Q&A with Robyn Chachula
We're Robyn Chachula fangirls here in the office; our editor in chief, Theresa Gonzalez, did a terrific interview with her for the September/October 2012 issue, and our editor Rose White called out Robyn's Crochet Stitches Visual Encyclopedia as one of her favorite Kindle books. So we were especially pleased that Robyn was able to take the time to answer a few questions for our ongoing blog series of Q&As with Crochet Today! designers and friends.
1. What dream project have you yet to crochet?
Sadly, I would love to crochet something just for me. I have no idea when that might happen, but I have this very alternative construction shrug in my head. It would be a nightmare to publish the design, so it would be something just for me. I see it as a close-fitting shrug with motifs and chevrons mixed together. It is not freeform, but more like a brick pattern with some "bricks" being lacy motifs.
2. What’s your favorite crochet trend right now?
Colorwork, ones that require no work. Like Mosaic Crochet where you are crocheting stripes and you end up with great fabrics on both sides of your project. I am obsessed and have to stop myself from constantly designing projects all in color.
3. Tell us about your worst crochet “oops.”
I designed a shawl that had openings for the fronts to pass through each other and tie in the back. After crocheting and trying on my mannequin, I noticed I had a math error and those openings were on the shoulder not at the waist. Instead of frogging 5 hanks (at least ) of laceweight alpaca, I figured out how to repair the hole and create new openings by cutting my fabric. Then I posted my technique on my blog (http://crochetbyfaye.blogspot.com/2007/07/wait-how-did-that-buttonhole-get-there.html). I have been teaching every crocheter I can how to cut crochet ever since, so they don't end up in that crazy situation either.
4. Who inspires you?
Everyone who loves yarn. I love cables from Drew Emborsky, unique construction from Norah Gaughan, color combinations from Linda Permann, lace creations from Doris Chan, smart techniques from Kristin Omdahl and more. I just love cheerleading everyone who is doing something original in yarn. [Note: We just did a Q&A with Kristin Omdahl last month!]
5. What’s your go-to stitch pattern?
A lacy motif, sometimes it ends in a circle, sometimes a square. If I just have yarn (and no stitch dictionaries in front of me), I always create motifs.
6. What’s likely playing while you crochet?
An audiobook. I am a fiend. I will go through at least 2-3 a week while I am working and crocheting. I can't crochet in front of the TV, I end up watching and not crocheting. But with an audiobook, I can get so caught up in the story I will crochet so fast I don't even realize it.
7. What’s your fix for the crochet munchies?
Air-popped popcorn. I love salty snacks, but my waist line does not. I learned long ago that I can eat a whole bowl of popcorn and not feel huge afterwards. Plus air-popped popcorn with a bit of spray butter makes my hands just greasy enough that the yarn slides through my hands quickly without getting food in my yarn.
8. Who do you crochet for most?
Does work count? Otherwise, I pick up my hook the most for new babies and my daughter equally. I have a need that every baby should have something handmade. When my daughter was born, friends organized a secret crochet along for her. Every day the mail man brought a new handmade gift (like a sweater, socks, hat, blanket, toy, etc). I am still incredibly touched by their time and planning. We have at least 2 dozen handmade things all over her room from them.
9. In one word, how would you describe your crochet life?
Robyn certainly does have a colorful crochet life! To learn more about her background, check out our September/October 2012 issue (on newsstands—including digital newsstands!—right now). And be sure to enter to win a copy of the book she edited recently, Unexpected Afghans!
[Photographs in this post are of projects Robyn has designed for Crochet Today!]