Build your crochet arsenal on a shoestring budget

Last week, I began talking about crocheting circles. In further posts, I plan to elaborate on other shapes, but today I wanted to wish everyone a happy craft month. It is important that all handmade artists acknowledge this month and other small celebrations of our art.

I also wanted to introduce the first of the series, how to crochet or craft on a shoe string budget. It has been a long road to building my crochet arsenal and I am still building. Yet, I am always looking for new ways to expand whether it be a new stitch, working with new yarns, or practicing a new type of crochet.

With the economy being so iffy, the creatives ( as I like to call us ) have to invent new, cheaper ways to grow. So, today I am going to begin with creating your very own crochet needles. After I share this with you, it will be possible for you to make different sized needles for yourself , and who knows you may enjoy it so much that you begin to create you own line of needles. I know that this may sound difficult to you, but believe me it is not.  You can easily create something like these, after you have gained enough experience and researched a bit.

Do you know what dowel is? It is used in all kinds of crafts, in cake baking they are used to hold the tiers of the cake steady. A dowel looks like this:

Short dowel 16"

Short dowel 16″

Long dowel  from the hardware store (2 ft tall)

Long dowel from the hardware store (2 ft tall)

Materials:

Dowels- whatever size you desire

Steak knife – or just a sharp one that can cut with precision (you can use a drill but hey that’s cheating, this is supposed to be easy)

Pen

Emery board/ Nail file– Preferably one from the beauty store

Sandpaper- Medium grade ( less than $1 at Walmart)

Scissors

You are going to purchase a pack of dowels at the store. I recommend going to Walmart, because they have everything on this list.  In addition, you can purchase a number of the materials for this project there for a phenomenally affordable price. If you would like a longer dowel, go to Home Depot or  Lowes.  Don’t worry the dowels are always around the same price, so you’ll still be saving!

Now that you have everything you need. Place all materials on your workspace, or a table that you have no problem getting dirty. Dowels are very temperamental, be aware that they may break when you try to perfect the hook part of the needle. Do not be discouraged. Trust me, you are perfect for this because you design crafts and have a certain precision and deftness in the way you handle objects. So please be confident! In addition most dowels are long enough for you to make a few crochet needles. Just start all over.

Directions

  1. Okay, measure the dowel to the length of desired needle. I made 16” needles.

  2. Mark the space on the dowel with a knife, by making a groove in that space. Cut

  3. You now have you desired length cut off

  4. Now go to the top of the needle and draw a line in the shape of a hook . It will be a funny angle. I recommend looking at other crochet needles.

  5. Take the knife and cut out the chunk you just marked. Be careful, dowels are delicate. You’ll know what to do!

  6. When you begin cutting out the chunk , the shape of the hook will begin to form. Accentuate the shape of the hook, until it is like a crochet hook.

  7. Begin using emery board and sandpaper to smooth. Place the sandpaper in between the hook to smooth roughness.

  8. Then sandpaper the whole needle.

 You are almost done!

 At this point you want to make sure everything is smooth. So crochet something with it. If it is snagging on the yarn than you have to smooth again. If not you have a new needle to add to your stash.

Here’s the needles I made.

Handmade crochet needle

Handmade crochet needle

This week go online and check out different types of crochet needles. Especially, the ones made of wood, with extreme emphasis on how many are in high demand. Take note of how they finish, decorate, and sell them, or contrarily,lack of decor. Hey, maybe you can find yourself a business somewhere in there. A great place to start is here!

Send me pictures, please!!!!  See you soon……………

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