I was very excited to receive a copy of Crochet The Complete Step by Step Guide from DK Publishing for review.
This detailed guide is visually beautiful. I enjoyed flipping through the pages (all 320!) to explore the stitches and techniques which were included.
Included in this guide are the following:
- Yarn – types, reading labels
- Colour – colour wheel, how to choose colours to use together
- Hooks – sizes/types
- Basics – holding your hook, slip knots, chain stitches, fastening off, slip stitches, foundation rings
- Single Crochet, Half Double Crochet, Double Crochet, Treble Crochet, Double Treble, Triple Treble (each with photo tutorials!)
- Shaping Crochet, Decreasing, Increasing
- Flat Circles, Adjustable Rings, Motifs
- Following a Crochet Pattern – Sizing, Gauge
- Stitches – symbols and abbreviations (tutorials showing how to read stitch diagrams)
- Blocking and Seams
- Care for Crochet (washing/drying)
- Stitch Techniques and Stitch Anatomy (Front Loop, Back Loop, Chain Space, working between Stitches)
- Creating Textures with Stitches – Front/Back Post stitches, Shells, Bobbles, Clusters, Popcorns
These techniques are explored within the first 80-pages of the guide. With large photographs and clearly written instructions.
There are patterns included to practise each of the stitches and techniques.
I love the section for Simple textures and stitch patterns (page 84) . It provides you with a photograph of a finished swatch and a crochet diagram showing you the international crochet symbols to create the swatch with the corresponding written instructions. By providing these three pieces together you can see and understand how to read the crochet diagram clearly. It is an excellent tool!
Other items included, all with beautiful photography, patterns and tutorials are:
- Embroidery on crochet
- Edgings & buttons
- Edgings on fabric
- Circular Crochet
- Granny Squares, Medallions and Joining Techniques
- Filet Crochet
- Openwork/Lace Stitch Patterns
- Colourwork – Jacquard and Intarsia
- Broomstick Lace
- String Crochet
- Wire Crochet
- Rag Strip and Plastic Strip Crochet
- Crocheted Toys
- Felted Crochet
This guide really has it all. Plus it includes more than 80-crochet patterns!
The only flaw I can find in the guide (for me) are the yarns used in the patterns. They are beautiful – but they are not as easy to find here in Canada. I of course am willing to go shopping in my Local Speciality Yarn Shop to buy the imported DK weight yarn. I like to use the same yarns used in patterns – I find it much easier to reach the specified gauge if I start with the same tools.
I wanted to crochet the Striped Sweater for Drew but I tried a few of the yarns in my stash and I could not reach the specified gauge. I will have to wait until I can make the trip to the city to pick up some “DK weight merino-mix yarn” or order some online (twist my rubber arm!).
I did try a couple of the patterns where gauge would not be an issue and I practised some of the stitches included in the guide.
I crocheted a Filagree bookmark (page 178):
I crocheted a Chunky Bracelet (page 30):
I tried one of the Simple Openwork Stitch Patterns: Shell Mesh Stitch (page 114):
I fell in love with the Flower Blanket (page 143), Baby Blanket (page 148), Rag Doll (page 271), Summer Tunic Dress (page 274), Child’s Hoodie (page 240) and the Baby Boy’s Booties (page 219).
Here are some other designs in the book and please note these images were provided by DK Publishing to be used in this post (and note also the full pattern was provided in the image below for the Women’s beret – click the image to enlarge):
This is an excellent guide to have in your crochet library. If you are looking for a book that explains crochet from start to finish – this is the one you need.
If this is the first time you are picking up a crochet hook – this guide will provide you with the knowledge you need to learn the craft.
I really can’t say enough about this book.
Would you like a free crochet pattern from the book?
Well if you visit DK Canada today there is a free pdf download available for the Granny Pillow Project.
To see this book and others available visit the DK Publishing Website.