5 Indispensable Resources for Beginner Crafters
At 26 years old, I consider myself to be a fairly crafty person with about a decade and change of art in my background. But I am a novice compared to MaryJane's 70 years of crocheting and knitting. So when MaryJane makes a recommendation, that is something I hear with the weight and emphasis it deserves. A lot of the time when getting started in a new craft, it can be difficult to find just the right teacher. So many crafters online go too fast or focus on aesthetic camera angles rather than detailed, instructional ones. What I wanted to do this week was compile some of the recommendations from MaryJane for beginner crafters to start you on your journey.
1) TL Yarn Crafts on YouTube.
Obviously, one of the best resources for learning a new craft is YouTube. As a free resource, it is easily the first recommendation for any beginner to get their start. Toni, the designer and instructor behind TL Yarn Crafts, creates an educational and inspirational space for makers of all skill levels. She offers crochet tips and tricks and even the occasional free crochet pattern! One of the main qualities that makes us recommend this channel so much is Toni’s teaching style. The detail and the pacing of each video is so carefully designed that it is so encouraging for a beginner and I scarcely need to rewind in order to follow along. Toni teaches not only traditional crochet but Tunisian crochet as well. Her absolute beginner’s guide to Tunisian crochet video is 20 minutes long and so rich in information throughout each step.
Another resource that is so in depth and abundant with lessons, tips, and tricks. CreativeBug Studios has a subscription based service on their website that provides thousands of art & crafts classes, downloadable patterns, templates, and recipes, along with a community gallery and forum to connect with other crafters in your niche. There is a 7-day free trial, and if you enjoy it, it is only $4.95/month. This is a resource that MaryJane personally utilizes when checking out new crafts for herself. I, myself, am checking out the "Quicklook" classes available on their YouTube page to really get the most out of the free trial days by having my crafts narrowed down.
Ravelry is popularly noted as one of the top ten websites with free knitting patterns and it holds true on our list as well. They are jam-packed with free patterns and that list grows daily. Like Pinterest, it is one of those websites where you have to sign up to view but it is easy and free and a worthwhile account to have. There are so many helpful forums there where, especially for a greenhorn knitter like me, I can delve into any questions that I have. In addition to the free knitting patterns, there is also a shop to purchase more unique and quality patterns.
4) The Woolery
When it comes to weaving, spinning, felting, dyeing, rug hooking, and knitting there are few and far between when it comes to The Woolery. A definite recommendation in our book for anyone looking for an all in one resource for virtual workshops, patterns, or purchasing supplies. A bonus as well is that The Woolery also offers military discounts and ships out to APO/FPO/DPO locations. The Woolery offers a 10% discount to all active duty, reserve, retired or disabled veterans and their immediate family members.
Would it really be a crafting list if I didn’t include Etsy? I am sure that if you are reading this blog, I am preaching to the choir to say how helpful of a resource Etsy is. With a solid amount of constantly updating patterns, there is really no substitute for this resource when it comes to leveling up your crafting journey. I cannot express to you how many times I have been inspired by crafts I have found while scrolling Etsy. Most stores are very reasonably priced and there is always more stores to explore.
Above all else, the number one tip from both myself and MaryJane is to always check youtube. Do your research and get plugged into these communities. There are so many wonderful workshops out there and we are so excited to see what you craft next! In fact, coming up in September, Sacred Acres will be starting up crafting workshops with MaryJane where you can learn the amazing crafts that you can do with Alpaca Fiber like knitting, crochet, fiber processing, and felting soap. Keep an eye out on our website under the workshops tab to see when these classes sign ups are announced. Class sizes will be limited due to space available, and it will be first-come-first-serve. We hope to see you there and happy crafting.