Personal Crochet Awards: What happens at Chain Link….

… doesn’t necessarily stay at Chain Link, especially when many, many thanks and much recognition must be given for brilliant teamwork. The Crochet Guild of America is a volunteer organization and the success of our conferences depends on selfless dedication on the part of the committee members and our Board of Directors liaisons to the committees. I can’t say we worked tirelessly.  I certainly was exhausted and more than a little grumpy by the close of the event.  Still am.

In retrospect, I did not express very well at the time the gratitude and affection I feel for all those who pitched in to make the three events I helped produce so awesome and fun: the Design Competition, the Dance Party, the Fashion Show.  I hope to make up for that here.  Also, in the spirit of carefully considered disclosure, I’ve decided to spill about some of the stuff you missed if you weren’t there in Manchester, NH for the 2012 Chain Link Conference.

“Design Trek: The Next Generation”: this award goes to the heirs apparent to this huge event, my co-chairs for the 2012 Design Competition committee, Andee Graves and Shari White, and special thanks to Janet Bates without whom we might still be there packing up boob dummies.

“So You Think You Can Design…”: I’ve previously been on the judging panel for this event so I know it’s one of the most difficult places to be. For their keen eyes, immaculate taste, cooperative and congenial manner, efficiency, and take-no-prisoners attitude, I salute the three kahunas, our judges for 2012, Cari Clement, Melissa Leapman and Carla Scott.

“Show Me the Money”: No other crochet event offers more cash awards. Our winning designers took home $5,600 in prizes and it couldn’t have happened without the generous support of our sponsors. I bow down before them. If you have a chance, please let them know that you know that they are friends of crochet and CGOA.

The $1000 Grand Prize sponsor, Vogue Knitting Crochet

The Magnificent Seven, who each contributed $600 category sponsorships: and; Boye and the Crochet Dude brand; Interweave Crochet; Red Heart; Tahki Stacy Charles; Tulip Company; WEBS;

And special prize grants from the Crochet Liberation Front, Designing Vashti, and Gwen Blakley Kinsler.

“Dodecahedra-what-me-worry?”: For their serenity and easy competence at all things technical, I give full marks to the two savvy kids I call Team Geek, KJ Hay and Bradley Schmerl.

“Papa-papa-razzi Award”: For her awesome photography of everything that went down the runway at the Fashion Show, and for entrusting us with the precious results, a million thousand thanks to Bonnie Barker.

“Mod[el] Squad”: Thanks to the ringers who allowed themselves to be drafted, strutted their stuff and squeezed into the teeny tiny design and fashion show garments that nobody else could hope to wear, including teen sensations Patrice Scott, Katy Temple, and Becky Barker and the exquisite Carlotta Craig, the coolest mom on the block Haley Zimmerman, and to Missy Boo, too. Also, to the unsung heroines behind the curtain at the fashion show who made everything run like Drano, I thank Diane Moyer and Pat (forgive me I can’t remember her last name). 🙂

“Moves Like Jagger Award”: Jack Blumenthal

“Best Y.M.C.A from a Chair”: Carol Moore

“Best Chicken Dance”: Tammy Hildebrand.  I don’t know why I bother to single her out every year.  Tam always brings it on; nobody even comes close to her enthusiasm and technique.

“Redneck Woman Appreciation Award”: Here’s to all my sisters out there keeping it country, and a big Hell Yeah back atcha!

“Oh What a Terrible Tangled Web”: What started out as a monumental ball winding catastrophe turned into a love fest due to the grace and forgiveness of Yvette Jiggetts and the diligence of the Un-Knotters Erwin Goodwin et al. This is Chain Link camaraderie and caring at its finest.

“More Me Than Me”: It was an honor and a thrill to see so many crocheters wearing their garments made from Doris Chan patterns.  I shoulda taken more pictures.  Meaning I took NO pictures.  But all of my friends please let me know if you’ve posted any and I’ll share. I must mention one intrepid fan who wore a different DC every day and must surely own more samples of my designs than I do.  Linda (aka LadyGryphon on showed me at least six of her stunning creations and doubtless had packed more in her suitcase. I suspect if I designed underwear and shoes, there would have been even more. 🙂

“Knowing When to Stop Swatching May Be the Smartest Thing That Any CGOA Instructor Can Learn”: I do not exaggerate when I report that one person provided at least ten pounds of crochet swatches as classroom demo materials.  I only know this to be true because I helped ship, handle and schlep them around. Yes, she totally geeks out with her techniques, but this is a good thing, huh? To Vashti Braha, congratulations on your four sold-out, well-received classes this Chain Link, but enough with the swatches already!  Vashti is on the teaching schedule in Reno, but trust me, I will not be lugging swatches unless there is wine and chocolate cake at the end of it.

“Best Chocolate Cake”: You had to know this was coming.  I sampled at least a half-dozen different ones in Manchester, from the sweet little thing offered with the Mexican Buffet at the venue hotel’s J.D.’s Tavern to the dessert at our Saturday night CGOA Dinner to the elegant cognac-infused French confection from Finesse Pastries a few blocks down on Elm Street. The absolute best chocolate cake among those available to me was the Chocolate Decadence from Baked Downtown Cafe. I actually inhaled two huge slices during the conference.  But as I always insist, “Calories consumed at Chain Link do not count”.

“Best Performance as a Crochet Newbie”: Cast in the role of clueless freshman crochet designer in the new format for Professional Development Day, K-Mac, Kimberly McAlindin, deserves an Academy Award for her portrayal.  If you don’t mind ROFL, then sign up for PDDay in Reno in September when there’ll be another K-Mac attack.

Registration is now open for the second CGOA Conference for 2012 in Reno, Nevada, 12-16 September.  Be there…. or be scratching your head wondering what the frack is this all about when I post those awards!


5 thoughts on “Personal Crochet Awards: What happens at Chain Link….

  1. And an especially big thank you and hug for all that you do. and have done. these last few years go to you, Doris!! (Missyboo says “Hi” , too)

  2. So that’s a mere 2.5 lb. of swatches per class; half o’ that being the posterboard for a pretty mounting, and maybe .25 of that being beads. So 1 lb of swatches per class. That’s like 8-9 skeins of a fancy yarn. I guess that IS a lot. ?

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