Dowels are a versatile crafting and project supply. As such, they can be used in innumerable ways. Frequently, they are a simplistic, but essential part of a craft or project. However, they can also be used as a stand-alone supply, then used secondarily in the creation of other crafts and projects. For instance, a dowel can first be used to craft crochet hooks, which can then be used to make any number of items, such as afghans, baby blankets, or shawls.
To craft your own crochet hooks, first start by securing a few items you will need to complete the project. This includes a dowel with a diameter close equal or approximate to the desired size, 40 grit and 100 grit sandpaper, and a wood carving knife. If you’d like, you may choose to also have a metal crochet needle on hand as a point of reference. However, given the overall simplicity of this project, it’s not necessarily a requirement.
With these materials on hand, begin the project by first cutting the dowel into two five to six inch segments. This is the standard lengths for the average individual. However, the segment lengths can be adjusted to shorter or longer lengths to accommodate the height and the overall comfort of the individual handling the hooks.
Once the dowel segments are cut, use the wood carving knife to make the rough form of an oval at the tip of the dowel. This is the area that will become the notched end, supplying the crocheting hook. Use the 40 grit sandpaper to help form the oval shape. Then, use the 100 grit sandpaper to apply a more fine finish.
Using a pencil, lightly mark the area of the dowel that lies approximately 1/4 of an inch from the oval tip. Then, use the wood carving knife to apply an upward cut of about 45 degrees into the wood dowel. Be careful not to inadvertently cut all the way through the dowel. Again using the sandpaper, wedge the 40 grit into the cut to achieve a rough sand and allow for more space within the hook. Once the size of the hook is satisfactory, follow by using the 100 grit sandpaper to apply a fine, smooth finish.
It is the carving and sanding of the notch that determines the size of the hook. Because of this, the crafter is allowed full control in making the crochet hooks. In fact, an array of crochet hooks of various sizes can be created by or for the crafter.
This is just one way in which a hardwood dowel can be used in and of its own right in the creation of other crafts and projects.