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My life philosophy can be distilled down to this equation: Handcrafted + Not Like Everyone Else = Cool!

I'm Jaime Eads Maraia and I am a cancer-surviving, crochet-loving, cooking-school dropout!  I am lucky that I can stay home with my two girls, my 5-year-old Mims, and my 91-year-old grandma Mema.  I have an awesome family that loves and supports me, despite my yarn-y obsessions.

I live in Southern California, where I am forty-five minutes from the beach, an hour and a half from the mountains, and three minutes from Disneyland.  

You can follow the blog by using the link on the sidebar, the sidebar also has links to my Facebook and Twitter accounts.  You can follow me on Craftsy, become my friend on Ravelry, and follow my boards on Pinterest (if you are not a member of Pinterest yet, I will be happy to send you an invitation!  Just send me an email at CrochetDynamite@gmail.com with Pinterest Invitation in the subject line.)

My books are currently Amazon exclusives for the Kindle.  You can purchase them HERE.


xoxo

29 comments:

  1. I think you are inspiring, and it's awesome that your Grams is 91, God bless her.

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  2. Landed on your blog via All Free Crochet's link to your London bag (love it!!). I love everything you've done and had to follow!

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    1. Thanks Nancy! That's really sweet! And it's so fun to have new readers! Glad you became a Dynamo!!
      xo Jaime

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  3. Just found your blog. I love it. I saw the crochet pattern for the lip balm holder and let me tell ya, you have just gave me a ton of work to do lol I am going to make them for my daughter's Junior troop for an end of the year gift. A lot of the girls-mine included-are moving up to Cadets next year. That is just a terrific present my daughter can give to the girls.

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    1. Hi Jean! Sorry for the extra work! LOL!!! If it helps, they work up really quickly! Thanks for stopping by!
      xo Jaime

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  4. Hi! I found your site through your monster beanie pattern shared by AllFreeCrochet on Facebook. I actually wasn't sure what the picture was of so I came over to check it out. I love your work and feel like we have a lot in common. I am also a cancer survivor, crochet lover, and I'm a Cosmetology school finisher who decided she just did not want to do that for a living. So I hope you won't mind me adding you to my blogroll. Nice to meet you! :D
    Teeni
    a/k/a The Mad Crochet Scientist
    www.vtearoom.com

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    1. Hi Teeni! Thank you so much for adding me to your blog roll. What an awesome group of people to be included in! Oh my goodness, we DO have a lot in common! I am so glad you couldn't figure out what I had crocheted (although, on second thought, maybe that was a craft fail... LOL!!)
      xo Jaime

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  5. No, it wasn't your work at all - the photo just did not show the bottom or where it ended. So don't second guess yourself! The beanie is adorable - but I AM glad that photo brought me here! :)

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    1. You are too sweet! Thank you so much.
      xo Jaime

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  6. I have a crochet question on checking my gauge. The project I'm working on now says: 12 dc and 6 rows to 3". My 6 rows equals 3", but my 12 dc equals 4". I'm working on a baby blanket so the gauge isn't crucial, but on anything I do it's always like that. One part is right and the other is off. If I try another hook then the part that was right will be off. Do you have any suggestions?
    Thanks, Cindy
    PS: I really like your work!

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    1. Hi Cindy! Your problem is super common. It's hard to crochet exactly to someone else's gauge. Since you can only use one, I would start by working to get the stitch gauge right first and then see how far off the row gauge is. Ultimately you can't control row gauge as much as you can control the stitch gauge, so that's where I personally always start.
      xo Jaime

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  7. Hi Jaime, My name is Breanne. I am a very beginning crocheter. I adore the hats you are wearing at the top of your blog. Are they simply made? Could a beginner do one? If so...where can I find the pattern???

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    1. Hi Breanne! Welcome to my site! The hats that Mims and I are wearing on the November banner at the top of the blog are simply made and a beginner could do one. They are actually the ebook exclusive patterns in my 2nd book, Crochet Dynamite: Gifts for Your Besties, which is available in the Amazon Kindle store for less than a buck (Kindle software is available for FREE for your computer, tablet and smart phone)!
      I have a couple of hat patterns available for free on the blog, if you'd like to try out my patterns before you commit to purchasing one.
      xo Jaime

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  8. Just found your site...WOW - I'm impressed!!
    I would consider myself between a novice and intermediate (I've done mostly shawls, blankets, hats - oh - and 2 lovely bags!)
    My question -- what the heck is a Magic Circle?

    Thanks a bunch,

    CK

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  9. Hi CK! Thanks! I'm glad you found me!
    A magic loop/circle is a way of starting a circular pattern with an adjustable loop that allows you to tighten the hole in the center (unlike a chain center where the hole is not adjustable). I like this video showing how to do it:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kvjYPFBP85c
    Hope to see you around more!
    xo Jaime

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  10. Jaime, I also just ran into your blog (thru All Free Crochet) and am totally inspired and thank you for sharing your story. Best wishes to you and your "Mema" and how adorable is the name "Mims". I have four "M's" Mariah, Marcus, Madison and Mason! I look forward to seeing more of your creations! I adore crochet, and wish I had more time to try some of your cool ideas.

    -Katie

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    1. Hi Katie! Heh, I had to go back and re-read what I had said up at the top, since I don't remember being particularly inspiring. LOL!!!
      Yay for M names! I was lucky that my last name, Maraia (pronounced Mariah), sounds cute with every name in the world, so we were free to name her whatever crazy thing we wanted.
      xo Jaime

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  11. Holy guacamole! I just found your blog and I AM AMAZED! ABSOLUTELY MATHEMATICAL!

    In all honestly, I'm blown away by all the cool stuff you have on offer and now I can't wait for my creaky old person hands to "warm up" in this deep Ohio cold so I can get started! You have an awesome blog and totally radical projects (both crochet and not) so thanks and a BIG WHAT UP from Akron, Ohio!!! <3

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    1. Hi, Mandar! A BIG WHAT UP back from Orange County!!! I'm delighted that you found me (honestly, I still freak out and giggle whenever I see I've got new readers! LOL!!!) and I want to say THANK YOU! for all the kind words. Hope Ohio thaws a bit for you!
      xo Jaime

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  12. Hi Jaime,
    I have a few friends and family members having babies this year and would like to make something special...However, I am a newbie to crocheting (& knitting...I have found crocheting easier) any easy, simple..but still cute projects you could suggest...or come up with ;) So far...I have 2 girls coming soon.
    Thanks for your help. :)
    Did I mention I'm a newbie at this...LOL
    Belinda

    PS: Love your site and projects. :)

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  13. Hey there Jaime, from up North in Canadaland! I am sooo happy to have found your blog!! I am a knitter that is trying crochet and your patterns are fabulous :) I cannot wait to try the bacon blanket this summer! I will post some pics if I ever finish it! LOL. And by the by, this is gonna sound so weird, I know it.. but... Your hubby, Jake, I saw you posted a photo of the two of you (handsome couple I may add) and I couldn't help but notice that your man looks like my fave contestant on this cooking show I indulge in during the summer, Masterchef USA from a year or two ago.. Your hubs, I swear, look just like the contestant I was rootin' for, Jake and I just thought I'd tell you :P LOL

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  14. Hi Jamie...need some info or if you can direct me to a website that might help...Have a friend who just started chemo for breast cancer ( stage 2)...her hair is starting to fall out and i would like to make her something to wear, instead of always wearing a scarf...
    any info you can share would be most appreciated.
    Thanks
    Fran

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  15. I just found your website & loved both Market bags that are so colorful, just great awesome work. I have a friend she lives in Knoxville who is a 15 year breast cancer survivor. Its nice to read what you share about yourself, and your family. I don't have any website or blogs but enjoy the free patterns that so many sites are willing to share. I use to live near Disneyland ":) but now live 5 minutes away from the beach in beautiful Oxnard. Thanks for sharing your patterns.
    Susan ~ Sunny Oxnard California ":)

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  16. Hi! I am crocheting a shawl from Aunt Lydia's cotton thread and would like to paint it with metallic rainbow colors. Do you know how to do this or somewhere I can go to find out?

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  17. Hi Jaime - I just found our blog from All Free Crochet. You ideas and crafting is fabulous!! Wow you are a crazy crochet goddess. I have been crocheting a long time and it's so incredulous to see such wonderful projects. Thank you so much for posting the for us who share your passions.

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  19. Hi! I really like your patterns! They are so easy to follow. Is it okay if I sell my finished pieces using your patterns? I will most definitely give you credit (name, webpage, etc.) on my tags. Thank you!

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