Guest Author - Beverly Elrod
Iíve said it before and Iíll say it again, you can crochet (or do any other fiber art) with anything that you can wrap around a hook (needle for tatting, knitting and various other fiber arts). But, what of the outcome? It all depends on a couple of different angles. Ask yourself a few questions like, ďWhat do I want to accomplish with the project that I intend to make? Am I making this project for warmth, looks, softness, etc? or Do I really care what the outcome is since Iím just testing a pattern?Ē These questions and many more will help you to determine the direction you will take concerning the genre of what you will be crocheting with.
There are some who would say that you absolutely must use the exactly fiber that a pattern calls for; otherwise, youíre not even making what it is that youíre following a pattern for. These duplication factors not only include whether you should use yarn or thread, but itís expected that you also use the exact same color that the pattern calls for. I do not judge persons who have this attitude. Thereís nothing wrong with using only the material and color that a pattern calls for, but I do feel that we limit our possibilities when we stick to these strict guidelines.
For myself, if Iím just wanting to work up a pattern to get the gist of how it will look, Iíll use my simplest and cheapest thread or yarn. Of course, Iíll use a hook that will be suitable for the size of yarn or thread that Iíll be using. I may follow a doily pattern but use a bigger hook and a heavier thread or even a fine yarn to turn the pattern into a chunky table topper or even a tablecloth. I might even do just the opposite and turn a tablecloth into a doily or a table topper into a small doily or coaster. If a doily pattern calls for a size #10 thread, I could use a size #5 or #3 and make a table topper. Or, I could use a special yarn with some halo or ribbon and make a wonderful, warm and decorative lapghan or afghan.
Iím fond of transferring yarn stuffed animal patterns into a thread crocheted miniature animal. Teddy bear collectors take quite a fancy to these miniatures of their favorite animal toy and will pay quite a price for these smaller versions. Itís a lot of fun to reduce large animals into a much smaller counter-part to small children.
For me, thereís nothing wrong with using your imagination and substituting one fiber for another (or even a group of others). This is what how we make something Ďour owní. Most of my fiber art friends know one of my personal sayings as being, ďIíve never met a pattern I couldnít change.Ē And, one of the easiest way to Ďchangeí a pattern is simply by changing your thread or yarn and possibly your hook.