What’s New for 2014
It’s a new year and there is a lot of excitement about knitting and crochet trends for 2014. As we say goodbye to 2013, we see emerald green go by the wayside. New yarns and techniques will be sure to bring out the creativity in all of us. So what’s hot and what’s not?
Pantone has named Radiant Orchard as the 2014 color of the year. This replaces emerald green. Lion Brand’s blog states that Radiant Orchard inspires confidence and emanates joy, love and health. It is time to browse through your stash and pull out the purple.
Specialty yarns are in vogue for 2014. Everything from mohair to mink is being spun into yarn. Instead of the usual wool, why not give yak a try. If animal fibers are not your thing, try bamboo, or maybe yarns made from corn. Big chunky yarns are also in style.
Knit vs. Crochet
Ask avid crocheters or knitters why you should learn their art and they’ll probably say because it’s the most beautiful and versatile art form. Some say one’s faster; others, more fashionable. Decide for yourself. We hope you learn both.
Crochet is an extremely versatile and popular technique for making a variety of fashion and home decor accessories. To crochet, you need a hook and yarn. Depending on the type yarn you use, you can create a variety of different fabrics. By combining crochet stitches and lighter weight or softer yarns, you create a delicate, drapable fabric; a thicker yarn produces a sturdy fabric. Beautiful textured and raised stitches are especially easy to make in crochet. You can also crochet with fine threads to create lacy projects like doilies or even string or cord.
You start by making a slip stitch, wrapping the yarn around the hook and pulling a loop through the slip stitch. This is the basic chain stitch. A series of chains creates a foundation row and from this base you build rows of stitches.
You can crochet in rows, keeping your work flat, or you can join your stitches, creating a ring and work in the round.
Knitting has long been the favorite technique for sweater making because of the detailing and color patterning that is possible, and the supple, drapable fabric the stitches produce. The two basic stitches — knit and purl — can be worked alone or together and form many other stitches.
Knitting requires two needles and a continuous strand of yarn. You begin by making a slip knot on one needle and "casting on" the number of stitches you need for the project. (That’s the term for creating the foundation row on one needle.) The basic stitches are created using both needles, wrapping the yarn over one needle and drawing the wrapped yarn through loops on the other needle.
Circular knitting needles — long, flexible needles with a point on each end — are growing in popularity because they eliminate seams and the need to continually turn your knitting at the end of a row.