Make your own free website on Tripod.com

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 (bobbiec@juno.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 ( lhalnan@cdsnet.net) 8/96

 




*THE HARMONY GUIDE TO CROCHETING
Techniques and Stitches
Publisher: Harmony books, a division of Crown Publishers
Date:1986,1992 by Lyric Books Limited
Costs:USA $16.00 & CANADA $20.00
No. Pages: 172

  • LORI highly recommends this book, especially for those of us who like to make up their own designs.

  • She says, Just when you think you know it all this book will show you more.

  • I think this is just a wonderful book. It contains tons of different stitches for those who like to create their own patterns.

    Besides an introduction and a list of basic stitches the book includes
  • Stitch Variations,
  • Clusters,
  • Patterns for Texture and Color,
  • All-over Patterns,
  • Openwork and Lace Patterns,
  • Filet Crochet & Motifs,
  • Irish Style Crochet,
  • Edgings and Trimmings, and
  • Afghan (Tunisian Crochet)

    The introduction has everything a beginner could need to learn step by step. It also has working from a diagram and illustrates this through the whole book. I highly recommend this book for beginners and expert crocheters alike. Just when you think you know it all this book will show you more. ###

    Reviewed by Lori for Crochet Partners, 1996 Darrell_Born@MBnet.MB.CA

    QUICK AND COZY AFGHANS -----Review by Diana Sacco
    Leisure Arts,Inc and Oxmoor House, Inc.
    Copyright 1994
    126 pages, softcover
    Price $14.95

    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 ( esacco@pgh.net). 8/96



    Quick Christmas Ornaments--Reviewers give a thumbs down on this one
    House of White Birches Publication

    This pamphlet was sent to two separate reviewers-- both of them are especially skilled & experienced crocheters.

    They both gave this pamphlet a thumbs down. Here's the gist of their criticism:

  • The instructions are are poorly written:.

  • The instructions for specific ornaments aren't consolidated. You have to to flip back and forth between different instruction sets, on different pages, in order to get the complete instructions.

  • The color combinations for ornaments are unappealing and many of the designs are just silly looking.


    QUICK-AND EASY CROCHET, Review by Angie Tate
    Edited by Mary Carolyn Waldrep
    Dover Publications Inc., 1989
    Cost: $2.95

    This is one of the best motif books I've seen. for intermediate crocheters, but there are one or two patterns good for beginners.
  • I highly recommend it for anyone who likes thread crochet, motifs or vintage patterns.
  • It's an excellent quality book at a great price. I recommend it

    It's easy to see why Dover Publications added Quick-and-Easy Crochet to the Dover Needlework Series in 1989. Editor Mary Carolyn Waldrep's collection of thirty-six vintage thread motif designs from the 1930's-1950's will become a classic, like the patterns inside.

    The timelessness and versatility of motif designs are shown in the variety of projects. Easy motifs join to make intricate, graceful patterns that lose no charm after sixty years. Bedspreads, tablecloths, runners, place mats, single motifs and edgings let readers choose heirloom quality items for any purpose.

    Modern touches do not dispel the antique character of the book. The patterns come from Spool Cotton, Royal Society, American and Lily thread company booklets, so several threads used are still available.

    A stated thread size (usually 10-30) lets readers easily find substitutes for discontinued threads. The patterns, printed in original text, are easy to interpret. Readers can refer to clear black and white photos or the vintage stitch guide for help with any design. For U.S. crocheters, charts for hook size, metric and stitch conversion clarify the English patterns.

    This book encourages reader's innovations. The introduction discusses two methods of joining motifs and suggests making motifs in other thread sizes or for projects different from those pictured.
  • The Star in the Snow tablecloth shows assembly diagrams for a hexagon or rectangular cloth.
  • The Petal Doily or Jabot instructs readers to easily turn a table mat into a lacy collar.

    A multitude of motifs at a bargain basement price, Mary Carolyn Waldrep's Quick-and-Easy Crochet is a must for anyone who loves thread, motifs or vintage patterns. #### Review by Angie Tate for Crochet Partners, 1996 -


    VANNA - AFGHANS A TO Z-- 52 Crochet Favorites-- Reviewed by J. Barrett

    Oxmoor and Leisure Arts Publications ($14.95 )
    Order through Leisure Arts
    P.O. Box 5595
    Little Rock AR 72215
    (501) 868-8800

    I have heard others talk about how they like this book. Now that I've seen it you can count me as one of them!

    I'm just a down to earth type person. I thought this book would not be my cup of tea. I thought to myself, 'Yeah, Vanna. She's uppity so her afghans will be too." I really thought the fancier (and more expensive) yarns would be used. -I mean, for someone as famous as Vanna, I wouldn't expect anything else. Well, yes, I was wrong.

  • She uses ALL Lion Brand and Jiffy, Keepsake Sayelle, and Jamie yarns. That's not fancy stuff: I can get that stuff locally!

  • There are two afghans for each letter of the alphabet--enough for an afghan a week for a whole year. Since I make several afghans a week for Navy Relief (a charity), I can easily try out one new pattern from this book every week. That would keep me in new patterns for a whole year.] There are lots of good traditional patterns and the colors really speak for themselves.

    The baby afghans are well thought out. I liked their color schemes and designs: like the one with a stuffed animal face in the corner and the ones with nursery rhyme themes. It's great section for generating ideas. I might even make a few of them from this section for Navy Relief.

    My favorites in the regular-sized afghans were the raised flower motif the ones with Christmas designs.

    There are some color schemes in this book I don't care for--like the southwest design, the geometric shaped motifs, the rustic designs, and football theme. I also didn't care for the photos with Vanna all dressed up and wrapped in an afghan. However, with 52 patterns to choose from you really can't go wrong if you buy this book. It's only $14.95 for all these patterns.

    I have heard others talk about how they like this book. Now that I've seen it too, you can count me as one of them! I was letting the fame of Vanna get to me, but she is really a down to earth person also. She even designed one of the afghans herself. ##### Reviewed by J. Barrett for Crochet Partners 4/96 jbarrett@aqua.net