Welcome to Long Yarn Tails. I welcome you as I welcome all my friends, with a ball of my newest yarn in one hand, and a cup of hot chocolate in the other. Come in, sit down and stay a while. I invite you to get acquainted with the various stories, interviews, instructional articles and patterns that you will find scattered throughout this website. New and old visitors alike are always welcome.


When I was just a lad I would sit next to my mom and watch in amazement at how she could take a ball of cotton thread and a single hooked needle and create beautiful lacy doilies and colorful pot holders. Sensing my curiosity and desire to create, she asked, “would you like to learn to crochet like mommie?” My eagerness was very apparent as I wiggled with excitement to think that I could learn to make beautiful creations myself.

She patiently placed one of the crochet hooks in my right hand and showed me how to hold it. Thread size hooks are not like the larger crochet hooks that many learn with today. These are much smaller and daintier, with the head small enough to accept the cotton crochet thread – not yarn; thread. Tiny, tiny thread. At six years old I didn’t know that there were larger hooks that I could learn to crochet with. All I saw my mom use were tiny hooks and tiny thread. So that is how I was introduced to the world of fiber arts.

She showed me how to make a slip knot with a loop which hung loosely in my left hand. Then how to hold the thread, like a giant sewing bobbin, the thread came off the ball and wound its way down between my pinkie and ring fingers, under my ring and and middle finger and around and over my pointer finger – finally attaching the loop of the slip knot on the head of the crochet hook in my right hand. The trick was to hold tension on the thread with my pinkie and ring finger so it would not be too loose. Somehow, my tongue jutting out of my mouth helped to hold the thread tightly in place so it wouldn’t flop around.

I had no idea that day what joys would come from learning to crochet.  Eventually I mastered the art of crocheting with thread, learning the various stitches used to crochet and how to read and decipher written patterns. Sometimes it was even more fun to make up my own patterns by experimenting with stitches and chains to see what they would do when combined in different ways.

When I was about 10 I saved my money and bought my own set of crochet needles in a leatherette zipper pouch. The hooks were shiny ans smooth in multiple pastel colors, in all sizes from tiny to big. They were Susan Bates hooks that I bought at Sears in the domestics department. Remember Sears? Remember when Sears had a domestics department? I still have my original crochet needles and would not trade or sell them for anything. The joy they still bring all these years later far outweigh any money or treasures.

When I was 12 a cousin showed me how to knit. Instead of one needle, now there were two, and no hook to catch the yarn. Yes, yarn. I found a whole new world when I discovered yarn. I then taught myself how to do needlepoint, then cross stitch, and punch needle embroidery. I even dabbled in tatting for a while.  Eventually I learned to draft patterns and sew, but that is another story for another website. As I build this website for you, we will learn more things together.


Many of you want to learn how to play with yarn. Whether that is crocheting, knitting, weaving, embroidery, cross stitch, needlepoint, etc.Whatever it is you want to learn to do, we will eventually discover it together here at Long Yarn Tails. I want you to find the joy of creating with your own hands, making gifts for others, and watching the joy on their faces as they realize that you took the time to create something beautiful and special just for them.

You can’t buy that feeling of accomplishment, the joy that comes from knowing that you can create and express yourself through the fiber arts. I want to help you become proficient at whatever it is that will help you find the same joy and satisfaction that I have found through the years. Then go out and share your creations with the world.


It is my hope that through stories, interviews, instructional articles, and specifically chosen projects for beginning to advanced skill levels, we will create a dynamic and creative community that all have the same mission – to learn how to create fiber works of art.  Then, take those works of art out to our family, friends and many others who desperately need the love you will create with your hands.

If you ever need a hand or have any questions, feel free to go to our Contact page and send me a message. I will be more than happy to lend a hand.

All the best,

J. S. Wayne