This is a book review of Crochet It. Love It. Wear It! The Ultimate Collection for Every Occasion.
What You Need to Know About This Crochet Pattern Book:
Author: Drew Emborsky, also known as “The Crochet Dude”.
Publisher: Leisure Arts
ISBN 13: 978-1-60140-942-3
ISBN 10: 1-60140-942-7
This book is available in multiple formats, as follows:
Number of Pages: 96
Cover Price: $20.95 US dollars — although it is now available from the publisher at a better price.
Skill Level: 12 of the 13 patterns in this book are rated as intermediate level patterns. The other is rated for experienced crocheters.
The Focus of This Book:
This book focuses entirely on wearable items for ladies. The subtitle of the book says “The ultimate collection for every occasion”; for a collection that only includes 13 patterns, this book really does give you an outstanding variety, with fashions that would be appropriate to wear for both everyday and special occasions.
There’s another, more subtle ongoing theme in this book. You could almost re-title it, “Crochet Post Stitches. Love Post Stitches. Wear Post Stitches!”
Crochet Projects Included in This Book:
- 1. Debra — This is a long, belted cardigan with rich texture created using post stitches. The design features cables, v stitches and treble crochets. This is a gorgeous design that looks as nice as a comparable cable knit sweater.
- 2. Ruffled Cardigan — This is another long cardigan sweater, but the look is different enough from the other long sweater in the book that you’d be justified in making both of them. This one’s frillier, with a lacier stitch pattern and a ruffled edging that accents the textured lace design.
- 3. Pencil Skirt — This is a sophisticated cabled skirt with mass appeal. In the project photos, the skirt is styled with a dress-for-success type blazer and silky-looking blouse. Seems to me that you could also pair it with a luxurious sweater or camisole top for wearing after five.
- 4. Budapest Nights — This is a long, dramatic coat crocheted using textured stitches including bobbles and post stitches. To finish this masterpiece, the coat is trimmed with faux fur.
If you decide to make this design, prepare to invest quite a bit of time in the project; the pattern is twelve pages worth of instructions! It looks like it would be worth the time spent; it’s truly a spectacular design.
This is the one pattern in the book that’s recommended for experienced crocheters.
Note that the design was originally created with yarn that has now been discontinued.
The smallest bust size for this design is 39 1/2 inches; the largest is 63 1/2 inches (X-Large.) There are 4 sizes total.
- 5. Antebellum — This is a short-sleeved, high-waisted baby doll top with a lace-up detail at the neckline. Post stitches add lots of texture and visual interest to this already-interesting design. This is a silhouette that would be flattering to a variety of figures.
- 6. Quintessential — This is a little black dress with a draped neckline and a hemline that falls below the knee — perfect for use as a cocktail dress or party dress. If you make this design, I’m thinking you’ll be able to wear it often during the winter holiday season, especially if you go out on New Year’s Eve.
Black crochet stitches are notoriously hard to see. If you decide to crochet this pattern, you’ll need a good light source, and it will help to place a white pillowcase or cloth in your lap as you work. Be aware also that it’s challenging to see the stitch details in these photographs, particularly because it’s a black dress photographed against a shadowy gray background.
- 7. Laurie — This is a criss-cross wraparound top that will be flattering to most figures.
- 8. Angel of Music — I wondered about the name of this jacket until I saw the accompanying pattern note that mentions this is an opera jacket inspired by vintage Hollywood glamour. You crochet this piece using extended single crochet stitches and post stitches; the fabric has amazing texture and interesting details.
- 9. Saugatuck Summer — This short-sleeved top looks like it would make a fantastic layering piece. When it’s really cold out, you could wear it under a jacket — and you could possibly even wear it with one of the long sweaters presented in the book, assuming you make compatible color choices.
- 10. Hesperas — This is a youthful-looking dress that could be styled either goth or romantic. It looks like a good candidate for a high school or college girl to wear to a prom, formal or fancy party. .
Sizes range from small (32″ bust) – X- large (44″ bust) for this design.
- 11. Vashti — This skirt is chic and gorgeous. It’s also an interesting design to crochet. I worked a bit of this pattern and found the instructions clear and easy to follow.
It’s worth noting that the finished length of the skirt is 38 inches — so if you’re a petite lady, it is likely to turn out too long for you unless you make some adjustments to the pattern. It looks to me like it’s also too long for the fashion model who’s wearing it in the project photos. It’s definitely too long for me, so I’ll have to either adjust the pattern or abandon the project. I haven’t decided for sure yet which of those options to go with.
- 12. Investing — This is a racier crocheted version of a smartly tailored vest. Depending on how you style it, it could go in several different directions; it could look romantic, goth or businesslike.
Sizes range from small (30″ bust) – large (38″ bust) for this design.
- 13. Keyhole Scarf — This is a distinctive ruffled scarf crocheted in a lacy yet richly textured stitch pattern that incorporates post stitches. The unique keyhole design ensures that you’ll never have to wonder how to tie this thing — a definite bonus!
The design looks sophisticated when crocheted in the suggested yarn, a lovely alpaca. However, I think you’ll have to use some caution when you choose your yarns and colors — and also when you accessorize this. If you use a junky cheap yarn or the wrong colors, the look could accidentally turn out Bozo-the-clownish.
The Best Things About This Book
- There’s some incredible design work in this book.
- This is an amazingly wearable collection. These garments drape wonderfully and look stylish. If time and money were no object, I’d want to make 7 of the pieces in this book. That isn’t realistic for me right now, but I’m hoping to end up with at least one or two. Everyone’s sense of style is different, but I think this collection has mass appeal; it seems to me that most crocheters will find something worth making in this collection.
- The patterns are graded for a wide range of sizes, with plus sizes up to 2x-large available for many (but not all) of the designs.
- The stylist has done a great job of accessorizing the models and pairing the crocheted pieces with ensembles that complement them well.
- The graphic design of the book is trendy and interesting. The patterns are written out in a font that is large and readable.
Things to Be Aware of Before You Buy This Book
- Every single design in this book incorporates post stitches. If you enjoy crocheting post stitches, this is the book for you! And if you don’t, this book would definitely not be a purchase you’ll enjoy.
If you want to learn, or practice your post stitches, this book is the perfect motivational opportunity to do so. This collection gives you 13 really good reasons to perfect your post stitches.
- Some of the yarns used to crochet the original project samples have now been discontinued, which will make it necessary for you to either substitute yarns or track down a discontinued yarn on the secondary market — unless of course you already happen to have the right amount of the original yarn in your stash.
- The patterns in this book consist of written instructions and multiple color photographs. International symbol crochet charts ARE NOT incuded in this book. You do get helpful schematics for most of the designs.
In instances where the front of a garment is worked in two pieces, the schematics seem to include only the right fronts — which is fine for the designs that are totally symmetrical. Looking at the Budapest Nights coat, which appears to be asymmetrical, I’m a little puzzled as to why there isn’t a left front schematic included. For me, that wouldn’t be a deal-breaker; there’s enough info there that I think I’d be able to crochet this.
- I think the majority of clothing items in this book are timeless styles that will remain wearable for many years to come. If I were only going to buy one crochet book, I’d definitely choose this collection over many of the newer ones that are being published now. However, the design and layout of this book could possibly start to look dated at some point soon. The models are all posed against gray backgrounds; the gray trend still seems to be going strong as of 2016, but when it finally dies, all that gray is going scream “past trend”. On the bright side, the nondescript gray backgrounds mean there aren’t many distracting elements when you look at the project photos. So that’s a big plus.
Crochet It. Love It. Wear It! is a definite winner. I recommend this book to intermediate-level and experienced crocheters who either enjoy crocheting post stitches or would like to learn how to crochet post stitches.
It’s obvious that a crazy amount of time, planning, creative energy, effort and development money went into making this book. I think the collection is more than worth its asking price; it’s a great value for what you get in exchange, even several years after its original publication date.
Where to Buy This Book:
- Click here to shop for this book at the Leisure Arts website.
- Click here to shop for this book at Amazon.com.
- Click here to download the Kindle version of the book at Amazon.
Find More Crochet Patterns Featuring Post Stitches
- Bonnie Barker’s Book Noggins and Necks features lovely, wearable cabled hat and scarf patterns.
- Crochet Master Class teaches you many different crochet techniques, including aran crochet and others.
Review posted 8/9/2016 and updated 9/3/2016.