Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Book Review: Ultimate Beginner's Guide to Tunisian Crochet




Title: Ultimate Beginner's Guide to Tunisian Crochet
Author: Kim Guzman

Book Review by Marie Segares (www.undergroundcrafter.com)


Tunisian crochet has been increasing in popularity for the past few years, and if you’ve been waiting to learn, now’s your chance!  In the Ultimate Beginner's Guide to Tunisian Crochet, Kim Guzman walks you through the basics while offering nine projects of increasing difficulty. The book focuses on Tunisian crochet creations that mimic the look of hand knitting.

The book includes an introduction to the types of hooks that are available for Tunisian crochet, as well as ways to modify standard or double-ended crochet hooks for Tunisian crochet.  

An eight-page section with step-by-step photos demonstrates the basic stitches including Tunisian simple, knit, purl, reverse, and extended stitches.  This section is helpful even to a more experienced Tunisian crocheter because Tunisian crochet stitch names are not always standardized, and the pictures allow you to identify stitches you may already know, which may have been called a different name in prior publications.

After introducing you to the stitches, Kim shares techniques for increasing, decreasing, changing colors, seaming and other finishing.  The remainder of the book is devoted to the patterns, with a brief section at the end that includes information on reading patterns and the yarns used in the book.

Kim writes in a conversational tone and reading this book is like having a great teacher looking over your shoulder.  Some of my favorite features are that the book lays flat so you can read along while crocheting; projects list yarn by type rather than by brand for easy substitution (a list of yarns used for each project is provided at the end); and many pictures and illustrations demonstrate various techniques throughout the book.  Kim assumes that you have at least some knowledge of standard crochet (i.e., how to make a chain) and familiarity with pattern-reading conventions. 

Ravelry members can view pictures of all the patterns in the book here.  Kim will be hosting a TCAL (Tunisian Crochet-A-Long) for the Cabled Mitts starting November 15 in her Yahoo group.  You can learn more about it here.  Since Tunisian crochet cables can be challenging to even more experienced Tunisian crocheters, you may want to join in!

This book would appeal to crocheters who want to learn Tunisian crochet, crocheters who want to explore different techniques, and Tunisian crocheters who are looking to expand their skills beyond the basic stitches.

Project types: 2 vests, 2 scarves/cowls, 1 ruana, 1 hat, 1 blanket, 1 bag, and 1 pair of mitts.
Skill levels: 1 Beginner project, 4 Easy projects, and 4 Intermediate projects. 
Retail price: $12.95 ($9.99 ebook)

Full disclosure: A free review copy of Ultimate Beginner's Guide to Tunisian Crochet was provided by Leisure Arts Inc. 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.

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