Friday, November 29, 2013

Knitting Yarns

Knitting Yarns: Writers on KnittingKnitting Yarns: Writers on Knitting by Ann Hood
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Anyone who has read more than one of my reviews before knows I'm a crafter and more specifically a knitter and crocheter, and anyone who follows my blog knows I try to review a wide variety of crafting books, so naturally I jumped at the chance.

There's a few similar books out there, a collection of short stories with the common theme of knitting in all the stories. The difference is this collection includes more famous people, like Barbara Kingsolver, Sue Grafton, and Anne Shayne (of Mason Dixon fame). Like any short story collection, some are better than others - my least favorite was about a guy who kept talking about how he didn't knit but yet his story somehow involves knitting anyway. He just kept talking about how he didn't knit, like he was insulting the craft and those who love it. But that's the great thing about short story collections, you spend a few minutes reading a story you don't like, you move on to the next one that you do like.

There's also a few patterns included in the book, which in books like this I always figure they include solely as a way of selling more books (you know, people who enjoy reading will read this book, and people who just want patterns will buy this book, so you get twice as many sales). You have no idea what the patterns look like because you have to go online to see photos - I hope that this is maybe just something in my e-ARC and not in the final book. They are all very basic designs, like fingerless gloves, cabled head wrap, ruffled slipper socks, coffee cozies, etc., and most designed by Helen Bingham.

I received a copy of this book for free through

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Tuesday, November 19, 2013

book review: Last Chance Knit & Stitch by Hope Ramsay

Last Chance Knit & Stitch (Last Chance, #6)Last Chance Knit & Stitch by Hope Ramsay
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I read this book right after I read "Dark and Stormy Knit". I always read these types of books, being a big knitter, but these types of books are always just too cutesy and happy and perfect for me.

That being said, this is one of the better knitting fiction books out there that I've read. The pacing is good, you can get into the characters, the storyline moves along at a decent pace. I'm not terribly in love with any of the characters, and I'm not terribly upset when the book ends, either. It's a quick read, great for whiling away a couple of hours (or in my case, read on quick work breaks). Molly's character drove me batty for most of the book, she was just way too weak willed (and immature) for her age, and it did make it difficult to really get into the book.

I received a review copy from netgalley for free in exchange for my honest review

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Thursday, November 14, 2013

Quilting With a Modern Slant

Quilting with a Modern Slant: People, Patterns, and Techniques Inspiring the Modern Quilt CommunityQuilting with a Modern Slant: People, Patterns, and Techniques Inspiring the Modern Quilt Community by Rachel May
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

First, I want to say I am not a quilter, but I am a fiber artist and teacher and have long, long been obsessed with quilts. I own a ton of quilt books for their inspiration and even own a fabric stash & a sewing machine, though I can barely sew. I want to be a quilter, but the fiber life has a mind of its own.

The book starts with the basics, explaining how to make a simple quilt (6 parts) and defines what modern quilting is, and what different people feel about quilting and modern quilting in particular. There's a lot of writing from lots of different quilters from all walks of life, talking about how they make quilts and why and how they got started. You'll reconigize some of the names included in the book if you have any interest in quilting at all.

The book also has gorgeous, inspiring photography on each and every page.

I enjoyed the improv section the most, which makes sense because I love freeform the most in my fiber journey.

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Monday, November 11, 2013

Granny Square Love

Granny Square Love: A New Twist on a Crochet Classic for Your HomeGranny Square Love: A New Twist on a Crochet Classic for Your Home by Sarah London
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

First of all, let me start by saying I'm a huge fan of Sarah London, have been reading her blog since she first started writing one, & I'm also ravelry friends with her.

The book starts as with so many other crochet books, with a how to section. I really, really, really hate seeing that in so many books, I always feel if you are a beginner crocheter, you'd be getting a whole how-to book out of the library or from the bookstore, you wouldn't just pick up a random crochet book & hope there's a how to section in it. To me, it's really a waste of space in the book & a waste of money, but that may just be me.

As with all of London's stuff, all of the projects in the book are very bright & colorful, which is why she has so many fans. The projects are beautifully photographed, with both full shots & close up views. There are 25 projects included in the book, & they are all very beginner friendly. The focus here is on color, not stitches, and each project includes some tips on picking color.

My absolute favorite project is the Grocer's Tote, which is also featured on London's blog.

I won a copy of this book as part of London's blog tour.

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