Special series of crochet patterns coming up

Wilma Westenberg working on new FIL series of crochet patterns

Hi all,

Last week I shared a personal update on my blog and Instagram with a picture of myself. I want to thank you all from the deepest of my heart. After posting that picture, I received a thousand messages filled with love – and none of them was negative.

Not only did your words have a big impact on me, also my extended family (people with the same condition) read your comments. Many of them have younger kids who look like me and are worried about the acceptance of their kids when they get older. Reading your words encouraged them too and restored a little faith in humanity.


New series of patterns coming up

Looking back, getting diagnosed and finding people with the same condition is what I needed to become who I am. My new ‘extended family’ is located all over the world and I can’t wait to meet them all. So far I was able to meet five of them during my trip through the USA.

I want to use this positive change in my life as a source of inspiration for my crochet designs. Many of my upcoming patterns will be special designs inspired by my extended family who all have made a huge impact on me.

Some patterns of this series are ready to be published (expect them soon!), some are still in progress and some are only concepts/ideas which I still have to work on coming months. I’m excited to share our unique stories with you through crochet and can’t wait to show the designs we (mom and I) have worked on!



Edit: the first four patterns in this series are available!

• Just me hookin’ at the Red Rock State Park ⛰•

Yep, that’s right, that’s me! I actually never really share pictures of myself here on Instagram. Mainly to avoid rude comments or questions. I have learnt that the internet can be a mean place when you have a different appearance. And the more followers I got on Instagram, the scarier it became. • I was born with an unknown malignant tumor in my face. Doctors never knew what I had exactly and said I was the only one so far they knew of. One year ago (2017) I did a second opinion and got diagnosed with an ultra rare condition. I started searching on Google and found a few other people with the same condition who look just like me. I see them as my new ‘extended family’. I wrote a blog post with more info, you can find the link in my bio.

• It took me three years to find the courage to post a picture and talk about my tumor here on Insta. I want to thank you all for helping me getting here. Thank you for following me and always leaving such nice comments. Thank you dear (crochet) friends who I’ve met the last 12 months for encouraging me. Thank you amazing crochet community for always being so kind and supportive. Words cannot describe how much you mean to me! <3

Een bericht gedeeld door 🔹Wilma Westenberg (@wilmawestenberg) op

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  • Reply
    Flor Hernandez
    7 November 2018 at 12:21 am

    Hola soy madre y abuela de dos personas que segun son especiales porque? padecen sidrome treacher collins mi hija y mi nieta pierre Robin en ambos casos la malformacion facial esta presente tienen rostro pequeño orejas deformes, madibula con mordida abierta su lenguaje no es claro pero me han enseñado que nada ni nadie los detiene recien vimos la pelicula de extraordinario lo cual ayudo a mucha gente a comprender por que no todos son perfectos y hoy lo compruebo una vez mas Dios nos pone en el camino seres maravillosos el simple hecho de dar con tu espacio me hace valorar mas lo que dios me ha dado te felicito eres un ser maravilloso tejere el shawl Ana Lucia y asi conservare tu cariño te envio un mega afectuoso saludo desde Mexico
    flor hernandez

  • Reply
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    Donna Houle
    14 September 2018 at 5:08 pm

    You are so beautiful and it shows in your patterns too. Love them all. Thank God for you. Take care

  • Reply
    Audra Granath
    10 September 2018 at 7:25 pm

    What a talented & beautiful girl you are! Thank you for sharing your life with us & thank you for all of the wonderful patterns. Sending a big hug to you from me in Chicago!

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    Paula Mersing
    29 July 2018 at 3:27 am

    Luisa, I pray the day comes, when God gives the doctors a cure for this illness. In the meantime, keep crocheting and sharing your beauty and the beauty of your creations with us all. With love, Paula Mersing.

    • Reply
      Paula Mersing
      29 July 2018 at 3:28 am

      Wilma, I am sorry I typed your name wrong.

  • Reply
    27 July 2018 at 1:34 pm

    He Wilma, super gaaf wat je doet! Het is nooit makkelijk om te leven met een chronische aandoening of het nou zichtbaar is of niet, invaliderend is of niet, zeldzaam of niet. Het vereist een hoop veerkracht, moed en optimisme om het dan zo’n leuke en positieve draai aan te geven zoals jij dit doet. Chapeau!

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    Donna Buonomo
    17 July 2018 at 4:35 pm

    Hi Wilma. I never do this. I usually admire people’s work and pay for the download if I want to give the project a try. Of course, tell them how talented I think they are. Your story has touched me as no other has in a long time.

    I’ve been crocheting for it seems forever. My mom taught me, and it took a long time because she was right handed and I’m a lefty and at 12 that’s hard to adapt to. I was determined and I did learn. That was about 50 years ago. I am the Aunt who always made sure that every baby received their own blanket in the colors that the mom wanted. It gave me pleasure because I give bigger blankets and they last FOREVER.

    I want you to know that everyone has SOMETHING. Sometimes it shows, sometimes not. Crochet saved my life, I believe. I was hospitalized for depression a few years ago. I seriously couldn’t cope. I had been a caretaker first for my dying father and soon after for my mom. After mom passed I was spent, life seemed not worth living. It took a very long time for me to feel better. I think it stays with you and it’s an ongoing battle, but again; it could be worse. So God and Crochet became my coping skills. It’s a calming craft that gives an end result that is usually pleasant, occasionally beautiful.

    I love what you are doing with/for others with the same condition you have. The joy that you bring them is wonderful. I hope this hasn’t been too wordy. I just had to comment on the lovely work you do and your beautiful outlook on life.

    Now it you’ll excuse me I’m going to download “Lovely Luisa” and give her a whirl. Luisa was my grandma’s name, so maybe she join me in spirit while I work on my project.

    • Reply
      18 July 2018 at 4:52 pm

      Dear Donna, thank you so much for taking the time to write me this beautiful, personal comment. I really appreciate it. Amazing how you’ve always made blankets for babies in the family – indeed something they will cherish forever! So sorry you had to go through such hard time, but I’m also very happy to hear that you feel better and that crochet helped you. And how nice that your grandma’s name was Luisa! Your grandma will always be with you, as she is in your heart and love never dies Sending hugs from Holland!

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    Mary Rhudy
    26 June 2018 at 7:32 pm

    Hello, Wilma! I have an au t named Wilma. Is there an awareness colour for your condition? I, for one, would very much like to make some shawls in that colour. My condition is being homeless and diabetic and autistic whilst having PTSD. Thank you for sharing of yourself.

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    10 June 2018 at 1:43 am

    Would love a downloadable version of your pattern.

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    25 May 2018 at 1:38 pm

    Thank you!!!!! I just love each design your talents abound with selection of fiber and colors truly a gift . Keep being a voice for those who have your medical condition.

    • Reply
      26 May 2018 at 10:22 pm

      Thank you so much Sandra! <3

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    9 May 2018 at 8:22 pm

    You are a delight and congratulations on your engagement keep up the beautiful patterns looking forward to updates

    • Reply
      11 May 2018 at 11:14 pm

      Thank you so much Bonnie! <3

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    5 May 2018 at 5:54 pm

    I am interested in making you Joyful Josie shawl.
    What yarn cake did you use???

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