Annie’s Sale!

There is a big sale on clearance items this weekend!  Check it out not just for crochet but all the craft and home solutions too!

My Learn Bruges Lace (Crochet) book is only $3.99  CRAZY! (It has symbol diagrams in addition to the text).  Plus you can use an additional discount code at checkout. Look at the top left corner of the sale page.

Learn Bruges Lace

Have a great weekend!

Leave a comment

When Life Gives You Lemons…

When life gives you lemons, you stitch away stress!  The Craft Yarn Council has a fun campaign going on for the month of April.  You can visit their Facebook Page for giveaways and tips for managing stress through creative yarn play.

Lemon7-hand-square (1) Stitch Away Stress

Do you know anyone who could use a little crocheted stress-ball lemon? Relax your tired stitching hands with this adorable lemon stress-ball pattern!  It’s FREE on the Craft Yarn Council Site HERE. It was designed by iconic crochet designer, Twinkie Chan.

It’s tax season, I know it would be good for me to #StitchAwayStress.  Perhaps I should make a stress-ball lemon and give it to my accountant?  I’m sure he could use some stress relief too!

The Craft Yarn Council has interviewed many people just like you! Learn more about how knit and crochet has improved the lives of others with this powerful YouTube video.

Leave a comment

Stitch Away Stress!

Stitch Away Stress

All month in April, the Craft Yarn Council will be talking about how to #StitchAwayStress!  Use the hashtag for Instagram and other Social Media to tell your story!


My favorite ways to Stitch Away Stress are:

1. Crochet with my cat nearby. Aw, sleepy kitty.

2. Choose a rhythmic pattern where I can just stitch without thinking too hard.

3. Choose a GREAT yarn. Something smooth and soft that won’t get grumpy if I decide to pull out a few stitches.  Some yarn, like mohair, is beautiful but can turn into a battle if you have to rip out.

4. Choose a GREAT color. Choose a color that you love.

5. Choose a project you will GIVE to someone you love. Think of them as you make it.

6. Keep your tension Goldilocks… not too tight, not too loose, just right. Don’t try thread for the first time if your goal is to de-stress. Don’t try a Q sized hook for the first time if your goal is to de-stress.

7. Turn off your phone or computer. Just for 15 minutes or so if you are anxious. The world can wait 15 minutes.


1 Comment

Snapshot of the Day

I’m in Berne, Indiana at the Annie’s offices today and yesterday. Yesterday I was in the studio with Melissa, awesome videographer (and artist!). We were just taping my hands this time, working a few stitches that will go on the Stitch Guide. (This is why I didn’t have any big makeup on!)  For these short video clips, Melissa looks over my left shoulder and aims the camera at my hands.  I have to be careful to keep my hands far out from my body so that she doesn’t get my bent head in the shot!

032615 snapshot of day 1 032615 snapshot of day 2

Ironically, I went for a run last night after work, fell, and cut up my hands :(  Good thing I completed the videos first!  My hands are fine, but they aren’t “video ready” until they heal up a bit.

1 Comment

Stitch Away Stress!

Stitch Away Stress

Beginning April 1st, in observance of National Stress Awareness Month, the Craft Yarn Council will be encouraging people to #StitchAwayStress and would love for YOU to join in the fun.

 Visit CYC’s Instagram (@craftyarncouncil) and Facebook pages throughout the month for 30 Days of Creative Ways to #StitchAwayStress. You’ll find a variety of fun and educational posts for using knitting and crochet to relax, relieve stress and boost mood, including activity ideas, giveaways, videos, health studies and stats, a one-of-a-kind stress busting pattern and more.    

In April, here on Behind the Hook, I’ll be listing my favorite tips for using crochet to #StitchAwayStress

Stay tuned!


1 Comment

Summer is Here!

There may be lingering snow in many areas and the flooding of Spring is happening here in Southern Ohio, but the Summer issue of Crochet! is HERE.

There are so many exciting projects in this issue!  On the cover is the Clearwater Tank, by Rebecca Velasquez. This is stitched in beautiful Anzula yarns, Breeze.  It is sized from XS to 3X.  It’s a silk and linen blend yarn that is so perfect for warmer temperatures. The tank offers beautiful coverage with a lovely accent of the drape neckline.

Buy the digital edition and get your copy of Crochet! instantly.



Los amantes del ganchillo que no hablen inglés aún pueden disfrutar de muchos de los patrones en la revista Crochet! Magazine.

Varios proyectos en cada número tienen tanto instrucciones escritas como esquemas de ganchillo.

Para ayudar a unir puentes entre idioma y símbolos, visite esta pagine en la web de Annie´s que ofrece una explicación de los símbolos del ganchillo.


Crocheters who do not speak English can still enjoy many of the patterns in Crochet! magazine. Several projects in each issue have both written instructions and symbol diagrams. To help bridge the gap between language and symbols, visit this page on the Annie’s website that offers a key to crochet symbols.

Symbol Crochet
U.S. single crochet (sc)
U.K. double crochet (dc)
Français maille serree
Español punto bajo (pb)
Deutsch Feste Masche (fM)
Italiano maglia bassa (m. bassa)
Leave a comment


Can you imagine a world where all crafts live in harmony? Knitters and Crocheters coming together to join with beaders, paper crafters, quilters, sewers, flower arrangers, cake decorators, cross-stitchers, painters!  What a wonderful world it would be!

Now we can get a weekend long crafting in harmony experience…

new lo res logo

Save the date for October 30, 31 and November 1 at the Grand Wayne Convention Center, Ft. Wayne, Indiana.

There will be tons of information coming as details on the classes, teachers and vendors all firm up. What I do know is that the teacher list is AWESOME and you are going to want to attend with a friend or two or family member or two and sample not only your favorite crafts but new ones you may want to learn! There will be free activities and demonstrations. DEBBIE MACOMBER will be there as the keynote speaker! Here’s the website where information will be forthcoming!




Don’t Miss the Special Newsstand Issues!

Now you can subscribe to the Special Newsstand issues of Crochet! and Crochet World. Separate from your regular subscriptions of the magazines, our editor, Carol Alexander, has been putting together Special issues 2 times per year for both magazines. Now you can subscribe to all FOUR special issues in print copy or digital copy so you won’t miss out and you won’t have to drive to the store to find them!

Here’s how: Read the details here.

This is a brand new offering at a discount for Annie’s Crochet Specials!

Here is a photo of the Specials already published:

Enjoy home delivery of newstand special issues of Crochet World and Crochet! with our exclusive subscription offer!


Leave a comment

Become a Designer for Crochet!

Have you always had a secret desire to design for Crochet! ?  Does your heart race at even reading this headline? The next deadline for design proposals is May 8, 2015.  I will be looking at proposals for the Spring 2016 issue.

How do you propose a project for publication?

Step 1: On the left sidebar of the Crochet! magazine website, under More Information, choose “Designer Guidelines” or click HERE for a direct link to the designer guidelines. Click on and read the ‘Submission Guidelines’.

Step 2: Email us at and ask for an Editorial Calendar. It gives you the dates, details, and inspiration about submitting for this issue and the next one.

What needs to be in a proposal?

1.  A completed Project Submission form (it’s attached to the editorial calendar). Fill in the form completely with all the necessary information: What yarn you want to use, what color, what the project is, how big it will be, what stitches you will use, what you would like to call it, and a pretty description to introduce the project, etc.

2. A swatch!  Even in an emailed submission, make a large swatch and attach a great photo of it. Make sure if your project has multiple stitch patterns, that we can see them all. If your project has grading, show on your swatch how you plan to increase or decrease. If you plan on attaching flowers or trims, show those on your swatch or on a second swatch.

3. A sketch!  It doesn’t have to be a talented sketch, just give us an idea of where things will go, what length of sleeves does it have (if any) how long will a garment fit on the body (tunic length, cropped length?).  If your sketch is really, uh, sketchy… use more words to help illustrate, and point to it! —–> 3/4 sleeve, mid-hip length, length of purse handle, etc.

4. If you have never published a pattern before, or haven’t published one with us, please send us a portion of the written pattern you are proposing. Having a well-written pattern is just as important as having a pretty pattern.

You can either mail in your submission with your swatches (make sure you wrote down exactly what you did… we’ll keep your swatch if we use it.) OR you can email your submission (then you can keep your swatch for reference).

DO: Please send submissions to only one publication at a time… because what if we both say, ‘YES”?, then you’ll be in the embarrassing spot of telling someone you can’t deliver on your proposal.

DO: Be amazing. ;)  Look over our past issues but don’t try and copy what you’ve seen us publish before. We want what we haven’t already seen!

DO: Be bold. Every published designer has had rejections. It happens. It will happen to you. Most of the time it’s just that the “fit” isn’t right. It doesn’t mean that your project is bad. If it doesn’t get accepted design something new and try again. Ask yourself… if I saw this in a magazine, and I had never seen it before, would I want to make it? What would excite me about this project? Would it teach me something new?

DO: Be happy crocheting. There is nothing wrong with stitching happily along on projects that other designers have written. Designers are just crocheters who don’t like to follow instructions ;)



1 Comment