Before I give you the rundown of the science that has taken place this week I wanted to let you all know that in addition to the weekly pollings I do in this Facebook group, I have created a group specifically for It’s Crochet O’Clock as well where I will be doing additional pollings. A lot of people have asked me to do additional pollings each week but I do not wish to put further strain on the admins of the group, these pollings and the results get so much activity that it can become quite tedious for the admins there so I’ve decided to just run them in a different area. But, fear not I will still continue to run the weekly pollings each Tuesday as I’ve been doing for months now, at least until they kick me out! If you’d like to join in on the additional pollings please feel free to join the It’s Crochet O’Clock Facebook group! The more the merrier!
Now, onward with the science!
This week I wanted to know what the most popular CALs were and a few other tidbits of information that I could gather just from asking that question. Over 1600 people participated in the polling and a total of 58 CALs were offered. I have worked data on the top 20 most popular CALs but fear not. I have other ideas up my sleeve for the rest of them! For those of you who aren’t familiar a Crochet Along is a crochet pattern that is released in portions week by week that a massive group of people all work at the same time.
20: Eastern Jewels – 2017 – Janie Crow
19: Vibrant Vintage Blanket – 2016 – Rachele Carmona
18: Spicier Life – 2017 – Sandra Paul
17: Lily Pond – 2015 – Jane Crowfoot
16: Moogly – 2017 – Tamara Kelly
15: Snow-Drop – 2017 – Debbie Hemsley
14: Carousel – 2016 – Susan Pinner
13: Around the Bases – 2015 – ChiChi Allen
12: Stardust Melodies – 2017 – Polly Plum
11: Frida’s Flowers – 2016 – Jane Crowfoot
10: Elements – 2017 – Sandra Kuijer
9: Kalevala – 2017 – Multiple Designers
8: Last Dance – 2016 – Multiple Designers
7: Hygge – 2017 – Kirsten Ballering
6: Atlanticus – 2017 – Vanessa Smith
5: Lilliana – 2017 – Vanessa Smith
4: Spirit of Life – 2017 – Tatsiana Kupryianchyk
3: Nuts about Squares – 2017 – Multiple Designers
2: Mandala Madness – 2016 – Helen Shrimpton
1: Sophie’s Universe – 2015 – Dedri Uys
Literally 1/3 of the votes were for Sophie’s Universe. It had over double the votes of it’s closest runner up. Pretty impressive if you ask me. What is even better though were the comments I read from so many concerning this CAL. Most stated that Sophie’s Universe was what brought them back to crochet after a long absence or that Sophie’s Universe inspired them to learn to crochet. I’ve often wondered at different stages in my life that when I am gone from this plant will I have left it better, how would I have changed it or if I’d impressed enough tradition on the generations that follow me. I think it’s pretty safe to say that Dedri doesn’t have that problem. She has absolutely changed our craft, opened it up and given an avenue of expansion globally. She’s made a difference and I hope she knows that.
So the research was extensive with this one. I visited each and every CAL page and took various notes. I visited many mainstream online retailers to gain pricing. Believe me when I tell you, hours went into this.
By a landslide Wool Warehouse was the most economical way to obtain color packs for these CALs, if there were color packs. Wool Warehouse was nearly 18% cheaper than any other online retailer I looked at. Now of course, this doesn’t include shipping but all the other retailers have shipping as well so I don’t think that should be a factor.
There was a tie for the most affordable CAL in the top 20. Eastern Jewels and the Small Mandala Madness packs can both be obtained for $33.61 USD followed by the Small Sophie’s Universe which is $38.10 USD.
On the other side of the coin, the Large Mandala Madness was the most expensive coming in at $264.49 USD followed by the Large Sophie’s Universe which is $166.98 USD.
Now these are just the CALs that offered color packs. There are a total of eight CALs listed here that did not offer color pack options which means you’d have to choose your own yarns. One of those may come in cheaper than the ones that offered a color pack but, that is a whole other ball of wax and many, many more hours of research.
Of our 20 CALs, 8 of them were sponsored by Scheepjes or promoted Scheepjes yarn. 5 of them were sponsored by Stylecraft or promoted Stylecraft yarn. This makes one thing extremely clear. Scheepjes certainly has a fabulous team with a great deal of talent for spotting influencers and designers. Scheepjes as a brand was off the grid for 22 years after closing up shop in 1989. Since 2011 the new company that owns the brand has been able to bring it back to life and apparently did the right thing and hired folks who understand the power of bloggers and how they influence us. I don’t know what the other “popular brands” are doing in this department but it can absolutely be improved, dramatically.
It is interesting to note that Vanessa Smith holds the 5th and 6th places in our most popular CALs list and the color packs for her projects are also her own. That is pretty impressive considering the influencer backing the “major” brands had. To the best of my knowledge (which in the past two days has greatly been expanded) there isn’t another designer who made the list that both designed and sold the yarn. I’m here to tell you, not only is she a talented designer but this woman also has fabulous business sense.
Jane Crowfoot/Janie Crow gets a big gold star. She is the only designer to have 3 of her designs on the top 20 list. That is, designs that were hers alone. Dedri Uys and Tatsiana Kupryianchyk share the numbers with her. Each of them designed their own and then participated in two others.
12 of our 20 most popular CALs come from 2017! I think this is a pretty good indication that CALs are on the rise. They’ve been around for a number of years but I think they are actually growing in popularity. Which is odd. Most of the time there is a very distinct shelf life on things that can keep people’s attention. Perhaps this trend is remaining so strong and growing because of the vast differences between the projects. They are all very different from each other.
The UK and the USA are home to most of the designers on this list. Each of them can claim five designers.
15% of us have never done a CAL and 1.19% of us have started CALs but never finished them.
Whew! This has been a very long process but I am glad that we made it through. I hope you all have seen some projects that maybe you’ve missed or forgotten about that you’ll choose to do. Or, perhaps this weeks polling will help you decide which CAL you’d like to work on next.