Thank you to those who have shared in the joy of the first two Needle Arts with Vision Loss books being completed. Yes, I am working on the Machine Sewing book slowly, yet surely it will get done while enjoying doing other needle arts along the way.

This week I was briefly side-tracked with a class of a different sort of Needle Art, Irish Crochet Clones Lace. Taught by expert and author, Marie Treanor at Laci’s store and Museum, Berkeley, CA. Marie’s wealth of knowledge and beautiful samples of her work and others work are inspiration for the techniques she teaches. Besides learning new techniques, it was fun meeting with folk who love lace and crocheting lace.

The class showed me new techniques and gave me deeper appreciation for crochet. I also discovered why I have been confused with crochet terminology over the years. The British terms for the stitches are different than, yet similar to the USA terms. As a child while living outside of the USA, I learned the British terms first; not knowing they were different in the USA. Before doing your project, clarify the pattern’s English meanings -British or USA?

For patterns, verbal written patterns work for the visually impaired. While from what I know, the International crochet code chart patterns won’t come through accurately with the adaptive technology. Thus, someone who knows the code needs to read the pattern to a visually impaired person for use of the pattern.

If a visually impaired person wants to make crochet lace first practice the techniques using yarn or heavy cording with a hook the size of the yarn thickness. Then progress down to at least No. 10 mercerized 6-strand cotton thread and #1.50 Irish hook size or #10 US hook size. For a challenge continue on to smaller sizes of thread and hooks to discover how small you can go. Remember to give yourself patience in the learning process.

If you crochet or not, give crochet lace a try. Yes, Marie tells me that she makes her pieces while watching TV and she’s known of visually impaired persons who make crochet lace.

Enjoy the Needle Art of Irish Crochet Lace!


Clones Lace: The Story and Patterns of Irish Crochet by Maire Treanor, Revised Edition, 2010. Lacis Publications, 3163 Adeline Street, Berkeley, CA, 94703-2503, USA

25th Annual International Clones Lace Summer Workshops, 9th -14th June 2015, Clones Lacemakers, 3 Mullinamoy, Clones, County Monaghan, Ireland.

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