NatCroMo 2015, March 3: Marty Miller

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National Crochet Month

Welcome to Crochetville’s third annual Designer Blog Tour, taking place all throughout March 2015 in celebration of National Crochet Month (NatCroMo). Each day on our blog, you will find 1) in-depth profile posts for two crochet designers, with a link to their blogs so you can see what specials (free patterns, discount coupon codes, tutorials, etc.) they may be offering for NatCroMo, 2) a daily giveaway post with entries open from 8:00 AM CST to 8:00 AM CST the following day, and 3) during the last week of the month, daily posts from a Crochet Guild of America board member. Join us each day for a new surprise!

Today’s Posts: Shelby Allaho, Stitch Story | Marty Miller, The Crochet Doctor | Daily Giveaway | Halos of Hope Hat Collection | Complete Designer Schedule


Marty Miller, The Crochet Doctor

Crochetville is very proud to have designer Marty Miller, also known as The Crochet Doctor, with us today, March 3, as one of the featured designers on our 2015 Designer Blog Tour in honor of National Crochet Month (NatCroMo).


About Marty:

Marty’s grandmother Tillie taught her to crochet when she was only 5 years old, and she hasn’t stopped since! In 8th grade, Marty was in an accelerated class where all the students were finishing their classwork very quickly. To keep the students out of trouble, the teacher taught them all how to make granny squares, which were assembled into afghans for donation to veterans.

She says her first crochet project was probably a blanket for one of her dolls. She still has the first big blanket that she crocheted for her new baby boy, quite a few years later. Her son’s blanket was made with a ripple stitch pattern and had a few minor problems. The chain foundation was extremely tight, and the rows kept getting a little looser and a little more looser, until the final row was extremely loose. Marty now uses that blanket for teaching purposes to demonstrate the benefit of using foundation stitches. (Not familiar with foundation stitches? Be sure to visit Marty’s blog later to learn more.)

Marty is well-known in crochet circles for quite a few things:

  1. Her designs using foundation crochet stitches and stitch patterns, instead of using a chain and then working all the stitches of the first row or round into that chain. With foundation stitches, you work one chain, then work the stitch that goes into it. Then your work the next chain and the stitch that goes into it, and so on.
  2. Her frequent use of granny squares (and other granny motifs) in her designs for garments, accessories, and home goods.
  3. Her designs for wearable sweaters that utilize simple construction and shapes, resulting in patterns that are easy to follow.

If you’ve ever seen any of Marty’s patterns, you’ll have noticed that they are usually easy to crochet. Marty keeps the number of rows to repeat in a stitch pattern to a minimum so the pattern repeat is easy to remember. She loves making it so you don’t have to keep looking at the written pattern to try to find your next step! Many of her garment designs are more of a blueprint than a pattern, allowing you to use many different types and weights of yarn in your projects. Marty understands how many of us find a favorite sweater design that we feel is really flattering, and wish we could have that sweater in many different colors. Her sweater designs will give you the freedom to create an entire wardrobe of sweaters that look so different from each other that most people won’t guess you used the same pattern (or blueprint) to make them.

In addition to crochet, Marty has enjoyed knitting, weaving, cross stitch, needlepoint, and making silver jewelry over the years. But crochet has always been her first love and is what she spends her time on now.

Marty has accomplished quite a lot in the crochet industry. She’s a well-known instructor, teaching in-person classes across the country at Chain Link (CGOA conference), TNNA, and Stitches South as well as online classes at Craftsy. She has published two books (one of which is out of print) and countless patterns in various crochet magazines. Marty all served on the Board of Directors of the Crochet Guild of America for four years, and as president of the organization in 2010.

While these accomplishments are quite exemplary, Marty may be the proudest of the fact that her granddaughter, whom she taught to finger crochet when she was 6 years old, had a finger crochet pattern published in Crochet! magazine when she was 11.


Advice for New Designers:

Take some classes on designing – like how to size garments, and how to write patterns.Learn about why you need a tech editor for your patterns if you are going to self-publish. (And learn the difference between a tech editor and a pattern tester.) Also, learn about copyright and professionalism.
If you want to teach, and you’ve never taught before, take some classes on teaching, or observe good teachers in action by taking their classes. And then practice, at your local yarn shop, for a small group of students, or even one-on-one.

Some of Marty’s Favorites:

  • Favorite Crochet Reference Books: Stitch dictionaries
  • Favorite Hook: In-line hooks
  • Favorite Yarn: DK or heavier
  • Favorite Fiber: Whatever she’s working with that meets the needs of the project
  • Favorite Thing to Crochet: Sweaters, afghans, scarves, totes, baskets, shawls, rugs, and just about everything else

What Marty Has to Say about Her Design Process:

My grandmother didn’t read English, so she couldn’t read patterns. She taught me how to figure things out without patterns, and that was my introduction to designing.

Visit Marty’s Blog: NatCroMo Sneak Peek


You will definitely want to visit Marty’s blog post today! She’ll be offering a special sale on her Craftsy class, Mastering Foundation Crochet Stitches.


Find Marty Online:

Ravelry: martyagm

Crochet Doctor blog:

Not Your Granny’s Crochet blog:

Ravelry Designer Page:

Facebook: miller

Bluprint (formerly Craftsy): Marty Miller, Instructor Profile

Additional Blog Tour Information:

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28 thoughts on “NatCroMo 2015, March 3: Marty Miller”

  1. I do wish I could take your Foundation Chain class on Craftsy. But being disabled, it’s just not in the budget. 🙁

  2. It was great to read where someone else started crocheting at such a tender age, and to have had the pleasure of teaching your granddaughter at such a young age ~ priceless!

  3. I am working on my very first ripple blanket! It hopefully will be loved and cherished as you still cherish yours. Mine is going to a friend who’s expecting.

  4. I like using foundation stitches, they can come in handy. I have been using some to make a ribbon for a hat, as I am out of ribbon but have lots of yarn.

  5. I haven’t done much with foundation stitches yet…only been crocheting 30-odd years! I’ve managed to lose count every time I’ve tried it. Obviously I need to try again.

  6. My sister-in-law taught me to chain and single crochet when I was nine years old, and I taught myself after that and haven’t stopped since. Thanks for the inspiration!

  7. I will def. try to take your class once I get off satellite internet! Data charges make it hard to watch videos!

  8. Foundation stitches look like the way to go—can’t wait to learn them! Thanks for the great offer on Craftsy!


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