Tuesday 26 August 2014

August Break Day 17 : Bookshelf

Hello, and welcome to Day 17 of the August Break. 
Today's theme is "Bookshelf". Well done for sticking with me as I catch up!

In case you hadn't worked it out by now, I'm still on holibobs (or vacation as the locals would say :) My travel bookshelf is my kindle, but I didn't want to witter on about that. Instead, I thought 'd witter on about the new crochet books I've bought whilst here, and share with you some lovely pictures :) New crochet books! Yippee! Very very very nearly as exciting as new yarn (but not quite).

I do love a bookshop. Whilst yarn shops make my heart beat a little faster and my head goes a bit giddy, when I'm in a bookshop I go into a bit of a Zen-mode. Actually, libraries have the same effect. There's something so calming about all those wonderful, delicious books. Almost soon as you cross the threshold, and the door closes with a soft swish behind you, a stillness happens. Problems and worries are left behind with the noise and busy-ness outside. Row after row, shelf after shelf, book after book. Pictures. Images. Sketches. Words. Stories. Descriptions. Lists. Instructions. Who needs the internet ? Everything you ever needed is right here, only you are so calm you don't actually need anything, except to wander up and down the rows, tilting your head to read the titles, occasionally selecting a book to open, and peruse, before gently placing it back in its rightful little slot.

And so I found myself, in my happy place, the nearest bookshop. At this stage I must confess I didn't experience my usual calmness but this is because it was An American Bookshop and so by definition is bigger than your average purveyor of literature (no offence Americans, but you do BIG Very Well). Instead I had the giddiness and really wanted to run around shrieking with hysterical excitement over all those lovely books :) But I was very sensible and headed for the books-on-craft section. How restrained.

This first book In bought is Crochet Garden by Suzann Thompson.

It's beautifully illustrated with vibrant pictures in gorgeous colours.

Patterns for all sorts of flowers can be found inside, like forget-me-nots and roses.

There's even a pattern for a poinsettia. But ssshhhhhhh no one mention the "C" word yet ....

There are also some leaf patterns, like these maples. And I KNOW I have the colours of yarn for these, I bought them yesterday!

And also some little creatures to keep the flowers company.

There are also some really sweet little flowery scenes dotted throughout, I'm very inspired to make some with a mix of crochet and embroidery.

 Aren't they adorable ? Aaaah my creative spark is sparkling right now let me tell you!!

Next up is this little beauty, "How to Show & Sell Your Crafts, by Torie Jayne 

I haven't taken many pictures of the interior because, honestly, they are all so gorgeous I'd have to show you every page. What's that you say ? You do really want to see a picture ? Oh, okay then, just the one though ... 

I've justified the purchase because it's, er, for research purposes. For advice on selling my own stuff you see, an investment if you will. Yes, that's it, an investment :) There are sections on branding, online selling, photographing your work, pricing, marketing, and so on, but I'm not sure I can concentrate on the words due to the really beautiful photos. All it's done so far is give me a serious case of craft room envy. Oh alright, one more picture ...

Third on my list of newly-acquired books is this fabulous collection of projects.

Most crochet books try to teach crochet for absolute beginners as well as provide interesting patterns to follow. That's great and all, but more and more I find myself a bit miffed that the first 20 pages of a 90 page book is just a repeat of the first 20 pages of the last book I bought. So I was really happy when I flicked through Crochet One-Skein Wonders. 

The book dives straight into a project on the first page (well, page 9, after the index and other blurb). There then follows 256 pages choc-full of patterns and illustrations. Bags, scarves, socks, coasters, mitts, jewellery, baskets, it's got the lot.

The projects are arranged by yarn weight. I LOVE this approach. It's really very sensible. I rarely find a pattern then choose the yarn for it, instead I almost always go "oooooo loooooook!!!!!!!! New yarn!!!!!! Must buy it !!!!!" and then I have to find something to do with it...... I'm sure you all understand, cos it's not just me is it.  And once you decide which pattern to make with your new yarn, there is also a handy chart to assist you. Well for most patterns anyway. We hookers are a visual crew are we not.

I have already made something out of this book, but I'll keep you in suspense for another day :)

The last "book" isn't actually a book, it's a magazine, but it still contains lots of lovely crochet-goodness. There you go, look, it even says on the cover "27 Sizzling(!) Summer Patterns" !!! Sizzlin' !!!!

Now. Dear readers. Dear American readers. I must confess that when I was browsing the crochet section of the magazine aisle in the bookshop (and quite impressive an aisle it was too), I started to get really rather stressed. There were loads of crochet magazines, but nothing was grabbing me. Surely there must be some mistake ? Not grabbed by a magazine ? Does not compute. I leafed through loads, getting a bit frazzled, trying to find something to give me that "oooooh! I need to buy you NOW!!" Feeling. But nothing. Are American magazines just not as exciting ? Or was I having a bad day? Please dear American readers, feel free to let me know! Maybe I need to try again. Or try a different bookshop. Ooooooh! A visit to another bookshop!
Anyway, I did buy the latest issue "Love of Crochet". And actually it has really really grown on me. Maybe not quite "sizzling" but warming up very nicely.

 I know a Little Miss who would love this Peony Purse (that's a "bag" all you Brits out there).

I particularly like this "Climbing Wisteria" wrap thingy. That's definitely on my (ridiculously long) must-do-sometime list. Now, I wonder if I have any yarn or do I need to go shopping again ...?



  1. Gosh, I'm not sure why American crochet magazines aren't exciting.. but I've never been in your bookstores to see yours. ((hugs)), Teresa :-)

    1. I'm not sure that your magazines aren't exciting. I definitely think I should do more research before deciding, don't you agree ;) xxx

  2. If only there were enough time to make everything that appealed! Have fun x

    1. I know. Perhaps if I spent less time shopping and blogging I might actually make something!!

  3. Oooh lovely lovely books they all look yummy. I only wish I had the time to make everything on my wish list lol
    Enjoy the rest of your holidays
    Jackie x

  4. I'm really enjoying your holiday posts (I'm afraid it's gone all rainy and chilly here in Blighty) and this is my favourite so far. I feel inspired just looking at your craft book collection, especially that interiors one :) I must finish my current WIP before I begin anything new, though. Glad you're having fun in Florida x

  5. Stunning books, I have book envy...

  6. In fact, American crochet magazines are so old mind. I agree with you about it, it is not exciting. It is not in mind to do something young I think, and the difference with Europe is the way we live.
    Taking time in small houses and crochet something for the kitchen or something to put on our back when we read something in our sofa during evening.
    We do not live like that, with details..
    And I must confess that you have beautiful wool in Europe with colours we don't find here.
    Maybe it is an explanation. I am in Canada for 10 years now and I saw the difference with Europe. That is why I was exciting to receive molly makes us edition.... and why your blogs are inspiring.
    Love, Miss.

  7. Hi Jill, these books look rather tempting, thanks for bringing them to our attention!
    I really like the idea of crochet flowers, they are great! (I just did a post about the same subject). I always wanted that 100 crochet flowers to make book, how does yours compare with that? Would you say it gives very detailed step by step instructions? Sizzlin' summer - I think it is truly over! (At least here in Belgium it seems so!)
    Happy reading!
    Ingrid xx

  8. When I go to America there are various shops on my list and a bookstore is always on the list, I love the buy magazines - usually about building houses! - and look at the books, but I tend to try not to buy too many because of the weight issue. It is nice to research though and then I have to confess to sometimes coming home and ordering online! All of your books look lovely, I am sure that you will have fun with lots of crocheting. xx

  9. Love the crochet book but how sad the mags didn't grab your attention.

  10. I don't really buy magazines, so I couldn't tell you. I have a subscription to one and I do think it's pretty exciting but tastes can vary. :)


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