Posted in Crochet

Crochet. Crocheting. Crocheter. Note 1

My Crochet Journal, Entry 1: Crocheter’s Warm-up

Crochet. Crocheting. My favorite way of creating handmade fabric. A hook and string (thread, yarn) is all I need to make something. Whether I’m following a pattern or creating a design of my own, I enjoy the process of making loops that flow into groups of stitches that form flowers and zigzags and waves and geometric shapes and so much more.

Crocheting can be very relaxing and meditative and it can be energizing and entertaining too. There is a range of health benefits attributed to crocheting as well.

I’ve come to realize it’s a good idea to start each crochet fun session with a quick set of warm-up exercises for hands&fingers. I’ve made a quick video of my fav ‘workout’:

The key is to place NO strain or pressure on muscles or joins. The workout should cause no pain or discomfort. The purpose is to warm up and relax hands, to improve coordination and to prep fingers for work. Also, I like using a super soft and squishy ball.


Disclaimer: I am not a medical professional. The information I am sharing here is based on my personal experience as a crocheter and is not intended to prevent or treat any condition. For professional advice, please consult a specialist/physical therapist.

Coming up next: crochet hooks I like using; ways to hold yarn to best control tension; ways to hold a crochet hook.

Posted in Crochet, Knitting, Yarn


I wonder if there are folks out there whose spouses/partners/other family members resent and/or devalue their fiber art interests. Is there a stigma that knitting, crocheting, spinning is a waste of time and resources that a self-respecting professional in any other field would never do? Is there anyone who’s ever felt like they would have been better off sneaking past their loved one/s with their brand new stitch dictionary/yarn/hooks or needles and shoving them in the depths of their stash unnoticed? 😀

I do it all in the open 🙂 never sneak or shove. But sometimes I wonder, is it just me or am I indeed the only individual in the house so excited about my little finds and projects, and should I care?

Well, of course I care about how the loved ones feel about things I do, but whether I should care about anyone’s resentment towards my fiber hobbies is, probably a rhetorical question.

Take a look at the pic:

Knitting on the go - knitting in the car -

What do you resent more: those stressed jeans or the knitting? 😀

The End.

“I will wind them over my hand the way Aunt Maria does, so that the balls feel quite ‘spongey’. I wish that all yarns came from the factories wound in balls, though!”

“You are not the first person to wish that,” said the Yarn Baby. “Hanks and skeins are much harder for a child to manage than balls.”

This never gets old. Child or adult, take care that the yarn balls you’re handwinding are ‘spongey’ enough not to damage the fiber 🙂

Ball of Yarn, handwound -

Do you ever handwind your yarn into balls?

Jane Eayre Fryer. The Mary Frances Knitting and Crocheting Book. 1918. p.39.

A Ball of Yarn

Posted in Crochet

Meditative-Crocheting a Doily

Crocheting this little doily feels like meditative-drawing a mandala. It’s complex and intricate yet relaxing & easy – instructions are very clear and easy to follow:


Lorelai Crochet Doily -

I’ve stumbled upon Grace Fearon’s designs and Lorelei – a free pattern on Ravelry – is my first project – just to get a feel of her designs, which are quite fascinating!

💙Back to crocheting :)💙





Posted in Knitting

Knitting with Kids

I’ve stumbled upon this bit of info re knitting and instruction dating back to the mid 1800s. The intro sounds a little funny/dated. The rest sounds like an answer to my question, ‘at what age it would be appropriate for a child to start learning how to knit/crochet.’ I am more comfortable with the idea of teaching children hand-knitting and finger-crocheting. But, here it goes:

“Knitting is a most universally popular employment, and has this great advantage above others, that it affords a useful occupation for the old, when the failure of eye-sight obliges them to lay aside all other work. But to knit well in age we must be diligent in youth; and it is surprising how early children may be taught, and how much pride and pleasure they feel in knitting their first garter. I visited an interesting little school the other day in which children of three and four years of age were taught this useful work, and saw some nice little socks of their knitting. On asking the obliging and clever governess how it was possible to train such little creatures, even to perform the first step in the art; she most kindly sent me the following rules, at the same time allowing me to print them for the benefit of my scholars: –

“When teaching little children the art of knitting, I take them by my side, and cast up a garter. I then show them how I knit the simple stitch, saying whilst I do so, ‘put in the needle, put up the cotton, turn in the stitch, and slip it off.’ The repetition of these rules not only instructs, but at the same time amuses my little scholars. I then put the work into their own hands, and at first guide their fingers, repeating the lesson until they have learnt it, which they do in a surprisingly short time, together with the stitch it is intended to teach. I have girls of four years of age who can knit their own socks, as well as supply their little brothers and sisters with these useful articles. At five they can knit ‘antimacassars,’ and other fancy stitches; and in teaching these, I follow the same plan, and make them learn the receipt by heart before putting into practice. I also teach my little boy-scholars to knit; as, besides the advantage it may be to them in after life, it amuses and keeps them quiet in school.””

The Industrial Handbook…Part II.-Knitting. London, 1856. pp5-6.

Wow, 3-4-year-olds knitting their own socks. I have trouble picturing this as possible nowadays. It probably is. But, I could not recommend having knitting needles around a child or even an active pet that age 🙂 I did my very first bit of knitting, I believe, in middle school. It was not an ‘antimacassar’ 🙂 I’ve been working on this one for over a month now:

Angora Knit Hat -

But that has nothing to do with my age 😀

I am wondering if it would be ok for a child to knit with these new prym “ball-point” needles that I keep wanting to buy for myself, but haven’t figured out how/where.

It’s certainly an interesting insight; explains a lot. Just look at all those amazing knitting patterns published in the 19th century.

How old were you when you first picked up knitting needles and made your first knit stitch? What brand needles would you recommend for a knitting session with a kid?

Crocheting in Circles

Crochet Circles - Bohemian Flower

Just felt like crocheting a few plain circles playing with different basic stitches, relying heavily on simple math. Was curious to see if geometry formulae would fully apply in each specific case.

Do you normally use formulae to come up with specific circular designs or is it all intuitive for you?

Posted in Animals | Birds | Pets, Crochet, Knitting

A Knit Hat, Crochet Swans, and a Cat

I’ve finished and test-worn my nordic inspired knit hat. There’s no lining, yet the hat is super warm. With just 20% of alpaca there’s no need to add insulation at all. Can you tell the hat is on a snow blanket? 🙂 There are a few snowflakes on the hat too; – took the pic before it got covered in snow – it’s snowing out!

My Knitted Hat | Estonian Knits | Bohemian Flower,

I’ve knitted it using Mountain Bluebird, Aspyn, Yarn Bee yarn. Love the soft fabric it makes!

How do you like working with alpaca?

Oh, and I could help, but share a couple pics of this super cute kitty and an amazing crocheted curtain with gorgeous swans on it!

Kitty and Crochet Swans 2 | Bohemian Flower |

Kitty and Crochet Swans 1 | Bohemian Flower |

There was as person in the room, who, I assume, ‘s the owner of the kitty and possibly the author of the crochet work. They are probably used to people taking photos of their awesome pet and the crochet masterpiece and didn’t mind that I was standing there admiring the view and taking a couple pics (Thank you!). 🙂



Posted in Animals | Birds | Pets, Knitting, Yarn

Puppaca Yarn

Holding a pair of hanks of hand-spun Dog hair and Alpaca yarn felt like staring at a blank sheet of canvas paper. The yarn felt so lovely I hesitated to start a project out of fear to ruin the yarn. All ideas vanished. What would I make? Definitely something I could feel with my hands as much as possible…mittens or wrist warmers. To break the block, I simply began hand-winding the yarn into balls. Then I started knitting…and ended up with two sets of small rectangles, ribbed and plain, which are about to turn into lovely mitts.

Alpaca - Dog Hair | Bohemian Flower -

Alpaca - Dog Hair Yarn | Bohemian Flower -

I love the combination of super soft, incredibly strong – you can’t break it with your hands – hypoallergenic and soothing Alpaca and coarse, water resistant, and energizing Dog Hair. I call the yarn Puppaca 🙂

I don’t know though how Mr. Fluffy likes the whole idea:

Mr Fluffy -

Have you ever tried knitting or crocheting with dog hair yarn? What do you think it’s best for?

Posted in Animals | Birds | Pets, Nature

Baby Steps

I love watching this new mommy teach her baby how to properly roll in the dirt, or take a proper bath that is. You can tell she’s so loving, confident, and patient – making sure her baby learns to do things independently at his/her own pace 🙂

The baby rhino is a quick learner too! Thankfully, I had a phone with me to capture this cuteness 🙂

❤️ 🦏



Posted in Coloring, Sketching, Drawing, Painting


Drawing or coloring geometric shapes and patterns appears to help clear the mind, focus, and relax 🙂 I don’t know how exactly that works, I’m not a neuroscientist :), but I’ve tested that many times on myself and it always feels great to’ve had a doodling / coloring “session”. I’ve even noticed it feels like I’ve accomplished something significant…as if I’d completed an important work-related project, for example 🙂 This makes me want to share what I’ve learned with you.

Try coloring this bouquet and see if there’s any difference in how you feel before and after. I’d be curious to know if you notice any change –

Bouquet - Coloring Page - Bohemian Flower - mytrailinghobbies.jpg

Here’a a printable coloring page in Letter format:

Bouquet – Meditative Coloring Page _ Bohemian Flower,

Here’s a printable coloring page in A4:

Bouquet – Meditative Coloring Page – A4_ Bohemian Flower,

So many books have been published on this, but it’s kind of cool to try it for yourself and see if it actually works 🙂

Have you tried meditative coloring?


Posted in Knitting

A Knitting Mentor

It’s so cold out. Snowflakes and crisp air always bring up a feeling of joy in me. I have a perfect excuse to get back to my knitting 🙂

Check out a pic of my Florentine Frieze + Woven Tweed + cablesChocolate woolen scarf in the works:

Bohemian Flower MyTrailingHobbies | Florentine Frieze | Woven Tweed | Cable | Knitted Scarf |

The stitch patterns come from the Walker Treasury, which makes it easy to improvise when you have no plan, other than “making a scarf”, but feel like using a more complex stitch pattern. It helps to use a stitch counter to follow patterns like Florentine Frieze, as Barbara’s books don’t always offer knitting charts.

I like thinking of Barbara Walker, an unsurpassed designer, author, and knit stitch pattern collector, as my knitting mentor.

Stitch dictionaries are a necessity if you like to knit and there’s always something new to learn from each book in the niche. I certainly do not consider investing in a variety of dictionaries a waste. But, if I were to give my younger self one piece of advice regarding a good comprehensive knitting book as a starter and a core, I’d recommend Ms. Walker’s work – from the four Treasuries of Knitting Patterns, to Learn-to-Knit, to Knitting from the Top.

Barbara Walker Treasury of Knitting Patterns | Bohemian Flower MyTrailingHobbies |

One thing I want to mention, regarding her Mosaic Knitting book: if shopping online, take a close look at the cover before ordering it. Doing some research on her work helped me overcome the shock I felt taking my first look at that book.

The mosaic knitting technique itself is pretty awesome and she does offer some lovely patterns.

Even though her books could use more knitting charts – which is virtually a given in European books of the 20th century, the variety of stitch patterns and combinations thereof always get ideas popping in my head as I flip through the Treasury.

Thanks, Schoolhouse Press, for making her work available to us today 🙂 Seriously, I feel we are lucky to be able to access the info she invested so much time and effort in putting together. And the gray-scale and black and white images of patterns and swatches only help make it look like a classy classic.

Anyway, where was I  – ah my scarf, gotta get back to my scarfie!

Who would you consider your knitting mentor?


Posted in Knitting

Intuitive Knits: a Sock

Intuitive Sock |

– my intuitive custom-fit knitted holiday sock. This past holiday season, one of my favorite projects was my improvised knitted sock – I only had enough time to make one 🙂 even though it didn’t involve any fancy patterning.  I threw in a couple of “seasonal” colors, a candy-like braid, a reinforced heel, a padded sole, and did some shaping along the way as I felt fit. I can’t say it’s a cute sock, but it is super comfy.



This one was the first attempt:

Intuitive Sock 1 |

– featuring an invisible join at the beginning of work, an elastic 2×2 ribbing and stripes that flow smoothly from color to color and maintaining the pleasant softness of the ribbing.

What made me set the piece aside, for better times, and start anew was the specs of color in purl sections:

Intuitive Sock 2 |

– generally, no big deal and oftentimes a desired effect, but not in this case.

So I did the “knit the first row around” when changing colors to get clean stripes. Effect achieved, as seen in the top pic. But the downside is a ribbing not as soft or bouncy as the original.

So this was my intuitive sock knitting bit. Did I enjoy it? Yes. Will my next pair of socks be intuitive? Absolutely.

Pros: freedom to knit as you please; no swatching (never mind the scrapped piece, it’s still usable 🙂

Cons: you do have to try your sock on a few times if you want it to fit nicely (it’s actually fun and could be another ‘pro’ 🙂 ; your pattern options are limited to plain and elastic, unless you are an absolute pro and know exactly how any stitch pattern is going to work out (is it even possible with the wealth of yarn, needles and stitch patterns?). Speaking of plain though, graph patterns are an awesome way to decorate any knitting, I am yet to try doing that with no prior planning whatsoever.

Do you normally knit intuitively or do you prefer to follow a pattern?