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Not all yarn is beautiful.
Not all crochet and knitting is beautiful.

For example, this is a project that's been abandoned to a bag buried in the back of my closet.

For example, this is a project that’s been abandoned to a bag buried in the back of my closet.

Even so, Pinterest is filled with gorgeous photos of potential projects, my crochet board included. So much beautiful stuff out there to make with beautiful yarn.

Take a peek at comments on craft blogs, Ravelry projects, r/crochet threads, etc., and look at the outpourings of positivity and compliments. The online craft world is overwhelmingly kind, and I don’t doubt the sincerity of that kindness.

Everything is lovely.

And when it isn’t, we say very little or nothing at all.

Don’t get me wrong, that’s a good thing.

Uninvited criticism on something someone’s spent weeks or months on making, someone who then has the courage to put it out there in the public eye, that criticism is uncalled for and unwelcome. So I will never criticize someone’s personal work on their blog, their Ravelry project page, or anywhere else they put it out there online.

Even when they're just goofily wearing hand-dyed yarn on their heads.

Even when they’re just goofily wearing hand-dyed yarn on their heads.

But sometimes I really just want to point out that some segments of the craft world are bonkers. Mostly the free patterns offered by large yarn companies like Red Heart and Lion Brand, where unlike a curated Pinterest board, the beautiful is mixed in with some head-scratchingly (literally, in this case I think) weird projects. I have a whole folder on my computer dedicated to “bad crochet,” filled with screenshots of free patterns that make me feel sorry for the models or the pattern testers.

I find (perverse?) joy in ugly/weird patterns, which sometimes I’ve shared on this blog

Indefensible crochet
Indefensible crochet: terrifying toys
A Book of Men’s Sweaters
Glorious (?) Crochet Sweaters
Oh. My. (<—-seriously, of all of these links, this is the one to click. you won’t be disappointed)

Writing this post sent me back to some of those free pattern pages, where to my great discomfort a “reviews” section has been added to the patterns. How can I make fun of a bizarre baby hat covered in worms when enthusiastic crafters are gushing about how adorable it is especially when you add more worms than the pattern is designed with?

Bonkers? Ugly? To me, yes.

But somewhere out there, someone is genuinely rhapsodizing about how exciting a pair of fun-fur bracelets look, or how dashing a granny square snuggie will look on the man of the house. Or about putting more worms on a baby’s head.

And who am I to judge? Maybe I need to revise how I began this post.

All yarn is beautiful to someone.
All crochet and knitting is beautiful to someone.

(Really, you must see these to believe they exist. I laughed so hard I cried when I posted it last year.)

A Playful Day