Friday, March 15, 2013

I have CDO. (That's OCD, only in the right order.)

Just something I've been working on.
I never know how to start these. I usually have a general idea of what I want to say, but where to start? Although I guess this is a start -of a sort- so here we go.

The reason I have such a hard time starting blogs (not to mention finishing them) is that I'm at least mildly OCD. It's not something you'd notice right away if we'd just met, like you'd see with Tony Shalhoub in Monk, Jack Nicholson in As Good As It Gets, or Bill Murray in What About Bob?

My OCD mostly manifests itself in perfectionism. If I'm tasked to do something, I like to plan it out in my head until I've thought out every detail to complete the task in the best most efficient "perfect" manor  This includes thinking up everything that could go wrong and how to fix or avoid it. Obviously this isn't very practical; it's also highly stressful. Throw an internet mystery audience into the mix and you can see why I've whittled down countless ideas for blog posts into nothing. 

A cousin of perfectionism is my affinity for control. If I something can't happen perfectly, the least it could do is happen the way I want it to. But I realize the world doesn't work like that so I tend to have a very "all or nothing" approach to tasks. If I'm involved, I will to the best I can to complete it the best way it could possibly be done. If I'm not involved, or when I realize I won't be able to attain this most times impossible goal, I tend to just....fizzle...and put little to no effort into it. Why would I spend my time and effort on something sub-par?
Again, this is not the way the whole world works, and I know this, and it's something I'm working on. 

Crochet has been a wonderful coping mechanism. My work is always my own, and I can frog & re-do it as many times as I want until it is perfection. It's also a great way to distract me and use up a large part of worried thinking energy. Plus! I get to make lovely things to show the people around me how much I love them, even though I'm not always great at expressing it in other more common ways. That's why this blog is called "I love, Therefore I Craft."
I crochet because I love, and creating is the only way I know to truly express it.

What about you? Why do you crochet, craft, or create? 

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Monkey Business

Hello again!
It's been a couple weeks since I've talked to you! Last week was Spring Break here, so I was spending some time with my Mister. He introduced me to Minecraft, so I have to admit I've been a bit distracted. Maybe I'll turn that into something constructive and come up with a few Minecrafty projects in the future. Hmmmm....we'll see. 

I didn't spend all my time playing though! This past weekend I buckled down and finished my latest project, and here he is!

You can find the pattern here!

I've made a couple other monkeys in the past few years, but I like this one best. I tweaked how I attach the arms and legs a bit, and I really like how it came out. It's crazy how much you can learn about crochet just by keeping a variety of projects on your to-do list. And I have to say, making things up as I go along is the most fun. I love the challenge of figuring out what shapes and sizes I need to use to get it exactly how I want, as well as the freedom to do it! 

If you like the Mischievous Monkey, you can buy the pattern on Ravelry, and don't forget to check out my other patterns too!

If you want to know what I'm up to between blog posts, you can follow me on Twitter and Instagram

Are there any amigurumi animals you'd like me to write a pattern for? I've got a couple ideas, but I'd love to hear from you! Just let me know in the comments or on Twitter.

Friday, March 1, 2013

My New Model

As fun as designing patterns is, when it comes to hats and other clothing that isn't one size fits all, it's also stressful. I'm not great spatially, so if I don't have the person I'm making something for right next to me as I'm crocheting....there's a good chance it won't always fit. 
Then, no matter what size I've made, there's the fact that not everyone who reads my pattern is going to be the same size. But I don't really know what size I've made, and trying to figure out how to "adjust" patterns to fit others is overwhelming. 

Yes, I realize most patterns are not going to have sizes for absolutely everyone, but I'm a bit OCD, and if I'm going to consciously try and include people of more than one size, I'm going to feel bad about not making it do-able for everyone. Even if this is completely outrageous expectation.

So! In order to fight the OCD anxiety of making something that will fit everyone, I had the genius idea of switching my model to someone that is always available for fittings, as well as the same size as many crochet-wearers across the world. 

Her name is Addy, and she is my American Girl doll. I can't believe I didn't think of this sooner. First, I made her a matching hat & scarf. (If you're interested, the pattern is available here.) I also just finished an afghan for her bed.

Hat & Scarf
All ready for bed.