Today I get to bring you something a little different – a book review! Emily Littlefair of the Loopy Stitch (also on Facebook if you click here) has so kindly sent me a copy of her new book, Round and Round the Crochet Hook. It’s full of gorgeous crochet patterns to decorate your home. There are cushions, doilies, garlands, a matching coaster and placemat set, a rug, and an absolutely stunning afghan that I really wish I’d had time to dig my hook into called Winnie’s Wonderland Blanket (you should definitely click here and check out this blanket!).
You know, sometimes I forget how much I love browsing through a book of crochet patterns. I tend to flip through it about 30 times before I decide which one to start with. There is something so enjoyable about the process. I do love browsing Ravelry too, but flipping through a book has an entirely different effect on me. It’s soothing and exciting at the same time. I highly recommend giving it a try if you’ve only worked from online patterns before.
In the introduction Emily explains that all of the projects are designed to take from just a few hours to just a few days. And they really are! I spend most of my crochet time on big projects that take a lot of my time and yarn. So I found it really refreshing to sit down and crochet something pretty for my home in an evening. In fact, I didn’t really get any process photos of what I made because I finished everything so quickly I simply forgot to stop and take any.
The patterns are all very clearly written and easy to follow, they all come with charts, and they all have lots of pictures. The book is completely full of gorgeous pictures!
As I browsed the book the first 30 times, I realized that a doily pattern called Stars in the Night Sky stood out to me. I think it’s probably the most unique pattern in the book and overall a very original design.
My project came out to about 20.5 inches (52cm) from point to point after a good blocking with steam. You will definitely want to block this one to get everything to stay in place and for all of that negative space to remain nice and open. I made it with a 3.75mm hook and Stylecraft Special DK in the following:
- Main color: Silver
- Motif 1: Black and Graphite
- Motif 2 & 5: Apricot and Vintage Peach
- Motif 3 & 6: Khaki and Pistachio
- Motif 4 & 7: Gold and Saffron
Now, I was only asked to make one design from the book and talk about it… but I couldn’t stop. These quick projects turned out to be exactly what I needed to refresh myself and get my creative juices flowing. So I flipped through the book another 30 times until I picked Fenced Around Wall Hanging. I’m not planning on hanging mine though. It works too well as a decoration on my table and my little birds just love it! (Those are salt and pepper shakers, in case you were wondering.)
This one came out to 13.75 inches (35cm) I also made it with a 3.75mm hook and Stylecraft Special DK. I used the color placement per the pattern, but I changed the colors as such:
- Color A: White
- Color B: Parchment
- Color C: Aspen
- Color D: Claret
I adore how the colors changed the look of this piece to something vintage and country. I find it charming and I love the high contrast created by the Claret and Aspen colorways.
Ok. Ok. That was good. Right? No. I had to look through the book again, because, honestly, the Dandelion Bouquet Doily was calling me. And I really could use something for Christmas. Well, I figured these projects are so fast I can squeeze another one in. Plus, I was really enjoying myself!
This one came out at 19 inches (48.5cm) with the same 3.75mm hook and Stylecraft Special DK. I again used the color placement per the pattern and changed my colors:
- Color A: Mushroom
- Color B: Duck Egg
- Color C: Khaki
- Color D: Claret
I think this might be my official 2017 Christmas palette. I’m crazy about these colors! And my little birds liked this one too.
I steam blocked this one too (I steam block everything I do in acrylic these days) and as I pinned it out I decided to let the points be pointy. Though I could have also made it round or 12 sided.
Phew! Ok. I did three projects and I couldn’t wait to show you and Emily. Then, just last night, I was sitting around trying to think of something to do, and this one pattern from the book was still in my mind. I didn’t even fight it. I gave in. It was bound to happen. I wasn’t going to settle until I made this pattern called Sweet Sunshine Doily. It didn’t call to me at first. It wasn’t the loudest pattern I heard. But, it was the most persistent, and I’m so glad I finally listened. I’m completely smitten with this project! In fact, I may just spend this evening making one in my Christmas palette mentioned above.
The colors are some of my favorites in a very new-to-me combo of pink and mustard. The shapes created in the piece are captivating and charming. I just adore it!
I did have to block this one a little more aggressively than the others. Emily used cotton for the designs in the book and I was using acrylic which has a lot more spring. That can definitely affect your outcome. So, since I like pristine doilies that lay perfectly flat, I again steam blocked this one but pinned it a bit more than I normally would to make sure it stretched out enough. I chose not to pin the picots around the edge, instead I gently nudged them into place as I steamed them being extremely careful not to smash them and destroy their loopy charm.
Again, I kept using Stylecraft special DK but I switched to a 4mm hook (not that big of a difference from the previous one, not even sure why I changed it up). The doily is 13 inches (33cm) from point to glorious point. I did slightly change up the color sequence as follows (I followed the pattern for where to fasten off and where to attach a new color):
- Color A: Vintage Peach
- Color B: Apricot
- Color C: Silver
- Color D: Duck Egg
- Color E: Gold
- Color B
- Color A
- Color D
- Color C
- Color E
This is definitely not the end of my relationship with this book. I’m so glad to have it in my collection and you can definitely keep an eye out for at least a couple more projects from me. There’s a table runner in the back calling my name… and those garlands! I might need one of those garlands for Christmas.
You can get Round and Round the Crochet Hook on Amazon, it’s now available. Just click the link below:
Thanks for reading and a huge thank you to Emily for the chance to review her beautiful book!
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If you’re looking for a more interactive Facebook experience, join the Polly Plum Pattern Posse Facebook group. We’re a fun and supportive group. Really! There’s so much help there that chances are your question will be answered by someone before I even see it. It’s the best place to go with a question. It’s also a great place to share your Polly Plum makes and see what others are making.