Book Review: Hug It Out!

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Title: Hug It Out! 9 Crochet Designs to Offer Comfort

Author: Drew Emborsky aka The Crochet Dude

Book Review by Jennifer J. Cirka (

Charity stitching is something close to my heart, so when I had the opportunity to review Hug it Out by none other than the CGOA's very own Crochet Dude, I jumped at the chance. I personally crochet and donate many items a year locally and am always looking for unique new ideas for objects to create. And Drew's book through Leisure Arts does just that!

Whether you are looking for a stash-busting Kennel Blanket to donate to your local animal shelter or if you are in need of a unique cap for a friend fighting cancer and starting chemo, Drew Emborsky's book has a design for you! My favorites include the Baby Comfort Blanket and Baby Hat which any premature newborn would love to snuggle in. Plus the Mobius Cowl is a wonderful idea for anyone with mobility challenges. And what scared little child would not adore a Comfort Teddy when sirens come blaring to an accident or crime scene!

This book features nine beautiful designs perfect for giving and range from beginner to intermediate in skill level. Most designs use basic stitches and easy finishing techniques too. Hug it Out offers excellent ideas for many different charitable opportunities, and if you don't have a specific charity that you donate to, the book offers a list of national organizations which are all willing to accept your handmade goodies. And of course, the book also includes your standard general instructions with abbreviations and yarn information.

While reviewing this book, I quickly whipped up a Kennel Blanket to donate to my local no-kill animal shelter. I selected this design for many reasons. First, it is a GREAT stash buster and like many of you, I have a huge stash! Second, my daughter and I usually spend part of our Fridays at our shelter walking and playing with the dogs, but over the last few months our time there has been nil because of our own dog being ill and needing constant care. And my third reason for choosing this design was the opportunity to try a new-to-me stitch called the linked double crochet. The blanket came out beautifully, I loved the new stitch, and I can't wait to see some sweet little dog snuggled in my blanket the next time we are there.
I would not hesitate to recommend this book to anyone who enjoys charitable stitching. I loved that Drew offers a touching note at the beginning of the book about how he began his charitable giving quest after his mother passed away. I can't say it any better than he did in his note... “Giving is the heart and soul of every 'crocheter' I have ever met, without exception!” I urge all of you to make something to donate whenever you can. Not only does it bring a smile to their face, it makes you feel wonderful too! Show how much you care with these easy crocheted “hugs.”

(Leisure Arts Inc., 2011, 28 Pages, $7.95, ISBN-13: 978-1-60900-279-4)

Full disclosure: A free review copy of Hug It Out! 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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