It’s a short update today. Checkout this pretty photo I took this morning of a brand-new star stitch class swatch. This is what the Starwirbel Cowl stitch pattern looks like when it’s done in flat spiraling rounds. (It still has the scrap yarn marking the spiraling rounds.) I’m testing the shaping information in the Starwirbel Way class handout.
Thanks for joining me as I blog the 50 days of preparation for the crochet conference this summer! It’s Day 11 which means I’ve blogged one-fifth of the 50 days.
Have I completed one-fifth of my tasks? Frankly, I don’t know. There are so many little things to do that they’re hard to count accurately. If my gut says I’m moving through things at a good pace, I’ve learned I can trust that and enjoy the constant river of details that get done as they flow through me. I’m halfway through my list of things to do for the Starwirbel star stitch class.
It was my gut that said, “For the 2016 conference you’ll have from half to two-thirds of 2015’s river of show booth details to manage. After several years of teaching you’ll have slightly less than half of a river of teaching details, so GO FOR IT! DO BOTH!”
“A Star Stitch For Every Purpose” is a sold out three-hour crochet class that I taught in July, 2014 at the 20th anniversary annual conference for the national crochet guild (CGOA). I researched over 200 sources from the 1840’s to the present. Class materials included a spiral-bound booklet of Star stitch patterns and a step by step how-to section.
Click on an image in the gallery below to learn more about it. Scroll past this gallery for more resources.
My Star Stitch Crochet Board in Pinterest. It was specially promoted by Pinterest admins earlier this year: “We think your board is amazing, and it really demonstrates what Pinterest is all about!”
The earliest example of Star stitches I’ve found so far is in an 1881 issue of a Norwegian magazine. It’s remarkable to me how seldom Star stitches have appeared in crochet books since 1881!
Key historical sources:
1881: Nordisk Mønster-Tidende.
1886: Knitting and Crochet.
1891: The Art of Crocheting, by Butterick.
1891: Home Work, by A. M. (Toronto).
Late 1800’s: Weldons Practical Crochet, First Series (London).
1910: Fleisher’s Book #8.
When Star stitches do appear in a book or online, they can vary in many ways both subtle and dramatic. This is mainly because a Star stitch is a compound stitch, so there are opportunities to vary each step along the way. This is true not only when completing each Star, but also when crocheting the next row into it, and what stitches are in that next row. For example, you can crochet Stars into Stars – with turning or without. You can alternate a row of Stars with a row of, say, single crochet stitches. All of these simple choices change the look of the stitch, and the experience of crocheting them.
I’ve been unable to locate a print copy of two Japanese “Star Crochet” books, but here is the ISBN for one of the volumes: 978-4-579-11323-1.
Planned pooling crochet patterns: Ravelry doesn’t seem to have a category for this technique yet, so I used the keyword “pooling”. Of 23 search results it looks like 20 are true planned pooling. Of these, 17 are argyles, and most appear to be seed stitch (as of 4/16/18). This is a self-updating link.
Planned pooling knitting patterns: as with the crochet search link above, I used a keyword search and the link is self updating. Of the 91 results (as of 4/16/18), about 80 are true planned pooling designs.
Three strong fashion trends are relevant to this class topic: graphic/linear texture, net lace, and fringe. I’ve created a Pinterest board for each trend.
Steeks: Ideas These are often simple shapes that become magically wearable and trendy with just a cut or two.
Trend: the New Fringe I thought today’s fringe was a passing fad but it continues to have a lot of mojo! That’s great for us. Many cut stitch patterns beg to be fringed, especially if you don’t want to use a double-ended hook for Tunisian lace nets. If you cut across several rows, turning that cut edge into fringe is the ideal thing to do with all the ends.
Trend: Simple Crochet Mesh Nets It’s a classic fabric with fresh boho looks. It’ll be a long-term trend because it’s also now going urbane-futuristic-techie.