Colorful Crochet Lace with Mary Jane Hall

Colorful Crochet Lace with Mary Jane Hall was the topic for Thursday’s Yarn Thing with Marly Bird. Mary Jane Hall profile pic

We began with a ‘small world’ moment, where Marly remembers the first time she met Mary Jane at a TNNA, they were sat at the same table. At that time, Mary Jane had just written Positively Crochet, every one has come so far since then.

Born in the ‘Deep South’, Mary Jane says she was all over that area of the US. After college, she married her husband and settled in Ohio, where she lives today. Normally, she likes to be shown how to do things, but she learned to crochet from a book, with a little assistance from other ladies she knew.
Up until 2004, she had crocheted mostly in the winter, working on hats and scarves, with a few baby layettes. Others asked her to teach them to crochet the ponchos that became popular about then, she created a few patterns of different shapes and put them on E-bay. In about two months she sold about 150 copies!

Mary Jane thought perhaps Leisure Arts might be looking for designs so she wrote them (she admits how little she knew) but received a phone call asking to do two booklets of her designs. This was about January 2005, and became Crochet Young and Trendy and Crochet in Style.

Mary Jane began to think she was ready to put together a book. She considered the books of the past and how they had upwards of a hundred patterns, and the range from easy to advance experienced crocheters. That was Positively Crochet. Next she wrote Crochet that Fits.Mary Jane really kept in mind the crocheters that had, up until picking up her book, made afghans, scarves and hotpads. She incorporated a Graduated Stitch Method where adjust the height of the stitch helps the fabric of the garment fit the body better. She says she considers that cute little blacCCL_CoverMechanical.inddk dress on the cover of Crochet that Fits as beginner project!

This new book, Colorful Crochet Lace (Ravelry Link) has a Parisian theme, many of the names of the projects featured are French, sha
ped with french design in mind. You can pick up a copy through the Interweave website in both book format and electronic file.

You can find Mary Jane Hall at her blog, also in Ravelry. Plus she is active in social media, so you can find her in Facebook and Twitter as well as many other places.

Mary Jane’s visit was part of a Crochet Blog Tour. You can see Colorful Crochet Lace have been or will be posted in these blogs, check them out!

  1. Vickie Howell, August 4th
  2. Outstanding Crochet, August 5th
  3. Bonnie Bay, August 6th
  4. Crochetville, August 7th
  5. My Little City Girl, August 11th
  6. Hook and Needle Designs, August 14th
  7. GoCrochet, August 17th
  8. Turquoiz Blue — This is Crochet, August 18th
  9. Cute Crochet Chat, August 19th
  10. Hot Lava Crochet, August 20th
  11. Crochet Architect, August  21st
  12. Crochet Renee, August 24th


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  1. Vicki Lynch says:

    The lace patterns used by Mary Jane make me wish I already knew how to crochet. It’s a skill I’ll need to work on / learn. I enjoyed getting to listen live for a change today, very interesting and engaging as always.

  2. Amy says:

    I love lace. I’ve been ogling this book since the patterns first went up on Ravelry. It’s on my list to buy, but it would be great to win a copy. It was fun hearing about Mary Jane’s crochet career.

  3. Kay Bridge says:

    When I was very small I picked up a crochet hook and tried to copy what my mother was doing. When she asked me what I was doing I replied, ‘I’m making holes!’ She said “No dear, you’re making lace”.

    • Mary Jane Hall says:

      That is so funny and cute Kay! My granddaughters actually did the same thing when they were very small – one day when they were at my house I was in the kitchen and when I went in the living room they were both sitting on the couch pretending to crochet. They each had 1 of my hooks and an antique dolly in their hands moving their fingers as if they were crocheting. Just adorable. They were too young to learn (ages 2 & 4). I also got a kick out of you telling your mom you were making holes! When I did a survey asking people what their definition of lace was, one adult person said it was fabric with holes in it!

    • Mary Jane Hall says:

      Thank you for the compliment Mary! I hope you DO learn to crochet. It’s so easy. My Romanian daughter in law has been a knitter since she learned as a child in Romania. When I finally got around to teaching her to crochet, she was litterly jumping up and down in the living room saying “This is SO much fun! Why didn’t you teach me to do this a long time ago?!” She caught on very quickly and I think it had to do with the fact she already knew how to knit. She didn’t want her first project that night to be a scarf or anything else simple, but she keep insisting on her first project to be a Newsboy Cap! She did it and I kept saying over and over “Are you SURE you didn’t learn to crochet when you were in Romania? She said no! Next time I saw her, she had made little Chloe, age 9 months, a cap to match without asking me to help her know how to make it smaller.

  4. Katelyn M says:

    Thanks for another great episode. Honestly I haven’t attempted crochet lace yet. Typically I only see shawls and haven’t looked that hard for other items. This book has really got me thinking about crochet lace. I am going to be adding this to my list and would love to make some of these items for next summer. Thanks for sharing with us!!!

  5. Mademoiselle Mermaid says:

    It was as delightful to listen to Mary Jane Hall’s story as it was to listen to her adorable accent!! …The crochet lace book looks like a dream, and a French cafe theme is beyond perfect!! Wonderful show 🙂

    • Mary Jane Hall says:

      Thank you SO much for the compliment! You put a smile on my face! It’s funny because I was born in Texas and lived all over the deep south, but have lost most of my accent since living in Ohio for so many years. I’ve lived in Texas, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Mississippi and Louisiana (where I graduated HS), but I think I have more of an Oklahoma accent because my mom was from there and I sound like other people who live in Oklahoma. They don’t have quite the long, southern drawl as my family in Texas and Alabama.

  6. Suzanne says:

    This was a fantastic discussion today. I actually listened to parts of it several times. I am totally intrigued by the graduated stitches. My favorite part was when Mary Jane said, “I have several books. Like 300…”
    I laughed out loud at that. I have knit lace but not crocheted it. I will have to take a good look at Mary Jane’s patterns for an entry point there.

  7. MELISSA C. says:

    I love crocheting up some lace! Just checked out the designs, love the tops and shut up! A hooded jacket in my size! I think I’ll take a Curvy Crochet class then get that book! Great podcast, thanks

  8. Mary Anne says:

    Who knew that crochet lace could be so beautiful! I’ve crocheted doilies and lots of snowflakes but this book takes crochet lace to a new level. Thanks for a great show.

  9. Michelle says:

    Marley, thanks for having Mary Jane Hall on your show. I haven’t heard of her or seen her designs. Boy have I been missing out! Gorgeous stuff especially the lace. Crochet, in my opinion, is the perfect method for creating lace. Again, thanks for the show it was one of my favorites.

    • Mary Jane Hall says:

      I thank Marly for having me on the show too, Michelle! I appreciate Interweave for all the publicity they have done (especially Tommy!) + my designer friends who have participated in the book blog tour. I’m thrilled more people are finding out about me as a designer and the books. I love meeting new people and it is my main source of income, so I am very thankful to everyone!

  10. Ashleigh Eden says:

    I love to crochet lace, and this book looks so great! I really enjoy listening to these podcasts and hearing everyone’s stories, it’s really inspiring!

  11. Sheryl sanders says:

    Another wonderful podcast. Listening to Mary Jane makes me want to do lace .
    So it looks like I’ll have to give up sleeping.(lol) Thanks so much to you and Mary Jane for inspiring us to expand ideas to do more crochet.etc.

  12. MaryPat says:

    I can’t wait to get started. Mary Jane, you definitely inspire people to start crocheting lace!! Thank you:).

  13. Laura says:

    Loved the podcast, as always! Amazon told me I would like her new lace book and it is on my wish list. Now a few more of her books are on there as well. =)

  14. Missy Schmidt says:

    Crocheting is my passion. And I love Mary Jane’s lace patterns!!! I added several of her books to my Amazon wish list! Her designs are truly inspiring! Thanks for a lovely podcast!

  15. Renee' C. says:

    So fun! I actually learned crochet by doing crocheted lace with my Grandmother! Thanks for having Mary Jane on the show!

  16. Lori Biamonte says:

    Thank you for another wonderful podcast. I, too, love lace! I haven’t been brave enough to crochet lace but I’m now inspired to do so.

  17. Chris says:

    I’m hoping you can help. I am working on a pattern from Colourful Crochet Lace called Tunique Unique. Unfortunately I am part way through and discovering that the instructions do not make sense. I am trying to find a way to contact Mary for advice, as clearly something is wrong with this pattern. So I have had to stop abruptly and hope that I haven’t struggled this far for nothing. I would be so grateful to solve this. My email is [email protected] if anyone can help. Thank you!

Marly Bird

The One and Only, Marly

Marly is a knitwear and crochet designer (and yarn addict) that is here to help you learn how to knit and crochet in a way that's fun and approachable.

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