THE NEW CROCHET DICTIONARY Reviewed by
Bobbie K. Connolly
by Rhoda Ochser Goldberg
Crown Publishers, Inc.
201 East 50th Street
NY, NY 10022
160 pages Cost $12.00
The last line of the Introduction sums up the function of this publication: "This book is meant to be a learning guide for the beginner and a reference book for the expert".
In the process of crocheting, I always seem to come across something I cannot remember how to do or do not quite understand a direction, or need clarification on an item. This book has come to my aid more than once. The first thing I liked about it was its size. It is a softcover but yet not so small that the print is hard to read, and not too large or cumbersome to carry. It easily fits in a project bag for quick reference. All photographs are in black and white. For patterns and stitch demos this format makes it easier to see each row and how the stitches are formed. All stitches shown are demonstrated by a drawing or picture as well as having a verbal explanation. The pattern stitches are shown by the actual picture of the finished product.
The subjects covered are:
The Basics -Hooks (Styles & Types) Conversion chart from American to British to metric.
Accessories: Counters, Bobbins, Needles, Tassels, Fringe & Pom Pom Makers
Yarns: Natural, Synthetic, Dye Lots, Ply and Labels on Yarn as well as pictures of the same pattern worked in different yarns.
How to Read Directions
Abbreviations: British and American Equivalent Terms
Measurements: Linear/Metric Size Conversion Tables
A to Z: Here, the terms of crochet are shown via pictures and explained in a nice alphabetical format. You can learn the how-tos of buttonholes and buttons, increase and decrease, joining seams, as well as how to rip apart that old sweater that no one wears anymore, clean the yarn, and turn it into fresh yarn for your next project!
Basic Directions: This is the area I refer to most often: the stitches, from single crochet to a triple triple crochet.
Pattern Stitches : For the ambitious crocheters who like to experiment, here is a section for you. There are 105 different pattern stitches explained with a picture of each. For those of you who need a certain effect on something you are making or designing, this section may just be what you are looking for.
Immediately following that section are the Multicolored Stitches. Even though the pictures are black and white, they used high contrasting yarn so it is quite easy to see the effect that the contrasts would have.
The Motif Section :43 different patterns ranging from leaves, to granny squares, to pinwheels to daisies to name just a few. Edgings, blankets, borders all can be created by using any of the ideas listed.
Afghan or Tunisian Crochet :Six pages are devoted to this stitch - drawings of how to do the basic afghan stitch as well as 15 different afghan stitches are included.
Filet Crochet : An explanation of the amazingly easy Filet Crochet, including how to read the blocks, decreasing and increasing and even includes a few patterns as well as the entire alphabet.
Fur Stitches :For that "fluffy" effect on a project - here is the explanation of how to give it just the right touch.
Crochet/Knit : This refers to crochet that uses the "two headed" crochet hook, which has a hook on both ends whose final product resembles knitting and is reversible.
Other Topics Covered: Snowflake and Quilt Patterns, Beaded Crochet, Rag Crochet, Aran Crochet,Broomstick Crochet, Hairpin Crochet, Edgings and Braids, Converting Knitting to Crochet, Left Hand Crochet Basics
I have found this book to be an invaluable tool for crocheting. Although the actual lay-out of the chapters is a little different than what I prefer, it is still easy to find the topic you need and quickly get the answer. Explanations are easy to understand and the no-gloss paper also makes it easier to read. At a cost of $12.00 it was well worth the money and would also make a great gift for that crocheter you know (including yourself!) I give this book an official CP :> Recommended Buy! It's the next best thing to Crochet Partners!
Reviewed for Crochet Partners by Bobbie K. Connolly (email@example.com) 9/96
PINEAPPLE JEWELS Reviewed by LORNA HALNAN
The Needlecraft Shop
$3.99 (may be ordered direct from company)
To Order call: 1-903-636-4000
Designed by Hazel Henry & Lucille LaFlamme---(Review editor's note: These designers also doily experts. They design a lot of intricate stuff for Magic Crochet and Decorative Crochet.)
Not for the Beginning Thread Crocheter, though, says our reviewer.. "If you're new to crocheting with thread, I would recommend getting a few smaller and easier doilies under your belt before tackling these doilies."
Each doily is made with size 10 cotton thread and the suggested hook is either an 8 or 9. The finished sizes range from 15" to 18 1/2". The instructions are clear and easy to follow. They all have a skill level of "Average". I made the "Misty Opal" design and had no trouble at all. I would say that if you've crocheted any doilies at all before, you can accomplish these without any problem. If you're new to crocheting with thread, I would recommend getting a few smaller and easier doilies "under your belt" before tackling these doilies.
The doily called "Misty Opal" starts with a round center with six spokes that eventually turn into six large pineapples. The pairs of dc stitches make a nice pattern in-between the pineapples. "Frosted Quartz" begins with a circle of tr stitches and then chains that become 7 large pineapples. Between the points of those pineapples are formed 7 more pineapples, ending in chains and picots all around. "Polished Crystal" has 8 spider-web style motifs and then some small wheat stalks (three groups of tr stitches). 16 pineapples circle the edge of this one. "Mother of Pearl" starts with a six point start in the middle and ends up forming six pineapples with a fan design between them. "Glazed Marble" forms a double star pattern and then 8 pineapples are formed with chains and picots between them. "Diamond Dust" starts with a beautiful 6 point motif in the center. Groups of dc stitches fan out between 6 pineapples and then become a wheat style design. A honeycomb design rings the edge of this one to finish it.
The Needlecraft Shop includes a brief "Meet the Designer" paragraph on Hazel and Lucille, a very nice touch. I like knowing something about the background of the designers. It turns out that Hazel and Lucille are sisters. What a wonderful bond to have with your sister--crocheting and designing!
You can order this booklet from the Needlecraft Shop catalog for only $3.99, which I consider to be a bargain for these six totally incredible patterns.
Reviewed for Crochet Partners by Lorna Halana ( firstname.lastname@example.org) 8/96
QUICK AND COZY AFGHANS -----Review by Diana
Leisure Arts,Inc and Oxmoor House, Inc.
126 pages, softcover
"Really Cool!" says Diana's 14 year-old daughter about the afghan her mother is making for her using a pattern from this book.
The title of this book is an apt description of what one will find inside. I have enjoyed experimenting with the patterns in this book. I believe it contains a wealth of patterns to suit a variety of tastes. I have also found it easy to change the colors for my personal needs.
It contains 52 "quick to crochet" afghan selections, from quick and easy to more elaborate. There are several baby afghans just waiting to be tried. The index breaks the contents into four sections: country casual, colorful mix, classic elegance, and soft and sweet. There are even afghans for different celebrations during the year (Christmas, Valentine's Day, Fourth of July)! It also contains a basic stitch guide with large easy-to-see diagrams in the back of the book, which is a helpful reminder. The directions are easy to understand with the afghans I have completed.
Since receiving this book, I have completed Lacy Blocks for my mother's birthday- she loved it. It was done in peach and the basic design is a spider's web pattern, which looks far more difficult than it is. I turned to this book again to complete a beautiful baby afghan called Sleepy Shells. I did it in white, rather than the suggested two color combination. It turned out beautifully.
My 14 year old daughter found a pattern she wanted called Soft Stripes, which is worked from side to side, holding six strands of yarn together with a Q hook. Although I have not completed it yet, my daughter's color combination of fuschia, black, blue, and purple guarantee it will be "one of a kind." My daughter rates this work in progress as "really cool".
The patterns in this book range from those worked all in one piece to motif/granny square, and those worked in strips. There are also theme patterns: a red/white & blue, a christmas red/green afghan done in strips, and a candy- red valentines day choice.
My favorite pattern though, is the Sophisticated Swirl. In the picture, it is a snow white afghan done in pinwheel motifs. When I have completed all my other projects :), I will do this one for myself!
Reviewed for Crochet Partners by Diane Sacco ( email@example.com). 8/96