Hello! and Welcome!
My name is Jorie and I am the crazy yarn lady behind "the Yarn Cactus." I have dabbled in crochet on and off for over a decade. Thanks to advancements in the internet, apps, and more, I have a ton to share! I aspire to be a helping hand or guiding light to beginner and tenured crocheters alike!
I began seriously crocheting in 2014 when I had relocated to Dallas, TX - away from home, family, friends and everything I knew! I needed something to keep my mind and my hands busy. I am not big into social situations, in fact most social situations leave me completely drained and exhausted. Crochet is something that really helped me to recharge and be ready for the next adventure. It also satisfied my constant need to express my creativeness and add color to the world!
I dove into crochet with little to no knowledge of what was the "right" way vs. the way I was going about it. I also had very little money to invest, but I had a big appetite for anything and everything crochet! I wanted every color of yarn. I wanted every hook size and type. I wanted every accessory I ran across too. Think scissors, bags, yarn winders, yarn swifts, measuring tapes, blocking boards, stitch markers, and more! Since I couldn't afford all of these things, I settled on a set of metal hooks and 9 skeins of yarn in an ombre going from purple to turquoise, and with this I made a blanket! I had stumbled across a pattern on Pinterest, pinned it and set to work. I had NO clue what I was getting myself into. I had crazy edges, tails coming out of my ears, and wonky stitches galore. But since I didn't know any better and that this wasn't "right", I pressed on. I made a giant ombre blanket that I still have today.
Having conquered my first blanket, to the store I went! I bought 8 skeins of a multicolored yarn and started a basket weave pattern on a chain I didn't even count out. This was my first introduction to a "yarn eater" when it comes to a pattern. My starting width was somewhere around 60" and 8 skeins was not going to allow me to make it through. Back to the store I went to get more yarn. At this point, I get an unplanned lesson in dye lots and how they come in to play. Not having the patience or money to start over correctly, again I pressed on. That blanket now lives with my dad in Illinois on his farm. I generally have to perform a repair each time I visit, but it is well loved and something I'm proud to say I made.
As to not bore you, let's just say at this point I have completed hundreds of projects. I now live in Phoenix, AZ with my husband, our pets, our old Ford trucks, and THE YARN BARN (more on this later). I have made everything from dish-cloths, to amigurumi (stuffed animals), to hats, to wearables, to blankets and more! I'm always exploring, learning and challenging the accepted norms.
The intent of starting the Yarn Cactus is to provide resources, reviews, tips/tricks, or even just an ear to all of the wonderful crochet enthusiasts out there! I plan to share lists of different items (think a list of charity campaigns, ways to use scraps, and more!), discussions on different supplies, tools, and notions. Occasionally I'll even share the methods behind my "madness" in case it would benefit another. I don't promise to know it all, or even know the "right" way, but I can promise sincerity and good intentions.