I got the opportunity to interview Yolanda from yochet. She recently published a book about crocheting! Her creations are great. Look for yourself by visiting her Instagram page. Her handle is @yochetcrochet. And, if you want to learn how she creates her crocheted dolls, purchase her book (Dolled up: Simple Steps to Amazing Amigurumi Crochet Dolls). It’s available through Apple Books and Amazon, links below.
I enjoyed her answers to my questions. Keep reading to find out what she said about crocheting, being outdoors, managing projects, and more! Also, don’t forget to check out some of her favorite projects on the @robotyams Instagram.
CB: What inspired you to post your creations online?
Yolanda: When I first started writing my book on crochet dolls, I wanted to have a presence on social media to establish credibility and make connections. I didn’t know much about Instagram or blogging, but I learned quickly and loved sharing and interacting with others. I started to enjoy the mediums for their own sake. When I finally finished my book and self-published it, those mediums became places I could share the journey as well as the finished product.
CB: What is your favorite thing to crochet, or what do you crochet the most?
Yolanda: My mom taught me how to crochet when I was a little girl, and the things I made were blankets and rebozos (shawls). When I had my daughter, I gravitated towards making dolls and toys. I’ve continued to love making dolls and other whimsical things. I love to crochet dolls so much; I even wrote a book about it. I have also made a bunch of phone cases, mainly because I use them at work. I don’t crochet many clothes unless, of course, I’m making a crochet fairy outfit with wings. 🙂
CB: What was your most challenging project, and how did you complete it?
Yolanda: I’ve been crocheting for a very long time, and I’ve had many challenging projects, so it’s hard to pick just one. Naturally, I’ll pick one that is doll related. I manage an after-school program at an elementary school. Over the years, I have managed to carve out time when I can teach the kids how to crochet. I also make many items for our prize-box, and the kids give input into what they want me to make.
One day, the kids decided they wanted me to make a life-size doll of myself. Finding moments during the workday was challenging, but the kids were so excited about the idea, I went for it. I took moments here and there during reading or craft time to work on it. The doll ended up being the size of a child instead of an adult, and it got done eventually. Instead of looking at it as an insurmountable project that would take forever to make, I took the attitude that any progress was good and that it would get done soon enough–as long as I kept chipping away at it. The kids got such a kick out of watching me make her. It inspired many of them to try to crochet as well. When the doll was done, there was never a shortage of kids wanting to play with her. It was very challenging to finish but very rewarding once it was done.
CB: Your Instagram posts are creative. Where do you find inspiration?
Yolanda: Inspiration is everywhere! Certainly, seeing what others are doing in other craft accounts is very inspiring. I am also an avid reader, and the magical worlds and creatures I read about inspire my crochet. I love reading and collecting books. I read all genres, but I have a special place for fantasy/supernatural/sci-fi stories.
I’ve recently become obsessed with succulents, and my garden has grown over the last few years. I started another Instagram account focused on my succulents. I immediately enjoyed that account.
My children, as well as family members, have made requests over the years that stretch my capabilities and have been a tremendous source of inspiration. I love gardening, hiking, and the outdoors and just being out there inspires me. Hiking and camping with my siblings have become something that’s grown over the past few years. I really loved camping at Yosemite with my brother and sisters. I hope I get the opportunity to go back.
I also love photography, which conveniently helps with posting about all my other hobbies.
My students definitely inspire me because they have so many ideas (sometimes very crazy ideas) on things I should make that I would have never thought of making on my own. It would probably be easier to ask me what doesn’t inspire me. 🙂
CB: Do you cosplay? If so, what’s your favorite character to cosplay as?
Yolanda: Hmmm… I enjoy going to renaissance fairs and dressing up in costumes that I crochet myself. Does that count as cosplay? I don’t necessarily go as a character, but I have dressed up as a fairy, a mermaid, and a dragon queen.
CB: What inspired you to publish your book?
Yolanda: One of my best friends knits and crochets, but she only felt comfortable following patterns. She didn’t think she was capable of making anything on her own. She would admire my dolls and would claim she couldn’t possibly create them herself. I would explain my process and knew she was fully capable of creating her own dolls. She continued to think she couldn’t do it, so I decided to create a book about my process, thinking if she saw it written down in a book, she would go for it. She was my book tester along the way and using my process, she started making her own dolls! I was super excited. Seeing how it helped her inspired me to finish it and get it published.
CB: Where’s your favorite place to crochet?
Yolanda: Honestly, I don’t have a favorite place. My favorite place is anywhere I plop down and start crocheting. My bed is the place I crochet the most, but it’s equally ‘favorite’ to any other place.
CB: Your friends and family must love receiving crocheted gifts from you! Do you get a lot of requests?
Yolanda: Absolutely! All the time! Now I know how my mother felt when we all bombarded her with crochet requests. I’ve had to learn how to say no, although honestly, I don’t say no very often. I get a lot of joy in giving unique items to friends and family and seeing the happiness when they receive them.
The most requested item this year was Baby Yoda from the Mandalorian TV show. I had crochet Baby Yodas coming out of my ears! I made 11 of them! I sold two, but the rest went to family and friends. I made a large one for myself, but then, both my sisters wanted it. I promised to make a new one for each of them, but I was Baby Yoda’d out! I ended up just making one more for one sister and giving my Baby Yoda to my other sister. I kept a little one for myself. If I get the itch for a large Baby Yoda again, I can always make myself another one.
This interview was published with the permission of Yolanda Sherman.
© Claudia Bedolla, Robot Yams, Yolanda Sherman. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from Claudia Bedolla and or Yolanda Sherman is strictly prohibited. Excerpts, images, and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Robot Yams and or Yolanda Sherman with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.