I’m excited to share a review of a crochet pattern book and reference guide by Tracey Lord, along with a giveaway for readers in the United States and Canada, so read on for details!
This post contains affiliate links. I may receive compensation (at no added cost to you) if you make a purchase using these links. A free review copy of The Big Book of Granny Squares: 365 Crochet Motifs was provided to me by Interweave. Although I accept free products for review, I do not accept additional compensation, nor do I guarantee a positive review. My reviews are based entirely on my honest opinions.
The Big Book of Granny Squares: 365 Crochet Motifs by Tracey Lord is pretty much a granny square lover’s dream. (Spoiler alert: I really liked this book!) It describes itself as “The biggest collection of crochet motifs. Ever.” And, it may be true (or, at least it feels like it’s true when you’re reading it).
The book is a spiral-bound hardcover, so it’s perfect for reading while you’re crocheting. It opens with an Introduction which includes suggestions for using the squares. Choosing a Hook, Choosing & Buying Yarns, and Getting Started provide helpful background information and are written conversationally. Choosing Colors has many great hints for expanding your color comfort zone. Crochet Basics, Starting Out, Basic Stitches, Making a Square, and Decorative Stitches include written and illustrated instructions for holding the hook and yarn; making a slip knot, foundation chain, foundation chain ring, and magic ring; nine basic stitches (slip stitch, half double crochet, double crochet, half treble crochet, treble crochet, double treble crochet, triple treble crochet, and quadruple treble crochet); tips for crocheting in rows and rounds, joining yarn, working into front or back loops, and reading charts; and 11 special stitches (clusters, bobbles, popcorns, puffs, bullions, crocodile stitch, front and back post stitches, spike stitch, crab stitch, and surface crochet). Finishing Off is a 3-page section that covers blocking, weaving in ends, and joining squares with three sewing methods and join-as-you-go, as well as including a list of U.S. pattern abbreviations.
The book then moves into 365 square patterns. Each pattern includes a brief introduction, a list of special stitches, a medium or large flat lay picture of the square on a white background, and written instructions in U.S. crochet abbreviations. The difficulty level for the pattern is graphically indicated by one (beginner), two (easy), three (intermediate) or four (experienced) stars. There is a range of skill levels used, with 108 beginner, 134 easy, 93 intermediate, and 29 experienced patterns included. There is also a key to the colors used in each square. The book ends with a detailed index and biographies of the authors.
If you love granny squares, you will find plenty to enjoy in this book. You will find lacy, dense, textured, simple, and intricate patterns in this book. (You can see a few of the patterns on the book’s Ravelry source page here.) As I already mentioned, there’s a range of skill levels, and there are more than just the standard grannies you see in most stitch guides. The Big Book of Granny Squares: 365 Crochet Motifs can definitely be used as the basis for a 365/granny-a-day challenge, or just to refer to from time to time for some color or pattern inspiration. There are a few things that could be improved. It would have been helpful to clarify which sections or patterns were written by Tracey or the six listed co-authors. The font, in the opinion of my aging eyes, is far too small, especially in the reference sections. I understand it was necessary to keep the book under 300 pages so it could remain affordable, but in a perfect world, the font would be a few points larger. Overall, though, I would recommend this book for any crocheter who likes to make motifs.
I hope my review has you excited about getting your hands on The Big Book of Granny Squares: 365 Crochet Motifs! The nice folks at Interweave have set aside a copy for one lucky winner.
This giveaway is open to readers with mailing addresses in the United States and Canada, except where prohibited by law. Enter by 11:59 p.m. Eastern on Wednesday, September 6, 2017. One winner will be chosen at random from the entries submitted via the Rafflecopter widget. The winner will receive 1 copy of The Big Book of Granny Squares: 365 Crochet Motifs, courtesy of Interweave. Good luck!