A New Hobby: I am hooked.

The lineage of using fiber in our family

It has been a joy watching my daughter developing her yarn and fabric crafts the way she has over the years. She started with tatting and lace making and went on to sew, crochet and knit; hence taking after my parents. My mother knitted garments and toys and my father learnt to tat fishing nets when he was little. As a child I learnt how to knit and sew and by 15 years old I was making my own clothes as a way of saving money. I was very fussy and didn’t like my mother’s casual approach to sewing as I liked things done perfectly. So it is no surprise when I made my garment to prove to my mother that it can be done properly that she said to me: “I see you can sew, you can carry on sewing for yourself.” And I was only too happy to do so.

I did try knitting but I found that my hands quickly became numb and it took the joy out of the process and often my mother would finish my projects for me.  So I never took to knitting in the same way and was happy for my mother to knit our family jerseys from one season to the next. I viewed my mother’s garment knitting much like being on a production line. I didn’t see it as a form of art; only after she died did I begin to appreciate it as an art form. Now that I watch my daughter, Ellie, I can see the great artistic enjoyment and value that it brings to the artist’s life and in the end both giver and receiver are blessed.  

I have been fascinated with the process of crochet as I never explored this avenue before. After watching Ellie I told her that I would like to try it but I was worried about my wrist giving me trouble again (I have had carpel tunnel syndrome in my right-hand wrist). After some thought and exploration she said that she thought it would be a better option than knitting as my right-hand wrist would stay stationary. I first tried my hand at cut-off mittens in the beginning of the year.  

My new found hobby.

For my birthday Ellie asked me to choose some fiber which she purchased for me. It is called Blue Face Leicester Oatmeal combed wool top fibre 100g Forever Autumn from Crafty Cats Knittybits.

Ellie then hand spun it into beautiful skein of wool.

For anyone interested in fiber: it is fascinating to learn about the process and you can read about Ellie processing wool from beginning to end: Shetland Fleece Processing and Spinning.

My Project: Infinity Scarf.

It was 100gr which is enough for a small project and I decided to make a faux knit crochet infinity scarf using a free pattern from TAYLOR LYNN CROCHET. Here are some photos showing my progress from beginning to end.

And I am hooked, excuse the pun.

My reflections

Some of you know that I live in South Africa and Ellie lives in Scotland so it is a very special way of bonding, physically and emotionally, using the thread to connect us. What I found really meaningful is that as I crocheted I was contemplating how Ellie had been spinning this wool especially for me. I could imagine her enjoyment of creating the yarn as she would have had to have chosen the mixing of the two coloured threads to make the 2 ply thread.

I also pondered over the fact that I now had the thread she had created for me in my hands and how I was fashioning it into a specific garment.  The cycling of the fibre from hand to hand and person to person; it was a wonderful way to feel connected.   

What relaxing hobbies do you enjoy?

How do you stay connected with family members that are too far to visit?

Take care, till next time.

32 thoughts on “A New Hobby: I am hooked.

  1. It’s heartening that your daughter has taken up this hobby. Though my mother and sisters were well versed in knitting and crochet, the next generation is least bothered.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Wow, how talented are your Ellie! I love the different colours of wool and it’s fascinating to see how she spun the wool to the end product – which you have now in your hands 💌. What a wonderful way of connecting with her … and well done to you on that beautiful scarf.
    My mom enjoy knitting and to crochet the most beautiful “lappies” (I don’t know what it’s called in English – you would ☺️). I love watching her, but not doing it myself … but your post got my thinking of trying it while she’s still here with me and can teach me …

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Hi Morag, what a wonderful post! When I first attended pre-diploma Art College my wish was to do textiles. There was something in the handling of different wools (you say fibres) and fabrics. It didn’t work out, It’s a long story for another time, but I didn’t make the grade. I had to leave college and find work, ending up in clothing manufacturing. A 30-year career there ended with me learning new skills but without addressing that original dream. Redundancy and many life traumas later, well, I’ve on! Nowadays my only hobby, recent, is attempting to make wooden spoons from ‘green’ wood. I will stick at it as I’m in a small club and the company there is very companionable, and I’m mostly outdoors. Of course, Covid has changed everything! I would love to crochet, even simple things, but I’m also drawn to weaving and tapestry in a creative, artistic way. My Gran and my Mother knitted all the time but growing up here in the 50s and 60s none of us children seemed interested. Perhaps it had something to do with the changing fashions, particularly in the 60s? This is an interesting post; it has set my ‘little grey cells’ spinning. I should also say that what you and your daughter are doing is amazing. ✨💐💖

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Ashley, thank you for your wonderful message, I really value what you have shared. Life is full of unexpected turns, and I hope you can find something inspiring to do in your free time. Weaving and tapestry are wonderful too. And spinning 😃😜Wilting is something that fascinates me too. My mother used to witle letter openers when she was a climber. In the evening she would witle next to the fire.

      If I had grown up in the UK I would have loved to have studied textiles, but I was discouraged to do so in South Africa, apparently our training was inferior. Not sure if it really was but as you know my life took a different route too. I always enjoy your ‘visits’.

      Liked by 1 person

      • 🤣 It would be good to try some “wilting” 🙃 At the moment with Covid restrictions the club isn’t running although one or two turn up to help get things reading for the summer. I’m painting the shed there; I did one half last Saturday and if it’s dry I’ll finish it this Saturday. We are having bright sunny mornings here but with a touch of frost so it’s still too early to be planting anything delicate! 💐🙋‍♂️

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Wow!! That fiber is beautiful and the process of spinning it is fascinating! Your infinity scarf turned out lovely. That’s great that you found a new hobby and it connects you with family! 💖 I enjoyed reading the story of how you came to sew as a child, too!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Some hobbies are good for relaxing and exploring our creativity. Knitting and crocheting certainly are an art form. My mom taught me how to crochet and I must say, I enjoyed it back then. Like you, I learned to sew when I was young, making my own Barbie clothes by hand and then sewing dresses for myself and even a suit for my brother when I was 16.

    I like photography and fashion. My daughter lives in Seattle, so like you and Ellie, there are many miles between us, but fashion keeps us connected. We are both very concerned about fair trade, sustainable and ethical fashion. That’s why she opened an eco-boutique and she got me on board after learning so much from watching THE TRUE COST. Sadly, her little shop is closing after 5 years of hard work and a labour of love (due to lockdowns).

    ❤️carmen

    Liked by 1 person

    • Awwww thank you for your special share, about you and your sewing even for your brother, so amazing… it is lovely to have a special connection with family members like with your daughter too. I am sorry to hear about her shop having to close… I hope even if it’s an end to a chapter that her clothing story goes on into the next chapter in ways she might not have guessed. Hugs and love. From Morag 💐

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Such a stunning way to be connected and very creative too. I enjoy flower arranging and I’m constantly learning how to grow some of the greenery and flowers that I love doing arrangement with. My daughter is doing her community service year in a rural hospital, about 5 hours away from home and for this reason we connect mostly via video calls. The last time she came home, she told me that she’s thinking of planting some herbs at her home. I gave her some mint to take back with her, the mint started rooting from cuttings I did. I visited her recently and was happy to see that it was growing lovely in her little court yard. In return, I brought some cuttings from plants growing in her little court yard and I’m hoping it will take and grow here at home. After reading your post I believe that I just started a hobby with my daughter too 🙂 Thank you so much for the encouragement.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. That’s such a nice story and how you keep bonded to your daughter despite the distance. Scotland has some gorgeous yarns and tweeds. You’re both so talented too! My maternal grandmother, who was Italian, was also very talented in sewing, embroidery, lace making, knitting, crocheting etc. In fact she ended up designing and modelling some clothes for Debenhams when she emigrated to London with the rest of the family. She would never throw any clothes away, but would unpick woolies and remodel other clothes. I love crochet too, though I stay bonded with my family via Skype!
    Happy crocheting!!!! xxx

    Liked by 1 person

  8. You are very talented!
    I used to knit all day, every day, but a lower arm injury has prevented me from knitting for years. Not that I have very good at it. I always had trouble picking up the stitches for the neck. I too have enjoyed watching my daughters learn to knit, and how that has spread into other creative areas of their lives. Thanks so much for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

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