I have officially become a hooker. (My real-life, non-yarnie friends reading this need not be alarmed--it's not what you think.) Up to this point, I had been struggling every time a pattern called for a bit of crochet. I learned little tricks like picking up stitches and binding off on the very next row, rather than finishing off a neckline or armhole with crochet. To me, all a hook was good for was for making repairs after I dropped stitches. I kept telling myself that I needed to be more adept at crochet, but put off doing anything about it.
Finally this week, I took a private class with Ann (Rav link) at my LYS. Since my arms had been bothering me, I went on a self-imposed knitting hiatus the week before the class so that I wouldn't risk not being able to do it. It was worth the wait because Ann was a great teacher! In the first hour, I learned the basics. My ah-ha! moment (actually, it was more of a duh! moment) came when I realized that you are supposed to hold the base of your work with your left thumb and middle finger. No wonder why I always thought it was so difficult and unmanageable! Everything would flop around and be so hard to manipulate. I *cannot* believe I didn't realize such a simple and seemingly intuitive thing, but I just didn't. Well, once that clicked, I was off and running.
In the second hour, I showed Ann the pattern I aspired to eventually make...the Anne scarf (Rav link). I credit Janet with the inspiration and the nudge and Ann for making it happen for me.
Ta da! My very first crochet project. Yes, I am happy. And yes, I have been trolling Rav for inspiration to make other crochet projects. I am hooked.
Details are on Ravelry. BTW, now that Rav project pages can be made public, I am going to stop updating the Gallery. I'll decide later what I want to do with it.