Sunday
Mar242013

Welcome Fellow Crochet Blog Tourists!

Thank you for taking the time to stop by and visit my website as we celebrate National Crochet Month together! I want to thank Amy Shelton and Donna Hulka for all their hard work and enthusiasm in setting this up for us. You can check out their site at Crochetville for a complete list of participating designers.  Don't forget to check out Project Night Night, and see how you can help their wonderful cause of providing "Night Night" packages - free of charge - to homeless children in need of a little extra comfort.  If you aren't a member of the Crochet Guild of America (CGOA) I want to encourage you to learn more. Whether you are a beginner or a seasoned crocheter, young or "mature", CGOA is the place for you!  Be sure to see Marcy Smith's blog post today on the tour at the CGOA page.

I've got a few goodies that I hope will bless you.  Below you'll find an instructional video on how to block a crocheted piece made of acrylic.  You'll also find a story of how I stumbled into designing.

If you scroll down to the March 10 blog entry, you'll find my latest free pattern: the Dubonnet Poncho - just in time for spring!  Of course you are very welcomed to peruse my other free patterns simply by going to the tab "patterns" and scrolling down to "free patterns".  I am also making my Leisure Arts leflets Aran Afghans and Noggins & Necks available at a discounted price.  If you buy both I will even cover the cost of shipping! Just click the "Bonnie's Leisure Arts Patterns" tab at the top of the page.

Should you need any help with some of the Aran crochet stitches, just check out the free instructional videos under the video tab.  Make sure you choose RH for right-handers, or LH for left-handers.  If at any time you have questions, just let me know!  Interracting with other crocheters is one of the biggest blessings in the world to me.

Resting in His grace,

Bonnie Barker

 

 

How I Became A Crochet Designer

by Bonnie Barker

My journey into the publication world began in a very unlikely place - the county fair.  For years I had entered crochet projects, always hoping for that elusive purple champion ribbon for my work.  Well, one year it actually happened!  Not only did I get a purple ribbon for my afghan, but also the “Best of Show” for the crochet department!  To say the least, I was thrilled. 

About two weeks after the fair had ended I received a call from a woman in New Jersey who had visited our fair in Maryland.  She really liked my afghan and wanted to know where I bought the pattern.  I explained that it was an original pattern and I had not even thought to put it in print.  That phone call really made me think.  If this lady, whom I had never met was interested in purchasing this pattern, maybe others would also be interested.  Since this was just one of several original afghan patterns that I had crocheted over the years, I decided to contact the only publisher I knew, Leisure Arts.  Using a simple point and shoot digital camera, I photographed 4 afghans and e-mailed the photos to them.  Within a short time I received a response from them, asking me to send the afghans to their office in Arkansas.  Since I had never dealt with publishers before, I felt a little uneasy boxing up about 5 years worth of work and sending it off.  It was almost as if I were boxing up my children and sending them!  I had one other afghan that could round out the set, so Leisure Arts said to include it.  At this point there was no guarantee of anything.  I only knew that they wanted a closer look at my work.

Within a week or two I received the exciting news that I would be offered a contract for the rights to my afghans!  The purple ribbons made me excited, but this had me walking on air for a few days.  Now all I had to do was to wait for the contract to come in the mail.  I knew that there would be a small advance until the booklet would be published, but I had no clue as to how much this would be.  I did the only thing I knew how to do at this point:  pray.  I prayed for a specific amount of money, and with this prayer I wanted to commit 20% of any earnings to the Lord through a ministry that has been near and dear to my heart - the orphanage in Guadalupe, Mexico called Rancho 3M.  The day finally arrived when I received the contract and I was stunned.  The total advance for the publication of my Aran Afghans was the exact total that I had prayed for plus 20% more!  I knew God answers prayers, but I am so much more aware of His sovereign hand in all the details of life, including something as seemingly obscure as crochet publications.  Of course He is THE Master Designer.

 

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Reader Comments (4)

Thank you so much for sharing your story and your lovely patterns! God Bless!

March 24, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterRegina

Hi Bonnie! What a beautiful poncho pattern. My daughter loves these...maybe I can make it for her! Thanks for your wonderful story about the way you got into designing. God is so good! Bless you!

March 24, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterAngela Whisnant

I've spent the last little while enjoying your blog while I sip my morning coffee before my busy world starts. Thank you for sharing so much of yourself. You were a true blessing to me today!

March 25, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterChristi

Your afghans are amazing! Can you share a little about how you go about designing them?

March 25, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterPatrice

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