Thank you for joining me at the home for Vonne’s Crochet & Beading. Since building my original site many years ago, a LOT has happened since the 1900’s as the kids are saying these days.
Once upon a time, a mother taught her daughter how to both knit and crochet. Sometime during the last decade, I ‘remembered’ how to knit while yarn doodling with a circular double-ended crochet hook. Occasionally, I’ll cross over to the dark side to make a scarf or cowl…but my first love is and will always be crochet!
My crochet journey has been off and on since I learned. I went back to it after Mom passed and I found her stash. I was off and running again, and haven’t slowed down much since.
2000: One day in June, I sat in amazement of all the crochet-related stuff you could find online: groups and forums, freebies and resourceful websites. The awesome talent and giving spirits of the hookers who came before me were inspiration for the birth of Von’s Crochet Cyberspace. I started the group in an effort to organize some of the info people seemed to be looking for repeatedly, and anything I thought was helpful. It grew to over 500 members, for which I’m thankful and grateful. This website will host the newest iteration, so if you’re interested in being part of a membership, stay tuned…
2001: I was literally found by the founder of the New York City Crochet Guild, which was created because there was no formal group in the city…imagine that! It was a busy year for me…I co-managed another online MSN group called Crochet Paradise, as well as conducting monthly charity drives at my group, some of which included Hats 4 the Homeless, Warming Families, Binky Patrol, Project Linus and The Ships Project. I also began designing; yet another direction to wander off into…
2002: I served in the NYCCG as First Vice President and co-managed the Yahoo! group, as well as writing an occasional yarn store review for the newsletter. They also participated in their first Knit-Out & Crochet Too Event in Union Square Park, where I taught at the crochet tent and wore a fellow member’s garment in my modeling debut! That year I joined the Crochet Guild of America, a perk of which is a subscription to Crochet! magazine.
2003: I left the NYCCG to focus more on teaching, designing and publishing. In celebration of National Crochet Week in March, I made an in-store apearance at The Yarn Tree, where I taught and demonstrated various methods of crochet, which later aired on a local cable channel (and is also available on DVD). I wrote several articles published in Chain Link (the CGOA’s newsletter) as an insert of Crochet! for members. This was also the year I attended my first Chain Link Conference, which was held in Chicago, and when I met the founder, Gwen Blakley Kinsler, and many others who were as crazy for crochet as I am.
First and foremost, I was most fortunate to meet Pauline Turner, who literally saved my life and for which I will forever be grateful.
In addition, I met Todd Paschall (@toddpaschall), who created his own technique, Crochet By Numbers, and the late William Elmore, who also created his own technique, The Elmore Method and where I first learned of what people now call extended stitches. I can proudly say I’ve kept my word to him by using and talking about his stitches every chance I get!
I taught again at the Knit-Out event; by this time, I was a Craft Yarn Council Certified Crochet Teacher, as several members of the New York City Crochet Guild were part of the first live class conducted at the Fashion Institute of Technology by Arnetta Kenney. Later that year, I assisted in her Crochet for Pleasure class, and even had my first real interview during a yarn sale at Seaport Yarn!
2004: I was even busier, and taught everywhere I could: the Brooklyn Public Library, Police Athletic League, Knit-A-Way, as well as back at The Yarn Tree and another Knit-Out event. I wrote more articles for the Chain Link newsletter, and to further my crochet education, I became an Associate Professional CGOA member, and even got to model my own garment at the Chain Link Conference fashion show!
2005: I rejoined the NYCCG. In celebration of National Crochet Month, with the help of fellow NYCCG’ers, I hosted classes and demonstrations on Saturdays in March, which also aired on a local cable channel (yes, also available on DVD) at Knit-A-Way, and taught and hosted a Meetup for crocheters there as well. At this Chain Link Conference, I debuted my first published pattern; the garment was live and on display at the vendor’s market booth. I taught once again at the Knit-Out event and later that year had the pleasure of substituting for Arnetta during another one of her Crochet for Pleasure classes.
2006: Other opportunities came along; sold a design to Caron Yarns, which was displayed at the CHA and TNNA trade shows; began selling my crochet and beaded items at Habana Outpost’s Open Air Market, introduced to me and encouraged by eco-friendly designer Lopeti Etu, who is also a former crochet student.
I attended Chain Link again, primarily for Professional Day. I was a spectator at this year’s Knit-Out event (which sadly turned out to be the last one!); hanging out at the NYCCG tent and helping with the Caps for the Capital effort. The guild and ‘friends’ contributed well over 3,000 preemie hats, of which I made over 100. In addition, as networking has its benefits, I taught for DC37 and at Gumbo, both of which were by referral from fellow crocheters.
2007: Back again to teach for DC37 and at Gumbo; that was just the beginning…
2008: I spent more time designing than teaching, and even managed to squeeze in some beading, too!
2009: Back at DC37 for another teaching session! Unfortunately, as my class proposal was not accepted, I didn’t go Chain Link, but there was always next year!!!