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March is National Crochet Month ~ Spring Gardens Not Far Behind!

March 2014

Do you love to crochet? Can’t get enough? Do you say, “Just one more row” even though your eyes are bleary and it’s way past your bedtime? Shout about your love of crochet from the rooftops all this month during the annual National Crochet Month celebration of crochet! I have much to celebrate and I'm proud to let you know about my new book, The Fine Art of Crochet

"The artists have clearly been selected for innovation. The variety of techniques and materials used forces the reader to question any pre-conceived ideas about this particular craft; the results are a real eye-opener. From elegant jewellery and wearable art to bold and striking sculptures and installations; the range covered is breathtaking."

You can win a copy of my book! Just sign up with your email to "follow" my blog (at the right of this blog), and let me know in the comments section that you have done so. You will then be entered into a drawing to win a copy. Deadline: March 31, at midnight. Open to U.S. residents.

I'm excited to be on the Designer Blog Tour sponsored by Crochetville again this year, and happy to be sharing today with Kate Steinke, CGOA board member and the brains behind the Buddy Program at the CGOA conferences. Kate and I share a common passion for crochet and we constantly spread the word about what we love about our favorite hobby! Read her post today on the tour to see what she has in store for National Crochet Month.

Thanks to the efforts of Past President Pam Oddi, the Crochet Guild of America (CGOA) initiated National Crochet Week back in 1998 as a way to promote our guild and crochet.  The idea was so well-received that it soon became national Crochet Month; and a whole month was necessary to celebrate everything about our beloved craft!  Today during National Crochet Month, many other associated groups have jumped on he bandwagon to celebrate, finding creative ways to have fun during March (and every month!) with other crocheters. Our senses are saturated with promotional blasts; huge sales get our attention; free how-to tutorials get us over the hump; and we chat with crochet friends all over the world, or even face-to-face if we want. There are no boundaries and it certainly goes to show what an impact our organization of passionate crocheters has had on the crochet world!

As 2014 began, I was in a state of overwhelm. So addicted to the computer and the amazingly huge amount of crochet across social media, I spend a lot of time at my desk and get all “tangled up” with the day in and day out bombardment of crochet stimulus. But wait, don’t get me wrong! I’m not so addicted that I don’t make time for my beloved crochet each and every day! It is a solid part of my life and no day is complete unless I express myself through crochet.

National Crochet Month 2014 is special because it is a way to kick off the celebration of the 20th Anniversary of  CGOA which will get started officially at our Manchester Conference, July 24-27, 2014. Who would have thought back in 1993 when I typed the Chain Link newsletter laboriously on an Apple 2 word processor, cutting and pasting illustrations, that I would become cyber-savvy enough to participate in a great blog tour like this one organized by Crochetville?  

The first CGOA conference in Chicago in 1994 was amazing. Without all the new-fangled tools that we enjoy today, a small but dedicated group put together an exciting weekend of crochet excitement. I can still remember it as if it were yesterday! How happy those ninety participants were to be together with like-minded crocheters who shared the same level of passion! My Northern IL Chapter is the very first CGOA chapter. Read about how we celebrate National Crochet Month each year at our annual Crochet Buffet which is in its eighth year! 

This year each designer on the Blog Tour donated a pattern, based on the theme "Spring Garden." They are included in an eBook that will be available from Crochetville soon. Here’s a sneak peek at the pattern I designed for this occasion. 

Spring Garden Miser Purse
Also this year, the designers on the Blog Tour voted to support Halos of Hope as our charity of choice. The touching motto of Halos of Hope is as follows: “Cancer is a journey of courage. Let us embrace you along the way.” This non-profit organization provides stylish and soft hats for patients going through chemotherapy. I have a particular fondness for the organization, because the founder, Pam Haschke, is a member of my local Northern IL Chapter of CGOA. If you wish you can contribute your crochet talents and make hats for this worthwhile organization; or if you’d prefer, you can also donate. 

Thank you so much, Amy and Donna, for all your efforts on behalf of crocheters everywhere!  To read Kate Steinke's blog post today and to keep up with the other Designers on this year’s blog tour, see the list at Crochetville. You’ll want to visit these blogs often; they always have crochet goodness to share with you!

Even though today's cyber-world allows us to connect with crocheters all over the world via our computers, there is really nothing like meeting face-to-face at the Chain Link Conference during the Knit & Crochet Show. See you in Manchester!


CJ Raggs said…
I just became a follower of your blog. Hoping to win your book-it looks great!
Stephanie B. said…
What if we already follow your blog as I do?
BoricuaCrochet said…
I'm already a follower. Looking forward to meet you one day. Beautiful design.
Tea norman said…
The purse is very pretty.
Anonymous said…
Subscribed to blog.
Dina Felker said…
I love to crochet! Started 4 years ago, and I got my sister started and now my niece. I find it so relaxing and therapeutic. I just signed up to follow your blog. Thank you
snowie44 said…
Absolutely LOVE the Miser Purse!! Just found you through Face Book and loook forward to following you!
snowie44 said…
Absolutely LOVE the Miser Purse!! Just found you through a link on FB and look forward to seeing more from you!
Terry Davis said…
I have always thought of my crocheting as creating art. Patterns are a starting point to which I always add my personal twist. Nice to know there are more like me! Following your blog and hoping to win the book but feel I am already a winner just being inspired by you!
Krocheter said…
Following now...I have read your blog before!!
jackie-tn said…
I'm signed up already but would love to win your book!
Ms_Lonelyheart said…
Hi Gwen! Can't believe I haven't been following your blog all along, but I'm definitely in now. Would love to win your new book. <3 Lynda Kraft
Deb said…
Hola Gwen! I just read the reviews on fiberartist,amazon and barnes and noble, Congratulations! I look forward to reading the history and viewing more of the photos of these very inspiring pieces of art!

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