Crochet: A Rising Art

by Jadyn Miller

At Tri-City Prep, there has been a recent rise in the popularity of yarn-related crafts, such as crochet.

Along with this, there was the creation of Crafts Club. This club is an opportunity for those who enjoy crafts to them in a space where they can be productive while also chatting with others that have similar interests. One of the people who has been to this club, Leah Packer, said, “We crochet or knit, chat, and enjoy ourselves…I would recommend it to everyone.”

With more and more interest, it brings into question, where did crochet come from?
Unlike knitting and some other crafts, which have an easily traceable history, crochet has no single origin.

The most common theory as to where it began is in China. Tambour, a type of Chinese Embroidery, uses thread looped through fabric, similar to the chain stitch. Later, when this spread to Europe, the French did the stitch without the fabric, eventually naming it crochet.

tambour

Crochet was very popular among the poor, due to the fact that it could be used to make many different household items. Along with this, it was a cheaper option than lace to decorate and embellish things.

Patterns were not used very often, and even when they were, the patterns were vague, and relied heavily on the pictures to explain. It took just as much intuition as the actual reading. More commonly, you would find books, similar to scrapbooks, that were made with patches of different stitches, allowing for them to be copied as needed.

Crochet may have originated in China, but that doesn’t mean it stayed there. It spread all over, being improved upon as time went on. First came slip stitch crochet, which was one of the first ways to crochet. It allowed you to make clothing and other helpful things. When the single crochet was invented, people were now able to make blocks and use block patterns from other crafts. Now, they had the ability to make things that were previously unattainable with crochet.

During the Irish potato famine, it was the rise of crochet that saved many families. Many of them would sell their crocheted goods, then use the money to immigrate. This gave rise to what was called Irish crochet.

Crochet has come very far in its time, and versions of it can be found in the majority of cultures. While it used to be a trade taught by mouth from person-to-person, with the rise of new technology, it has become much easier to learn, with tutorials online, and free patterns everywhere.

For those who still find it easier to learn from someone else, there are still options. There are things such as classes that can be taken to learn many of these different crafts.

Another option is to learn from a peer. If you have no friends that crochet, but would still like to learn, you can go to the Crafts Club, where you are sure to find at least one person who can give you some helpful tips.

Meetings are held in Mrs. Kauffman’s room on Thursdays after school. If you would like to learn to crochet and would like some tips, or already know and would like to try doing it more, you may want to try going to one of the craft club’s meetings. Everyone is welcome!