Thanksgiving yarn and hooks giveaway!

There are so many things to be thankful for this Thanksgiving, even if you’re not celebrating the holiday in the United States.  To demonstrate this, check out this list I found (from itsbubz on Instagram):

Grateful for…

  1.  Early wakeups = children to love
  2. House to clean = safe place to live
  3. Laundry = clothes to wear
  4. Dishes to wash = food to eat
  5. Crumbs under the table = family meals
  6. Grocery shopping = $ to provide for us
  7. Toilets to clean = indoor plumbing
  8. Lots of noise = people in my life
  9. Endless questions about homework = kids’ brains growing
  10. Sore & tired in bed = I’m still alive!


Even though I don’t have kids, this is a great reminder that we can find things to be grateful for in what we usually consider to be unpleasant chores.

In the spirit of spreading thankfulness (which incidentally can also be really good for your mental health, see here), I’m hosting a giveaway!





  • 1 100g skein of fingering/sock weight yarn (480m/525yds) from DyeForYarn.  This Merino/BabyCamel yarn is a single ply yarn made of 55% merino superwash wool, 45% baby camel.  It is very soft and warm (I used it for my wedding wrap). Colorway: Blood Smear.

Not Your Average Crochet Thanksgiving 2015 giveaway

  • 1 more skein of the exact same yarn in colorway: Disappointed.

Not Your Average Crochet Thanksgiving 2015 giveaway

  • 4 Susan Bates aluminum crochet hooks in sizes:
    • B/1 (2.25mm)
    • C/2 (2.75mm)
    • D/3 (3.25mm)
    • E/4 (3.5mm)

Not Your Average Crochet Thanksgiving 2015 giveaway

The yarn currently retails for $21.27 USD (click here for my previous review of the yarn) and the Susan Bates hooks are my favorite aluminum brand, hands down, because the in-line shape allows me to crochet more quickly and smoothly.


The giveaway starts today and runs through the end of Sunday, December 6, 2015 EST and the winner will be drawn randomly on the following day.  The winner will receive an email alerting them to their win, and they must respond with their full name and shipping address within 24 hours of the email being sent or else another winner will be drawn.  The giveaway is open to all countries.

To enter, you must do ALL of the following:

  1. Follow this blog (via WordPress, Bloglovin’, or email).
  2. Re-blog this post (or share on another social media platform if you don’t have a blog, such as Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, etc.).  Multiple entries can be earned if you share on multiple platforms.
  3. Leave a comment on this post including the following information: a) how you follow this blog  b) the links to your re-blogged post and any of your shares on other social media platforms.

If all three of these have not been met, you will not be entered.

Please keep in mind that if you are a new commenter on my blog I will have to verify your comment before it will appear below, but you are entered once you submit your comment so please do not comment twice.

Good luck to everyone, and happy Thanksgiving!


fun containers (yes, containers)!

How do you store your crochet and knitting stuff?  I like the practical but I also really love the unusual, especially combined with sentimental, and that perfectly describes what I keep [some of] my hooks in next to my armchair:

new header image

It’s an old plant frog, I think they’re called, and it’s made by Camark (a now closed pottery company in Camden, Arkansas, where a family member of mine used to work).  It’s special to me and I’m so happy that I can use it for something I love!  The mug to the left was my grandmother’s, so there’s lots to love in this picture for me (that’s why I made it the new header image for this site a few weeks ago!).

I do use a more practical zippered pencil pouch and a zippered knitting needle pouch for projects on the go, as well as a little tin with my needles and some stitch markers, but this is so much cuter at home and really adds some personality to my storage, hehe.

What do you use to store your stuff?  Do you have any neat containers of your own?

That’s all for today, thanks for stopping by!

everything you need to know about crochet hooks

This is a re-post of a page I published back in June of 2011.  It’s still available in the menu bar but I thought it worth revisiting!

intro to crochet hooks

My favorite metal hooks are Susan Bates, hands down. I find them more ergonomic than Boye hooks due to the shape of the actual hook and its alignment with the handle.


There’s quite a range! Most yarns say on the label what hook sizes are most appropriate, as do most patterns. However, I personally don’t follow these guides all the time, because I find that they tend to make looser stitches than I like. There are also different methods of sizing: metric sizing and US sizing being the most predominant. It’s good to be familiar with both, so if I see a pattern that calls for a 5.00mm hook I can automatically say “OK, that’s an H-8, I think I have a couple in my collection” or vice versa.  Click here for a comparison chart.


Another tip: the material your hooks are made of actually do make a difference in how you crochet. Plastic hooks are more flexible and so tend to make looser stitches than metal hooks do, for instance. Not a huge deal, of course, but a matter of personal preference, and there’s lots to choose from! Bamboo or wood has more of a grip, and therefore is perfect for slippery yarns like silk, whereas aluminum/metal hooks are more slippery and might fare better with wool blends. Bone or horn hooks are usually antiques and can be really fancy/expensive, although the one above was not.


One thing you can do to make your hooks more comfortable to hold is to get little grippies — like those things you put on your pencils in 3rd grade. They sell packs of different sizes at places like Michael’s, so you don’t have to search far, and they’re cheap.

favorite stuff & online shopping

For both crocheting and knitting, I have come to regard some particular items as special favorites.  I want to share with you in case you may be looking for something similar!  I’ll start off with basic tools:

toolsMy lavender lotion bar is AMAZING in both smell and feel.  Check out the Lavishea website!  I mean, you need to take care of your hands that do so much work to make such lovely things!  Also, my Westcott sewing scissors that were given to me by my mom are the best — they’ve stayed sharp since I started crocheting all those years ago and the handles are nice and comfy.  The Cath Kidston tape measure I’ve shown you before, I know, but it bears looking at it again because it’s so darn cute!  Can’t get it on the US website though — you have to go to England!

susan bates hooksThese are my favorite metal hooks, and ironically they were gifted me by my horrible ex’s mother.  They’re old Susan Bates hooks, I believe (although they don’t actually have a brand name on them), sizes H-8 (5mm) and J-10 (6mm).  I use the H hook for everything possible.  Now I actually have some hook sets that my great grandmother owned, and those of course are my real favorites, but I don’t use those much because I’m scared of losing them.  There’s a regular set and a tiny steel hook set, and they mean a lot to me.

brittany hooksThese Brittany wooden hooks are my favorite wooden ones because of the actual hook shape and the fancy ends!  Pictured are D-3 (3.25mm) and J-10 (6mm).  I haven’t found these in the States either, and I only recently found them available online at Deramores.  I think I’ll be getting more of these soon!

newhook1This older, square, discolored picture shows a lovely antique hook made of bone.  It’s size E-4 (3.5mm).  Small but gorgeous!

knitting toolsThese are my favorite knitting tools — Brittany knitting needles and cable needles are available in the US, and I love these cable needles.  This is also the only pretty handmade stitch marker I’ve got, so I love it!

straightsEven though I don’t use straight needles too much since I’ve got a lovely circular set that does the job, I do love these cute ChiaoGoo ones!  Yes, they’re bamboo, but they’ve held up pretty well so far.  I don’t even like cats that much (I mean they’re great, but they make me sneeze) but these are so cute!

I got a couple of extras, like extra cables, ID tags, and cable joins.And of course my favorite circular knitting needles are my KnitPicks Sunstruck interchangeable needles!  These are the same as the KnitPro Harmony needles, for those of you in Europe.  These are awesome because, as I’ve said many times before, they have such nice sharp points and they don’t split on me like the bamboo circulars do.

And as far as DPNs, I just ordered the KnitPicks Sunstruck 6″ DPN Set — I know already that they’ll be my favorite!  I know I’m short on cash and I should probably have waited for these, but these will be worth it.  I’m going to use them for some Christmas ornaments that I’m going to give as Christmas gifts this year!  Of course that means I also bought the Christmas book by Arne & Carlos from KnitPicks as well, so I can get started.  (After my dad bought me the Easter Knits book by them, I’ve been astounded that I hadn’t heard of them before and I’m really excited about their stuff!)  I still need the yarn for the Christmas ornaments, but it will be cheap yarn, and overall it will save us A LOT of money on gifts this year!  I’ll just have to wait a bit longer on the yarn…

In my KnitPicks order I also tossed in two balls of Dishie Multi Yarn in Cottage (25849), just because it’s absolutely gorgeous and cheerful and it’ll make some great washcloths or dishcloths that I can also use as gifts!  It’s not the softest cotton but that’s why it’s designed for things that get wet all the time and take a lot of wear.  Here’s the colorway:

I spent a good bit, but at least I qualified for free shipping… It was a bit of an impulse buy…  I’m sorry, Mom.  :-(  As hard as it is to believe, I actually am getting better… Ugh, now I feel all guilty!  I really do shop smart, though — the DPN set saves money when compared to buying them all separately, and getting the book from a US distributor saved me money there, too!  And the yarn’s not really expensive, either.  Look at me, trying to justify my shopping.  I guess I should have just waited until I had more money to spend, even though they’re all great buys.  *sigh*

Anyway, I feel like I’m starting to ramble, so I’ll sign off for now.  I know I said I’d hold off on the posts but I’ve still got 7 more topics to post about, not counting any projects I’m working on.  Thanks for stopping by!  I’m sure I’ll break down and post again within the next few days, so check back soon!


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