, I love crochet, I even love afgans and doilies.”

This is very exciting. I thank Charles for his kind words and do hope that he again picks up the hook. Maybe I’ll invite him to Men Who Crochet. 🙂



Sales for the hoodie pattern are very slow. I’m really quite surprised. After all the expectation and buzz around the time I made it available, it’s hard to understand why it isn’t selling. I should be finishing up the plus sizes today to get that off to the proofreader. Maybe the larger sizes will sell better. This development is really taking a bite out of the bottom line.

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