Sunday, November 30, 2008

Weekend crochet for babies by Sue Whiting

About 3 weeks ago a Lauren from New Holland Publishers sent me an email wondering if I might be interested in doing any reviews for them. As you may know New Holland publish a wide range of crochet, craft & knitting titles. I emailed Lauren to say I'd be delighted to have a go a reviewing them & shortly after a lovely parcel arrived by post. Inside was a great surprise... not just one hardback book but 3! It turns out they had 3 new titles coming out....

Weekend Crochet for Babies by Sue Whiting, Beautiful Knits for Heads, Hands & Toes by Alison Dupernex & Beautiful Crochet for Heads, Hands & Toes by Melody Griffiths.

To be honest I've never written a book review before so my first thought was how would I go about it. After looking through all 3 books and seeing quite a few irresistible projects, I quickly decided my best way forward was to try out a project from each of the books and let you know how I got on following the patterns. 

With Christmas fast approaching I started with Weekend Crochet for Babies as the title suggested to me that the projects would be fairly quick and easy to do. I needed a Christmas present for my friends little girl 'Nia' who was 1yr in October and I'd spotted this really cute hat, scarf & bag set made using Colinette Jitterbug 4ply in the book. 

Unfortunately I don't have any jitterbug yarn but I do have plenty of Kauni & Evilla 4ply pure wools from astrids dutch obsessions in my stash to choose from so my 1st project was speedily underway with a lovely cream, pink & biscuit Kauni colourway.


 In recent years I am more used to writing my own patterns than following someone elses and I was delighted to find the project patterns were very easy and clear to follow. 
I started with the hat and by the end of my 1st evening it was already finished... I'm not a speedy crocheter so this was indeed a very quick item to do as i'd made the largest size 12-18 months! The main body of the hat is worked in rounds of trebles (UK terminology) and finished with a lovely double shell like edging which gives it a gentle fluted brim.

The next evening I started the scarf and again found the pattern very easy. When I'd got into the rythm of the design I only had to refer to the pattern when starting the next round as it is made using trebles and the same edging from the hat. It took me a bit longer to do than the hat... just over 2 evenings altogether as there are a fair amount of stitches involved working around the length of the scarf. The finished piece is charming though and well worth it. I just love the way the fluted edging spirals around the scarf as it drapes... It even rolls around itself into a lovely looking flower shape which will be an ideal method to present it in the Christmas wrapping paper!

The last item in the project was the bag... again in the now very familiar treble fabric with shell edgings. It took me about the same time to complete as the scarf and this was mainly due to the hand stitching needed to attach the handle at the final stage. I had to re-read a few parts of the pattern carefully towards the end when you are making the frill part, as when I'd initially read the pattern through before starting... those parts had seemed a bit unclear. When I actually got to crocheting that stage in the bag it then made total sense and it was very easy to see what to do next to make sure the frill lay the right way down the bag. The handle is easy & made of a spiraling tube of double crochet (UK terminology) and stitched securely to the top edge of the bag opening.

So within a matter of some evenings all the items were now finished and looking great. The book definitely followed what I was expecting from it and with no brain draining tricky things to wear you out in the process :) If you are looking for some quick & cute projects for sweaters, jackets, hats & toys to rattle up for presents then look no further... you'll not be disappointed. Or if you know an avid crocheter who is always looking for new projects to do for babies this book will be right up their street.


  1. That is so cool! Do you get to keep the pattern books?

    I love what you've made so far, the scarf being my favorite. I wish I had a little girl relative to crochet for. :-)

  2. Yes! All three & as an avid craft book buyer the fact that I can keep them is a bonus :)

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