Tag Archives: how to crochet

Happy Birthday Crochet Kharma!

Yesturday was my birthday, my gift from husband was a trip out to my favorite bookstores, which is a long drive through pretty country side.

This one book store has all manner of treasures, I know if I’m looking for something funky, out of the ordinary, or a subject that has little information on it, this used book store will have it at some point. Today I scored crochet gold!

I found two older crochet books, one from 1948, hardbound even, entitled  “The Complete Book of Crochet” by Elizabeth L. Mathieson. It’s a fabulous book for the crochet historian to possess. I’m honored to be it’s latest keeper!

The second book I found is PROOF of all that I have been requesting in books on crochet!! It’s entitled, “America’s Crochet Book”, by Gertrude Taylor. Published in 1972 by Charles Scribner & Sons. This book has it all from how to learn crochet with some of the best written instructions I’ve ever seen, (Lefties beware though, the antiquated view on left handedism is present but the other information is so worth skipping that vingnette).

Chapter One includes:

  1. General :  Types of hooks and hook sizes: Steel hooks, Aluminum or plastic hooks, wood hooks, afghan hooks
  2. Description of Beginning Stitches: Chain stitch, Single, Half Double, Double, Treble, Double Treble, Triple Treble, Slip Stitch
  3. Shaping of Crochet Pieces:  Decreases (in each of the stitches by the way), Increases, Bind off.
  4. Pracice stitches with yarn: Joining new thread

From starting your first project, to learning how to fit garments and finish them correctly (to make them as polished as anything anyone else purchases!) to instructions for Tunisian Crochet and hairpin lace…this book is an amazing amazing tribute to our craft.

The information on fitting garments and how to alter a pattern to fit YOUR body is EXACTLY what we have been asking for, and when publishers say it can’t be done we can now point at this book and blow them big raspberries!

It can be done! It has been done! And where was this book in my life 20 years ago!!! It’s fabulous! Written in plain Engligh with the beginning garment maker in mind I love this book.

Here’s a sample of some of the encouraging text!

“So many people think that they need only purchase yarn, hooks, and a pattern book to create gorgeous garments. This is not so. You must develop a new skill and start your way at the bottom of the ladder and work your way up rung by rung. If you have crocheted for years, making doilies, edgings, or tablecloths, you have a little head start on the brand new beginner, but still you must learn how to fit, block, and finish garments made of yarn.”

Have I been channeling her? Is she still around? Does anyone know her or did know her in real life, because I want to make sure some one hugs her on my behalf! I love, love, love this book and it is now my brand new favorite of all time!

Did I mention it’s in mint condition, dust jacket and all? Oh yes, it shall have a hallowed place in my home.

I want to thank all the wonderful folks on the CLF message board on Ravelry, and on Facebook for the birthday wishes!  How lovely to be thought of!

A reminder to you all the Crochet Liberation Front’s 3rd birthday is July 27th, what do you want to do to celebrate?

Book Review: Creating Crochet Fabric

Dora Ohrenstein, the crochetinsider, has brought us a rhapsodical journey of hooks and fiber in her new book, Creating Crochet Fabric (lark books, 2010)

For those of you who have not ventured off the known crocheted path, because of the amazing and overwhelming amounts of fiber choices into today’s yarn world, fear no more! Dora Ohrenstein will happily take you by the hand, and walk you through the wonderful world of fibers and possiblities in her intreguing and inspiring new book!

Through her own experiential and experimental process Dora shows how various yarns play together, solo, and how with some ingenuity, and a little know how, you can freely play with yarn to create fabulous items. Whereas she encourages you to move beyond the pattern, and convincingly explains that swatching is a creative process in it’s own right, she also provides some artful, unique, and beautiful patterns!

Another thing I completely adore about this book, is the unique stitch patterns and wonderful diagrams/charts. Fabulous! The book is well written, thoughtfully planned, well edited and wonderfully executed 😉

I’m rather partial the the tunisian crochet jackets she made, and was quite put out that she beat me to it, because I’ve had a design running around in my head that’s almost exactly like her simple stitch jacket!! It turned out just like I envisioned and we never even talked about it! LOL…

Yet one more book I wish I would have had in my early crochet journey, one I am glad to have now to help inspire my own crochet designs. This is going to be a go to book for me when I’m having one of those creative “blah” days, because the photos, color schemes and textures just make your hands itch to get back into the hook!