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The theme for I Love Yarn Day 2016 is Stitch it Forward. We yarn-crafters are supposed to help others learn our crafts so they can love yarn as much as we do. I’ve been a little busy and sick lately so I’ve not been able to do much on my blog. I figure I’ll re-start my blogging with a post to help others learn crochet. I don’t feel the need to re-invent the wheel, however, so this won’t be a post teaching you how to crochet. It is instead a post about a resource I’ve used to hone my crochet skills, Annie’s “Learn to Crochet” online or DVD class. (I’ve provided a link at the end of the post.)
In the interest of full disclosure, my first resource in learning to crochet was the Boye I Taught Myself Crochet set. I’m not much of a visual learner, though, so I had to puzzle through a lot of things to use it.
“Learn to Crochet” is taught by Ellen Gormley, a name pretty familiar in the crochet community. She’s the editor of Crochet! magazine, for one.
The class is available as an online class or a DVD. When you purchase the online class you get lifetime access to streaming the class and a line of communication to the instructor. I bought the DVD version because I didn’t like to watch videos on the computer. If you’re techy you can hook up your computer to your TV, but I don’t like to bother with that.
Included with both are the patterns for all of the projects in the class.
For the hearing impaired, both the online and DVD classes are closed-captioned. There is a caption that shows up in one of the lessons, so I’m not sure how the two would interact there.
After crocheting a few things using only simple stitches I found Annie’s “Learn to Crochet” video class. I thought it would be a good way to review to make sure I had my basics down right. Since I’ve only used the DVD version of the class I can’t speak to the experience of the online class. I’m glad I bought the DVD version, though, because I like the flexibility of being able to not need the internet to watch it.
I’ve still not finished all the projects and lessons, but I’ve done all but the last project. The blanket, which I’m making relatively big, has slowed me down. The class has really stretched my skills. I didn’t think I had it in me to add a flower embellishment to a hat, but this class gave me the confidence to try it and succeed. The fact that I made the hat in the first place was pure joy since I didn’t think I could do that either.
I really like the way the class is set up. Even though I’d already been crocheting, I liked being walked through everything including information needed before you even picked up a hook and yarn. The instructor is easy to understand and is very clear with instruction. She takes you step-by-step through the stitches and helps you avoid potential pitfalls in each project. It’s been a good learning experience and I’m glad I bought it. The included projects aren’t hard and I enjoyed making them.
How the class is set up
The class is separated into nine lessons (plus an introduction and a wrap-up). The first three lessons are an introduction to the terms and tools of crochet. Then there is a tutorial on the basic crochet stitches. The other five lessons are projects that are designed to teach specific skills.
Each project is covered in one lesson. In that lesson she details all the skills you’ll need to complete the project. She doesn’t go through the entire project as you’re watching, though. Sometimes she skips a few rows or parts ahead to cover the next potential trouble spot. This isn’t an issue with me since I’m sure if she crocheted the entire piece on video some of the lessons would be really long. Also, the blanket is able to be a bit more personalized with you being able to choose how many squares you want to do.
I watched each project lesson in sections. This is a bit hard since the lessons aren’t sub-divided by pattern parts. If you want to do this, too, just watch each lesson and crochet along. You can pause or stop the video if you need to catch up. This method worked best for me because it allowed me to focus on doing each part. I didn’t have to remember all the tips she offered for the whole project, just for the part I was currently working on. This isn’t a big deal with a small project like the dishcloth, but more for a larger project like the blanket.
Annie’s Learn to Crochet class is a really good resource, whether you’re a completely new crocheter or are a crocheter dusting off their hooks. When you’re finished with the class, you’ll not only have more confidence and skills. You’ll also have several useful items that you can proudly proclaim “I made it myself!”
If you want to buy this resource, please use the following link: Learn to Crochet! Online Classes at Annie’s
If you’re a crocheter, how did you learn to crochet? Let us know in the comments!
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