Book Reviews: One Good, One Bad….

Several month ago, I had received a gift certificate, as part of a prize/award I won for NJFV, from the Writer’s Digest.

To make my selections, I of course gravitated to my two fav. categories,  (cookbooks and crafts) and these are two of the craft books I picked out.

From a distance, reading about them online, they both seemed to be great picks. That didn’t turn out to be the case, in reality, at least in my opinion.

First, the good news:

 (photo of  book covers no longer available)

 The Knitter’s Bible, Knitted Accessories by Claire Crompton is what I had hoped for and then some. What a great book!!! Chock-full of beautiful accessory items to knit and none too difficult to complete in short order.

I am planning to make several of the projects from this book and hopefully make a serious dent (LOL)  in the stash I have been accumulating for waaaaaaaaaaaay too many years!

 I really love the: Smart Girl Gloves (sans the button detail, just a bit much for me), Magic Mitten Gloves, so cute and worthy of being featured on the front cover and the Autumn Leaves Hooded Poncho (more of a capelet) very pretty.

Directions are consise, easy to understand and complete. And fun, fabulous variations abound with yarn suggestions and drawings/gorgeous color photos for most projects. I will surely enjoy this book for years to come. Worth every penny. Even better for free!   🙂

 Now, the bad:

Crochet Squared by Marsha A. Polk.

I had high expectations for this book. Crochet is my first love, in yarn crafts and this sounded like such a cool concept; a book featuring various projects all stemming from a basic square crochet design.

Wow, what a disappointment. The patterns for the most part, in my opinion are just plain ugly and certainly not worth spending time and money on making. 

The author seems to be on a yarn fun fur/fuzzy kick….which ok, to a point (in trim etc) can be effective, but come on….every project seems to be a mass of tangles and fuzz…just plain goofey and gross.  Most of the patterns are also rather ‘old ladyish’ for lack of better term, not the trendy, ultra-cool designs I had expected, given the description of the book, online.

The instructions, gauges and yarn suggestions are sketchy at best. Definitely not a book I would recommend and certainly not one I plan to use. This one is unfortunately headed for the recycle bin, not my personal craft book collection. Maybe someone out there (public library?) will revel in all these fuzzy wonders….It ain’t gonna be me!!!

 Anyone out there with these books on hand? What do you think? Have you made any of the projects yet?

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5 responses

  1. I was considering Knitted Accessories as one I might like to add to the library. I’m glad to hear its worth the purchase! It’s going to stay on the list.

    Also good to know what to avoid. I don’t crochet all that much these days, but I did some over the summer and it was kind of fun to get back to it. But, I think I can do without a Fun Fur book at this stage of my life!

  2. I don’t have either book. I’m glad to know that the Knitted Accessories book is good. Sorry to hear that you don’t like the other one.

  3. I haven’t seen either book, but based on your first recommendation, I think I”m gong to see if I can get it at the library. I just took back a book that I wanted to keep forever…the Martha Stewart best of FOOD cookbook…from the monthly magazines. Good recipes for doing in short order. Some wonderful basic stuff.

  4. i am having serious trouble finding the yarn for the magic mittens… i can only find 3 colors..one of which has been renumbered (862 is now 756 gold).. color 877 i can’t find anywhere and color 746 has been discontinued. have you had any luck? any ideas for substitution? need similar dk wool yarn..

  5. I really hope you find the rest of the colors you need Beth, I would LOVE to see these completed! Such beautiful colors in the pic, glad you went with those.

    Have you checked online wool sites? I just checked at the back of the book(you probably already did!) and the author suggests Jaeger Matchmaker DK. In the pattern, she states any lightweight DK yarn. Can you contact Jaeger directly? Good luck! 🙂

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