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Everywhere, No where
I started the CLF as a joke on Ravelry, back in July of 2007. The joke was on me, we're a real group, that seeks to liberate ourselves from stereo types about our craft and ourselves. Other than being called "Fearless Leader", I'm a designer, mother, editor, wife, hand spinner, yarn addict, incessant reader, and over all geek in the coolest of geeky ways.

Beware Defamers of the Hook!

Beware Defamers of the Hook!
Like Joan of Arc, and the Scarlet Pimpernel we are here to seek Justice!

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Official Blog of the Crochet Liberation Front

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Modern Twist Flapper Hookalicious!

Modern Twist Flapper
Originally uploaded by tallybates

Wow! This is one sweet hat! CLF Member Natemmab (Natalie Bates) has designed this cute little flapper hat!

Now only do I love the shape, I adore the simple, but elegant use of the button...simple and elegant always a winning combo!

Check out her pattern in her Tallib Etsy Shop and it's also available on Ravelry.com

Congrats CLF Member Natemmab! You are duly awarded the Hookalicious Award for seriously well designed crochet! (That and fearless leader is a hat fanatic, so this totally rocks my world!)

Back to work...

Well gang, it's time to get back to work... I want to thank all of you great people who have sent notes and thoughts, and prayers. They have all been welcomed and I am so grateful that we have such a supportive group of people in the CLF. As much as you did this for me and my family, I know you would do for any other member of our community (CLF or not)...I applaud you.

So, now on with the crochet side of business...I do have a piece of advice...when emotions are high please don't work on a project that matters...um...VOE (voice of experience)...I'm almost tempted to show what I did to a funky doodle shawl I was working on...EEK another project doomed to the UFO bag or more like me Free Form time :)

Free forming isn't just for art you know, it's a great way to fix mistakes, embellish, embellish, embellish.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009


I won't be online to do CLF stuff much this week dear friends and minions. My former husband, Rashid Sultan Fakhroo, passed away Friday Jan. 24th 2009.

He was my college sweetheart, the father of my children, and a man who met me match for match in intellect, and outdid me in a sense of fun and adventure. Like many poetic souls his internal life was often a struggle, and sadly he spent the past five years suffering in the hospital in Bahrain. I am relieved that he finally is at rest and isn't suffering any more.

I have to take some time out with my children for a few days, and get some paper work in order.

I have to say this experience has been somewhat surreal. I am very grateful to all of the family in Bahrain, the Seychelles, and the USA who have recognized that yes, he and I did love each other when we were married, and that sadly alcoholism consumed him and his life. Our children have inherited the best of who Rashid was, being beautiful, intellegent and soulful people. I have always dedicated myself to allowing them to have the kind of loving home they deserve.

The children are doing as well as can be expected, they had not seen their father since we left the middle east ten years ago. For them this a surreal experience, but not one without emotion.

My daughter and I have spent the past several nights sitting on my bed crocheting together and talking about her father. She has some memories of him, all of them good. And we are grateful for that. Sadly my son only remembers his father from photos.

Rashid would have loved the CLF it would have tickled his sense of humor.

Anyway, I'd best be about this long day of getting paper work caught up to, and contacting other people who need to know, now that the shock is starting to subside.

I would also like to say I am grateful to my husband Jeff, for being a brilliant father to the children, and completely understanding of our emotions during this time of release and sadness. I know for a fact that Rashid was glad that Jeff was a good man to the children.

I'll be back on line soon. Thank you for understanding.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

So, who is this Fearless Leader Woman?

You know when I decided to make the CLF become more than a joke, I never really thought about talking about myself. I'm, believe it or not, kinda shy. Fine, go ahead and laugh, but really it's pretty easy to be brazen in a podcast or in writing, I don't have to see you face to face, or worry really about what you think, most of the time, because well, I'm hiding behind my laptop.

So, now that we're a year and a half old...I thought I might tell you a little about me, just like I did in the CLF book, and I only did that because my friends at home bothered me to do it.

GRIN....See I told you I'm not really all that "Fearless".

First off, I'm Laurie Wheeler and I live on Camano Island in Washington State. I have two fabulous kids, a great hubby, a dog, six cats, and sadly no more fish. But, come spring I'll get some more and we hope that there are no more odd accidents that take out my fish population.

I've crocheted since I was a small child, and almost 8 years ago I became a handspinner. I love to make things for myself, my kids, my friends, oh heck, I'd crochet for anyone anywhere!

I'm the superintendant for my local fair's Fleece and Handspinning Division, the Stanwood Camano Fair is a fabulous community fair, and I love our department. The people and projects are motivating from year to year. We transformed the once a year experience into a once a month meeting in Stanwood WA where we were are supposed to be spinning, but lately for some strange reason everyone is CROCHETING!!! LOL...

In fact, Martha, our Queen Bee (she just crowned me baby queen last year) has made 8 items out of the Crochet Liberation Front First Ever book, and she is a novice crocheter. All of the lads and lasses involved in our group are so very talented, and we all do more than spin and crochet, we also weave, card weave, twine, embroider, lucet, felt, needle felt, knit in a million ways, and enjoy demonstrating to the public.

This group of people inspired me in many ways to go forward with the CLF as something MORE.

Besides my family and fiberarts persuits, I've been all over the world. I went to university in England, worked in Africa and Europe, was married, worked and lived in Bahrain (in the Middle East), and done all kinds of bizarre and crazy things.

Right now besides the CLF, I'm currently working to save our local library on Camano Island. It is only a pilot project that ends in 2010. Due to the poor economic situation our country is facing our library board is reluctant to have a levy on the ballot. For which I don't blame them, but we still need the library to be permanent. So a very committed group of Camano Islanders have gotten together as a friends group to raise the necessary money to keep our library premises flourishing.

I am committed to this, because the Camano Island Library is my office. Like over half the population on Camano Island, I can't get anything other than dial up for internet service. The phone and cable companies will not bring those services to our areas claiming there is not a large enough popluation base. Many of us now use the library to meet our internet service needs.

I for one am so grateful that I have become a Patron of the Library, donated a copy of the First Ever Book, and will be donating more money in the future, because boy do I get a bang for my buck!

So, fellow CLFers, if you didn't really know who I was before, now you get a picture of who I am. A little wacky, a little crazy, adventurous, and well a fiber geek, but hey it's all good. I'm not so sure I'm fearless though, I think I just do things even when I'm terrified.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Crochet in that Crowd...

Inauguration Day 2009: Aerial view of the National Mall
Originally uploaded by USA TODAY

Yes, I know you know it's inauguration day here in the USA. We have a new president, and I am certainly not the first to post our collective sigh of relief (no matter who you voted for, we can all agree a change of scenery may be a good thing), but we also post our collective crocheted sightings.

In that crowd of thousands are crocheted hats and sweaters, there were plenty of pointy stick offerings too, but really I'm hear to write about crochet, I'm sure the pointy stickers are well covered in their blogospheres!

For a fun and insightful account check out CLF Member Vashti Braha's (Vashtirama) blog, http://www.designingvashti.blogspot.com.

I know I spotted some crochet up in the honored seating area, as well as some fabulously significant hats and scarves in the crowd.

Yay for crochet. It looked really good today. And here is for a peaceful transition of power. May we move forward in peace.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Hey did you know anyone can listen to podcasts?

You absolutely do not need to own an Ipod or MP3 player to listen to podcasts. Often you can listen right at your computer without having to download it at all, or you can still download them to listen to later.

Here are some crochet related sites with podcasts for your listening pleasure!

The Crochet Side

Getting Loopy

Yarn Thing

and of course our own CLF Podcast

Now you can subscribe to these via the podcast site, or Itunes if they have it enabled, and also just streaming it online.

I've really enjoyed listening to them. Though due to my own *sigh* internet connection situation, I end up actually listening post-facto (the great part) versus live to Getting Loopy! Getting Loopy is actually more than a prerecorded podcast, you can call in live too! Or chat...One day I will make sure I'm at my BFF's house so I can use her connection just so I can chat with everyone else!

What does standing up mean?

Guys...I've been a little on the quiet side lately. Mostly cause well, I've been all peaceful-like on the insides. Not much has ruffled my feathers, I've come to just enjoy being here, now, present in my own little fuzzy place of crochet goodness.

But, I decided to poke my head out of my happy fuzzy place of yarny goodness and take a look at the world. What is funny, is that due to the CLF name we get called "militant" which is REALLY the cake topper to the joke...

Um, yeah, I mean think about it. We're asking for our needs to be met, that we have things we want to find and buy, and we're saying so...Sometimes with a little joke thrown in...and as I look at the world let me say this...We've been pretty damn nice about it.

Folks...Here's the deal, asking for what we want and need is NOT a militant act, NOR is it aggressive. It is assertive. Aggression is when you walk up to someone poke them in the chest, and in a Jimmy Cagney like voice say, "See here see...you dirty so and so...I want more patterns and I want em now see..."

Assertiveness is like this: I would appreciate, and purchase goods and services if they were made available to me.

Point frickin' blank see the difference?

I am so tired of the world driving itself into poverty, and economic collapse because folks feel helpless. It bugs me. It really bugs me. I know there are more of "us" than there are of "them" and I know that should we make a collective effort to make a micro-economy work for us we could.

But it takes some steel folks...steel in our spines to stand up straight and tall and say, in a very cool Katherine Hepburn kind of way, "No sir, I will not accept this sir, I am going to do what I think needs to be done sir, and you sir need to get out of my way sir!"

We need to stand up...Fear is our greatest enemy. FDR said it right (and probably got it from Eleanor) "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself!"

If we support our community...If we purchase what we CAN afford, WHEN we can afford it, then we make our community work. Bitching only does so much...action makes change.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

What's Up at the CLF!!??

Here's what's up :)

First of all we are busily planning the our First Annual Crochet Awards, possibly to be held in March, but we're still in the whole planning committee stage and working on exact details, you know little things like where it will be, and how are we going to accomplish this! We have some fairly good ideas, but just so you know we're working on it, you'll be the first to know when we have all the details set!

Secondly, a reminder to potential contributors to the CLF second book...I start accepting
submissions January 14th until Feb 20th of 2009. You can get the writers guidelines HERE.

We're looking at a possibility of several titles, I have a working title set, but don't like it much, and I think I'll do a poll or something to decide on the official title. Oddly enough I just can't think of everything, amazing isn't it...and you thought I could...oh you didn't...PHEW...

Thirdly...is there a thirdly? Um...Sure. Thirdly I'm working on putting all of the CLF survey data together, and will make it available for all and sundry....especially the sundry.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Setting our Picot Free!!!

Originally uploaded by anna_maranta

Our first Set My Picot Free Award of 2009 goes to CLF Member Maranta, for her "Crazy Summer Top"...

You have got to go onto Ravelry.com and check out this project, it is amazing! The flowers are crocheted, the top is crocheted, it's well made, beautifully and artistically composed, and is just the BEST of what crochet can be....and it's FUN!!! I LOVE THIS TOP!!

I am actually going to break from my normal habits and actually post several views of this from her project notebook on our blog because it is too dang fun! And you MUST see the details!

Gorgeous work...

CLF Member Maranta you are duly awarded the Set My Picot Free Award for outstanding crochet skill, composition and beauty! Congratulations!

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Just Postulating...Don't Shoot the Postulator...

Ok before I postulate or pontificate...or get on my big soap box...let me first say this....

The revised version (third time round :) ) of the Crochet Liberation First Ever Book is now available for your humble purchase through Amazon.com or via the Crochet Liberation Front Website ($24.50 through Februrary 16th)... So if you want fast shipping use amazon, if you can wait for about a week and a half chose the CLF website ;) YAY...

Now on to the postulation...

We've had this discussion about how the industry has statistics about needle arts, and how the pointy stick users will buy more, and pay for yarn, patterns etc....I've had a different experience, both as a crocheter, and as a vendor of quality art yarn.

As we discussed the matter on Ravelry I paused for thought (I know oh shock of shocks)...What if we crocheters don't do these things because we are not that market...what if we are something totally different...What if we want different things? What if we need something else? What if they aren't serving us because no one asked the right questions?

So let us ask those questions...HERE...and see what we have to say for ourselves... It's only 7 questions long, and I'm just kind of curious to see what answers we get! Yeah it's not scientific, yeah it's not developed by some polling company, but lets see what we say here...and test our own waters...

I know what I really should have put...how many of us are sick of the "knitting ads" in the CLF Group on Ravelry? I mean, I've ranted on this one before and many companies listened, I guess I'm gonna have to rant again :)

Please take the survey even if you aren't involved with the CLF ravelry group :)

Saturday, January 3, 2009


Originally uploaded by zoomama43

The first Hookalicious Award for 2009 goes to CLF Member ZooMama1 !

This awesome shawl made with a delightfully fun yarn, Jojoland Rhythm, our dear member was inspired by a Karabella pattern, but made significant modifications.

Congrats Zoomama1, this is fantastic, I love the yarn, and it would be too much fun to wear!!

Friday, January 2, 2009

CLF First Ever Book on hold for a little bit...

Well, I've made some corrections to the CLF First Ever Book...so as I was going to do the third upload during the week before Christmas, and um...well...cough...got snowed in! Now I shall do it, so for those of you who have been waiting to purchase the book with all it's corrected glory, you can do so in the next few days! Probably by Monday, if not sooner :)

Thanks for your support in this very first endeavor. I am so looking to the next two books to use all of my new found knowledge and skills, and man it's gonna be great!

So, stay tuned, I'll let you know when the CLF First Ever Book is up and for sale once again :)

Hooks Raised, CLF Salute!

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Gingerbread Mailbox Cozy is totally Kitschalicious!

Gingerbread Mailbox Cozy
Originally uploaded by crochetbug13

OK I have to say I love this idea, a mailbox cozy! This had to have given the mail carrier a chuckle!

CLF Member Crochetbug13 made this little beauty, and from her notes is her own design! Have to say I love it!

Crochetbug13 you are awarded the Kitschalicious Award!

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