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review 2020-04-16 13:40
Crochet Workshop
Crochet Workshop - James Walters

by James Walters


The book starts out with the basics of how to crochet, which was wonderful for me as I had never really got the hang of it before. Now it seems too easy!


Further chapters continue with how to read patterns and their little acronyms, technique, basic stitches and variations. I have to admit that I was attracted to the book by the design of the sampler stockings pictured on the cover. The bodysuit pictured on page 7 would be a tempting project as well, though there are few places that it might be appropriate to wear it!


A little history of crochet is given and followed by encouragement to look at possible clothing ideas with new eyes, to see that nearly anything can be done with crochet. If a craft book can be mind-expanding, this is the one. There is even advice to adapting patterns to left-handed workers. Simple practice exercises are suggested and we are assured that we don't have to manage perfection on the first try. The book seems more personal than your average craft instruction book, almost like a friend with a lot of patience is there to teach you.


After going through double, treble and half stitches as well as problems that might arise, we're shown how to make a basic fabric and how to work in rows without turning to achieve different textures. Variations in the base chain follow and suddenly we are able to make a circular design!


We get Granny squares of course, plus variations, how to work to a shape and splicing ends. Reading patterns comes after mastering the stitches and tensions, illustrated by simple diagrams of the shape of the fabric intended. Then we get into my favorite bit, embellishments. This is where the fancy stitches happen.


Some beginner patterns are offered, yet these are lovely! Not the simple round or square shapes that you usually see. From there we're thrown into a world of making shapes within shapes on a fabric and ready to make what looks like advanced projects, yet they have been made easy by the progression of the earlier part of the book and the exercises given. It's almost too easy.


This will probably be the only crochet book I will ever need, unless I want specific patterns from another source. I'm very impressed with the ease with which I've been able to follow the instructions to learn a craft that had eluded me before. The zaniness of the patterns that are given and the emphasis on interesting textures really appeals to me. It even shows how to make a wall picture in crochet, along with doilies that are far more interesting than the usual ones you see on grandma's side table. The little stars really interested be as well, as it's a favorite shape for me.


There's a section on finger crochet which I haven't tried yet, but looks fairly basic. One thing I didn't expect was the instruction on how to make pieces of fabric that allow for darts, so that you can shape a garment as you would in sewing. There is more about how to create the shapes you want than specific patterns, but those patterns that are provided are off the beaten track and the finished projects would impress any needleworker, though they aren't as hard to do as one might assume. Fancy edgings, covered button and button holes as well as woven crochet, which I had never heard of before are all included as well as information on different types of wool to work with.


The hanging crochet chair in the back really blew me away. All things considered, this is the most complete book on the craft of crochet that I can imagine and I'm really pleased to have found it. Easy 5 stars out of 5.

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review 2020-04-16 13:30
Comfort Knitting & Crochet Babies and Toddlers
Comfort Knitting & Crochet: Babies & Toddlers: More than 50 Knit and Crochet Designs Using Berroco's Comfort and Vintage Yarns - Norah Gaughan

by Norah Gaughan and the Berroco Design Team


This is a book of knitting and crochet patterns for those who are experienced at both knitting and crochet, and based specifically on the Berroco line of yarns.


I found the patterns both practical and attractive, and geared mostly towards fashionable ways to keep the baby warm. There is a nice selection of jackets and caps in classic and cabled designs as well as many baby blankets in interesting designs interspersed within the other patterns. I came across one summer dress, but otherwise the patterns were for winter warmth.


The Paddington Coat was especially appealing to me. The classic cable design could be used for a boy or a girl depending on color chosen. I also liked the bomber style jacket for boys, and wondered what effect it might have with the cap with the chin-strap that resembled a motorcycle helmet. The caps include one reminiscent of a baseball cap and a very nice basic cabled design.


Many of the blankets were variations on patchwork design, but there was one called High Fidoodlity Blanket which I found very interesting with its wavy stripes.


The one toy pattern was a slice of citrus, which added a whimsical note to the collection.


There are a couple of lovely patterns for girls like the Bolero jacket which has an almost Victorian sense of elegance, but this would be an excellent pattern book for those looking for boy baby patterns, which can be all too scarce. Abbreviations and special stitches are listed in the back and the book should be easily followed by anyone who already works in knit and crochet.

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review 2020-02-24 16:08
Review: Crochet and Cauldrons (Vampire Knitting Club #3) by Nancy Warren
Crochet and Cauldrons (Vampire Knitting Club #3) - Nancy Warren
Crochet and Cauldrons
Vampire Knitting Club #3
Nancy Warren
Paranormal Cozy Mystery
Ambleside Publishing
October 25th 2018
Kindle Unlimited


Every family has annoying relatives; mine just happen to be undead.


My Grandmother, Agnes Bartlett, used to own Cardinal Woolsey’s knitting shop in Oxford then died and left her shop to me, without informing me that she wasn’t actually dead. She’s a vampire and part of the world’s strangest craft circle – the Vampire Knitting Club.


As you might imagine, this means she’s free to interfere in how I run the business that used to be hers. She’s trying to teach me to knit and it’s not going well. She’s also trying to teach me how to be a witch, since it turns out I’m from a long line of witches. Another tiny detail about my family that no one ever told me, along with the long-lost witch cousins I recently discovered.


But I’m learning. I’ve got my family spell book, my black cat familiar, some powers that sometimes scare me, and an interesting new group of friends.


My archaeologist parents are coming to visit and bringing me a gift I could do without.


So, to recap, I run a knitting shop and I can’t knit. I’m a beginning witch who can’t always control her cat, never mind her magic, and my love life is as tangled as the last sock I tried to knit. Oh, and for some reason, I keep getting involved in murder investigations. Good thing I have my vampire knitters to help sniff out clues.


At least I’ve finally hired the perfect assistant, a real demon with the crochet hook. Or is she too perfect?


Crochet and Cauldrons is the third book in the Vampire Knitting Club series of fun, paranormal cozy mysteries.






"I might have to meet a scary witch, but I wasn’t doing it without a lot of caffeine in my system.43% Crochet and Cauldrons"


Crochet and Cauldrons is book three in the Vampire Knitting Club series by Nancy Warren. It was another fun cozy mystery. 


Lucy has to deal with an ancient curse, an unknown demon, a cat thief, and many pretty boys. She was brave and determined. She is becoming more conformable with her life in Oxford and I like seeing her settle in. 


The mystery. Unfortunately this go around it was obvious to me who the demon was. I can’t understand how Lucy didn’t figure out. They’re where a lot of give aways. Thou I did still enjoy the mystery and everyone working to keep Lucy safe. 


We do get to meet a few new characters and Lucy’s group of friends expands.


Crochet and Cauldrons is an enjoyable read. Now onto the next one. 


Rated: 3 Stars


Was this review helpful? If so, please consider liking it on Goodreads (Angela)!









I was born and raised in Northern Indiana. I’m an outdoor sun loving reader living near San Fransisco. I’m a mother, wife, dog owner, animal, and book lover. I’m the owner, reviewer, and mind behind Angel’s Guilty Pleasures. My favorite animals are horses & dogs. As for reading I love all things paranormal & urban fantasy. My favorite shifters are dragons!

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Source: angelsguiltypleasures.com/2020/02/review-crochet-and-cauldrons-vampire-knitting-club-3-by-nancy-warren
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review 2019-06-11 17:04
Review ~ Entertaining!
Crochet and Cauldrons (Vampire Knitting Club #3) - Nancy Warren



Book source ~ Kindle Lending Library


Lucy Swift inherited her grandmother’s wool shop in Oxford and even though she can’t knit worth a damn she decides to give running it a try since it means a lot to her grandmother. Yes, I said “means” and not “meant.” You see, her grandmother is now a vampire and even though she’s still adjusting to her new way of life and can’t be seen by anyone she knew before, she still is attached to the shop and her granddaughter. Plus, she needs to teach Lucy how to be a witch. Because that’s also something Lucy didn’t know about before her grandmother died. Let’s not forget the vampire knitting circle and the fact that murders keep happening around Lucy and she feels a need to solve them.


In this installment, Lucy’s parents make an unexpected visit even though they’re right in the middle of an exciting find in their Egyptian archaeological dig. Things are weird though and Lucy is trying to figure out how an Egyptian artifact fits into her life and whether it’s tied to the murder of a graduate student.


I love this cozy mystery series. It has humor, paranormal aspects, great characters, and quirky situations for Lucy to deal with. The vampire knitting circle is just too awesome. I love them! There’s even a possibility of some romance coming up in the future. Exciting! I’m going to continue on with this series in the hopes that Lucy will get better at magic. Because heaven knows she sucks at knitting. LOL


Source: imavoraciousreader.blogspot.com/2019/06/crochet-and-cauldrons.html
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text 2019-05-15 19:53
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