Thursday, July 24, 2014

Tunisian Crochet Winter Hat

PATTERN: Tunisian Crochet Winter Hat
Any yarn of your choice
Crochet hook (tunisian style) one size larger than yarn suggests

Helpful videos:  
Tunisian Simple Stitch:
Tunisian Purl Stitch:
Huge thank you to Crochet Kim who taught me how to work both stitches!

chain to a length the size of hat (from crown to ears), add 1.5 to 2 more inches (as desired), plus two chains.

Row 1: tunisian purl each stitch
Row 2: tunisian purl each stitch
Row 3: tunisian simple stitch across
Row 4: tunisian simple stitch across

Repeat rows 1 through 4 until work is the diameter that goes around your head (or head of person the hat is for)
seam sides together using slip stitch if rows are even, sc if needed for spacing
weave yarn through the stitches at one end and pull tight, secure with a knot.   (Alternatively, you can braid yarn, weave it through the stitches at one end and make a hat that will also work as a cowl)
turn inside out,
fold the bottom 1.5 to 2 inches up for a brim.
if desired, add a pom pom to the top.

Hat Size Chart (but I strongly recommend you measure the head you are making the hat for, or have someone measure for you.

A life after loss?

I get caught up in petty little concerns.  I get stressed out over bills and over plans that fall apart.  Life just seems so stressful.  And then I get a text message.  "Do you know what happened to Feike and his family?"

And all my concerns disappear as my heart shatters as it learns that a dear friend has lost his home, his cars, all of his belongings in a fire, but most painful, two of his five children were lost in the fire.

The beautiful angels, Zeph and Noah!

I can't imagine how one even breathes, but I know that living is super important for the three remaining children.  One of his infant children, Remmy, remains in the hospital in Salt Lake City due to injuries from the fire.

So, as I sit stunned and shocked, I wonder what can I do?  I spend hours trying to sort out what I can do to help.  And it occurs to me, a charity auction.  I can donate completed items, and I can donate some yarn.  I decide I can also ask others if they would like to help, or share about the charity auction.

So, I have a charity auction going on here:
Charity Auction for the Van Dijk Family

If you would like to donate just cash, please go here:

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

But I'm not stealing.....[1].jpg

It would never occur to us to steal a loaf of bread, nor nail polish, but every single day, people steal and do not even think twice.   We steal when we copy a movie for a friend.  We steal when we copy a cd for a friend.  We steal when we copy patterns for friends.  In our minds, there is some disconnect.  We tell ourselves that we paid for the pattern we should be able to do with it what we like.  When we buy bread, we can share it with our friends, what is wrong with sharing a CD or a pattern?

Well here is what is wrong.  When you share the bread, some you eat, and some your friends eat.  The bread is a limited resource.  Now lets look at a music CD.  You play it for your friends when you are together.  AWESOME!  You shared your CD.   One of your friends loves it and asks for a copy.  You copy the CD for them.  Now, instead of going into the store and shoplifting the CD from the store, you stole it by making a copy for your friend.

It would never occur to us to copy a Rembrandt nor any other artist's painting.  We would see how wrong that is.  But we never consider it wrong to copy the fiber artist's patterns.  I am sad at how prevalent this behavior is.  It is not just a few that are doing this.  I see it in LYS (Local Yarn Shops), knitting groups, crochet groups, Facebook craft groups, and individuals.

So, now we know we are basically shoplifting, but we aren't taking any money from the store, so what is the problem?  Well lets look at the process it takes.   The designer (or songwriter or script writer) works hours often weeks and sometimes months or years, writing and rewriting, editing and refining their pattern (song or script).  The designer has individuals test the pattern to make sure there are no errors and that the instructions are clear.  The songwriter works with the publisher to find someone to record the song (or if the songwriter is also the singer, he finds a band to help him record his song).  The script writer takes the script to a find someone who wants to film it.  So, whether a pattern, a CD or a movie, hours and hours have gone into creating it.  Sometimes a lot of money has gone into creating the design, the cd or the movie.  At least one person makes their livelihood -- earns a living by writing these songs, or patterns, or movie scripts.  That is how that person feeds their family.  So when you copy it and give it to another, you took food off that person's table.  

Each time you copy something that is copywritten, you give away something that was not yours to give.  You become a thief.  And if you are using a stolen pattern (ie copied pattern) to make money, you have now become a fence.   So not only are you guilty of theft, but you are guilty of selling stolen property.

I was not going to say anything, but my heart is heavy.  I stopped selling patterns because of theft, and the large amount of people who sent nasty messages to me about how selling patterns was wrong and harmful.   They berated me.   Yet these same people had no idea how many hours are spent writing a pattern, and how many hours are spent working with testers, and how many hours are spent editing and adding photos to the pattern (and/or videos), just so the user has the best pattern possible.   I don't design like I used to.  My heart isn't in it.  But my husband is still a songwriter.  And I have hundreds of people I love and admire who make their living either writing patterns, or songs, or scripts.  It breaks my heart when I see such flagrant disregard for their work.  It breaks my heart when people think it is no big deal to steal from these hardworking individuals.
So, each time you choose to copy a pattern you bought, or ask a friend to copy a pattern they bought for you to use, you are saying that the designer's time, talent, efforts are worth stealing.  You are saying you don't mind being a thief.   And each time you copy music or movies you are saying that you don't mind stealing from the writers and everyone else involved.  You have no problem stealing.  I doubt this will change anyone's behaviors, but if it gets one person to reconsider their actions and stop, this is totally worth it.

What are your thoughts???