I’m well on my way to finishing the Driftwood Shawl I showed you in my last post, but given the end-of-term activities, I know I won’t finish it for at least another week, and I’m dying to share this book with you!
|The Sea Turtle poncho|
Rustic Modern Crochet, by Yumiko Alexander, features elegant, tactile patterns that are as beautiful as they are quirky.
|The Sand Dollar wrap|
Many of the items are unlike anything I’ve seen. The various scarves, shawls and accessories are completely unique, which gives the book a very contemporary feel, but without losing its warm, relaxed vibe. I turned each page wanting to wear an item, cuddle beneath a shrug, touch a tactile scarf.
Sophisticated yet not entirely refined.
|The Sea Glass scarf on the right|
The table of contents gives an idea of the nature-based ethos of the book. Titles like Sand and Shells, Coral Bouquet and Beach Pebbles evoke earth and water.
The wrap I’m making is aptly named Driftwood Shawl, with colour and texture, lines, nooks and crannies like something careworn by sea winds. I love it!
|Sunset Waves shawl/shrug|
Each pattern is clearly laid out on three or more pages, with photographs of the item at different angles. The beginning of the patterns feature a materials list that gives not only the yarn weight and amount required, but then lists the name of the particular yarn used in the photos, its fibre type and number of skeins used. I like this feature – often a pattern will just list the brand used in the photo, then it’s up to me to find out the yarn weight, amount per skein, etc.
|Lace Reflections gloves with a top layer of lacy crochet|
The instructions include a sidebar listing any specialty stitches for the pattern, such as lace stitch, clusters and popcorn stitch. One thing to note is that the book is written in US terms – beware the double crochet mix-up! But as long as you keep this in mind, the patterns are easy to understand. The author also includes helpful diagrams as well as written instructions, which transcends any language barriers!
Overall, I really enjoy this book. It has the odd item that I raise my eyebrows at, wondering who would wear something like that out of the house (is that a requirement for every crochet book?), but for the most part, the patterns are a fascinating exploration of texture in crochet. With such an old craft, it really is refreshing to see crochet being used in such new ways!