Awww, do you remember this little sweetie? This is the Bower Bird, a wonderful project that I created to teach during a crochet week in Provence in October 2012. I can hardly believe that fifteen months have passed since then as this project still seems so fresh and vibrant in my mind.
I think it would be true to say that this little Bower Bird is probably my all time favourite design. I confess I am a little bit proud of it, especially as this pattern did not in any way fly off my hook. It was hard and laborious and I made a shed load of mistakes as I worked my way towards something that I was completely happy with. I corrected and tweaked and re-worked the basic pattern shapes more times than I care to remember. I think part of the problem was that I could see this little bird so clearly in my minds eye and I wanted to create the exact thing I was visualising. The rounded tummy, the jutty little tail, the shaped wings, the stubby little beak. I wanted it to look perfect, but I also wanted to create a pleasing pattern to work, something that would be simple enough to teach, but complex enough to provide a bit of a challenge.
When I came home from Provence, I really enjoyed sharing the project here in the Attic. Such a terrific response, everyone seemed to love it and I was asked so many times for the pattern and a tutorial. There were declarations of love and quite a lot of begging!
So I did what I have always done in the past and set about working up a tutorial. Tutorials are extremely time consuming to make. They are hard work, really they are. I LOVE making them, but no denying it, they are extremely labour intensive, especially for something quite complex like the Bower Bird. It took me almost a whole day to photograph the tutorial, but when I uploaded the photographs the following day, my heart sank. This was in the depths of a dismal November, and the lighting was truly awful. My photos looked dark and many were out of focus due to the lack of light. I was gutted. All that work, all those hours and hours of labour and for nothing. I really didn't have it in me at the time to start all over again with it, my heart just wasn't in it.
And so the pattern stayed with me, the one and only thing that I have made without giving it away freely here on my blog. It was not a deliberate decision to withhold it, more the lack of time and heart to labour over it any more than I already had done.
During the past year, I have often pondered what to do with this pattern of mine. Many of you have continued to write and ask for it. Some of you even accused me of deliberately breaking my promise and not sharing it when I said I would. I know that so many of you were disappointed when the pattern didn't happen, and I did feel really bad about that.
I even began to listen to people who were telling me to sell it. Don't give it away for free, they said, why should you? Sell it! Produce a down-loadable PDF and make some money from it! And yet......I just couldn't bring myself to go that route, it just isn't right for me, and isn't what Attic24 is about.
So this is what I've decided. When we edge a little bit closer to Springtime and we begin to get some half-decent daylight hours, I am going to re-make the tutorial. There were 84 pictures in the original set, I tell you, it is a LOT of work, but I will do it for you. And I will put it here on my blog for free, for you all to enjoy, just as I always have done. You might choose to buy me a coffee in return, and that would be very much appreciated.
In the meantime, I'd like to let you know that I have a couple of workshop dates soon where I will be teaching the Bower Bird as a project. Our studio blog isn't quite finished yet, I had hoped to have it ready to launch today, but have had way too many distractions for that to happen. I hadn't really wanted to use Attic24 to publicise my workshops, but time is running out, so please forgive me!
In brief, my first two workshops dates are Saturday 8th February and Saturday 8th March, and take place in the studio (Skipton, North Yorkshire). The day runs from 10-4 and costs £45. This includes morning tea/coffee and pastries, a light lunch and afternoon tea/coffee/nibbles. All materials are included too. Class sizes will be kept small (a maximum of 8) and you will need to be able to crochet! Four places have already been taken, so if you are interested in coming along and enjoying a day of social creativity, please just leave me a message in the comments and I'll drop you a line with more info. BOTH DATES FULLY BOOKED ♥ thank you! ♥
Thank you so much as always for your friendship here, I appreciate it more than I am able to say.