Blog · Miscellaneous

2020 Year-End Review

So, I’ve been putting off this post in the hopes that I might complete one more project before the ball drops on 2020, but let’s get real here. I am fully planning on spending the wasteland of a week between Christmas and New Year’s Day eating the contents of my Christmas stocking and becoming one with my couch and video games. Having said that, I do want to reflect a bit on arguably the worst year in our collective recent memory.

Just like everyone else who went into quarantine in the early days of 2020, I had hoped that I might spend the time wisely. I would commune with my yarn and hooks. Learn their inner secrets and harness that to elevate myself to Grand High Stitch Witch. Well, that didn’t exactly go as planned. Whilst I didn’t really ever get the chance to master crochet sorcery, I am pretty proud of the stuff I did accomplish. Let’s all hop in the Wayback Machine and see what we can find, shall we?

The first stop along Memory Lane is last winter. I started off this doomed year in a flurry of color and texture while making these hoods. I was going to stockpile them and hit the fair circuit this year, but again, that didn’t go as planned. Some of my dear winter hoods have been shipped off to various corners of the world, but some (looking at you, mermaid hood) I just couldn’t bear to part with. Maybe next year, provided the apocalypse does not come.

The last days before lockdown and the early days of quarantine, I’ll admit, get a little more…. let’s go with “outside the box” in terms of design. Here, I’m starting to experiment with design and write some stuff down that is either available for purchase as a pattern or will be soon. Look for a Birthday Cake Hat pattern coming soon to a pattern purchasing platform near you! This Flatwoods Monster hat you see being modeled ever so handsomely by Mr. Wolf Bite has gone back to the drawing board and will hopefully be available in a more fleshed out version early in 2021.

Chugging right along, here you see quarantine is in full swing. My good friend Christy Broy Art hosted a Quarantine Cosplay Contest and guess who won! I whipped up a gasmask (pattern by The Twisted Hatter) and a plague doctor mask (pattern by Crochetverse), added some creepy accessories, and snagged the victory! This was definitely a 2020 highlight for Casa Wolf Bite!

The first RBG inspired collar of 2020.

Speaking of crochet highlights, GISH (The Greatest International Scavenger Hunt) is usually a good way to get some experience with making things that you wouldn’t normally make. Check out the above two pictures for some 2020 offerings.

2020: the year of the custom order and making stuff up as you go along! Y’all, let’s pause here and acknowledge my wonderful and gorgeous husband who not only models, but untangles my yarn messes and never (audibly) complains, blessed be his name. Amen.

Okay, we’re back! At some point this summer, my niece messaged me with a tiny, baby of a request. Could I possibly make for her The Sweater? You know the one. You may have been inundated with requests of your own. Know that you are not alone. I decided to tackle this with a mix of primarily Tunisian crochet stitches (I used sc for the jacquard squares). While it’s true that I could have knitted this for the child, I figured she would want it sometime before her retirement, so I just went for it. I would file this under something I am very proud of myself for having completed this year.

I also had a couple of requests for custom mouse ears that I want to include because they are so dang fun! A dear friend of mine requested a set of Sleeping Beauty inspired ears for herself and a set of Starry Night inspired ears for her sister. That was a bit of a challenge to wrap my head around, but it all turned out okay in the end.

In keeping with the custom order theme, my next 2020 offering is rather somber. A good friend of mine in Australia requested that I make a replica of RBG’s dissent collar when she heard the news of RBG’s passing. I saw that quite a few folks online were also interested in making their own collars, so I decided to go ahead and write up a pattern for this one. I made it available for purchase with 100% of the pattern proceeds through Election Day in the US going to RAICES (The Refugee and Immigrant Center for Education and Legal Services). I was able to donate over $100! Another small highlight in such a dark year. I am also pleased to report that the collar is a hit in Australia and I’m hoping it will be the start of a crochet bling trend!

The We Dissent Collar was my very first pattern. The Enchanted Fairy House Hat was my second. This hat was born out of a desire to tap into stories and memories from my childhood. I am the child of an Appalachian family, and, boy, do our roots run deep. My ancestors from Scotland and Ireland brought with them to the hollers of Southwestern Virginia the magic of the Fair Folk and I decided to channel that magic into fiber. Once again, this hat made its way Down Under and currently resides in Western Australia. Wouldn’t Nanny and Pa think that was somethin’ else?

Next, let’s move into late fall/early winter. After the success of some of my patterns and finished items, I was asked to teach beginner’s crochet workshops for adults and children at the museum in which I work. Pictured above on the far left is an example of one of the hats we’ll be making at the next one.

We will not, however, be teaching the children how to make their own Facehuggers from the Alien franchise. They have to go to a different museum for that. This Facehugger (pattern by Cindy de Vries) in particular was done as part of an Alien themed Christmas present for Mr. Wolf Bite for being such an excellent crochet helper and life partner. The other part of this present was a light up paper mache/clay/glue/latex monstrosity of an egg pod, which actually turned out kinda cool and may get posted to Instagram in the coming days. Stay tuned!

So, here we are. Present day. This was by no means an exhaustive look at the projects of 2020, but more of a whirlwind tour. Mostly so one day I can look back and say that I made stuff during a year when I felt like my creativity and will to make would never return. Time, my friends, keeps on slippin’, slippin’, slippin’ and we are standing at the precipice of the future. I sure do keep hope alive that next year will bring us all something good and something beautiful and something kind. Follow me on social media for updates, just in case there’s a New Year miracle and I actually get something done. Have a fantastic, shiny, marvelous New Year, and thank you for making the old one bearable.

The ultimate in winter fashion looks.

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