The first anniversary of Off the Hook Crochet Guild

I have, on occasion, mentioned that I belong to a local chapter of the CGOA (Crochet Guild of America), and as today was the second Sunday of the month (and the eve of International Crochet Day), we had a meeting, and this particular meeting marked one year, since we first met as a guild.

In addition to readying ourselves for the Chain Link conference in Greensboro, North Carolina that begins on September 21, there was also a collection of pet mats that we made to donate in honor of Jean Leinhauser, an avid crocheter who (with her business partner, Rita Weiss) worked most of her adult life to advance the cause of this craft. Jean passed away unexpectedly last June, and we wanted to do something that commemorated her life, and as she loved crochet and dogs, we settled on donating pet mats to a shelter.

In addition to the pet mats I made using Kim Werker’s Bullseye Pet Mat pattern. Here is the first pet mat I made using this pattern:

Bullseye Pet Mart made from a strand of worsted weight acrylic and a strand of tied together scraps

and here is the second:

My second pet mat made using Kim Werker's Bullseye pet mat pattern

Other members had contributions to make as well. Betty was particularly busy with this project and created three pet mats. The first one she calls “Pelt”:

Betty's "Pelt" petmat

Made with a strand of worsted weight acrylic paired with a strand of fun fur, “Pelt” feels as though it would provide any pet with a lot of comfort.

Next up was a large granny square, perfect for a smaller cat:

Betty's petmat for a cat

As she did with “Pelt” Betty paired two strands of yarn to create this work.

The last of Betty’s pet mats was my favorite. Made of reclaimed crocheted yo-yos that she had been given, Betty joined them using a flat braid joining technique:

Betty's pet mat made from crocheted yo-yos

If you are interested in learning about the joining technique she used, you can go to this page and then search for the term “Flat Braid Yo-Yo Joining” which will take you to a PDF with wonderful photos and written directions to guide you.

Meanwhile, Jody (who I believe is able to crochet in her sleep) worked on this mat during the meeting:

Jody gets a start on a petmat

Had I been thinking more clearly, I would have gotten a photo of it at the end of the meeting to document her progress.

My first year in the crochet guild has been wonderful. It has been a real delight to be in the company of like-minded people who understand the joy and wonder I experience when I crochet, and we have done things together that I don’t think would have been able to accomplish on our own.

I hope that every one has a memorable (in a good way) International Crochet Day 2011 tomorrow, and that the new crochet year brings many new and exciting crafting adventures.

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