Sunday, 6 March 2011

Another (entirely sponsored) review. Crochet, anyone?

Sometime last month, Miss Dunnit and I had a lot of fun at Hobbycraft picking a couple balls of wool and a crochet hook each and a 'how to' book. She wanted to make Animeguru. These are the teeny versions of soft toy animals. I agreed, because well, how hard can it be - and we can do it together! So when the young man at New Holland Publishers asked me if I'd like a couple of books to review, I picked 'Love......Crochet' as one of them. It's part of a run of 'Love......' craft related books.
As with the card making book, it's very handle-able and stays open at the prescribed page - which for a rank beginner is very helpful. The photography is lovely, especially important for the 'how to' section of the book. Each stitch technique is explained step by step and different coloured yarn (note that I now say yarn and not wool - it's part of the learning!) clearly denotes the different stitches where they are combined. Very helpful. So the book is split into two really - a great 'teach me' section and then a whole bunch of projects, ranging from beginner easy to frighteningly almost professional, with a quick guide star rating. And they're likely projects too; you know, no loo roll holders or anti-macassars!
I stumbled hard at the very first hurdle though - I didn't understand the instructions or photos for casting on! After Miss Dunnit's eye rolling and (quite useful) demonstration, I was off - I made a chain, followed it with a row of doubles and then a staggering number of trebles. And then I rolled it up and sewed it across the bottom and ta na, I had a flower! Teresa said I should have started with a square, but you know me - dive in, semi-drown, stagger back and start again, properly!
Approaching a new craft has made me very aware
of my memory skills, and I had to keep turning to the
glossary at the back to check that I understood all the abbreviations; frustrating for two reasons - one or two aren't in the glossary and that means a level of understanding is pre-supposed. Dangerous! The second frustration was having to stop and turn to a page elsewhere; I'm perfectly sure that the balance of the page design wouldn't be spoiled by having the abbreviation glossary running along the foot or top of the pages of the projects that are categorised for beginners. I found that the counting and
learning to 'read' the stitches I'd already done required concentration anew. A good trial for the old brain!
Now I need to buy some appropriate yarn and set off on something useful. I enjoyed the book - and to think, if Miss D hadn't wanted to learn, I'd have missed this completely!

Love… Crochet is published by New Holland Publishers, price £12.99.
Enter the discount code Stamping at the checkout to receive 20% discount and free P&P.
(Free P&P to UK residents only!)
Offer valid until 1st September 2011


Jules said...

Ooh your flower is fab! I've been thinking about giving crochet a go for a while now, my friend is brilliant at it, so I might take the plunge and order this book :D

Angie said...

Love the flower. I have tried and tried to get started on crochet...tried all the easy instructions on the web with no luck ... maybe I need that book ...or a Miss Dunnit. xx

Lou Mac said...

Ohhhhh Julia - I am intrigued!! You have made this whole business sound easy-ish!!

I've just gone and bought this book - you're a bad influence. A bargin at £5.19 - so I can't complain! I would love to learn crochet, just to make those stunning flowers!!

Lou Mac. xo

Penni said...

I was in John Lewis yesterday I bought I crochet hook, wool and a Crochet Workshop book - how spooky!!!!

I've had a little play, but I think it might take some practice before I actually create anything I would consider showing LOL!!!!

I'm going to have a little go a this rose you've made, it's fabulous.



Annie said...

Well done you Julia. Your flowers is pretty impressive for a beginner. :-)
A x

Claire said...

Love that flower, I've only managed to croceht once, but really enjoyed it, I need a bit more time to be able to practise.

Paige said...

If i hadn't just ordered three crocheting how to.... books a last month, I might well have been making an order now for this one. Have fun with the hooking, it's additive!!!!

Dotty Jo said...

No, no, no - please don't get me started on another obsession sorry hobby! Looks gorgeous, Jo x

Sylvia/LittleTreasures said...

Thanks for sharing this. I love the flower. Before Xmas I purchased Daughter in Law a set of hooks, a beginners book and yarn. Then I thought you use to do this and have Lots of Stash so I started playing around with it. The Yarns available now are beautiful, variety of colors and the textures are luscious.
I was using the fine treads for flowers on some of my projects but the YARN is a great idea. Thanks for RE Inspiring me!!!

Teresa said...

Brilliant Mrs Dunnit! The girl dome well :)

That is a flower to be proud of, well done to Miss Dunnit too for getting you going on this new project. Look forward to seeing more crochet on your cards and scrapbook pages!

misteejay said...

Well done you. The flower is lovely. Great that you are trying something new that I'm sure you will enjoy and get to grips with very quickly.

Toni :o)

Anonymous said...

Your flower is completely fab - I love it. But, I beg you, in another post PLEEEEEZZZZE share the 'elephant' with your followers. Something that made me laugh so hard my back hurt, has to be shared with the masses! :) xxxx LL Jan xx

Smudgemakes said...

Gorgeous flower, Julia! I am into crochet just now too! (and knitting again!)

kayc said...

I was thinking about learning to crochet so I might give it a go now. Thanks. Kathleen x

donnalouiserodgers said...

always good to learn something new, stops the rot setting in...

Sandra said...

Great review, as a complete novice myself, who even has her old, ladybird learn to crochet book and still can't quite get it .. I'm finding your review very helpful.

Pam said...

It's great how our babies can teach us a thing or two once in awhile. Another great review and hat's off to mother/daughter teams I say! Amber wanted to start her Etsy shop w/little crochet hair thingies she'd been making and she told me one of the labels was arigu...something or other. I looked on Etsy and told her there wasn't anything like that and she should probably use a different label. She was ROFL and said it is amigurumi! OMG - an alternate universe before my eyes.

Carmen Wing said...

Your flower is gorgeous, I think you should loan Miss Dunnit out or get her to do a Scrap Ladies class :P My memory is awful - like really frighteningly bad lately which is why I think I struggle at crochet and knitting. I will perservere though.

HeARTworks said...

What a pretty flower! What I've done is try to crochet plastic yarn (from plastic bags)- never finished it though! maybe one day!

Sarn said...

Hi Julia

I have been crocheting since I was a nipper, but gave up for years and years . . . until recently when one of my friends expressed an interst in learning. She's coming round on Sat night for a crochet lesson! I might suggest this book to her too!

For any of you Crochet wannabe's . . . there's a great instructional video on You Tube by The Knit Witch . . . GOOD LUCK

Hugs, Sandra

Lyn said...

Well done the Dunnit women! Of course my darling grandma taught me how to crochet aged 7 to keep me quiet .... I lurve crochet from skinny thread lacy mats to full blown double knit baby shawls :-D