Tuesday, September 21, 2010

The Weightless Tunisian Crochet Stole

Name on birth certificate: Weightless Tunisian Stole

Birthdate: April 18, 2009

Takes after: 'Wicker stitch' sisters, thread crochet aunts, and lace knitting cousins.

Designers will tell you that when it comes to naming a design, it's really nice when crocheters AND knitters AND everyone else all "get" the name. This is true for Weightless.

Having the right name is a gift bestowed by her fairy godmother. (I had been calling her "Frosted Wicker" because she was conceived in frost-like lace weight mohair right after I created her Tunisian stitch pattern, which is called "Wicker stitch." But then the fairy godmother stepped in.)

Weightless has been having a grand time. Her weightless quality makes her Little Miss Popularity in school, and it disarms and charms those who might normally hold it against her that she's crocheted instead of knitted. She even gets invited to tea parties at yarn shops. This weekend will be her sixth! 

Thanks to another fairy godmother, she 'came out' as a debutante this past July at CGOA's Chain Link conference in Manchester NH. She was written up in Crochetville to critical acclaim.


This second fairy godmother, in the form of a good friend of mine, urged me to enter something in CGOA's 2010 design contest. She cajoled and flitted about my thoughts like Tinkerbell, sprinkling pixie dust all over my crochet projects until I agreed to enter something....and Weightless looks lovely with pixie dust. Good thing I listened because Weightless won Third Prize in the Special Occasion category!

Official CGOA Design Contest Photo
So far it sounds too good to be true, and it is. You should hear what a third fairy godmother did! She gave Weightless a Cinderella-like (or ugly duckling-to-swan-like) destiny by decreeing at birth that her true beauty will be forever invisible unless:
  1. a crocheter heeds the pattern by waving a much larger Tunisian wand than usual over the yarn, AND
  2. by the stroke of midnight, a crocheter must wield the magical Blocking Instrument of Lacy Excellence (spritz with water, spread out all stitches of Stole evenly and leave to dry completely on a flat toweled surface.)
The Scrapbook of Weightless
(Like a doting Mom, I'll update this section whenever newsy items occur.)
  • To learn more about the Weightless Tunisian crochet pattern, or to purchase and instantly download it, go to my pattern website here. To do the same in my Ravelry Store, go here. (If you go to my website, you can see lots more patterns--by me, and by Doris Chan, before they appear in Ravelry.)
  • The glowing review of the Weightless pattern by the founder of Crochetville can be read here.
  • Weightless has her own Crochet-Along! If you'd like to join in, please visit here and see where everyone's at.
  • About Weightless' award: see photo below of her in the contest with her ribbon. My girl is beaming! Thank you for the photo, Donna. This is what was read aloud as Weightless was presented with her prize: "When I think of this stole, I remember the first time I wore it. It was a special night, breezy and cool, and I felt beautiful. The Tunisian stitch pattern is my own combination of eyelet, slip, and twisted Tunisian stitches. I have not found this kind of eyelet lace used anywhere else so I've named it “Wicker Stitch". I like that the return rows settle into enough of a diagonal grain that the fabric acquires more stretch than the usual Tunisian stitch pattern. Yarn is a 75% kid mohair and 25% silk lightweight yarn called Ovation by S.R. Kertzer."
  • Weightless has a social life over in Ravelry. Even if you don't visit her page to purchase the pattern, look at the tabs across the top and you can see the Weightless projects other Ravelers make, when she pops up as a topic in forums, Ravelers' comments, and yarn ideas.
  • Weightless has her own Flickr set here. Actually she has two. One is public, and one can be accessed only by using a special pass found in her pattern!  
  • On Sharon Silverman's Contemporary Crochet Facebook page, Sharon wrote: "Yay, Vashti! She won third prize in the Crochet Guild of American 2010 design competition in the "Special Occasion" category for her Weightless Tunisian Stole--the contest was this summer but the winners' names are published in the current Crochet! mag. Gorgeous work." (September 20, 2010) Thank you, Sharon.