Say “crochet” and immediately, the likes of glass holders, doilies, and other quaint creations come to mind.
Malou Gaerlan started with those when she picked up the craft in 2017. In time, predictable placemats and tumblers gave way to Amigurumi—that is, the Japanese art of crocheting 3D dolls. From crocheting bears—too many to count, she said in an article—she took on a request that went viral. When a friend asked her to crochet the characters of the hit Netflix K-drama Crash Landing On You (CLOY), Malou delivered with adorable results. That cute creation was followed by Amigurumi of Netflix’s zombie K-Drama Kingdom, Lee Min-ho of The King: Eternal Monarch, the stars of Harry Potter, British author Jane Austen, and even fast-food mascot Jollibee!
Since then, her days have been busy. “Fully booked for the months of September and October,” she announced on a Facebook post. My Pope Philippines catches up with the 60-year-old Nxtgen coordinator of CCF Metro East and lady behind Gantsilyo Ko To to tell us about crochet’s attraction, her K-drama guilty pleasures, and what she wants to crochet next. (Read: These 3 Women Turn Stress Into Business a la K-drama With ‘Itaenim Class’!)
How did you get into crocheting and what do you like about it?
I got interested in crochet when I saw videos of finished products. Crochet is easy to learn. I started with the basics from a friend of mine who taught me. For the hard stitches, I research on YouTube. What I like about it is that you can carry your project along wherever you go.
How long did it take you to come up with your CLOY dolls? What were the challenges of making them?
The first CLOY dolls that I made took me quite a while. I had to research and study different ways to make the dress and the cap. The challenge in making them was how to execute the print of the garment. That’s when my husband came to the rescue. He hand-painted all the garments for me. (Read: How Can Knitted Toys Help Save Ifugao’s Rice Terraces?)
Are you into K-dramas or anything Korean?
Yes, right now I joined the bandwagon of being a full-fledged K-drama fan.
My favorites are, of course, CLOY, It’s Okay Not To Be Okay, Uncanny Encounter, and Vincenzo.
Your September and October calendars are full! What are you working on?
They are mostly dolls, although I have orders of crochet throw pillows also.
What is the attraction and beauty of a crochet doll, throw pillow, or shawl?
Maybe it’s because it’s handmade, you can create the color combination and stitches you want for a project.
Is there anything you can’t crochet? What do you dream of crocheting?
Hmmm, maybe a Pineapple circular rug, or a doll with moving arms and legs. I’m planning to enroll in an advance course if I can find any online. (Read: UP Open University Makes Online Bridge Courses Free for Public)