The best collaborations lead to the most beautiful creations. And it is high time we launched a new edition of our ‘Yarnplaza & …’ series. This time, we teamed up with crochet designer and crafty mom, Anneke Kooistra, who has created not one but two blankets exclusively for Yarnplaza. One for babies, and one for the rest of the family to snuggle under.
Anneke Kooistra is the creative brain behind the popular Instagram account, @ak_at_home. She started out with small makes for her dollhouse, and now shares her creativity and designs with over 25,000 followers. But no matter how many followers she has, her biggest fans remain her five children, who are also her greatest inspiration. Curious to find out more about this enthusiastic and creative crocheting mom? Then read our special designer interview to meet Anneke and find out more about her exclusive designs for Yarnplaza.
“Most people know me from my Instagram account @AK_at_home. I've had it for around six years now. This has led to a variety of collaborations through which more people have gotten to know me.”
“It was about six years ago. I had always enjoyed other handicrafts, then I came across a crochet book in a store. I thought I’d give it a try. I enjoyed it so much, I now mostly just crochet.”
“Firstly, I’d say ‘colorful’. When I first started crocheted, my projects were even more colorful. I’ve noticed that recently I’m tending towards more natural tones. I really love combining different colors until I get it just right. And I enjoy crocheting for kids. Cuddly toys and blankets are particular favorites of mine.”
“Cuddly toys are my favorite projects. I also really enjoy crocheting blankets, but halfway through, I think to myself ‘What have I begun?!’ Haha. But still, they’re really fun to make. For me, I enjoy alternating between toys and blankets the most.”
“My first blanket. My first-ever project was a small, crocheted toy. After that, I wanted to take on a challenge and crochet a blanket. You wouldn’t want to see the final result, though. It starts out narrow, goes wide, then narrows again. But I finished it, haha!”
“There are so many. I follow a lot of people on Instagram for different reasons. Some for their crocheting, others for their use of color, and others still for their photography. And they all inspire me.”
“I’d like to combine them! First, I’d eat out, because that would give me more time to crochet, then when I got home, I’d get back to my crocheting.”
“I used to sew a lot or sometimes I’d knit. I really enjoyed pimping up clothes using a variety of techniques. But nowadays, it’s predominantly crochet.”
“That would be my kids. I asked them this question at the table the other day, and there was an immediate outpouring of enthusiasm from them. I love how excited the children get about the things I make. They also often make special requests, which is extra fun and a great source of inspiration.”
“A long time ago, I was crocheting a lot and often. So much so that I heard my daughter tell someone, ‘My mom only ever crochets’. And I thought, oh, I’m going to have to cut back. But when I last brought up this incident with my daughter, she couldn’t remember it, so I think things are back in balance now.”
“I love crocheting while camping. When we’re on vacation and there’s nothing we have to do. It’s simply wonderful crocheting outdoors. At home, I’m happiest crocheting on the sofa, surrounded by the kids. That's the great thing about crocheting, it can be done anytime, anywhere, and with everyone around you.”
“I crochet quite tightly, as I’ve heard from crocheters who’ve tried my patterns. The projects often turn out bigger for them. Lately, I’ve been trying to take this into account and loosen up a bit by switching to a larger crochet hook.”
“My stash consists of lots of things, haha. I once emptied my craft cupboard and was shocked by how much fit into such a space. Since I was younger, I’ve been saving all sorts of bits and bobs, like buttons. If clothes are beyond repair, I always try to salvage what I can to use elsewhere, like the label, buttons, or beads. Friends always save these types of notions for me, so yes, the stash is quite substantial. I do prefer using things from my stash first before buying anything new.”
“Since the beginning, I’ve always had a small container with me while crocheting. It holds a couple hooks in different sizes, stitch markers, a row counter, a measuring tape, and a darning needle. Those are the basics that I always have on hand.”
“I’ve designed two blankets for Yarnplaza. A large version with light colors in natural tones and a repeating pattern. The other version is a baby blanket. It has a lovely palette of fresh (pastel) shades and lots of different stitch patterns to highlight the playful character of children.”
“I like following Yarnplaza. That way you always find out about the latest yarns and accessories. I really enjoy following Studio Hip & Stip, particularly for their use of color. And beyond that… Just check out who all I follow on my Instagram account. There are so many that I’m afraid I’ll leave out a lot of wonderful accounts that inspire me a lot.”
Crochet with Anneke, @ak_at_home
As Anneke says, her two blankets are now available exclusively at Yarnplaza. If you want to add some calming yet captivating natural tones to your living room, then the complete crochet kit for her large blanket is an excellent choice. To give this blanket your own unique take in colors that better suit your interior, order the crochet pattern and yarn separately. You’ll also find the complete crochet kit or digital crochet pattern for the baby blanket in our webshop. One designer, double the crochet fun!