ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Lovely Letter to a Vintage French Yarn

Updated on November 13, 2011
Photo of the author, divided in her feelings about this yarn
Photo of the author, divided in her feelings about this yarn

This is one letter in a collection of short stories written as love letters. The collection is designed to depict the love/ hate relationship that I sometimes have with a type of yarn or a piece I’m working on when I crochet. This letter is written to a vintage yarn I was trying to work with that I didn’t quite know how to use.

Dear vintage yarn,

You arrived in the first “yarn lot” that I bought off of Etsy. The lot was a collection of mismatched yarn and after it arrived I wondered for a moment if I’d made a mistake in purchasing it. Sure I’d gotten a fair price but what can really be done with half of a ball of yarn?

I do have to say that you were the first yarn to capture my eye in the box … and no offense, but it wasn’t in a good way. All that I saw at first was a ball of rough cotton candy pinkness. I didn’t like your color, the color that little girls puke up after a day of sticky sweetness and a night of Pepto Bismol. I didn’t like the way that you scraped against my skin as I pushed you to the side of the stash. I’ll say it more clearly – I did not like you.

I put the yarn lot away for awhile, not sure what purpose it would have. But then I started reading a lot about yarn bombing. I was familiar with this urban art, of course. I had seen examples of crochet and knit work around and about in San Francisco. I had seen news about Olek’s crocheted cozy for the bull on Wall Street. I liked the idea of this fabric form of graffiti. But it wasn’t until I really started reading about it that I got passionate about the idea of doing some yarnbombing myself.

Yarnbombing is a form of activism that I can get behind. It has some of the same history as graffiti art. However, it also has a strong history as a feminine art form since women are generally the ones who knit and crochet. Some yarnbombing crews take their cues from the rap industry so there’s this unique blend of street culture and fiber arts, masculine and feminine. It’s fascinating.

And I have to confess that getting into yarnbombing appealed to me because it had the allure of something edgy and hip and urban that I’d always wanted to do but never had the guts to do. And truth be told, never really wanted to do in the form of actual spray paint graffiti because I don’t paint well and I don’t like illegal things and although the taggers I’ve known in my life were creative people they were also frequently drug addicts and slackers. Yes, it’s a stereotype, but it’s one based on my personal experience. Yarnbombing is not exactly illegal especially because the work is impermanent. It’s about giving and sharing and community and although it could be argued that traditional graffiti art is the same thing, it’s a lot easier to see and accept when it comes in the form of nice soft yarn.

I know, you’re wondering what any of this has to do with you. Well, when I finally started thinking seriously about possibly doing some yarnbombing, I tried playfully to come up with my own tagger name. Most of the great names that I’d heard out there were for knitters – like Knitorious MEG and K1P1 and Puff Knitty. I had a tough time coming up with a name of my own. I thought about K’ro Shay or Krochet Dawg or about a dozen other bad variations on the word crochet but let’s face it – crochet is too French of a word to sound tough and “street”. You know what I mean, being from France and all. So then I started thinking about other crochet words and it hit me … Stash Bustah! Or maybe even Sistah Stash Bustah!

Because let’s face it, I wasn’t about to start using my nice yarn to decorate the world. I was going to use the stuff from my stash that I didn’t want or need or even like. And yes, I admit it, that’s where you come into the picture. Because when I thought about making something to use for yarnbombing, I immediately went back to that yarn lot box and picked you up.

And yes, as I started to work with you, I felt that same initial distaste. You really are a color that I wouldn’t typically use. And you are so rough on the hands. But as I began to crochet that first chain, I looked closer and realized why you were so sharp against my skin. You’re a 100% crystal rhodia skein, a vintage French yarn that really looks like it has little crystals hanging off of the thread. And the longer that chain got, the more attracted to your shimmery lightness I became. Instead of looking at you as cotton candy, I was starting to see the color of a light pink pearl in my hands.

I will be honest – you’re not easy to work with. Your rough edges made me think seriously about putting on some gloves if I was going to continue to work with you. I was glad that you were a bitty thing – just about one hundred yards – and that I wasn’t going to be making something long and involved with you. You are simply not the kind of yarn that deserves that kind of commitment. But you sure were more seductive than I’d imagined you to be.

When I had to take a break from the itchiness of working with you, I set you down and picked up your label, which I’d tossed aside earlier in the day. I found its vintage design charming. It said “made in France” but didn’t scream French. In fact, it looked very 1950’s American in its design and because of the font that was used. It made me want to turn you into a vintage inspired necklace.

So there is where I have to confess that I put aside that yarnbombing plan for a little while. I decided that you’d make a lovely necklace for myself instead. And you know, maybe some day I’ll tire of your itchiness around my neck and I’ll stick you on a sign somewhere in the spirit of what I’d really intended for you to be. But for now, I’m a little bit interested in continuing this affair.

Thanks for the surprise,

Sistah Stash Bustah!

Comments

Submit a Comment

  • RTalloni profile image

    RTalloni 

    6 years ago from the short journey

    No fair--where's the photo of this yarn???

    Neat post! :)

  • glassvisage profile image

    glassvisage 

    6 years ago from Northern California

    Love the tagger names :)

  • Johanna Baker profile image

    Johanna Mary Elisabeth Baker 

    7 years ago from Christchurch, New Zealand

    Giggle, crafts - sewing, knitting and crotchet can really get under your skin can't they? Lovely letter - great stuff..!

  • AudreyHowitt profile image

    Audrey Howitt 

    7 years ago from California

    Surprise me with your continuing affair!!! Love this!

working

This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

Show Details
Necessary
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Features
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Marketing
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Statistics
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)