Crochet Society Box 27 – Alanna O’Dea

We caught up with Alanna O’Dea one of our fabulous box 27 designers!

Hi! What are you up to today?

Hi everyone, lovely to meet you! Today has actually been a very rare day spent entirely away from crochet. It is school holidays here in Australia so my husband and I took our two sons to a local water park. My boys had the time of their lives, though I can tell you now, I will be very sore tomorrow – those water slides are very unforgiving!

What is your favourite type of project to crochet?

It honestly depends on what mood I am in and what I am in need of. I love to crochet an amigurumi when I feel like being challenged in a project that won’t take me an eternity to finish. On the other hand, when my mind needs a little soothing and calming, I find the repetitive motion of making a blanket relaxing. I think this is why I enjoy making children’s comforter blankets so much, it combines both styles of crochet which I get a lot out of. Either way, as long as there is time for a little crochet in my day, I am happy and content.

Where’s your favourite place to crochet?

In my clean, tidy, quiet lounge room (so when my children are in bed!) with my favourite candle burning.

Which of your crochet projects are you proudest of?

The two blankets I made for my sons when they were babies. There was a lot of time and love put into them. They are very simple and perhaps not my finest pieces, but they still get used every night.
I love how much my sons care for them – it is very special.

What’s the biggest challenge you’ve ever faced with your crochet?

I would say my biggest challenges have come with learning amigurumi. It was quite an intimidating style of crochet to begin with. Once I got the hang of it and gained more confidence however, I haven’t looked back. I am learning new shaping techniques and being challenged all the time, which I really love. I am absolutely hooked.

What’s the best piece of crochet advice you’ve ever received?

I have received a lot of great advice over the years both from my Mother and Grandmother.
The one that sticks in my mind is to write down the details of your project (hook size, brand, weight and colour of yarn) and keep it in a zip lock bag along with your project. That way you will never be left guessing what hook size you were using when life got in the way, and you had to put your project down for a week or two.

It’s been a difficult year for many of us – what would you say to any crocheters out there who are having a hard time?

It has been a difficult time for so many; it really is hard to comprehend at times just how difficult. Life has affected everyone so differently and so inexplicably; for this reason I am hesitant to hand out any advice, but I can talk about what has helped me, and that is mindfulness. I live each day being as present in the moment as I can be, love, laugh and engage as much as I can. All the simple things I once took for granted I no longer do. When I am able to pick up my crochet hook, I ensure that it is at a time I am able to relax – light a candle, turn off the news and put my phone on silent. This is time purely for me, I focus solely and silently on my crochet, on the yarn as it moves over my hook, and on the stitches I am creating. Crochet has become my meditation, it has taught my brain and body to relax; it has helped my state of mind immensely.

Do you have any big crochet plans coming up?

Yes. I would love to start filming tutorials for my patterns, as well as begin running crochet workshops within my local community. My ultimate dream is to have a little crochet studio where I can invite like-minded people in for cosy crochet evenings and run my workshops.

Where can people find out more about you?

People can find more about me on my website and on my Instagram profile @theodoreandrose where I try to post weekly.

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