Book Details and Overview:
Book Title: The Best of Interweave Crochet
Editor: Marcy Smith
Publisher: Interweave Press
Copyright Date: 2011
Format: Softcover / Trade Paperback
Number of Pages: 160, not counting the covers
Cover Price: $24.95 US dollars
Marcy Smith, editor of Interweave Crochet magazine, has chosen a collection of crochet patterns and articles she thinks are representative of the best that the magazine had to offer during the first five or six years of its publication. (I'm not entirely sure whether it's five years or six years; the back of the book says "five years;" the Interweave website says six.)
Crochet Patterns Included in This Book
- Luna sweater for women by Kim Guzman -- This is an amazing design; it features faux cables and feminine shaping.
- Northern Dreams, a pullover sweater for women designed by Julia Vaconsin -- symbol charts included
- Rosemary Sweater for women by Robyn Chachula
- Infinity Wrap by Kristin Omdahl -- symbol charts included
- Alpine Frost Scarf by Amy O'Neill Houck
- Dragonfly Shawl by Lisa Naskrent -- symbol charts included
- Boteh Scarf by Kathy Merrick symbol chart included
- Moorish Mosaic Afghan by Lisa Naskrent -- symbol charts included
- Big Bow Cardigan by Julia Vaconsin
- Tunisian Vest by Kathleen Power Johnson
- Come-and-Play Cardigan by Annette Petavy
- Stone Path Hat by Lisa Naskrent -- symbol chart included
- Solas Caomh, a baby blanket by Jodi Euchner -- symbol charts included
- Kathryn in Beauly Dress and Hat for toddlers, by Kathy Merrick
- Sir Stephen, the Bunny by Donna Childs
- Babette Blanket by Kathy Merrick
- Boho Blocks Cardigan for women, by Valentina Devine -- symbol charts included
- Ocean Pearls Cardigan by Julia Vaconsin
- Seafoam Vest by Chloe Nightingale
- Sera Lace Top for women, by Doris Chan -- symbol charts included
- Larger Than Life Bag by Cecily Keim -- symbol chart included
- Diamonds Silk Scarf by Carol Ventura -- includes chart
- Lace Dress by Lily Chin
- Fino Mitones by Marlaina Bird
Back to Basics Articles:
- Weaving in Ends
- Post Stitches
- Changing Color
Beyond the Basics Articles:
- Garment Construction: Seaming by Annette Petavy
- Learning to Love Laceweight by Tracy St. John
- Foundation Stitches by Marty Miller
- Tunisian Crochet Primer by Kathleen Power Johnson: Covers Tunisian simple stitch, Tunisian purl stitch, increasing and decreasing
- Finding Closure by Dora Ohrenstein
- Symbolcraft by Sandi Wiseheart
- Linked crochet
- The adjustable ring by Donna Hulka
- Sewing stitches
- Shoring up on Shells by Doris Chan
Comparing Costs on This Book vs Pattern Downloads From the Interweave Store
If you recently learned to crochet, you likely missed out on the first five to six years of Interweave Crochet magazine. Sure, you could buy the back issues (at least for the issues that are still available,) or you could download individual patterns in the Interweave store -- but from what I can see, this book is a reasonably cost-effective way of owning the highlights of the first five+ years of patterns and articles published in Interweave Crochet. Comparing prices on pattern downloads vs this book, the math isn't totally straightforward -- the pattern downloads currently have different prices, so a to-the-penny comparison would depend on which specific patterns you want -- but it looks to me like it's a better deal to buy the book if you'd like to own more than around four or five of these patterns. If you only want one or two of them, it's more cost-effective to download the individual patterns you want.
Interweave Crochet Had Some Great Patterns. Are These Really the BEST?
At this point, I should mention that I'm not a regular reader of Interweave Crochet. In the past, I have picked up random issues here and there, but I can't offer an honest opinion about whether or not these patterns are actually the best. That's pretty subjective anyway. What I can say is this: there's some pretty cool stuff included in this book.
Downside to This Book:
I didn't find many downsides to this book; overall, I think the book is fantastic. The only gripe I have with it is that there are no skill levels noted. For me, that isn't a deal breaker; your mileage may vary.
Without having crocheted any of the patterns, I would guess that there are patterns ranging from easy to advanced. I didn't see any that struck me as being ideal for total beginners, although the articles included would certainly be helpful to beginners.
Overall, I think this book definitely deserves five stars. It's a beautiful book with gorgeous projects and outstanding photography.
Do you have a copy of this book in hand? If so, you're invited to submit a review and share your opinion of it too!
References and External Links
When writing this book review, I consulted the following sources:
- Biographical information about Marcy Smith at the Interweave Crochet website
- The product listing at the Interweave store
- Obviously, I also referred to the book itself, which I had in hand while writing this book review.