Doily Rage (AKA To Each Her Own)

Opinions are a fascinating beast. On the one hand our opinions very much define who we are. On the other hand, how we express our opinions very much influences who other people think we are. Crochet me exists because I'm of the opinion that it's about time we broke the rules and started celebrating the flexibility, art, and function inherent to our craft. In my opinion, these qualities have fallen to the wayside in the face of stereotypes, anachronisms, ignorance, and fear. Strong words to apply to a benign little craft like ours? Maybe. But I'm one of strong opinions.

Last week Vera, a blogger I admire and respect, ranted about doilies and the bad name they've gotten. Rants are uncommon on Vera's blog, and this one is articulate, cohesive, and informative. Go read it. She really nails down why it's important not to constrain people, ideas, or creativity. All are subjective, dynamic, and fluid, and should be respected for what they are. When we talk about subjectivities in black-and-white terms, we fail them. Plus, in my opinion, the embodiment of cool is to say, "I like it, and I don't care if you judge me for it."

Do I have doilies around my house or office? Nope. And I don't plan to make any, either. When I first started this site, I lumped doilies in with orange/avocado/yellow 70s-era granny squares and large-skirted doll tp covers as the type of crochet it's about time we move beyond. In a year-and-a-half of doing nothing but writing about crochet, though, I've had time to flesh out my opinions and my motivations.

Doilies are pretty freaking stunning creations. 70s-era afghans are not. In either case, I respect that many people like them and that many others don't. My goal for Crochet me, though, is to push beyond the established and the typical into the progressive, the innovative, and the astonishing. It's only slightly an aesthetic goal; it's mostly a desire to push boundaries and explore and invent. It seems to me that mainstream crochet got stuck in the 70s, and I don't like stagnation. I appreciate history and I understand that fashion repeats itself. But I would really like to see more style that isn't a throwback or homage and that doesn't stem from a failure to bust out of the mold. With the exception of some wildly creative, brave and talented designers/artists/craftspeople, there simply isn't much new crochet going on. That's why I specify in the submission guidelines that if your pattern is more of the same, send it elsewhere. But if it's a new take on the tried and true, or if it's an entirely original thing, I'd love to see it.

Cool is in the eye of the beholder. New is objective. Send in your new crochet.

Post a Comment