Last week, during Wisconsin’s winter snow storm that will never end, I finally started my Craftsy class where I learn how to sew a dress.  I have had this class in my “library” for at least six months, and although I have browsed through it, I haven’t had the time to tackle it.  Okay, maybe I have been a little overwhelmed at all the steps it takes to make a dress (you quilters out there put me to shame too:).  And, maybe I’m just scared that I’m going to ruin the beautiful fabric that I bought for it.  Still, Sunday I had decided enough is enough.  I hit play on my tablet and started cutting out and then ironing tissue patterns.

All of this prep work was supposed to make the actual sewing easier.  I began to think about this philosophy in regards to crochet.  How can I prepare my next project so that I crochet faster and smarter?  I pulled out my handy-dandy yarn-ball winder.

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Remember this?  So simple a five year old could do it!

My newest project is a shoulder wrap, made with very fine merino and nylon.  I bought 750 yards of the golden-yellow yarn last year at CGOA.  I thought it would match the dress I am wearing to a wedding next weekend.

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First, I don’t understand why yarn companies wrap some yarns in skeins, some in cakes, some in balls, some like twist donuts, and some like this.  I’m sure there is an excellent reason, like they are keeping the integrity of the yarn intact, or something like that, but I just want to crochet with it!  Luckily, as I snipped all the white strings, I placed the threads around my neck so that it hung low like a million stranded necklace.  I then got to work with my ball winder.  For over an hour, I unwrapped and wound, unwrapped and wound.  Yes this was my Saturday night!  The end result was a magnificent wound ball that has only tangled once in my many hours of crocheting since.  Knowing (thanks to impatience in the past) that if I hadn’t wound it first, I would be nowhere near the progress I have made, I am glad I prepped my work first.

Because I wound the yarn, I could easily take my project with me to a coffee shop.

How do you usually prep for your big projects?  Do you make sure to buy all the yarn on the pattern, wind the balls, and lay out a plan?  Or do you wing it?  I am usually doing the latter, but now, seeing the benefits of putting a little effort beforehand, I might take a little more time before diving into my next project.

Hope all your projects are turning out as you planned, Happy Crocheting!

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