Monday, October 22, 2012

Book Review: Simple Crocheting


Title: Simple Crocheting, A Complete How-To-Crochet Workshop with 20 Projects
Author: Erika Knight

Book Review by Reneé Rodgers (www.crochetrenee.com)


The title of Knight’s latest book delivers what it promises. In Simple Crocheting, Knight strives to create a set of instructions which makes the art of crochet accessible to everyone. The author gives an excellent breakdown of yarns, hooks, gauge, project selection, pattern reading, abbreviations, and stitch formation. Each basic technique, from making a slip knot and holding the hook (with a brief nod to the lefties out there), to working all of the basic stitches, how many turning chains are needed when working back and forth as well as working in the round, are all described in good detail with step-by-step line drawings accompanying the written directions. Knight also provides this kind of detail when describing finishing and seaming.

I especially like the basic stitch library included in the book. Knight has included all of the basic stitches for reinforcement, as well as a small selection of lace and textured stitches. With no more than two stitch patterns per page, each is provided with written as well as charted instructions, and a generously-sized photograph of a completed swatch with a little extra note on each with ideas for usage. In total, there are 16 different stitch patterns in the library, including 4 basic motifs.

Nine of the projects are home décor, including three throws. The balance of the projects are fashion or fashion accessories, including a couple of jewelry projects. The only actual garment is Knight’s Asymmetrical Cardigan, which makes effective use of a super bulky weight yarn and an N-size hook to create a lacy cardi that reminds me a bit of a wearable flower garden. No doubt this garment would work up very quickly and be a cozy layering piece one could create with a definite instant gratification factor. 

Knight has also included projects that utilize yarns of all different weights, from laceweight to the super bulky and everything in between. She even includes a section on creating your own yarn from fabric strips. Two of the projects utilizing such yarn include a round rug and a pet bed. All of the projects in the book, if followed in order, would indeed lead a beginning crocheter step-by-step through the necessary skills needed to create successful crochet projects. By the end of the book, you would no longer be a beginner!

Simple Crocheting is an excellent book for those who wish to begin crocheting, and some of the projects would even appeal to a more advanced crocheter as well. The photography in this book is very well done, as are the line drawings. I believe Simple Crocheting, along with a couple of skeins of yarn and a hook, would also make an excellent gift for anyone you might know who desires to learn to crochet. 

(St. Martin’s Press, 2012, 144 pages, $24.99, ISBN 978-1-250-01621-8)

Full disclosure: A free review copy of Simple Crocheting was provided by St. Martin's 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.


Knitting Heritage Museum


"Join us to explore the concept of creating a place to honor 
our knit and crochet heritage." 

A message from the TNNA Yarn Group:

Hi All!

Remember when the Yarn Group decided to support Karen Kendrick-Hands and her work exploring the idea of a Knitting Heritage Museum? Well, the symposium is right around the corner! The event will be held in Madison, WI on November 8-10. Registration for the entire symposium has been capped at $175 for all three days' events with a terrific lineup of speakers, topics and activities. It is an exciting time to envision a totally unique museum, getting off to the right start. Come help us to develop a twenty-first century institution to honor an ancient fiber art.

Here's a link where you can register to part of this wonderful project.

Direct PDF to brochure here.

If you have further questions, contact Karen at kdkhands@me.com. She has been working relentlessly on this and is full of great information!

Best,
Beth Casey,Yarn Group Chair