Knits for Boys: 27 Patterns for Little Men + Grow-with-Me Tips & Tricks by Kate Oates from Tot Toppers and When I Grow Up is more than just a knitKnits for Boys: 27 Patterns for Little Men + Grow-with-Me Tips & Tricks by Kate Oates from Tot Toppers and When I Grow Up is more than just a knitting pattern book. It’s a great guide to knitting for children and for adjusting garment patterns.
The book opens with an introduction where Kate explains that her book features not only “classic designs with a modern edge” but also great suggestions for making knits that children will love. She shares her approach, which is that "Every child is unique and has his own style and preferences, and the various designs and options in this book give you plenty of ways to create knits your boys will want to wear."
Kate also shares her four steps for creating customized projects for boys: Flatter Them With Fit, Tempt Them With Texture, Captivate Them With Color, and Offer Them Options. Naturally, she provides more detail than I have about how to follow each of these steps, most of which are great tips for gift knitting in general.
Kate then shares a 25 page section, Grow-With-Me Sizing and Styling, which includes detailed information about gauge, blocking, taking accurate measurements, adjusting patterns (for fit and for style), sizing charts and growth patterns for children, and adding pockets and hoods. Kate also includes 9 detailed tips for creating designs that children can grow into. While Kate always writes these notes in reference to knitting for boys, many of the tips are applicable to knitting garment in general.
The next section, Materials, Techniques, and Abbreviations, is 7 pages long and provides some great tips on yarn substitution and written (and sometimes photographic) instructions for several techniques including I-cord, multiple cast on and bind off methods, wrap and turn, buttonholes, and zipper installation.
The next 3 sections focus on patterns. Grow-With-Me Projects, includes 8 patterns for tops and and a set of long johns (with top and bottom). Touch Me Texture includes 10 patterns for accessories and tops. The Color Collection includes 11 patterns for tops and accessories. Each pattern includes lovely full-page photos as well as numerous smaller pictures. Most patterns include notes and all of the garments include large schematics. Kate includes details in her patterns that will allow knitters to easily make all of the adjustments she describes in the earlier sections. For instance, she labels each part of the pattern to indicate which part of the garment is starting and whether it is an increase or decrease row. The book closes with a visual index that will help you find a cherished design later.
As with all pattern books, your enjoyment will probably be increased if you like the designs, and you can find great pictures of all of them on the Ravelry source page. However, because this book includes so much more than just patterns – discussions of the math of knitting, a primer on customizing garment patterns for picky recipients, etc. – it is well worth purchasing if you are new to creating garments and want to know more about the details.
Kate’s writing style is conversational but not overly chatty, and you feel like you might be taking a class with her. The patterns are in contemporary colors and are vibrant but not too “fussy” for the average young man. I would give this book 4.5 out of 5 stars for a knitter who likes to make projects for children, or one wants to learn more about customizing garment patterns for style and fit.
Full disclosure: An electronic review copy and paperback giveaway copy of Knits for Boys were provided by Stackpole Books. Although I accept free products for review, I do not accept additional compensation, nor do I guarantee a positive review. My reviews are based entirely on my honest opinions....more
My First Crochet Book is a comprehensive crochet book geared towards children. The book opens with a 1-page Tools and Materials overview, followed byMy First Crochet Book is a comprehensive crochet book geared towards children. The book opens with a 1-page Tools and Materials overview, followed by an 8-page Crochet Techniques section that includes written and illustrated instructions for basic crochet stitches, increasing, decreasing, and more. The book uses bright colors and includes cute illustrations of animals playing with yarn or hooks throughout.
The book then moves onto the patterns, which are organized by project type. The first section, Clothes and Accessories, includes 11 patterns. Jewelry includes 7 patterns, Bedroom Essentials includes 7 patterns, and Perfect Gifts includes 10 patterns. Each pattern is written out in U.S. pattern abbreviations and includes multiple illustrations. Some are informative (e.g., to show how to finish a project) and others are entertaining (e.g., an elephant holding a pair of scissors). There are also several full color photos of each project. The book ends with a list of suppliers with links to websites and a written index.
Although the subtitle on My First Crochet Book by CICO KIdz is “35 fun and easy projects for children aged 7 years +,” I would actually recommend it for older children in their tweens and teens for several reasons. It is fairly text-heavy, relies on illustrations rather than progress photos to provide instruction, and uses pattern abbreviations in the patterns. I think younger children would struggle with the translation from English to crochet pattern abbreviations (I know many adults do!), so I recommend this book for an older audience that has stronger reading skills and a longer attention span. Also, because the patterns are arranged by type rather than by skill level, I think a younger child might get frustrated if s/he unknowingly chooses a project that is too difficult. However, for an older child, or with parental guidance, I think this book has some really fun projects for kids. The cute illustrations and varied color palette make it visually appealing as well.
Full disclosure: A free review/giveaway copy of My First Crochet Book was provided by CICO Books. Although I accept free products for review, I do not accept additional compensation, nor do I guarantee a positive review. My reviews are based entirely on my honest opinions....more
Crochet for Kids is formatted like a high quality beginner crochet book but with details that make it just right for children learning to crochet. ItCrochet for Kids is formatted like a high quality beginner crochet book but with details that make it just right for children learning to crochet. It opens with some great introductory material, including A Short Guide to Yarn, Basic Equipment, and Crocheting Step-by-Step. Each of these sections includes many pictures and is written with simple, straightforward sentences. The Crocheting Step-by-Step section includes photo tutorials for all the basic crochet stitches, increasing, decreasing, and more.
The next section, Ready To Go! includes 12 beginner-friendly patterns that kids would love to make, like finger crochet shoelaces, a unisex brimmed hat, and hacky sacks. The patterns are written out in words without abbreviations and include lots of progress pictures to help. The next section, Moving Up, includes 10 slightly more advanced projects, like a slouchy beret with a bow, and appliques to sew on to to t-shirts or jeans for customization. The last section, Projects for Pros, includes 5 more challenging projects. These projects don’t necessarily require more skills, but they do require more patience! These include a blanket and other larger projects with frequent color changes. The book ends with a visual index (so it’s easy to find a favorite pattern again) and a bio of the author.
Although the book was originally written in German, it does seem to be translated clearly and I don’t anticipate children struggling through it. I do wish the lighting was better in the Crocheting Step-by-Step photos, but I’m sure that most children have better eyesight than I do! The book is filled with brightly lit pictures of children crocheting and wearing crochet gear, so it makes crochet seem really fun. It also doesn’t ask children to make the mental translation required for reading pattern abbreviations. The author seems to really understand how to teach children to crochet. If your child is confident about reading, this would be a great book to nurture a love of crochet.
I have read through many books on teaching children to crochet and have also taught children to crochet. This one seems to do the best job of combining a developmentally appropriate approach to learning to crochet with an appealing visual presentation.
Full disclosure: A free review/giveaway copy of Crochet for Kids was provided by Stackpole Books. Although I accept free products for review, I do not accept additional compensation, nor do I guarantee a positive review. My reviews are based entirely on my honest opinions....more
60 Quick Luxury Knits: Easy, Elegant Projects for Every Day in the Venezia Collection from Cascade Yarns is another book in Sixth & Spring's 60 Qu60 Quick Luxury Knits: Easy, Elegant Projects for Every Day in the Venezia Collection from Cascade Yarns® is another book in Sixth & Spring's 60 Quick Knits series. As the title suggests, this book features patterns designed with Cascade Yarns Venezia Sport and Cascade Yarns Venezia Worsted. About 2/3 of the patterns are in Venezia Sport, with the remaining patterns in Worsted. There is a variety of accessory designs for women, including 20 projects for neckwarmers (9 snoods/cowls/infinity scarves, 8 scarves, 2 collars, and 1 kerchief), 14 hats and headbands, 12 projects for the torso (including 8 wraps/shawls/shawlettes and 4 capes/capelets), 7 armwarmers/mitts/mittens, 2 bags, 2 belts, and individual patterns for legwarmers, socks, and a necklace. About 2/3 of the patterns are at the intermediate level, with 12 easy projects and 3 experienced level projects. All patterns are written with U.S. pattern abbreviations, and 16 also include charts (typically for color, lace, or cables).
The book is beautifully presented and definitely inspires you to start knitting! However, as with all pattern books, you're more likely to enjoy it if you like the patterns included, so be sure to check out all of the projects in this book on its Ravelry source page. My favorites are the Bow Clutch by Devin Cole, the Button Cable Beret by Kim Haesemeyer, the Buttoned Cable Cowl by Angela Tong, the Knotted I-Cord Belt by Alex Capshaw-Taylor, Solid and Stripe Infinity Scarf by Steven Hicks, and the Two-Color Cloche by Elena Malo. Hmmm, I guess it's obvious that I like buttons and cables...
If you're an intermediate knitter who enjoys making women's accessories, this may be the right book for you!
A free review copy of 60 Quick Luxury Knits was provided by Sixth & Spring Books. While I accept free items for review from companies, I do not accept additional compensation for positive reviews. Additionally, when accepting a review sample, I do not guarantee a positive review to the company. My reviews are entirely based on my honest opinions. ...more
50 Sunflowers to Knit, Crochet & Felt: Patterns and Projects Packed with Lush and Vibrant Colors That You Will Love to Make by Kristin Nicholas is50 Sunflowers to Knit, Crochet & Felt: Patterns and Projects Packed with Lush and Vibrant Colors That You Will Love to Make by Kristin Nicholas is a collection of patterns for sunflower appliqués and motifs. The book begins with a 22 page Before You Begin chapter that includes an overview of supplies such as knitting needles, crochet hooks, yarns, and other notions; a review of basic knitting and crochet techniques and special stitches used in the book, with both written instructions and illustrations; tips and instructions for felting, stuffing, blocking, and embellishing with embroidery and beads; and an overview of color theory. A gallery of the projects in the book follows, and then the patterns are presented. There are 31 knit and 25 crochet patterns (yes, there are more than 50!), some of which are shown felted. The knitting patterns are written with U.S. pattern abbreviations, and the crochet patterns include both stitch symbols and pattern abbreviations. The Projects chapter includes instructions for transforming the designs into a variety of home decor and wearable projects.
Although the title suggests that only patterns for sunflowers are included, there are actually other types of flowers and leaves, and a variety of creatures you might find in a garden, such as bees, butterflies, lady bugs, and birds. This book is ideal for an advanced beginner or intermediate multi-crafter who loves to make portable projects. The layout is attractive and the large, colorful pictures of each project definitely inspiring you to pick up your needles or hooks.
A free review copy of 50 Sunflowers to Knit, Crochet & Felt was provided by St. Martin's Griffin. While I accept free items for review from companies, I do not accept additional compensation for positive reviews. Additionally, when accepting a review sample, I do not guarantee a positive review to the company. My reviews are entirely based on my honest opinions. ...more
There's a lot to like about The Art of Social Media: Power Tips for Power Users by Guy Kawasaki. (Although Peg Fitzpatrick is listed as a co-author, iThere's a lot to like about The Art of Social Media: Power Tips for Power Users by Guy Kawasaki. (Although Peg Fitzpatrick is listed as a co-author, it seems that Guy did the actual writing - to avoid the dreaded disjointed feel of a grad school group project paper - while Peg contributed content and ideas.)
It starts off with the assumption that readers have a basic level of knowledge of social media in general and several platforms in particular: Facebook, Google+, Instagram, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Slideshare, and Twitter. I found it refreshing that there weren't countless pages used up by a tutorial on how to set up your Facebook page.
It's also written and formatted for today's business reader: short, with good use of white space, and formatting with bullets and numbered lists. I was able to finish the entire book within 24 hours by reading before bed and while commuting to several errands and appointments. As this is really the only kind of book I can read these days, I was very happy to get some takeaways that could help me out immediately without spending days and weeks digging through padding. I previously ready Guy's APE: Author, Publisher, Entrepreneur, and I really enjoy his writing style which is consistent, conversational, and informative.
The book starts with a helpful "Read This First" section and then is organized into 12 chapters: How to Optimize Your Profile, How to Feed the Content Monster, How to Perfect Your Posts, How to Respond to Comments, How to Integrate Social Media and Blogging, How to Get More Followers, How to Socialize Events, How to Run Google+ Hangouts on Air, How to Rock a Twitter Chat, How to Avoid Looking Clueless, How to Optimize for Individual Platforms, and How to Put Everything Together (which includes a great step-by-step plan for a book launch). There is also an alphabetical list of apps and services at the end (with links) and a thorough index.
There was a lot in the book that confirmed some of what I am doing already, and there was a lot that I learned. In particular, there were details about features on some of the platforms I don't yet use or am less familiar with, as well as apps and add-on services to help with scheduling, sharing, analytics, etc.. The ebook is filled with links, which is great, and I look forward to referring back to it when I'm ready to dive deep into a particular platform or method. I was able to immediately see the impact of some of Guy's suggestions, which strengthens his credibility even more. (For example, Guy recommends using pictures in your Twitter posts. I responded to his post on Twitter seeking reviewers for the book because I saw the picture of the book cover and wanted to learn more. It's highly unlikely I would have noticed the Tweet otherwise!)
It was a bit unclear to me who the intended audience of this book is, though. As a solopreneur, the advice to have separate business and personal accounts on each social platform seems... insane. (Who has time for that?) So I'm guessing I wasn't the primary audience. On the other hand, there are several comments which suggest that it isn't targeted at large companies who outsource their social media activities. Perhaps it's for a marketing person at a mid-sized company? This isn't a deal breaker, but I think being more clear about who the target audience is (besides "any person who has beyond beginner skills on any social media platform") would help. For instance, if I knew the "real" audience was people working for corporations, I would make mental adjustments while reading to determine what recommendations might be relevant for solopreneurs. Instead I'm wondering what I can or should try to adapt from the practices that are shared.
There's also no mention of costs for almost any of the apps or add-on services, or the cost of the time required for some of the "power user" frequency tips Guy suggests. Many of these ideas are financially out of the reach of a solopreneur, fledgling entrepreneur, non-profit organization, or even an established small business with small profit margins.
Finally, there's a point where I'm not completely in agreement with Guy. He subscribes to the idea of having continuous content, primarily from other sources, flying out of your social media accounts at all times. (This is discussed most in the How to Feed the Content Monster chapter.) Although I do share content that isn't my own on social media, I've recently been looking at the issue a bit more like Ralph Rivera from Web Search Social. I heard him speak on Cynthia Sanchez's Oh So Pinteresting podcast and later read his blog posts, "In Which I Discuss Why Content Curation For Marketing Sucks" and "Today’s Marketing Lesson: 'Get To The Choppa'." I'm not sure that constant sharing of the content of other people is always the right move for promoting your own brand. Perhaps for someone like Guy, who has made a career out of marketing for major brands (while not looking like he's marketing for major brands), this strategy works. But I'm not sure it works for me as a content-producing solopreneur when my brand is essentially me and my content.
There are a lot of great ideas in this book, and I'm sure that even some "power users" on some platforms will learn tips for optimizing other platforms. I don't think you have to agree with all of Guy's assertions. In fact, he recommends that you "be cuirous" and "field-test common generalizations" because "[e]veryone's follower's are different." Overall, I would recommend this book to anyone who uses social media regularly for business or professional reasons, with the understanding that you should adapt as appropriate for your situation.
Full disclosure: A free review copy of this book was provided by the author and publisher. Although I accept free products for review, I do not accept additional compensation, nor do I guarantee a positive review. My reviews are based entirely on my honest opinions....more
Once again, Kim Guzman has made a great look easy to crochet in Learn Drop Stitch Crochet. In this booklet from Annie's, Kim shares 7 patterns for womOnce again, Kim Guzman has made a great look easy to crochet in Learn Drop Stitch Crochet. In this booklet from Annie's, Kim shares 7 patterns for women's accessories and 1 garment using interesting variations on broomstick lace.
The booklet opens with an introduction sharing Kim's inspiration for creating crochet projects that look like knitting drop stitches. This is followed by 8 pages of photo tutorials demonstrating the basic techniques of broomstick lace (using a crochet hook with one knitting needle to create elongated stitches) and the special techniques such as crossed and twisted stitches that Kim uses in the patterns.
The booklet includes the 8 patterns, each of which includes at least one large photo on a model, the skill level, reference to the relevant tutorial page for the main drop stitches used, and blocking instructions.
Due to the lacy nature of drop stitches/broomstick lace, these designs have open work sections. Kim does use different needle sizes and explains that you can use a smaller knitting needle if you want the holes to be smaller. Most broomstick lace patterns that I've seen use the same basic method, so it was exciting to see Kim's variations. I think some crocheters would like to see international stitch symbols. (The patterns are all written using U.S. crochet abbreviations.) I also like how the Annie's booklets stay open and lay flat so you can see the tutorials or read the patterns while crocheting.
You can see all 8 patterns on the Ravelry source page for the booklet. I recommend this booklet to any crocheter interested in learning a new technique, or who likes the look of knitting, or who enjoys creating lacy projects.
Full disclosure: A free review copy of Learn Drop Stitch Crochet was provided by Annie's. Although I accept free products for review, I do not accept additional compensation, nor do I guarantee a positive review. My reviews are based entirely on my honest opinions....more
Crochet for Baby All Year is a collection of 39 crochet patterns for baby/infant wearables with accessories by Tammy Hildebrand. In the introduction,TCrochet for Baby All Year is a collection of 39 crochet patterns for baby/infant wearables with accessories by Tammy Hildebrand. In the introduction,Tammy shares that she was inspired to crochet great baby items after learning she was going to become a first-time grandmother in 2012. Although her grandbaby was a girl, Tammy aims for an equal opportunity book by sharing theme patterns for boys and girls organized around the calendar.
The book is arranged in chapters by month. Each chapter opens with a large (nearly full page) photograph of an adorable infant boy or girl (or, frequently, both) wearing that month's outfits with accessories. Each month's patterns are either unisex or include variations for both boys and girls. Tammy describes the holiday or seasonal activity that inspired the outfit, and then the chapter continues with the patterns. Each pattern includes more photographs of the projects on the cute little models, the skill level, special stitches, and schematics when appropriate. Garments are generally available in 3-5 sizes from newborn through 18 months. Most of the patterns are considered easy, with one intermediate and one experienced pattern included in the book. The patterns are written with US crochet terminology.
The project breakdown is as follows: Hats and bonnets: 14 Cardigans/sweater/jersey: 5 Dresses: 4 Booties and sandals: 3 Sleeveless tops: 3 Headbands: 2 Christening gowns: 2 Bikini/swim trunks: 2 Rompers: 2 Pants: 1 Bow tie: 1 Costume: 1
The book ends with a heartfelt acknowledgements page, information about the yarns used in the book, a glossary of pattern abbreviations, and thumbnails of each project for a quick visual reference.
Like all pattern books, your enjoyment will be increased by the number of projects you actually want to make! (My personal favorites are the Stanley or Stella the Stegasaurus Costume; the Fall Festival Cardigan, Hat, and Booties set; and the Varsity Cheerleader Girl Dress and Headband.) You can see pictures of each project in Stackpole's lookbook.
There are no tutorials or stitch illustrations included, so this book is geared towards an advanced beginner or intermediate crocheter who has their basic skills down and is comfortable with reading US pattern abbreviations.
I would recommend Crochet for Baby All Year to an advanced beginner crocheter who enjoys making projects for babies and infants and prefers reading pattern abbreviations.
A more advanced crocheter might wish for more complex patterns, and a crocheter who prefers international stitch symbols won't find them in this book.
Full disclosure: A free review copy of Crochet for Baby All Year: Easy-to-Make Outfits for Every Month was provided by Stackpole Books. Although I accept free products for review, I do not accept additional compensation, nor do I guarantee a positive review. My reviews are based entirely on my honest opinions....more
This is a short and sweet guide to setting up the type of non-fiction ebook that you can sell passively on your website as a PDF. Pat discusses writinThis is a short and sweet guide to setting up the type of non-fiction ebook that you can sell passively on your website as a PDF. Pat discusses writing, formatting, automating, marketing, pricing, and the use of affiliates briefly. If you are considering putting together a non-fiction ebook that you will sell directly as a PDF, this has some great information inside. The formatting was easy to read and Pat engages his readers with a conversational tone....more
I know I’m not the only crocheter who considers herself a “stitch guide junkie.” I have several dozen crochet stitch dictionaries, in multiple languagI know I’m not the only crocheter who considers herself a “stitch guide junkie.” I have several dozen crochet stitch dictionaries, in multiple languages, in my collection. Crochet Stitch Dictionary by Sarah Hazell breaks new ground by combining process photos with the standard information typically found in a good stitch guide.
The book opens with a Getting Started section that features information about hooks, yarn, and notions. Illustrations and text explain how to hold your yarn, start a foundation chain, and work in rows. The book goes beyond the basics of a stitch guide to include finishing instructions for weaving in ends, seaming, blocking, and caring for your projects. There is also a completely illustrated section with written explanations describing the basic stitches, variations on where to put the hook, and tips for forming specialty stitches such as bullions.
The rest of the book is devoted to a directory of stitches. The table of contents features a color thumbnail of each stitch, so they are easy to find. Each stitch features its own introduction, where Sarah shares alternate names, construction details, comparisons to other stitches in the guide, and project suggestions. Each stitch is shown in a large colorful picture against a white background. The stitch explanations are provided in international stitch symbols and “steps.” Each step is equivalent to a row, and includes the explanation in US pattern abbreviations and, usually, one process photo. The book ends with a four-page guide to US pattern abbreviations and symbols and a thorough index.
Crochet Stitch Dictionary has a wonderful layout, with clear and inspiring photographs. It offers more details than a typical stitch dictionary, so it would be suited for both beginners and more advanced crocheters. The process photos add great detail, but beginners might appreciate more photographs. The photos typically show where the hook might be inserted, or how a stitch should look when finished, but they don’t show each action within a stitch since each “step” is the equivalent of a complete row. If you already own a collection of stitch guides, you will see duplicates, since this book covers many of the popular crochet stitch patterns used in the US.
I wish the font for the row instructions was slightly larger, especially since the layout made good use of white space so there seems to be more room available. However, the beautiful layout and the addition of photos make this a wonderful stitch guide overall. I would recommend it as a general reference book for a beginning crocheter, for a more advanced crocheter with a limited (or non-existent) stitch guide collection, or a crocheter who learns best through photographs.
The book is available in print for a retail price of $22.95, and as an ebook on several platforms including Kindle.
Full disclosure: A free review copy of Crochet Stitch Dictionary was provided by Interweave Press. Although I accept free products for review, I do not accept additional compensation, nor do I guarantee a positive review. My reviews are based entirely on my honest opinions....more
The Go-To Book for Irish Crochet Motifs is a booklet by Kathryn White that combines an introduction to the stitches and techniques common in Irish croThe Go-To Book for Irish Crochet Motifs is a booklet by Kathryn White that combines an introduction to the stitches and techniques common in Irish crochet with over 100 patterns for motifs, edgings, and insertions written in modern US pattern abbreviations.
If you’ve always looked longingly at Irish crochet but haven’t the faintest clue how to recreate one of those patterns, you will find this booklet very helpful. In the Introduction and first chapter, Stitches & Techniques, Kathryn provides an overview of the basics of Irish crochet. She also shares some tips for simplified, contemporary versions of different techniques or patterns.
After the basics are introduced, the book continues with seven chapters of patterns, including one each on Flowers, Leaves, Fill-in Motifs, Edgings & Insertions, Dangles, Overlays, and Fill-in Lace. The next chapter, Irish Crochet Sampler for Fill-In Lace, explains several different methods for assembling Irish lace. The final chapter, Squares & Motifs, includes several larger motifs that can be joined together. At the end of the booklet, there is a one page illustrated stitch guide and charts with metric conversions and hook and needle size conversions.
Each chapter opens with a brief introduction and then continues into the patterns. Each pattern includes the skill level and a color photo, created in white cotton thread against a light colored background. I enjoyed having the option of keeping the project authentic or simplifying the methods. Kathryn did a good job of clearly explaining the methods.
I would have liked to see more process photos displaying visual techniques. In some cases, international stitch symbols would have been a helpful addition to the book, especially for the patterns that flow over a page. Nonetheless, The Go-To Book for Irish Crochet Motifs does a great job of clarifying the methods used to create traditional Irish crochet while also offering some simplifications for the modern crocheter.
This booklet would be most enjoyed by a crocheter who is interested in learning more about Irish crochet, or who enjoys lace. Although all the samples in the book are crocheted with thread, many of the patterns would translate well into yarn for a completely different look.
The booklet is available in print or as an electronic download for the retail price of $14.95.
Full disclosure: A free review copy of The Go-To Book for Irish Crochet Motifs was provided by Annie's. Although I accept free products for review, I do not accept additional compensation, nor do I guarantee a positive review. My reviews are based entirely on my honest opinions....more
Open Weave Fashions is a pattern booklet featuring six openwork crochet patterns for women. The booklet includes four women’s tops, a shawl and a hat.Open Weave Fashions is a pattern booklet featuring six openwork crochet patterns for women. The booklet includes four women’s tops, a shawl and a hat. Most of the patterns are crocheted in some combination of panels/strips and motifs. The final projects, the Perfect Color Lace Pullover & Hat, are shown in both vibrant, four-color versions and subdued, off-white versions.
All of the patterns are written with US pattern abbreviations and are rated at the intermediate level. A patient beginner, comfortable working with chain spaces, could also complete these projects. Most patterns include multiple, well-lit photos showing the projects from different angles on a model; the only exception is the Red Hot Tunic, which is only shown from the front. All of the garments are available in 5-6 sizes. At the end of the booklet, there is a one-page illustrated stitch guide and charts with metric conversions and hook and needle size conversions.
This booklet would be most enjoyed by an intermediate or adventurous beginner crocheter who is interested in creating lacy garments with minimal shaping and seamed construction. Like all pattern booklets, the decision about whether or not to buy this book will be largely dependent on personal taste.
The booklet is available in print or as an electronic download for the retail price of $8.95.
Full disclosure: A free review copy of Open Weave Fashions was provided by Annie's. Although I accept free products for review, I do not accept additional compensation, nor do I guarantee a positive review. My reviews are based entirely on my honest opinions....more
Beautiful Baby Boutique II is a pattern booklet featuring 22 crochet patterns for babies by Rebecca Leigh. The booklet includes five layette sets – eaBeautiful Baby Boutique II is a pattern booklet featuring 22 crochet patterns for babies by Rebecca Leigh. The booklet includes five layette sets – each including a set of three coordinated patterns for a dress, bloomers, bonnet, booties, a sweater, and/or hat – and four additional dress patterns.
All the patterns are written with US pattern abbreviations, and are rated at the easy level. The dresses and sweaters are all available in at least two sizes (in a three to six month range from 0-18 months). Most patterns are shown in multiple, large photos including one with an infant model. The color and styling suggests that the patterns would be most suited to baby girls.
Rebecca uses a range of popular stitch types, such as pineapples, ripples, post stitches, and puffs, to create heirloom-type garments and accessories for newborns and infants. She also uses a range of yarn weights to create different looks, from lacy to highly textured. In addition to the patterns, there is also a one page illustrated stitch guide with a pattern abbreviation glossary in the back.
This booklet would be most enjoyed by a crocheter who enjoys making projects for newborn and infant girls, and who enjoys making garments for special occasions. Like all pattern booklets, the decision about whether or not to buy this booklet will be largely dependent on personal taste.
The booklet is available in print or as an electronic download for the retail price of $9.95.
Full disclosure: A free review copy of Beautiful Baby Boutique II was provided by Annie's. Although I accept free products for review, I do not accept additional compensation, nor do I guarantee a positive review. My reviews are based entirely on my honest opinions....more