Team Marly Bird: Meet Kathryn

There are several different people here on Team Marly Bird. If you’ve been joining on the BiCrafty Boot Camp live videos then you’ve probably had a chance to meet Cryssi and/or Kathryn. We introduced you to Cryssi in more depth recently. Today, let’s learn more about Kathryn.

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When Kathryn Learned to Crochet

Kathryn is a crocheter who is learning how to knit alongside the BiCrafty Boot Campers. Kathryn first learned to crochet as a young child. However, she only learned the chain stitch. She made a really long yellow yarn chain that she wound round and round a rolling pin. Then she didn’t crochet again for years. She enjoyed lots of other crafts – making friendship bracelets, creating mail art.

In her mid-twenties, Kathryn suffered from serious depression. She had struggled with it for years and hit a really low point. She tried desperately to keep herself motivated, although it was hard. Somewhere along the way, she read that it’s worth trying to do something you loved as a child. She thought of crochet. So she picked up a couple hooks and some yarn and a children’s “learn to crochet” book and gave it a go.

Like so many other people, she was instantly hooked. And she quickly came to realize that crochet offered a lot of mental health benefits.

Psychology and Crafting

This member of team Marly Bird had always had an interest in psychology. She used crochet (along with therapy, etc.) to help herself heal from depression symptoms. She began writing about this experience on a new blog that she launched in 2011. As she shared her story, more and more people began to share that they, too, had healed through knitting and crochet. In 2012, Kathryn wrote a book called Crochet Saved My Life, sharing her story.

Since then, she has gone on to intensively study the mental and physical health benefits of crafting. She got a Masters in Psychological Studies. During her studies, she took any opportunity that she could to research the health benefits of crafting. She created studies, she interviewed hundreds of people, and she learned as much as possible.

Kathryn’s Crochet Books

Kathryn Vercillo crochet books

As aforementioned, Kathryn authored Crochet Saved My Life. Then she went on to author Hook to Heal, which is a set of written crochet and journal exercises to help improve different areas of your life through crafting. You’ve seen some of those exercises here on this blog.

Kathryn also launched a collaborative crochet project called Mandalas for Marinke to raise awareness about depression and suicide. Hundreds of people contributed mandalas along with stories about crafting to heal. She held two art shows and turned that project into a coffee-style book.

What Happened to Kathryn’s Crochet Blog?

Kathryn launched Crochet Concupiscence in 2011. She grew it over the years, accruing over 100,000 Pinterest followers and a steady following on Facebook and Instagram. However, over time, she got overwhelmed by the ins and outs of running a blog full-time by herself while also doing other writing for a living. So when someone offered to buy the blog, this team Marly Bird member decided to sell. She sold the blog a few years ago along with all of its associated media. The blog still exists online although sadly the new buyer never kept it up.

Joining Team Marly Bird

Kathryn has never stopped enjoying writing about crochet. She’s written the Crochet Heals monthly column for Happily Hooked digital magazine for over six years and also contributes feature articles and book reviews to that publication. She’s also written for Interweave Crochet, Crochet Today, Crochet!, Knit Edge, and By Hand magazines. For a few years she was the crochet blogger over at The Spruce Crafts (formerly About.com Crochet). She’s also contributed posts to a range of different crochet and craft sites including Red Heart, Lion Brand, Plymouth Yarns, and Craftsy.

She has worked off and on over the years with Salena Baca of American Crochet Association. When Salena saw that I was seeking assistance for team Marly Bird, she put the two of us in touch. It was a wonderful match. So, in October 2020, Kathryn joined team Marly Bird. She’s the blog content director, providing a lot of the blog content, overseeing the editorial calendar, and sprucing up the SEO-type of stuff the blog requires. She loves doing the blogging as part of a team rather than when she did it all solo.

Kathryn’s Craft Goals

Kathryn Vercillo, knit and crochet blogger for Marly Bird team

Kathryn’s learned the very basics of knitting from BiCrafty Bootcamp. She’s behind the team but knows it’s not a race. So she’s excited to keep working on advancing her knitting skills.

She knows a little bit of Tunisian crochet. However, she hasn’t worked on it in a long time, so she would like to brush up on that in the near future as well. She has similar experience and goals with broomstick lace, macrame, and frame loom weaving.

One of her personal goals is to turn her Hook to Heal book into a book series filled with projects. Right now they’re written exercises, but she wants to create patterns that show how to put those exercises to use. But for now, she’s really just enjoying being a part of team Marly Bird. She loves putting together crafty information for you. Reach out if you have any questions about the blog!

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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

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