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National Crochet Month:
Wendy Bickford, The Hooked Haberdasher
Crochetville is very proud to have designer Wendy Bickford with us today, March 19th, as one of the featured designers on our 2015 Designer Blog Tour in honor of National Crochet Month (NatCroMo).
If you’re not familiar with her work already, we’d like to share two of Wendy’s designs with you.
Three Truths and a Lie:
- Wendy is retired. She loves the RVing lifestyle and enjoys seeing the glorious sites to behold of the United States of America.
- Wendy is passionate about the fiber arts.
- Wendy has been married to her bestest friend in life, her husband Bob, for 30 years.
- Wendy just celebrated her 29th birthday.
Wendy is very passionate about the art of crochet. She enjoys putting a touch of whimsy in her designs and says, “I love to create fashionably functional patterns.” She is a pro/hobbyist photographer with a strict eye for details. She’s dabbled in nearly all of the fiber arts, but crochet is her favorite.
“My two beautiful grandmothers taught me the art of crochet when I was just a little girl,” says Wendy. Now she has been crocheting for over 40 years.
For her first projects, Wendy says, “Under the wise tutelage of my grandmothers, I started with doll blankets, which were really stitch/gauge-learning swatches. My first finished project was a dress for a ‘barbie bed doll.’ This project won a grand prize at the county fair in the junior division, and also prompted me to make my bed daily, so I could sit and gaze at my beautiful work of crochet art.”
Wendy started designing when she saw a garment in a movie and wanted to replicate it for herself. She did and then got so many requests for a pattern that “it all started this glorious ride of pattern designing,” she recalls.
About designing, Wendy says, “Well, for me it’s quite an arduous process that I do so enjoy! Beginning with sketching, making a mockup, taking detailed notes and photographs for tutorials, writing the pattern, grading the pattern sizing if necessary, photographing the finished object, editing the photos, rewriting and publishing a PDF document. Then it’s off to my testers for tech edits and projects. Once all of that has been completed, then I release the pattern, either paid or free.”
Wendy sees inspiration for her designs everywhere she looks: “from nature, urban culture, the fashion runway, to the eyes of a newborn baby.”
Wendy says her greatest crochet-related accomplishment is: “Seeing my family and friends wearing, using, and loving the items I’ve made for them; and having to replace some of the items with new ones from being ‘loved’ so much. It is also really nice to hear from someone who has made an item from one of my patterns, exclaiming how much they enjoyed the pattern and the finished object.”
Wendy shares a funny story with us: “When family or friends ask a question, and all they see is the palm of my hand facing them… they all say, ‘Oh, sorry, you’re counting.’ ”
Advice for New Crocheters:
Wendy suggests, “Try to find a family member or friend to teach you – there is something special for the experienced crocheter to pay it forward by teaching another the art of crochet. If unavailable, then read, watch You Tube tutorials, order a crochet resource book and JUST DO IT. I once took a midwifery Spanish class (20+ years ago) where the instructor had a motto that I’ve adopted into all areas of my life: ‘It’s not hard, it’s just NEW.’ ”
Advice for New Designers:
Wendy recommends, “Read, research, subscribe to crochet blogs, read, research, take classes, read, research, join a crochet community, read, research, join crochet groups on Facebook, read and research and then take action and implement all you’ve learned.”
Next Big Trend in Crochet
Wendy says, “Well, as trends go – everything old is new again! I love how this takes place every 20-30 years, bringing ‘old’ into the ‘new’ with a modern twist. I believe early 20th century fashion with a modern day twist is uptrending.”
Some of Wendy’s Favorites:
Favorite Books: Wendy doesn’t have any one particular favorite crochet reference book because, “The RV lifestyle has necessitated going paperless. I am an avid reader of many blogs, eBooks, eGuides, eMagazines, tutorials, and online documents of garment making from pretty much every era and the history of the garments.”
Favorite Hooks: “I have quite a ‘collection’ of crochet hook styles/brands and have used them all. At the moment, my favorite is the Clover Amour – they seem to fit my hand size perfectly and are extremely comfortable to work with.”
Favorite Yarn: “I really have no preference in particular. But, I would someday enjoy a nice hank of paco-vicuña (the most luxurious yarn I’ve ever seen or touched). I prefer to use blended animal/plant fiber yarns when I have the opportunity.”
Favorite Thing to Crochet: Wendy doesn’t have a favorite thing to crochet, she says, “I just LOVE to crochet and design something that strikes my fancy and hope that others will enjoy, too.”
Favorite Designers: Wendy guarantees us her list is a mile high. She says, “Just to name a few, in no particular order: Pattern Paradise, Moogly, Charmed by Ewe, Petals to Picots, The Purple Poncho, Cre8tion Crochet, and Kim Guzman. I also enjoy watching these folks on You Tube: Mikey from The Crochet Crowd, Johnny from New Stitch a Day, and Clare from BobWilson 123.”
Visit Wendy’s Blog: NatCroMo FREEBIE Sneak Peek
You will definitely want to visit Wendy’s blog post today! She has a week-long series for a Spa Day gift basket to include free patterns for the face scrubbie, washcloth, and basket as well as tutorials on how to make homemade fragranced sugar scrub, bath salts, and bath fizzies. The entire series will remain free on her website.
Find Wendy Online:
Ravelry Designer Page: ravelry.com/designers/the-hooked-haberdasher
Ravelry Profile: ravelry.com/people/WendyBickford (must be logged in to view profile)
Well, if your read our post about Wendy you know that she is indeed retired and loves the RVing lifestyle and that she is passionate about the fiber arts. And of course, the truth is that she did not just celebrate her 29th birthday.