Friday, June 11, 2010

Free Stuff - Pictures - An Interview - A Giveaway

I am finally posting the pictures of the finished dresses. I have been done for awhile now, but like I said ... I was waiting for something big and it is here.

But first, check out the dresses ...






I think they came out so nice and I am very pleased. The design of the dresses and the ease of the patterns is what really makes crocheting wonderful. So I thought I would pay tribute to the designer and post the dresses along with an interview with the master mind behind CrochetGarden.com, Lisa Naskrent.


Here we go...

1. When did you learn how to crochet and who taught you?

My grandmother taught me a few basic stitches when I was about 9 years old.

2. What were some of your ” beginner” projects?

My grandmother did not teach me to pattern read, but showed me how to make a little corsage. I also made many afghans using plain sc or dc stitches. Years later when I taught myself to pattern read, I made mostly afghans.

3. How do you think they looked then and how would they look to you now?

I actually still have one of the afghans I made. It is green and pink - and the ends are still not tied in. Back then, I thought it was a masterpiece. And today, I still think it is, a masterpiece from my beginning days :)

4. When did you start designing? What was the first thing you designed?

I was always designing. Even when my grandmother taught me basic stitches- I was making up my own stitches and little patterns of sorts. Sometimes I would hide from my grandmother- because she did not approve :) She wanted me to practice practice practice the basic stitches!

I was always a little inventor - not just in crochet- everything from projects at school, to making little devices and such for things around the house. Even in the elementary school- I did not want to read stories! I wanted to make my own. So I would spend time during recess in a corner of the playground writing stories and plays. When I was 13, a teacher sent one of my stories in to a literary magazine, and they published it.

5. What inspired you to start creating your own patterns?

The catalyst at the time when the Crochet Garden started was the failure to find exactly what I wanted to make my daughter. To this day I am very picky, and have a specific vision of what I want.

6. How/why was Crochet Garden started?

When I made a few things for my daughter, I posted a few patterns on the Internet. I think one of them was a cabled hat as well. I posted them on the Crochet About forums, and later on Crochetville. The response was incredible. People asked for more. The turning point was an email I received from a lady very upset. She said I should be selling these patterns - not giving them away for free. She told me my patterns were too good, and that I was “taking money” away from other designers. Whether it was true or not was irrelevant, it was a eureka moment for me.

I never thought of myself as running a business. I am very scatterbrained, disorganized…. I also majored in Computer Science and Biology and minored in Math (though I loved English and the Arts just as much). I thought business people were like my father- extremely organized, files, tabs… Everything I am not in that department :) I do not think my room was ever neat and tidy.

But I figured, why not? How bad can it be?

My desk is a whirlwind of papers, wall decor is post-its, and the phone is always wrapped around my chair, sometimes the printers too… Crochet hooks often fall from where I do not know, and for some reason, yarn balls like to mingle with the phone cord too much. I am often entangled in my own chaotic disarray. I have so many notes, I forget they are there. Ideas are rampant - kind of like the sheep jumping over the fence, only they all come over all at once? So I have notebooks and notebook of ideas, and sketches.. Thank goodness for spiral bound!

My system is definitely not of the norm, but somehow, it works!

Interestingly enough, my title on my testing forum is the “Absent Minded Designer.”

7. Did you ever think the demand for your creations would be at the height that it is? Why or why not?

I did not. I think because I never saw myself as a designer. I wanted to write books, design computer programs, develop research studies in biology- I had so many interests- and none of them consisted of crochet! :)

At the time, I did not even know the proper names of stitches. I remember when developing some early patterns, testers pointing out to me- hey isn’t this stitch a Ldc (long double crochet)? I said I don’t know.. I just made up a name for the stitch! hah.

So having a business that solely supports myself and my 2 children was definitely not a vision at that time. My early patterns were so long, so wordy… I really had no business sense. I had no idea of the difference between a sku and a skunk.

But like everything I have ever done in life (oh my poor parents what I put them through)- I dive in head first and go for the ride!

8. Who are your favorite designers?

I do not really have any hands down favorites. There are so many brilliant designers, that I admire so many, and each for different reasons.

9. When creating a new pattern what are some of the things you take into consideration?

This is a question that can be answered on numerous levels. Within those levels many layers- at least when I begin a design. First I consider what size ( if a garment ), ease, construction (always top down for garments), etc. While writing the pattern, I try to design in such a way that minimizes the length of the pattern. Long “chaotic” patterns can seem so daunting (whether they are or are not).

I also use a yarn that will complement the project being designed. I use a lot of cotton for infant wear. I also rarely, if ever will use handwash yarns for children. For shawls, the m ore I work with lace, the more I learn about properties of different fibers, and what may work with a certain lace pattern or work differently.

10. When writing a new pattern do you ACTUALLY make all the various sizes or is there some math equation you use to come with the sizes and stitch counts?

Oh there is a lot of math!!! Though I do have many volunteer testers (http://www.crochetgarden.com/forum) that test different sizes as well. I use an Excel spreadsheet for every design. It helps me double check math for stitch counts, repeats, etc. It is basically my visual calculator all laid out.

I also use a lot of math (from school days). I have used the Pythagorean theorem, some calculus and trigonometry. It is a big mix. Often fibers behave differently from one another… so it is a mix of math and finesse. I do a lot of swatching as well.

11. Do you have any advice for budding designers in the crochet world?

You need to believe. Do not think, oh, I do not know Excel, I can’t design crochet. Do not think, oh, I am not a math person so I cannot even begin to design. This is just my quirky way of doing some things. I have no idea if the way I do things is like anyone else - as I really had no mentor when building my business. I had no one to guide me how to write a pattern, how to design a pattern, how run a business from home and build it up. I had no guidance when I sent in my first pattern for publication to Interweave. I just did it and winged it. Thank goodness Kim Werker at the time took a chance on me! Hopefully I am not driving Marcy Smith too batty!

I took baby steps. Sometimes I made big oopsies! But what I do works for me, and I was able to buy a little house for myself and my children to live in. I still use coupons; we rarely go out to eat. But I am at home with my darlings, and doing something I absolutely love love love!

I never thought I would be doing this. Not because I did not believe in myself- only because it never crossed my mind until one day I received an angry email :) And then I thought, I’m going to do it! I look back and I think - wow 6 years ago, I did not even know the proper names of stitches. So if you know at least that- you are off to a better start than I was!

You have to have the passion. You need to possess a drive and motivation within. You have to believe.

If anyone has any questions, or wants some help - ask away!

Isn't she just awesome.

Okay, now the moment you have been waiting for...

THE GIVEAWAY!

Lisa in all of here awesomeness has DONATED a $25 gift certificate to Crochet Garden!

Wanna win?

Here is what you have to do...

  • Leave a comment below telling me at least 1 of the patterns you would purchase with your gift certificate.
  • Your comment MUST have an EMAIL ADDRESS
  • Only ONE entry per person.
  • If you forget something and need to leave a second comment, go back and DELETE your first comment.
  • Open to anyone with a computer.

This giveaway ends Tuesday, June 15th, 2010 @ 11:59pm

The winner has 72 hours from time of contact/announcement to respond and collect the prize. If the winner can not be reached the prize will be forfeited to another person.
Photobucket

51 comments:

BloreKnitter said...

Thanks for the giveaway! I think I will splurge on 'Afghan of the sandman', 'Bo Peep's garden of ruffles' and 'Enchanted slumber afghan'.

My email id: anaamica at gmail dot com.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for posting your interview with Lisa, Nicole. I liked it a lot. It was nice to hear that hard work is appreciated by others(even if it is shown in an angry fashion!)
The Angel Dreams pattern is one I admire, and would love to get a chance to make it & show it off.
That is a garment that could be passed down through the generations!

-K
Gaelic4Us@att.net

kristyh1981 said...

I would HAVE to buy the Market Day dress pattern for my daughter. It is very her! I showed her the pattern and she told me I just Had to make it for her! She is 4 and loves to pick patterns for me to make for her :D

e-mail: kristyhstagemanager@yahoo.com

Nekeisha said...

Thank You for the giveaway. I would definitely want the Pink Sands Sunhat & Tote, Blossoming Beauty Sundress, Garden Trellis Afghan and the Sierra Trails Afghan.

my email is sceanac@yahoo.com

Me said...

Nicole

I can't get over how big Miss Ryleigh is already. I haven't seen y'all in so long. I love the girls dresses. They are all so adorable.

Your interview with Lisa was great. She sounds like a wonderful person. We already know how fabulous you are.

I would have a hard time deciding which pattern to buy. I would want some girlie things since I have a friend w/a baby girl. I would have to craft something for her. I would probably get the pattern that you made Ryleigh's little cream and blue dress from.

email: aafphotography at gmail dot com

Kara said...

OMG I love so many of the patterns. For my youngest I would have to get the sock trim because she wears leg braces which means she doesn't get to wear many cool socks. For my 4 year old I would totally need the dresses. Especially the Little Maiden Sun dress.

Anonymous said...

If I won, I would buy the heirloom garter and Oberon's Lace Wrap. Both are so beautiful.

My email is beanabaybee13@yahoo.com

dccdmom said...

I love the Blooming Beauty sundresses you made. That is the first pattern I'd get.

Amy said...

I enjoyed your interview with Crochet Gardens. I would love to get the Pink Sands Hat and Tote Pattern.

(lia) said...

Wow! Such cute patterns! I love the matching dresses you made. So beautiful!

I'd for sure get the Charlotte Belle dress and the Lil' Darling Jumper.

Thanks for the giveaway!

I'm liacreates[at]gmail[dot]com

Cindy said...

Well, since I'm a shawlaholic, I would choose either the "Garden Trellis" or the "Pemberley".

Bamabayougirl said...

WOW what an inspiring interview. I have been crocheting over 40 years but still love to see new designers and what their imagination brings. I love the Market Day Dress and all the afghans.

gdsanich@prodigy.net

Lettetia said...

What a lovely couple of dresses and the girls are just beautiful.

Thank you for the informative interview and the chance to learn more about Crochet Garden.

I have had my eye on Winter Goddess Scarf Collection and the Pemberley Shawl for quite some time now, so I would have to purchase those two right away.

MoonKatz said...

I finally made my daughter a dress and was so thrilled with how it turned out I'm aching to get started on more. I browsed over the Crochet Garden website thinking of what I might spend a gift certificate on, and there's just so many pretty things it's hard to choose! I'd especially love hats because they are easy to tote around in progress. Something intricate like the Garden Of Lace ensemble appeals to me though having crocheted for over 22 years - I'd have to make it a few sizes large though to finish it before she outgrows it, lol. With four boys requesting other handmade things I kind of get off track, always have half a dozen or more WIP's sitting around and not always knit or crochet.

Moonkatz (a) gmail (.) com (I found your blog via facebook/Lion Brand) Thanks for the crafting eye candy!!! Your work is beautiful and your children are all just darling - how blessed you are!

Maria said...

All the patterns are so lovely, but a couple that catch my eye are the Charlotte Belle (gorgeous dress for a young girl!), the Winter Goddess Scarf Collection and perhaps Color Splash Afghan (this one looks so fun!).

maria@tunamaid.com

Thank you! :)

Mary said...

Oh my, what a tough choice!! I think I would narrow it down to: the beautiful Dixie Bell, the Bambino Cardi Wrap, and Pink Sands Sunhat & Tote. What beautiful patterns!

Thanks for the fun way to show off the beautiful designs!

cbcoleman said...

What a great opportunity! I enjoyed your interview with Lisa. I've had my eye on a few patterns at Crochet Garden for a long time, like Pebble Creek and Afghan of the Sandman. I'd also like to make a couple of Blossoming Beauties, for the little girls in my life. And as a special treat, the fantastic Pemberley Shawl - of course it's totally out of my league but I LOVE it!

-Cate

cbcoleman [at] aol [dot] com

Anonymous said...

Oh my!!! Your patterns are wonderful!!!! I would so love to win because, I can't work due to a back problem which I am hoping to have fixed with surgery in July, and I have no extra money for patterns these days. The first pattern I would get is the Marker Day dress! I have 4 granddaughters who would look adorable in it!!!!
Thanks for doing the give away!! That is very nice and gererous of you.

Lois
poohknit@wi.rr.com

Anonymous said...

Wow your girl's dresses are Gosh Darn Cute! Awesome job on those. I adore the Raleigh Belle.
Also a very enjoyable interview with Lisa. Thank You.
I would have to pick the Pemberley Shawl first, and then so many cute girly hings...hard to decide!

Brandy

I'm parkberry@tc3net.com

Silvina said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

I would love to have the Pinksands Sunhat and tote pattern for my granddaughter, she loves showing off at school in homemade wears, and she is addicted to totes, at the age of 7, also I really would like to knit the legwarmers.
email
marlib@telus.net,
from marlib7 on ravelry

leilalieva said...

Hi, lovely dresses! If I were to win, I'd get the book "Special techniques and stitches in Crochet". Leyla

The Knitwit Knitter said...

Thanks for the giveaway.I would pick the Daisy Halter & Skirt. Cute and would be great for the warm months ahead!

aezoey@aol.com

Heather said...

You definitely make crocheting cute again! I love finding creations that fit into modern day. Keep it up! :)

Anonymous said...

I love the Blooming Beauty sundress. I have twin year old great nieces and their sister is four. The girls would look awesome in these. All of your craftings are beautiful.

My email is bvandeweghe@att.net

RainbowCookies said...

I would love to get the Rugged Mountain Scarf patterns. The cable work is gorgeous. I cant knit yet so having a few patterns for crochet cables would be wonderful!

nightshade206(at)yahoo(dot)com

Anonymous said...

Hi Thank you for the great interview. I would love to have the Garden Trellis Shawl pattern, so pretty.
mandycan@fsmail.net

Sarah {The Student Knitter} said...

Oo! How fun!

I would like to try the garden trellis shawl! I'm still a beginning crocheting and it looks like one I could tackle! :D

hencat said...

Great interview! I would buy the Rugged Mountain Hat and Rugged Mountain Mittens. I crochet winter items for a gentleman that takes a group of disabled vets to the mountains of Maine every year for recreation...someone always shows up w/o a hat, so I send a few to him....this pattern looks to be very warm (with the cables).
Thanks! cathe .. hencat@bellsouth.net

Anonymous said...

I really enjoyed the interview it was very helpful. I've always wanted to design but thought I just wouldn't get through it with writing the pattern up. I just became a grandmother 7 months ago and she came along with a sister that is 4 so I would certainly have to purchase the Blooming Beauties if possible. My Step daughter loves getting their pictures taken and they would look adorable in that set. Best of Luck to you and your family.

Anonymous said...

I like the dresses you have made! Crochetgarden does have a lot of wonderful patterns :)
If I would get a gift certificate I think one of the patterns I would buy would have to be "Little Maiden sundress". But it is very hard to decide amongst all the beautiful patterns!

mf.i@hotmail.com

Anonymous said...

I just want to start by saying thank you for the interview you did. I love crocheting. When I read your interview I was blown away. I have designed my own patterns and was even on the verge of submitting one. But I just didn't like how long the pattern was. I wasn't sure just how much detail I needed to get into. So I didn't submit it. I have been crocheting for about 15 years and I am in the process of teaching my 7 year old daughter how. She love to watch and I love to share with her the joy of it. I have picked a few (LOL) dress patterns and one blanket pattern I would love to buy and make. @ of wich I could make for my daughter. Thank you again, and I look foward to reading your Blog. Katie
Seaside Fairy Sundress, Savannah Belle, Charlotte Belle, Little Maiden Sundress, Enchanted Slumber, Little Cábelet.


My email is: chloe_608@sbcglobal.net

rosebud75 said...

This is so cool for her to do this. The first pattern i would get would be Morning Dew Afghan. My E-mail address is rosebud_co@msn.com

Anonymous said...

I already have the rugged mountain scarf patterns, and would love to make the matching mittens and hats, so I would pick these patterns. (I'm near Chicago, so all would be very needed with our cold winters). I would also love to try a dress for my daughter who is 3, I haven't used thread, so would have to pick a beautiful pattern out.
Thanks! Jennifer
jschwardt@comcast.net

TheEdgeof17 said...

Great Giveaway. I love to crochet as well and have tons of hats that are truly unique. You can see my accomplishments as well at theedgeof17.com.......I would love to get the pattern "Beach Babe - Shorts & Tie Top"
Truly a fabulous set.
Thank you again. Your work is wonderful.
Dee

Cheryl G. said...

I would have to get the Daisy Halter and Skirt, I have two girls that this would fit and seeing as they have a cousin who is bigger than they are they get alot of Hand-Me-Downs this pattern would be perfect for them especially so that I could make my first grader new outfits for school and of course her little sister who has to wait another year, because her birthday falls after the cut off date for Kindergarten. Then I can make her some next year for school also.


peteybug76@yahoo.com

Anonymous said...

I love her patterns, I would def. get the Market Day Dress and the Little Maiden Sundress. Thanx for having the Giveaway.

email address is: cstive63@yahoo.com

Carol

Anonymous said...

What a great interview! Lisa has a unique and beautiful stye. I love her patterns and already own several: the wonderful Afghan of the Sandman, Rugged Mountain hats and sock trims. I'd like to add the Classic Baby Afghan, Corn Crib Afghan, Pebble Creek Afghan, Borealis, Bambino Beanies, and Winter Magic Hat to my collection.

my email is va_l_ray@yahoo.com

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much for introducing me to Crochet Garden. I absolutely love the patterns that are available. Will definately make a stop at a later date to purchase a few things. My favorites are: Beach Babe, Market Day, Little Maiden, and the Summer Sky Set (just naming a few)lol. My daughter loves to wear the things I make her. I really enjoyed the interview also. Thanks for the giveaway.

email: tyjensun at embarqmail dot com

Anonymous said...

I have a granddaughter that will be 1 year old at the end of June, and I could see her in the Little Maiden Sundress, Dixie Belle, and the Charlotte Belle. This is a very nice giveaway that I would love to win!


email: kroshey@yahoo.com

paryjeja said...

Oh the baby dress patterns on the Crochet Garden are beautiful. My first pattern would be the Garden Fairy dress.
paryjeja at sbcglobal dot net

Cathy said...

How fun! I would get the color splash afghan pattern - too cute!

My e-mail addy is catluke@gmail.com.

Thanks!

Jenn said...

Boy that a hard decision. There are many patterns that I want.

I've wanted the Market Day Dress for a while but after looking though all of the patterns available, the list also includes Beach Babe, Daisey Halter & Skirt, Little Cabelet, Little Maiden Sundress and the Summer Sky set.

If I am so lucky as to win this certificate, I can be reached at littlefire_2004@yahoo.com

Stephanie said...

I like the Blossoming Beauty sundress. My 3yo and my newest baby would both look adorable in this dress.
Stephanie
jabezprayer@hotmail.com

Anonymous said...

The market day Dress is fantastic. I'd have so much fun trying different colour combinations for an army of market day girls!

jacquijeffries@ntlworld.com

Esa said...

I would go for Charlotte Belle, Little Maiden Sundress, and the Little Darlin' Jumper Dress.

...it's actually easier to say what I wouldn't use it on than what I would...too many beautiful choices!

sy2112rinx@aol.com

Silvina said...

i love Little Maiden Sundress ...would look great on my 4 month old!!

sgrothues at gmail dot com

elizabeth said...

I just ran across your blog! Wonderful! and a giveaway!!! What's better than that? Fingers are crossed......eswmaddox@yahoo.com

Thanks

Anonymous said...

I LOVE the Beach Babe set! My daughter is such a girly girl and would love it - and the lacy tees too! And then perhaps the Winter Goddess set for myself and early Christmas gifts.....Thanks for running the give away!

Wendy - WHLord@yahoo.com

grammi said...

Hi

I see your a fan of crochetgardens patterns. I am too, but was wondering if you have made the dress Princess of Twilight. If so, can you please tell me, when you're adding the sleeves, do you include the side seams. I'm not sure if you do or not. The picture that I isn't very clear. I would be so happy to find this out. Since you use her patterns, possibly you know the answer.

Thanks for the help.

grammi24

Nicole ~ The Diva said...

Grammi,

Yes, I did make the Princess of Twilight dree. I hope I can help because it was over a year ago. I am not sure if you are aking about the ruffle part of the sleeves or the actual straps. I did not add the ruffle around the straps. But from the way it looks and what the pattern says, it seems as if YOU DO go around the entire strap with the ruffle sleeve. I hope I have helped. If you have any more questions please feel free to email me at

creator@superiorcreations.net

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...