Who else is super excited for another Designer Spotlight? For this week's Designer Spotlight, I was lucky enough to get an interview with Carol of Sweet Potato Crochet Creations. Carol is a super talented crochet designer who specializes in lovely wearables. You may have seen some of her designs before, but if you not, you definitely need to go check them out! But first, be sure to read through her interview, learn more about Carol and her crochet inspirations, and get a sneak peek of some of her gorgeous designs.
How long have you been crocheting?
I started crocheting partway through my pregnancy with my son. He’s 4 now so about 4.5 years.
How did you learn to crochet?
I learned to crochet the basic sc/hdc/dc stitches from YouTube. It was also a major help with learning how to do the magic circle as well! After I learned the basics, I taught myself how to read patterns and went from there. Repeats took a bit longer for me to understand and confused me at first, but I got the hang of them eventually. I really wish that my grandma could have taught me. She lives about 12 hours away though. However, my crocheting has encouraged her to get back into crocheting a bit. She’s even learned some new stitches!
What’s something you wish you had known when you’d first started crocheting?
Ugh! Definitely how important it was to make a gauge swatch. I didn’t even know what a gauge swatch was for awhile, and when I learned, it seemed like such a pain to have to do one. I still don’t enjoy making them, but I do because I know how important they are in making sure your final project comes out the correct size (and fits correctly if it is something to be worn).
What is your favorite thing about crocheting?
My favorite thing about crocheting is how fun and relaxing it is. I’m a stay-at-home mom, and it is definitely a stress reliever for me when I’ve had a rough day with the kids. But honestly, I’d crochet every day, stressed or not! :P
Is there a certain type of pattern you love to design the most? Why?
I LOVE designing hats! I like them because they are a quicker type of project that provides instant gratification.
When you’re creating new designs, is there something that inspires you? What’s your muse?
I get inspiration from a lot of different things. Sometimes people. I’ve designed a couple of different things with a particular person in mind when I was making it. Apart from my most recent Amara Top, if you see a person’s name connected to a pattern name, it was designed for that particular person. I also get inspiration from different stitches. I have 5 different stitch books at home that I like to look through if I ever lose my crojo or don’t seem to have any motivation for a certain design. I’ve even had my son look through the books with me to help pick out a stitch before. Clothing from normal stores like Target sometimes inspires me as well. I don’t go about copying them by any means, but I like to get ideas from the shape they have or the way they fit the body
What do you think is the most challenging aspect of designing?
I’ve come across a few speed bumps since I’ve started designing. From finding reliable testers to figuring out how to make certain stitches work for certain pieces, but I think the most challenging aspect of designing for me is time management!! With 2 young kids at home it is difficult for me to design as much as I would like without staying up super late or waking up super early, and after a long day my body just doesn’t want to do either of those things lol.
I’m sure it’s impossible to pick just one, but is there one project that you’re particularly proud of?
Although I am always proud of the designs that I make once I finish them, the one pattern that I am proud of most is my Twilight Horizon Hat. This was the first time I had ever made anything with a weight 1 yarn. I usually stick to worsted weight because it is what I have most of and is what I am most comfortable using. However to get the stitches to fit multiple sized head circumferences, I had to use a smaller weight. The hat took me much longer than one with worsted weight would, but the results were definitely worth it, and the stitch definition was amazing! I kept the prototype that I made for the pattern for myself and still wear it all of the time!!
What advice would you pass along to other crocheters?
Challenge yourself. You’d be amazed at what you are capable of if you go out of your comfort zone and try something new! Whether it be a new stitch or technique or maybe even an article of clothing. I see so many posts by other crocheters in crochet groups who don’t have enough confidence in their crochet capabilities or get discouraged because they think they can’t do or make something like some of the other people who post in the group. Just try! It never hurts to try. It may take a few times to get the hang of something new, and you might have to frog quite a bit, but the moment you finally get something figured out that you were stumped by before, you are going to feel pretty darn amazing. Don’t give up!
Thanks for sharing your crochet story with us, Carol! If you'd like to see more of her work, you can find her on Facebook, on Ravelry, and on her website. She's also started a crochet community that you can find here. And Carol has also been kind enough to create a special Ravelry coupon code, just for you all! Get 50% off of any pattern on Ravelry using the code COOKIE (the code ends on September 27th). Happy hooking!
Thank you for stopping by to visit my own personal corner of the web! Feel free to take a look around and check out what I've been crafting, crocheting, or baking. Hopefully you'll find something to inspire your own creativity!