Chat with Crochet Designers Vashti Braha and Doris Chan, Part 2

Here is the official transcript from Crochetville’s live chat with crochet designers Vashti Braha and Doris Chan that took place on our Facebook page on Friday, January 10, 2014. They joined us for a talk about their wonderful new yarn, Lotus, designed by crocheters with the special needs of crocheters in mind. We had so many questions that I’ve had to divide this blog post up into multiple parts. Links to all the parts can be found at the end of this post.


(Note: Text appears as it was entered during the live chat.)

We hope you’ll join us on our Facebook page for future chats with more of your favorite crochet designers.

Transcript of Live Chat with Crochet Designers Vashti Braha and Doris Chan, Part 2 of 3

Amy: If you have a question on a different topic than the one currently being discussed, signal with a ! and I’ll add you to the list.

Vashti: I think plied z-twist yarns trickle in here and there from Europe.
Doris: There are so many in the house that we are trying to keep order.  Or at least AMY is.
CrochetWithDee: that said, in the samples, there was one of a natural fiber … when can we see more of that offered???
Vashti: I asked Doris, if she had a whole room inner house of a yarn, what would it be like? That’s how Lotus happened. (This is a future blog post)shhh Dee
Amy: Tammy Hildebrand and I have had a similar chat about our dream yarn. I’m so glad Vashti and Doris got further along in the process of creating it than Tammy and I have!
CrochetWithDee: dooph. sorry Vashti.  (wildly sipping coffee)
Cnewpower: my first question was about whether you plan to offer variegated colorways, but i believe amy is planning to do as blog post on that. i can wait unless you want to share some hints on what to expect.
Doris: What samples… the garment images?  Cotton and rayon are both natural fibers, making this a natural blend.  Do you mean the shade? Natural eventually became Pearly Pearl.
Vashti: Dee, (your earlier HHCC comment) — that’s fantastic! Thanks for sharing with your CGOA chapter!
Linda C: I ordered 5 skeins of the Grenadine color. I noticed that the color reads differently with the cotton and rayon. Looks like the rayon gives it this almost iridescence quality. It’s beautiful.
Luciucantsayit: I run an upscale, usually one-off boutique crochet business, but I am contemplating moving into quality kits– are your yarns going to be available in large quantities?
CrochetWithDee: one day, when I get caught up with the blogging the Lotus Party will be on (their) blog.
Cnewpower: yes, sorry, hit post by accident! do you plan to put out any menswear patterns?
Doris: Not me on the menswear, sorry.  Unless your man wears lace.
Cnewpower: thanks! love your patterns for women.
Vashti: Doris, Dee is referring a super early test of a 100% merino plied z-twist yarn…
Amy: Okay, Doris, I actually snorted with that one. Good thing I didn’t have a moutful of coffee, or I’d have had a noseful!
Mrsmhwillia: ditto
Pam: ditto
Doris: It is called a Snaze.
Coffeedog: maybe lace for men would make a comeback….
Amy: I saw something about Lotus being introduced cones sometime in the future. Any updates on that, Vashti?
Wickedcrochetlady: Please don’t give my boyfriend ideas…
CrochetWithDee: men in lace?  Is that the title of Doris’ next book?sorry… dang. that was a question!!
Julie: I would love cones!
Karen: Sorry, Hubby just accidentally turned computer off, back in.
Vashti: Hard for me to picture Lotus for me because of the luster. But maybe the Black Gleam. And future autumn colors. We need a good brown for example.
Amy: I think I’ll let that one slide, Dee!
Linda D: real men wear lace though…like pink…
Doris: I work from the cones, both one pound and two pound.  It’s brilliant
Vashti: SORRY: MEN not “me”.
Coffeedog: yes, i would love a nice brown
Vashti: Pink IS the new black, so…
Amy: Cones are great for garments and those of us who hate weaving in ends!
Luciucantsayit: I run an upscale, usually one-off boutique crochet business, but I am contemplating moving into quality kits– are your yarns going to be available in large quantities?
Doris: But in order to strictly keep the twist as presented, I use a Yarn Pet with cones.
Craftyone: Cones would be good, especially for larger projects
Vashti: We have a color name: Coffeedog Brown.
Doris: YES YES, coffeedog color!
Craftyone: What’s a yarn pet?
CrochetWithDee: Coffeedog Brown <– Dee likes the sound of that
Vashti: Yes luciucantsayit, contact me: vashtibraha AT gmail DOT com
Amy: Sort of like a toilet paper roll holder for yarn. So you can unroll without twisting or untwisting it.
Vibeskat: huntingdon yarn mill, made in the USA? ❤️
Amy: AnaVito, please ask your question.
Doris: http://www.nancyskni…om/Yarn_Pet.htm
Vashti: Will be adding 1-pound Lotus cones to site. Also mini-balls of it.
Doris: yes, vibes, proudly made in USA
Vashti: Yes Lotus is made in the USA! I love this.
Coffeedog: ooh, mini balls too?
Amy: We’re getting close to the end of the question signals I have. Waiting in line fter Juanita: lucinda, Karen
Anybody else with new questions? Post a ! to the room
Linda C: Will you be selling Lotus at Stitches West in February?
Juanita: Is it that thinking on tall stitches and open stitches that let you select a combination of cotton and rayon? Will you be considering other combinations of fiber to add to the line?
Craftyone: Mini balls would be nice to add a contrasting trim to a garment.
Pam: Mini balls!!  Awesome!!
Ana: Hi. I been crocheting for a few year but haven’t tried any other stitches aside from single and double crochet. i would like to use the lotus yarn to make myself a sweater what stitches would you recommend me to try?
Vashti: I have total absolute control over the put ups (the winding & labeling) so I should have Lotus in all sizes right?
Coffeedog: color work with mini balls!
Doris: We have no plans to do any stitches events for now, nor any on-site retailing.
Linda C: I know you are on the east coast. Do you ever come out west? I live in Santa Barbara.
Doris: Juanita, yes I needed yarn that would work for garments in open stitches that held up to wear. Tall stitches.
CrochetWithDee: AnaVito, The HHCCers did a wide variety of stitches with the Lotus, they all came out very pretty
Amy: Ana, I think since the Lotus was designed to work well with taller stitches, it would look great with practically any stitch pattern.
Amerz: I like the idea of the mini-balls.  I love cones of yarn (fewer ends), but it would be nice to be able to have little balls of all the colors for motif projects.
Juanita: Will you be considering other combinations of fiber to add to the line? Although to me the cotton rayon is my favorite combination.
Amy: It has great stitch definition, and shows off the beauty of the actual stitch pattern quite well.
Vashti: Not in this order of priorities but as they come out of head: a wool free choice; excellent drape; smooth surface so stitch texture looks beautiful (sheen too); holds up well; not hard to handle (slippery or bumpy). Juanita, I so want to add LOTS of different yarns! Am learning a lot with Lotus so we are building slowly and steadily.
Doris: Ana, by knowing the basics, single and double, you can work many many stitch combinations that are wonderful in Lotus.  Shells, for example
Vashti: Amy – YES what you said to Ana.
Doris: Learning curve is ferocious.
Ana:  any specific stitch names ..
Vashti: I’m working up to having yarn booths at events like Stitches. BIG initial costs and planning. In researching phase still.
Doris: Actually, both the boss and I made…. wait for it… dishcloths out of leftover Lotus.
Lucinda: I am someone who loves to crochet, I am right,handed and do nothing but crochet, mostly scarves and afghans, so is Lotus worth me investing my time and money? Also how does everyone join th
Vashti: Holy cow the learning curves in this industry!!
CrochetWithDee: (HHCC’ers played with shells, granny squares, even cables.)
Amy: I think scarves made out of Lotus would be so luxurious!
Ana: well that kitchen must have looked beautiful
Lucinda: oops, how does everyone join their yarn when changing colors?
Doris: lucinda, you have the skills to create one-of-a kind fashions and accessories with a gorgeous yarn.  That’s what DesigningVashti is about
Vashti: I actually have to stop the scarf designs in my head when I swatch Lotus so that I broaden my pattern range.
Amy: As far as investing in making an afghan with Lotus, I think that would be an individual choice that each person would have to make for themselves based on their unique budget situation.
Vashti: Lotus is so flattering up near the face, on shoulders etc.
Doris: Lotus would be a very special baby afghan as a gift.
Ana: thanks thats a great idea. a scarf made out of lotus I say it be fancy for a wedding
Amy: Changing colors, Lucinda. Are you asking if there’s any special technique other than the usual for doing that with Lotus?
Doris: also, as lindadean knows, there are things that pass as shawls that are just oversized scarves.
Vashti: Agree with Doris – lovely special baby things. Also bridal showers.Like AnaVito said!
Linda D: It is all how you present it Doris!
Doris: The balls (cakes) are big. approx 100 g (3.5 oz).  You can get a good bit of fabric each.
Ana: yes. would it work well with purses/ bags made with pop tabs?
Vashti: About types of crochet stitches: I don’t mean tall stitches instead of other kinds; I mean even the normally tricky stitches like super tall ones are fast, easy, pretty, elegant.
Lucinda: Yes when you change colors in a project, you want to make sure it doesn’t unravel so I tie mine and make it neat, but I am sure there is a simple, neater!
Amy: AnaVito, I’ve never worked with pop tabs. Do you file down any rough edges before working with them?
Juanita: 256 yds/235 m is a very good amount for a skein
Doris: We haven’t tried pops, although it well with beads.  Perhaps give it a try?  It is a sturdy yarn.
Linda D: But weave before you wash….
Amy: I don’t really work with  pop tabs, but I’ve seen a lot of that work done with highly twisted rayon yarns like Omega. Lotus isn’t twisted that tightly. Like Doris said, work up a swatch and see what happens.
Vashti: After making lots of tiny appliqué shapes for my newsletter issue, the ends are staying put. They were easy to weave in. Knots stay knotted. Another reason I’m glad Lotus isn’t a slippery yarn!
Ana: right now what i want to begin on is a sweater.. more like a cardigan sweater, and maybe a pop tab bag. my own birthday gift xD
Karen: I just quickly read all I missed.  But didn’t see a response to — available sizes of yarns?  And if any plans for threads?  Also would like to see watercolor-like subtle changes in variegated yarns/threads.

Links to Other Parts of Chat Transcript:

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

About Vashti Braha

Vashti Braha

Vashti’s name may be familiar to you. Her crochet designs have been published in magazines and books since 2004, including Interweave Crochet, Crochet!, Crochet Today, Knit.1 . . . and have been seen in other popular publications and websites.

You can find Vashti on the internet in the following places:

Her Designing Vashti website

Her blog

Her Facebook page

Vashti’s Crochet Lounge on Ravelry


About Doris Chan

Doris Chan
Doris Chan is world-renowned for gorgeous, lacy crochet garments featuring top-down seamless construction. Her designs have also been published in Interweave Crochet, Crochet!, Crochet Today, Vogue Knitting, KnitScene, and Crochet World magazines. Many yarn companies have published her designs including Tahki Stacy Charles, Caron International, and Coats & Clark. Doris has also published 4 books of garment patterns with Potter Craft.
You can find Doris on the internet in the following places:
Her blog

Her Doris Chan Crochet group on Ravelry

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