Jay D Pomponio's Profile

About

When I was ten, I badgered my mother until she taught me how to knit, and at twelve, I was making my own mittens, scarves, and sweaters. I also learned how to do cotton floss embroidery by watching her do pillow cases and dresser scarves. In college, a good friend taught me crochet, and I taught myself how to tat. I am over sixty now, and I have done countless projects the past 50 years, and I've given away much of what I've made.

I recently entered some of my knitted and crocheted items in a local county fair, and I was awarded ten blue ribbons and one second place ribbon for my work, In fact, I was the top prize winner at the fair. It is especially nice to be recognized by one's peers and to know that I do quality work.

I do not particularly like the current trend to do projects quickly with thick, heavy yarns and big needles or large…

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  • Male
  • Born on September 14
  • Joined October 21, 2009

Favorite materials

Fingering weight yarns of natural fibers especially the new sock yarns, Fine DMC crochet threads, tatting thread, size 70, DMC embroidery floss

About

When I was ten, I badgered my mother until she taught me how to knit, and at twelve, I was making my own mittens, scarves, and sweaters. I also learned how to do cotton floss embroidery by watching her do pillow cases and dresser scarves. In college, a good friend taught me crochet, and I taught myself how to tat. I am over sixty now, and I have done countless projects the past 50 years, and I've given away much of what I've made.

I recently entered some of my knitted and crocheted items in a local county fair, and I was awarded ten blue ribbons and one second place ribbon for my work, In fact, I was the top prize winner at the fair. It is especially nice to be recognized by one's peers and to know that I do quality work.

I do not particularly like the current trend to do projects quickly with thick, heavy yarns and big needles or large hooks. To me, they look clunky, rushed and shoddy. I use all kinds of materials and weights, but I prefer fingering yarns, small needles, fine threads--and old, vintage patterns from the nineteenth century until just after the second World War when crafts people seemed to have had more time to make lasting heirloom items. Items finely knit or crocheted usually are more durable and they keep their shape better, which is especially important with baby clothes which must stand up to many washings.

I prefer to use natural fibers, although baby yarns do need to be washable and soft, so I use acrylics as well as washable wools and blends. I have a large collection of patterns of all kinds, mostly from the 1940s and 1950s. They still inspire me. I use patterns now that my mother used when she made my baby clothes. That's why I call myself RetroJay.

I am a conscientious perfectionist about my work. I have been known to do any kind of project over again to "get it right" even if the mistake was not noticeable. And if I see mistakes as I work, I take things out back to the error to correct them.

I keep abreast of new techniques, and I've recently discovered, for example, the pleasure of using bamboo needles for many projects. However, I still make socks from the ankle down, and I much prefer to use four needles than the "magic loop."

I do crafts everyday, and I never tire of them because I usually have several projects going on at once. In the course of just a couple of hours, I may work on as many as three or four different projects.

I have been urged by many people to try to sell my work because they have been so satisfied with things I've made for them. I hope that you find my work of value as well. I work full time, and live a frugal lifestyle. Still, I find it difficult to make ends meet. The patterns I use mostly come from times when people made their own clothing because it saved them money, and the items they made lasted and lasted, not like the "cultch" (a term that a dear old friend of mine used) that one finds at WalMart. And remember: the best gift is something handmade.

I enjoy creative challenges, and if you have some specific projects that you'd like done, write to me, and I might be able to undertake something knitted, crocheted, tatted, or embroidered that you'd like custom made.

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