Being a new(ish) knitter, there are plenty of things that I'm still learning. Binding off (or casting off if you prefer) is one of those things. I've learned how to do a traditional bind off - where you knit (or purl) a stitch, then pass one over and drop the stitch off the needle. For some reason though, my bind offs are always loose. I've tried using smaller needles, but I still can't get it just right. It's a challenge because not only are my edges ending up floppy, I can never tell how big my item is going to be when I'm finished.
When I crochet I don't have any of this trouble. I can see just what size my item is going to be, and I know exactly what my finished edge is going to look like. It's comforting. With knitting it's more of a leap of faith! Here's the thing. I really enjoy knitting and I know that with practice I'll improve, but I needed a plan!
If you've been here before, you know that I'm all about trying new things. I figured that maybe a different binding off technique would give me the finish I was looking for. I remembered downloading a free ebook from Knitting Daily that had to have the answer. (If you're not familiar with Knitting Daily I urge you to check them out. The have a bounty of free ebooks available - on all kinds of topics!)
That's where I found the sewn bind off. The book says that it creates a very elastic edge that is ropy in appearance, much like a purl row. Perfect the cowl that I was making as a Christmas present!
On another note, I'd like to thank all of you who participate in my giveaways. I'm blessed to receive review copies from various publishers and they are kind enough to provide me with copies to share with you. Giving books (and other goodies) away is such a great feeling. I love reading your comments and getting to know you through Facebook, your blogs, Etsy shops and all the other ways we connect! I hope that you'll come back and visit again - I've got several amazing new titles that I know you're going to love!
Thanks so much for stopping by and spending a bit of your day with me!
Until next time friends,
Be Blessed and Stitch & Read with Love!
It's been a while since we've gotten together. Don't think that I've been slacking! I've actually got so many things in the works right now that I struggle to keep a healthy balance. Since my last post and giveaway I'm excited to report that I've acquired some great new books and accessories to share with you. So let's get right down to business and talk about the Stitch Red series and the newest book: Crochet Red.
The Stitch Red series of books are the brain-child of Jimmy Beans Wool co-founder Laura Zander. Their designed to promote awareness and support for women and heart disease. Today heart disease is the number one killer of women and is more deadly than all forms of cancer. Wow! The good news is that we can change! Information gives us knowledge and that makes us powerful! Beautiful projects are coupled with personal stories from the designers, tips for healthy living and even enticing recipes. On top of that, a portion of the proceeds go to The Heart Truth® and women's heart health education and research.
When the publisher asked my if I was interested in reviewing a copy I didn't hesitate to say yes. While the women in my family have been fortunate, in 2012 my husband at the tender young age of 50 suffered a major heart attack. Thanks to the amazing medical professionals and the technology available he's made a tremendous recovery. He's got a pacemaker that helps his damaged heart beat strong and steady and we're both now non-smokers after more than 30 years!
Our family has made lots of changes and as devastating as the whole ordeal has been we appreciate each other more, let the little things slide and enjoy every single moment we have together. Things I'm sad to say we didn't always do before.
During those difficult times going in and out of the hospital, crocheting was my serenity. I was too distracted to concentrate on books and reading, but the easy rhythm of hook and yarn helped to keep me calm and let time pass without counting every minute. I continue to find peace and relaxation with my yarn, and a project bag is always with me just in case!
Now, about the book... Crochet Red is an attractive, nicely laid out collection. The book is divided into 3 primary sections. Following the introductions by both Deborah Norville and Vanna White we have: Projects & Profiles, Heart-Healthy Living, and Crochet Know-How. There are a variety of projects, and while a complete novice may need a little guidance, there seems to be a little something for everyone. There are bigger items, like the Peplum Jacket by Kathy Merrick with it's flattering shaping and detailed stitching at the waist and small fun items like the Heart Sachet (that I chose to make) by Kristin Nicholas. The patterns are clearly written and easy to follow. I did run into a little trouble making the heart sachet, but I think that was more due to being tired than any problem with the pattern!! I am a fan of charts as a means to enhance a written pattern, but I was able to get by without them and I think the end result is just lovely!! The photography is wonderful with multiple images from different angles including close ups of stitch details. I found this helpful (in the absence of charts) to make sure that I was following the pattern correctly.
As a book and reading geek I especially like this book as the profiles of the designers and details about the patterns add insight and feelings that we don't always see in pattern collections. I'm always interested in what inspires a design and like to understand how it came into being.
If you've read my reviews in the past, you know that I have a pet peeve about book bindings. I'm pleased to report that while this is a paperback with a glued binding, it easily stayed opened to the right page!!
Crochet Red Prize Package
I'm really excited to have this red themed prize package for you. All of the pieces just seemed to come together and I think it may be one of the best giveaways yet!! Here's what you'll win: A copy of the book (from the folks at Sixth&Spring Books); A pair of my favorite stork scissors; A key chain made from heart sachet pattern in the book embellished with beaded charms; A set of hand crafted stitch markers from our shop Nirvana Designs with easy open lever backs (that could even make cute earrings!!); and finally a red crochet hook. WOW!! It's free, easy and open to EVERYONE!! If I can send it to you through the US post office - you can enter!!
Well folks - I hope you're all as excited about this one as I am!
Thanks so much for stopping by and spending a bit of your day with me.
Until next time friends,
Be Blessed and Stitch & Read with Love!
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My name is Robin. I am a wife, mother and strong believer in the power of faith. I'm a maker, a crafter and an artist. I love exploring new mediums and sharing my adventures with you.
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Stitch & Read with Love!