By hook or by crook

23 Nov

Anyone who has seen me out and about in Glasgow recently may have spotted me, hook in hand, working away at a large blue and white object. This is my Christmas jumper which I have been crocheting for what feels like aeons (since last winter, actually, with a big break for the summer) and which I intend to finish before I go carol singing on the 7th of December.

Image by Davina Harrison on Flickr

But crochet hooks aren’t only good for giving me repetitive strain injury, they also have a variety of household uses – so much so that I think every home should have at least one.

  1. Unblocking drains. I don’t mean when it’s completely out of service and you have to grab either a plumber or a plunger. But when your shower drain is just running a bit slow due to a build-up of hair, a handy crochet hook will pull that hair back out again. I’m not saying it will be a pleasant experience, but it works, and costs nothing.
  2. Mending snags in jumpers. You know when your woolly jumper catches on something and leaves you with a loop sticking out of it? You could cut it, but that could turn in to a hole. Instead, stick a fine crochet hook through from the other side, pull the loop to the inside where you can’t see it, and all is well again!

  3. Removing stuck batteries. Have you ever had to remove a battery that has got stuck? It’s bad enough when they’re fitted sideways, but when they’re lengthways, as in a camera, it’s impossible. Unless you have a very fine crochet hook that you can slide down the side to hook that battery out.

  4. Hooking stuff out of tight spots. Similar to the battery one, but you can use a crochet hook to dredge up stuff that has fallen down the side of seats, down the back of shelves etc. I once lost a stitch marker down the side of a train seat and went fishing with my crochet hook. I brought up all kinds of nastiness, as you can imagine, but I did get the stitch marker back.

  5. Fixing dreadlocks. You weren’t expecting this one, were you? I don’t have personal experience of this, but a friend of mine used to have dreads, and asked for a spare crochet hook to tidy them up as they grew. Apparently it’s just the thing.

If that hasn’t persuaded you that you need a crochet hook in your life, nothing will. You can get them from the haberdashery department of big shops, or from craft shops, or online, obviously. You can get them in pretty colours or with soft, easy-grip handles. You can even get ones that look like magic wands! And if you run out of things to do with them, you could always take up crochet!


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