Pattern Writing Ain’t No Joke

So a goal I set for myself this summer was to write my first crochet pattern. Nothing super fancy or difficult, but mostly as a test of discipline and patience. As a yarn-thusiast, I follow a lot of pattern writers of all types and I see how beautiful their projects come out and it’s inspiring but it was also a little discouraging at first. Without seeing what goes on behind the curtain of the internet, it was like these designers could pump out a pattern in a few days and have a perfect finished object. Slightly discouraging… BUT I’ve decided to put those feelings aside and commit to taking the time to really understand what it takes.

I’m not a super patient person and honestly, I hate counting stitches. But this project – I’m making a sweater – has been super fun for me to write out. I’m learning a lot about myself and what I like and don’t like, what stitches I want to use where and for what purpose. I’m starting to realize that I understand a lot more than I think I do. It’s not as foreign as I thought it would be, I guess because I read patterns very regularly.

But this stuff ain’t no joke… as the title states. As with many creation methods, it can be quite tedious, and as much as I love tedious tasks, this was different. I had to have frogged my work ten times before I got in the groove of things. I made three swatches and tested different hook sizes. I tried single crochets versus double crochets. I haven’t gotten too far into the pattern simply because it’s something I work on at night after dinner. But I want this pattern to be perfect.

Okay… I know saying “perfect” may set the bar too high. Fair enough. But truthfully, it’s the way my brain works. It may not be a perfect pattern in the end but striving for perfection is how I keep myself from being lazy and not taking the time and paying attention to the details.

I’m starting to understand what goes into this monster that is pattern writing. I hope to be able to increase the difficulty of my patterns as I progress.


Harvest Chai Crochet Jumper

This jumper is super comfortable and I’m so proud of it and its simple design. I had never attempted to work outside of a pattern at this scale before so I’m over the moon about it.

I’m still sizing the pattern for all wearers at the moment but it will be up on the blog very soon — for FREE!


Hi! Thanks for visiting Quiet Mind Fibers.

If you’ve been here before, welcome back! If you’re new to my blog, thanks so much for checking it out!

I’d like to just give a short introduction of this blog and who runs it (aka: me!)

My name is Kristin Petersen and Quiet Mind Fibers is my small corner of the internet; it’s a place where I write about attaining mindfulness through my art (no -s) and my craft (no -s). I’m a lot of things. I’m a painter, crocheter, knitter, dog-mom, fiance, a daughter, reader, runner, and future teacher just to name a few. But mostly, I’m human. Like I assume many people have done, I started this blogging thing with no real idea of what I wanted it to be. Just a digital bucket where I could keep my ideas whenever they decided to come out and play. Recently, I realized that I gave up on writing out of fear of rejection or worse, being ignored (GASP!). After reading a very thought-provoking book, Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert , I realized that I don’t have to be accepted by hundreds of followers or even to followers to find enjoyment in writing. Sure, it helps if people read what you write, but it’s not why I started and shouldn’t keep me from starting again.

So here I am, world! Judge me if you wish, but I’m here to stay! On that note, here are some very true, fun things about me:

  1. I love Marvel movies, although, I don’t have a favorite superhero.
  2. I have 2 dogs that keep me teetering on the line of sanity 24/7.
  3. I’m getting married (EEK!) in December to my best friend in the whole world and I am over the moon excited!
  4. The movie I know the most lines of by heart is Finding Nemo (I’m also a BIG Pixar movie fan).
  5. I’ve moved around a lot. I’ve lived in California, Alabama, Texas, and Tennessee. I look forward to moving. I like the change. I’m not necessarily a nomad, but I enjoy the adventure moving frequently can bring.
  6. I hate to exercise but I love to wear athletic clothes.
  7. My favorite cuisine is Indian. The spicier the better!
  8. I’ve been a painting since the 9th grade (10 years or so), taking time off during college and during the last few years since I’ve been focused on getting my certificate to teach. I’m definitely not a professional, but I’ve sold a few pieces, which is pretty cool.
  9. I have a bachelor’s degree in Art History. Going to Italy fresh out of high school had a big impact of me; so much so that I was once convinced that I’d be the curator of a museum. French Impressionism and Indian Art are my two favorites to learn about. Truthfully, I think learning so much about art from around the world really gave me a better understanding of how the world works and how it has worked for hundreds of years. You can tell a lot about a culture through the art it leaves behind.
  10. I truly think that the best way to find yourself is through spending time in nature. I think back to all the time I’ve spent outdoors, truly IN the outdoors, and it was always enlightening. Almost spiritual.

    So there are some things about me. Hopefully that gives you a better idea of the person behind QMF.

Now, to re-introduce QMF. Beyond all that I just listed, I love to crochet and knit. I’ve been crocheting for about 4 years or so, and I’ve just recently (within the past year) picked up knitting in a serious way.

My original intention behind Quiet Mind Fibers was to create a blog where I could unleash some of my creativity in writing regardless of who could or would even read it. I wanted a place to unload my thoughts and possibly grow it to be a place to publish my own patterns. I’d like to include some of those things eventually, but honestly, I just enjoy writing. So that’s what I’m going to use QMF for now. I’m going to let go of the desire to be a blogger and I’m going to use this as a more-than-just-fiber-diary, so to speak; to unleash some of the ideas I have and just get them out there.

Thanks for stopping by. And don’t forget, we’re all in this together, be kind to one another.

5 Crochet Patterns You Can Start Right Now to Keep Your Sanity Through the Holidays

Office parties, family parties, costume parties, ugly Christmas sweater parties… So much goes on during the last 3 months of the year. I  love being around people most of the time, but to be completely honest, I’m a hardcore introvert.  The less loud noise I hear, the better. I enjoy going to parties and spending time with my friends and family, but sometimes, I’m drained, tired, and my brain just wants to shut down. When I have this feeling but have social events I’d still like not to miss, I bring a WIP (work in progress) with me just in case. I’ll walk in with my little project bag and find a comfy place to sit and let the people come to me if they want to talk. It can seem kind of lazy to extroverts but as an introvert, I only have so much social energy.

But now about some of my favorite projects! (YAY!)

Sometimes it can be hard to have a conversation and crochet at the same time. Complicated patterns and sentences could do more harm than good for your mind. So find a simple project to work on while when you go to try this. Try any of the projects I’ve listed below.

Lastly, let me say, none of these crocheters asked me to post their work. I’m not getting anything from them for posting their patterns on my page. I thoroughly believe that the patterns listed below are easy, fun, and can lead to interesting conversations when someone who doesn’t know the first thing about crochet asks “Are you knitting?! That’s so cool!”

So let’s go!

Crochet Ear Warmer by Rescued Paw Designs

Home Maker Throw by Sewrella

The Boho Crochet Wrap by All About Ami

Crochet Lana Kimono by Sewrella

Light Alpaca Poncho by Mama In A Stitch

I absolutely love these patterns. Each designer I’ve mentioned above has so much talent and really takes the beginner crocheter to mind when creating these patterns.

I know it seems like a short list, but trust me when I say these projects will keep you busy! Especially when you decide to “go back for seconds”. Ha!

Stay tuned for more of my favorite WIPs!

My Personal Self-Care Methods: what I do to quiet my mind

So this post isn’t actually about crocheting, knitting, crafting, or anything like that. It’s about self-care.

I will be the first person to admit I haven’t always loved myself. I think learning to love yourself for its imperfections is a big part of “growing up”. Some people may be filled with confidence and have always had a great sense of self-worth, but not all of us have been so lucky. I’m writing about self-care because it is a vital part in my remembering to show myself love in different ways each day. Self-care is not only important, it can be the difference between a really bad day and a pretty okay day. I recently had a few bad days in a row, right before I had started a new job. Juuust great. I felt tired, stupid, purposeless, and definitely not ready for this new adventure. Those bad days inspired me to shine some light on my life and open up a little about my self-care methods.

Each person’s method of self-care is different and unique to them. Some may find that their method includes a glass of wine and a good book while others may do yoga or head bang to 90’s Grunge. The things that I do are unique to me and may not do anything good for you. (Sorry!) But here’s a list of some of my favorite self-care methods:

  1. Meditative stretches in a hot bath while listening to trap (I prefer RL Grime).
  2. Crocheting while watching crime television (Criminal Minds, please!)
  3. Running my heart out for about 1-2 miles while listening to, you guessed it, trap. ( I have a YouTube playlist of songs that I “can run faster to”).
  4. Brushing my teeth (sometimes, on a particularly bad day, I’ll brush’m 5-6 times).
  5. Pruning and spending time with my plants. I have a pretty substantial patio garden, mostly tomato, jalapeños, and bell pepper plants. But spending time pruning and talking to my plants calms me. You can’t move too fast with plants or you could overwater something or even break off branches (no bueno!), so I thoroughly enjoy just tending to them. And I enjoy imagining my garden spanning so much further when I get some more space!
  6. Brushing, braiding, unbraiding, and re-braiding my hair. I have always loved when someone plays with my hair (as long as it’s invited haha), so I like to do this to kind of give myself a little head massage. It feels nice and if I get a cute hair-do at the end then… COOL!
  7. Yoga (short 10-15 minute sessions) but it’s a whole process. From choosing my outfit, clearing the space in my living room, choosing a video, and laying out my mat. I go very slowly through my poses while trying to put all my focus on my breath.
  8. Unplug! I usually do this while I crochet or do yoga so it ends up being pretty easy to do since my hands are busy.
  9. Singing: I actually love to sing, and (I think) I’m pretty okay at it. But I hardly ever sing in front of anyone — not even my fiance. It’s my personal thing. I can be truly free when I sing and it feels so nice to get loud sometimes without bothering anyone in the house.
  10. CLEANING! I love to clean (except for dishes, blegh!) I clean my house (or at least try to) every week or so.
  11. Getting inspired creatively! Sometimes, I’ll leave my debit and credit cards at home and go to a craft or thrift store to get inspired for new projects. (If I bring $$, I’ll spend $$ so I can’t bring $$ unless I plan to spend $$!)
  12. Go on a walk with my boys (I have to very active dogs — Ubba and Joey) and they are at least 2 and half handfuls so I like to take them to the park to get their “crazies out”!
  13. Pinning! Hahahooooh yeah! I’m a pinner alright! But really… sometimes, when done right, Pinterest can be really motivating and inspiring on days when you really don’t feel or even want to feel motivated or inspired. I personally love looking at gardening or crochet/knit ideas just to get those creative juices flowing.
  14. Cycling. This one is pretty new. So for my birthday this year, my fiance purchased me a road bike. And although it’s been raining pretty constantly in between blazing hot days in the part of the big TX where I live, I’ve got to say cycling is quite therapeutic. I’ve only just recently started the hobby, but it keeps me active and allows me to truly shut off all the other things in my head. Can’t hear that F-150 coming up behind me if I’m listening to music or not paying attention.

I am listing these here to share with anyone who may not have a self-care regimen.

Self-care is so beneficial. We all can agree on that at least, I hope. But what’s great is that self-care can be anything that positively effects you mentally, socially, emotionally, spiritually, or physically. I hope my list gives you an idea of what self-care can be. There’s no boxes to fill here, no expectations or judgement. Just pure, personal self-compassion and it is all up to you to figure out.

Thank you for joining me today. Take care.

So let me explain…

I know Quiet Mind Fiber must seem, at first glance, like it’s attempting to be like what many others have done. But let me tell you why it’s not…

Quiet Mind Fiber is a special place. I wanted to start a blog that would be helpful to people without just repeating what others had done, but I had come to a road block with it. I went a few weeks without writing anything down and just thinking about why I crochet and what I get out of it. 

I had this weird idea to try and combine crocheting and meditation. This idea was born from a very bad day. I was tired after working a full 12 hour shift at my job. My patience was paper thin. The world was loud and all I wanted was to find a quiet place, but I didn’t want to just go to bed with all that noise in my head. I wanted to crochet for a while… in silence.

I imagined sitting cross-legged in a dark room on a pile of soft pillows holding yarn and a hook in my hands. I would begin to meditate. Breathing in… and out. In… and out. My mind would begin to race and work out the things I had going on in my head. And from all this and without feeling my hands move, the yarn would become something. Maybe with the lights on and my eyes open, the something wouldn’t look like much. Maybe the stitches would be off or maybe I’d made something weird-shaped, but you know what? It would, in a way, reflect what my heart and mind needed to work out that day. 

I’m working on developing a guided crochet-inspired mediation practice in the hopes that it helps those who may have a hard time meditating because they are easily distracted or just overly-anxious and may benefit from something unconventional. I want to provide a place where it’s okay that not every piece makes it to Instagram. I want it to be an inspiration for creative meditation and mindful – yet imperfect – fiber artworks. 

So if these ideas interest you, please stay tuned!!

The Journey Begins

Thanks for joining me! I’m Kristin Petersen and I started Quiet Mind Fibers in order to have a place where I can talk about how I use crocheting and other fiber arts to clear out the dust from my mind, straighten out the “spaghetti-brain” as well as posting my own simple yet modern crochet patterns to help you use crochet as more than just a hobby.

I guess I’ll say a little bit about myself here just to get the ball rolling. I’m 24 and a graduate from the University of Memphis – Art History BFA. I love to crochet more than I love most people and it really helps me de-stress. I live in The Woodlands, Texas with my fiancé and our two doggos.

“Art washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life.” Pablo Picasso