Here are reviews of several books crocheters and knitters might find either useful or amusing:
“Connect the Shapes” by Edie Eckman puts 101 motif designs at crocheters’ fingertips. These motifs have little in common with the well-known granny square, although some of them are, indeed, square.
The motifs in the book can be likened to the motifs one finds in crochet pattern collections of the 1940s and 1950s, done with heavy to fine crochet cotton and used for making bureau scarves, table runners or even curtains. Thus, the motifs are, in a sense, familiar, yet they are new in the way that Eckman interprets them, based on yarn colors and types including worsted, mohair, midweight yarns and size-10 crochet cotton.
The book does a thorough job of covering the basics of crocheting and joining motifs of many shapes, including round, square, triangular and octogonal. It also is lavishly illustrated.
Instructions are given in text and chart form.
Project instructions in the book include placemats, a shawl, afghans, clothing and a lamp shade. A user-friendly aspect of the book is its spiral binding, allowing it to open flat, making it easier to follow the instructions.
The cost of the book is $19.95. For information, go tostorey.com.
“Knit Your Own Zombie” by Fiona Goble will give knitters with a ghoulish perspective plenty of fun guaranteed to produce, as the book’s subtitle states, “horrifying results.”
Instructions for basic body parts allow the knitter to create the classic Frankenstein, Dracula and the Mummy, as well as other “unlovlies,” including a mother-of-the-bride, a biker chick, a gravedigger and a rock star. But it doesn’t stop there. The book includes instructions for knitting monstrous clothing and ghoulish accessories for the zombies, too, then goes one step further and and tells you how to knit gory accessories such as guts, brains, hearts and, yes, rats.
This book is perfect for those with the courage to allow their knitting to go over to the dark side in a wonderfully hideous way. Let the shape shifting begin.
The cost of the book is $15.95. For information, call 800-289-0953 or inquire about both books at your local bookstore or library.
Maine Greyhound Placement Service is conducting a quilt raffle to benefit its work. To view the quilt, go to greyhoundplacement.com, click on Donate, then Quilt Raffle. Tickets are $1 each, six for $5 or 13 for $10. The drawing for the quilt will take place in December.
The International Guild of Miniature Artist’s summer Guild School will convene June 8-14 at Maine Maritime Academy in Castine. Classes will include instruction on furniture, pottery, Shaker boxes and many other small-scale decorative arts including basketry and 17th century embroidered bookbindings. For information, go to igma.org/guild_school/index.html.
Go to needlenthread.com to read about the process and photos of embroidered eggs — yes, that’s right, real eggs decorated with needle and thread.
Go to interweave.com to access free downloadable and printable e-books for knitting socks, cardigans, baby items and men’s wear; for crocheting baby items, bags, scarves and hats; and for beading peyote-stitch jewelry, wire-wrapped jewelry, beaded necklaces and wire jewlery.
Call Ardeana Hamlin at 990-8153 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Visit her blog at byhand.bangordailynews.com.