Crochet Expert Brenda K. Anderson

Today on the YarnThing Podcast with Marly Bird: Crochet expert Brenda K. Anderson!

Brenda K. Anderson learned to crochet from her mother when she was a little girl.  She crocheted for a while but then stopped for a long time.  In the meantime she had taken up sewing (it was a bit quicker for someone with a short attention span).  Right about when the first Stitch n’ Bitch book came out, Brenda rediscovered her crochet things and saw the skull sweater in Stitch n’ Bitch.  That sweater instantly grabbed Brenda and she called her mom (always crafty) and asked her to teach her to knit.  Soon after learning to knit, she saw an issue of Interweave Crochet, discovering that crochet didn’t all have to be acrylic sweaters and granny square potholders.  Always a designer (she even when to college for Fashion Design), becoming a crochet designer became the natural next step.  And she doesn’t just design for crochet, she also designs knitwear and for her day job.

Brenda’s day job has got to be one of the coolest job on the planet.  She is a costume designer for the puppets and performers at Sesame Street Live as well as other characters like mascots (most of this is hush-hush so that is all we can say).  A few weeks away from graduating college, she got a call from a woman who offered her a job which eventually lead to her current job.  So she gets to use her degree for both of her careers.

beastly crochet coverOver the last few years, Brenda’s designs have appeared in many many places including Interweave Crochet, Crochet Today, Interweave Knits, Stitching in the Stacks, Crochet Me, Crochet at Home and her very own book.  Her book just recently came out and is called Beastly Crochet: 23 Critters to Wear and Love.  This book if full of really awesome designs like the Sugar Skull Shoulder Bag and the Tiki Head Bolster.  In addition to bags and home items, there are wearables like hats and little crochet monsters.  The guys on the cover are particularly popular and a great first felting project.  They are also great little organizers as they are hollow! Such a neat idea.  There is also a great section on how to get your creatures/projects to look how you want.  Some people don’t naturally get how to make faces and need a little extra help and that is what this extra section gives you.  Brenda also did a video tutorial with Interweave called 3D Crochet that goes over some of those finishing techniques.

Important links from today’s show:

  • Brenda’s designer page on Ravelry
  • Sesame Street Live webpage
  • 3D Crochet video purchase page
  • Marly’s Knit-a-Long on Craftsy, the Belo Casamento Shrug

Online Knitting Radio at Blog Talk Radio with MarlyBird on BlogTalkRadio

And we can’t forget the Giveaway!  Leave a comment below with Brenda’s keyword for your chance to win your own copy of Beastly Crochet!


Let’s give some love to our sponsors!
Indian  Lake Artisans
Fiesta Yarns
Drew Emborsky
Bijou Basin Ranch
Buffalo Wool Co.
Green Mountain Spinnery

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  1. Linda says:

    If I were a zombie, I would want to be designed by Brenda! Her designs are super cute. It’s so much fun to crochet characters with a face–it’s like giving life to a cool creature that can love you back.

  2. radinnh says:

    I am happy to hear more fiber crafters are excited by crochet. Thank you Brenda for making it cool. Grandma never dreamed of crocheting a monster or zombie or any of the great projects you have introduced in Beastly Crochet. Keep crochet modern and fun and more kids will want to learn our craft and keep it alive. .

  3. melissavink says:

    Awesome podcast as always!! The idea of zombies freak me out as I am terrible with scary shows that have them in them. I’m a scaredy cat ;-). Plus it’d throw off my tension ;-). The designs in the book are awesome and it definitely helps when there are facial guides.

  4. Colleen Clarke says:

    I really enjoyed the show from yesterday even though I feel like a zombie due to the cold I have right now. I’ve been interested in making amigurumi for a while now and this could be the incentive to get started.

  5. Shelly says:

    I would love to create a bunny zombie for easter. My grandbabies would just LOVE it. Fun, happy interview.

  6. Vicki Lynch says:

    Marley- all the crochet shows you’ve had lately are really getting me intrigued to give it a try. I’ve been putting it off, but you keep introducing so many cool people and ideas. The monkeys in The Wizard of Oz were very frightening to me as a kid, so I can’t even imagine what a zombie would have done. I totally missed the memo about zombies being popular and didn’t figure it out until about a year ago.

  7. Elizabeth says:

    Loved this episode! Thanks Marly for such wonderful interviews 🙂
    My brother loves zombies; I may have to crochet him one for his birthday this year!

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.

Meet Marly

Knitting & Crochet Patterns for Every Mood
A cartoon image of a joyful chicken, sitting comfortably in a green armchair, knitting happily with blue yarn, surrounded by pink and white flowers, looking for DIY project ideas. -Marly Bird

Netflix & Chill

Simple projects for when you want to relax and zone out

A colorful illustration of a white rabbit with a unicorn horn, nestled among multi-colored leaves arranged like a fan behind it, projects every mood of peacefulness and whimsy. -Marly Bird

Social Butterfly

Frustration-free projects that you can easily work on in public areas

A whimsical illustration of a white chicken adorned with pink flowers and light pink butterflies, featuring flowing tail feathers and a playful pose, all set against a simple white background, perfect for mood-based projects. -Marly Bird

Smooth Jazz

Projects that require a bit more intense focus (but music is nice!)


Shhh Be Quiet!

Advanced projects requiring deep focus (but a big payoff, too!)