Thursday, May 31, 2012

Hookers Need Love Too (for their hooks!)

Hookers? Well that's a term . . . umm . . . let me quote an expert here:
" . . . the first printed crochet pattern appeared in a Dutch magazine early in the nineteenth century . . . As the appalling conditions of lace makers became known to the American women, they started to get interested in creating the work themselves rather than supporting the abusive practices of the lace making industry. In a book published at the time, a lace manufacturer admitted that he expected his workers to turn a few tricks on the side to make up for his not paying them a living wage. As Donna Kooler suggests in The Encyclopedia of Crochet, this may even explain how the word "hooker" came to have such wayward connotations."
~ Debbie Stoller Stitch 'n Bitch Crochet: The Happy Hooker

Now since crochet has only been around for a little over 200 years (*) and no one really knows where it started we can pretty much only rely on what's been written. Knitting has been around for thousands of years, so we crocheters are a new breed of crafter! 

Not really. I'd venture to say every crocheter has an old heart filled with love no matter the age of the person wielding the hooks. 8 to 108, we love making things that make people smile and provide a modicum of comfort. And sometimes we need to have some of that comfort for ourselves. 

I'd been telling myself that I was going to make a pouch for my hooks. I think I started saying that sometime around 1994. Maybe earlier. I was playing around the other day and finally got tired of digging my hooks out of the sandwich baggie they've lived in for the last 4 or 5 years. So I made a thing to put them in. I'm not really sure what this is called. It's a pouch, bag, envelope sort of thing. And I warn you ahead of time, it is not perfect in form but it is perfect for me. Unfortunately it doesn't hold all my hooks. But I can always make another one!

This is a green pouch with purple trim, a bronze colored button and a yellow hair band that I fashioned into a closure. It's single crochet stitch used throughout and the trim on the sides is just a double strand of purple in a blanket stitch holding the pouch part together. I also used the purple to make the individual pouches on the inside. I wanted something that would keep the hooks upright and prevent them from falling over. What's the point in making a holder if the hooks are just going to lay inside, right? They can do that in the manky old sandwich bag.

Now, I improvised a place for my embroidery needles. This could also hold notions such as small spools of sewing thread, embroidery floss, buttons, hair bands, pretty much anything that you can add onto an item you're crocheting.

In this picture, there are 14 hooks of various sizes and a small pair of scissors on one side; and four embroidery needles on the other side. Two of them are smaller and at the top of the picture in case you're having trouble seeing them. (^_^) My favorite hooks are absent since I have a couple projects they're tied up to right now. My favorite embroidery needle is there though, so hopefully I will quit misplacing it!

I'm thinking of making one of these for my mother for her birthday. Her favorite hooks are smaller though, ones used for crochet thread, E and lower I think. Maybe I can make one out of crochet thread for her.

Be a happy hooker and love your notions! Tot Zo!
(that means "see you soon" in Dutch)

*info taken from Stitch 'n Bitch Crochet: The Happy Hooker page 6

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