10 Crochet Lessons from The Princess Bride

Cwochet. Cwochet is what bwings us togever today. Or at least the 30th anniversary of the movie, The Princess Bride brings us together today.

The Princess Bride is chock-full of life wisdom, and we have discovered that it is also full of crochet wisdom—really! When I mentioned this idea to my coworkers, they immediately chimed in with a few lessons they’ve learned. Here’s the list we’ve come up with:

1. There’s a shortage of perfect projects in this world, and it would be a pity to ruin yours. So always make a gauge swatch.

Avoid sounding like a shrieking eel when a project turns out too small or too big; crochet a gauge swatch. Getting gauge ensures that the project will turn out just as you wish. Read “Lily Chin’s Crochet Tricks and Tips” for help crocheting a gauge swatch.

The Crocheter’s Toolbox by Lily Chin will have you stitching like a pro.

2. Avoid the Pit of Despair; buy an extra skein of yarn.

It can feel like years of your life are being sucked out of your body when you run out of yarn before you finish a project. Avoid this pit of despair, and buy and extra skein of yarn or 2 before you start crocheting. Trust me, it is frustrating to have to buy more yarn after you’ve started a project only to find that the dye lot is dramatically different, or worse, to learn that the yarn is discontinued and no longer available.

3. Not fixing mistakes is inconceivable.

We know that you know what that word means. And we know that you know that it’s inconceivable to leave mistakes in your crocheted projects, at least in most circumstances. My coworker Susanna Tobias and I debated “11 Reasons to Frog (or Not)”; find out when it truly is inconceivable to leave a mistake and when it might be acceptable after all.

4. Keep your yarn tidy so it doesn’t become an R.O.U.S.

Rodents of Unusual Size live in the fire swamp, but they may also take up residence in your yarn storage if you don’t keep your skeins neat and tidy. Wrap and tuck loose ends around their skeins so they don’t tangle into a ball forming an R.O.U.S. Store yarn by type or color in bins, bags, or baskets.

5. Twu Wuv is Buttercup finding her Westley. It’s also a crocheter finding the perfect crochet magazine.

Subscribe to Love of Crochet and Interweave Crochet magazines, and true love will find you even if your summer home is in the fire swamp.

Not even flame spurts, lightening sand, and R.O.U.S.s can keep the post office from delivering each quarterly issue to your door. Subscribe to the 2 best crochet magazines on the market today, Love of Crochet and Interweave Crochet, to stay connected to the crochet community, find inspiring projects to crochet, and learn fun stitches and techniques.

6 .Remember, this is for posterity, so be honest. Use the right yarn weight, fiber type, and color for each project.

You don’t want your friends and family to boo and hiss when you present your finished projects to them like the crowd did when Humperdinck presented Princess Buttercup. So make sure you pair the right yarn to each project. No one wants to wear a stiff sweater or scratchy scarf. If you make them something they don’t like, they’ll probably “accidently” tear the piece and frame Guilder for it.

7. Always carry a cloak.

You never know when you’ll be storming a castle or finding yourself in cold weather, so always carry a cloak. Better yet, crochet one for yourself and your loved ones. It’s definitely a garment you want to list among your assets.

Blocks Coat from Crochet in Color and Spanish Moss Coat from Interweave Crochet Fall 2008.

8. Even if you don’t have 6 fingers on your right hand, you can still master sword fighting . . . or color pooling. It simply takes practice.

Revenge is a strong motivator to learn a new skill, but love and beauty are better reasons. The color-pooling argyle print has taken the crochet community by storm, and it’s stunning. If you haven’t tried it yet, or want to brush up on this technique, read Deborah Bagley’s 6-part blog series starting with “Color Pooling 101: Argyle Print.”

Color Pooling Pillow from Interweave Crochet Spring 2017 and Scarf from Love of Crochet Spring 2017.

9. Don’t be afraid to storm the castle and try something outside your skill level. It won’t take a miracle pill to learn a new technique.

Forming a brute squad is just one of the ways you can learn a new technique as Lisa Espinosa pointed out in her blog “I Need Help and So Do You.” Magazines, books, and videos will also help you build your skills and have you stitching happily ever after while riding into the sunset on a white horse.

10. Find yourself a farm boy. One who will fetch you a pitcher, polish your horse’s saddle, and follow you up the Cliffs of Insanity.

Ok, this has nothing to do with crochet, but it is a nice bonus to find a guy who loves The Princess Bride and is not intimidated by your obsession with yarn. He may, however, put on a Vizzini accent and say, “No more yarn now, I mean it!” as you make one more trip to the yarn store. When you’re trying to be good and work with the yarn you have on hand, you’ll want to learn how to “Stash Bust Like a Pro.”

Happy Anniversary Princess Bride

The Princess Bride debuted 1987, and I was unfortunate enough to see it in the theatre. I say unfortunate because at the time I went, I didn’t know it was a comedy, and I sat next to a cousin who grumbled and complained about how stupid it was the entire time.

Fortunately, I watched it again a few years later knowing it was a comedy and laughed myself silly. I thoroughly enjoyed the book, as well. Now, at the 30th anniversary of the movie, I find it more relevant than ever.

The Princess Bride

Princess Bride Cast 30 Years later. The Princess Bride photos from imdb.com.

Have I missed anything? The movie has fencing, fighting, torture, revenge, giants, monsters, chases, escapes, true love, miracles . . . what has all of that taught you about crochet?


P.S.: To celebrate its 30th anniversary, The Princess Bride will return to theaters on Sunday, October 15 and Wednesday, October 18. Learn more at Fathom Events.

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