As I work on the center panel of my 2018 North Carolina State Fair project, I occasionally have to look for some “thing” that I need to work on it. Sometimes it is a particular needle or a specific shade of yarn that I know I have somewhere, or it could be one of the artifacts I am using as a combination, guide, talisman, and inspiration for the piece. Whatever it is, the first place I generally look is in one of the boxes I packed last March when my downsizing journey began, and this time, when I was looking for something else, I found my copy of The Crocheter’s Quilt Book.
I casually thumbed through the pages to determine if I should keep the book or add it to my downsizing pile, when I came across a pattern that caught my eye and my imagination. After I had done a few more pressing crochet tasks, I got out a hook and turquoise yarn and gave the pattern a spin:
Pleased with the result, I combined what I had learned from making the crochet diamond with some other techniques I have employed to make the crochet crazy quilt pieces and fashioned a triangle that I also liked:
Happy with the result, I realized that if I were to be as pleased with the crochet crazy quilt center panel as I was with the two shapes I had just crocheted, I needed to get out my embroidery book and practice some embroidery stitches on the crazy quilt swatch I had unearthed.
My first efforts were pretty sad, but eventually, I started to get the hang of it, and my stitches were more even and less awkward. I also learned that the crazy quilt embroidery stitches I think of as “the usual suspects” pop up so often because they work better than the others. So after a number of experimental efforts that didn’t look all that awesome, I started to concentrate more on the tried and true crazy quilt embroidery stitches, and was not disappointed:
With my “embroidery on crochet” skills much improved, I decided to move back to the center panel and finish work on the cherry cola crochet rickrack that I am crocheting to frame the two larger, off-white pieces:
And now that I have my tools, my supplies, and my skills all in one place, I can continue this journey, one stitch at a time.