Monday, June 24, 2013

The Finer Edge Giveaway and Review

An innovative collection of 40 stitch and 12 garment patterns from best-selling author Kristin Omdahl, The Finer Edge demonstrates various techniques, construction methods, and versatile applications for crochet edgings.

While crochet edgings are customarily used to trim or finish blankets and garments, designer Kristin Omdahl treats you to both traditional and novel new ways to expand your use of edgings. You will learn how edging patterns can be used to create entire fabrics, reformatted to make individual decorative motifs, reverse-engineered from existing fabrics, and even used to create three-dimensional designs. Focusing on construction techniques for edgings, The Finer Edge is divided into separate sections based on top-down, sideways, and bottom-up methods to help guide the reader.

Though there are 12 project patterns that highlight the edgings, you'll be inspired to creatively mix and match within each edging’s section. Also included in this gorgeous book are charts, illustrations, and photographs of crochet swatches and a pattern collection that includes multiple sizes, including plus sizes.

Discover innovation at its finest with The Finer Edge.



Barnes and Noble

Please welcome the wonderful and amazing Kristin Omdahl as she joins us today for a glimpse into her newest book, The Finer Edge. Filled with edgings that can be used as edgings or as projects in themselves. There are projects using the edgings given but I felt really drawn to the edgings themselves.  The combination of the written instruction and the charts were very helpful. 

The biggest thing that caught my eye was the possibility of using some of these patterns for a pretty headband, or perhaps an edging for a dishcloth gift- something small where you can learn a new stitch and not want to pass out from terror looking at unreadable instructions. I love that! (not passing out-readable instructions in both formats. lol)

The pictures in the book are colorful and really illustrate the wide variety of styles and functions.  The Birka Car Coat was a lovely piece, as was the Ephesus Cowl and the Pompeii Mobius.  

This book has a lot of great patterns that can be used in many ways. Many thanks to the publisher for sending a copy my way for review. My fingers are itching to pick up a hook and get a couple of headbands going.


1. Who was the main influence in your life that got you interested in crocheting/knitting?
It was my son, before he was born. When I was pregnant I was overwhelmed with the urge to learn how to knit and crochet to make things for him. 

2. What was the hardest project you have ever done and why?
The hardest project I ever worked on was a wool and mohair blanket I had to crochet in August outside at my son's football camp. It was over 90 degrees outside and I was almost finished, so I had a large wool blanket in my lap in the heat. That was difficult. But it was a job with a deadline, so I had to push through.

3. In your book, what pattern/project is your favorite and why?
I'm very excited about the 3-dimensional projects in the pattern collection because I wanted to know if it could be done: making 3-D fabric from edging. And it has allowed inspiration to explode ever since. Since writing the book, I keep thinking of other things I can make with this concept!

4. Favorite books to read when you are not knitting/crocheting?
I am an avid reader. I've been reading daily my whole life. Over the years, I have turned to non-fiction from fiction, but my all-time favorites are mostly fiction, still. These books I have read multiple times: Mayfair Witches Chronicles by Anne Rice, The Outlander by Diana Gabaldon, The Stand by Stephen King, The Alchemist by Paulo Coehlo, and The New Earth by Eckhart Tolle.

5. Chocolate cake or angel food?
I'm not much of a cake person! But one square of deep, dark chocolate with a nice cup of tea or coffee is wonderful.

6. Beach vacation or a trip to the mountains…
I live near the beach, and I always love going to the beach. I would never turn down a beach vacation, but I would like to try a mountain vacation. I'd REALLY like to go to Alaska and go salmon fishing.

7. What is one tip you would give to someone just learning how to knit/crochet? 
Breathe, relax and have fun! Tension is one of the hardest parts to achieve when you begin. And stressing about it will only make your tension tighter. 

8. What is your favorite ice cream flavor?
Chocolate or coconut. I don't like vanilla ice cream or even ice cream with a vanilla base. But it's because I despise artificial flavorings, especially artificial vanilla and almond flavorings.

9. What are some of the projects you are most proud of? (pictures and book links if possible)
I am proud of my career. I am a single mom, without child support or a safety net. I dreamed of being able to support my son with my designs since before he was born. I am grateful every single day that I can support us doing what I love. I am especially proud of my books because I enjoy the opportunity to teach a concept thoroughly through the large scale of books. 

10. Where are you going next on your needlework adventures?
I'd love to continue doing what I do, and add new mediums to my business. I want to be able to connect with my audience more closely online. I'm looking into different platforms for teaching and talking on the internet with video. Beefing up my YouTube channel, adding a video podcast. As soon as I launch it, I'll announce it on my blog:

Want to win a copy of The Finer Edge? Enter the Rafflecopter form below!

Friday, June 14, 2013

Metropolitan Knits

Metropolitan Knits: Chic Designs for Urban Style

Big city. Big style. Discover knitting that's fashionable yet timeless.

Knit for uptown or downtown with a trend-setting New York City designer. With these 20 polished, sophisticated projects, knitwear designer Melissa Wehrle has created a collection that perfectly reflects the rhythm, flavor, and drama of city life.

From a chunky cabled sweater and hat to a beautiful tunic and gossamer cardigan, Melissa's designs are beautifully shaped, expertly finished, and ready to be shown off on the street. They feature a variety of construction and finishing techniques, including knit-in pockets, tabs, button details, slip-stitch edgings, and small slits and pleats.

Projects are divided along three themes: Heart of the City- Designed for those who enjoy sleek midtown in mind. Urban Bohemia- The downtown bohemian goddess will love these looks. City Gardens- Made to inspire a sense of tranquility. These three looks balance out a complete picture of the modern woman. What more could a city knitter need?

·         Amazon:
·         Barnes & Noble:
·         Interweave:


This book was lovely. The projects within are a wide array of stylish designs that would be flattering to a number of body sizes and styles. With clean lines and creative patterns, this book has a ton of ideas for finishing and some unique styles that really caught my eye.  It is easy to see that this designer really knows her stuff and has crafted each piece with loving care and attention to detail. The patterns are clearly marked, letting you know how many stitches you are shooting for at the end of the row (thank goodness!) and the color pictures are simply lovely. For those who need some knitting reminders, there is an excellent how to section at the back of the book.

The Secret Garden Tank is gorgeous. The light green yarn that was used on the front portion is very mellow and soothing. When you flip it around, the back portion splits toward the bottom, revealing an ecru lacy panel. Simply divine. 

The Museum Sweater is  done in a lovely olive green with an arched pattern that is truly lovely. The turtleneck cowl look is drape like and adds an elegance to the piece that is inspirational.

For those (like me) who are more comfortable with smaller projects, the Opera Mitts and Uptown Scarf are divine. The scarf is done in a grey yarn that goes with anything and the opera gloves have a finely tuned sense of detail befitting their name.

All in all, this book has some wonderful pieces that are both classic and modern at the same time. The polish and sophistication of these designs are very chic and urban and make me itch to pick up my needles and give them a try. Great pics, good directions (written) and totals at the end of the rows make for a great and informative set of projects.

I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.


About the author:

Melissa Wehrle studied at the Fashion Institute of Technology, where she majored in Fashion Design, and for nearly a decade worked as a knitwear designer for the fashion industry. Melissa's hand-knit designs have been featured in Interweave Knits, Knitscene, and Yarn Forward. She is also the Creative Director for One Planet Yarn and Fiber. You can find her online at

Monday, February 25, 2013

Simply Crochet: Awesome Projects!

Simply Crochet: 22 Stylish Designs for Everyday


When I got my review copy of this book I was more than a little excited. My friend had a copy and had shown it to me, making me instantly drool. I was not disappointed as I sat with my e-reader and thumbed through the pages. I immediately set upon a crochet hook and began to ponder the great projects set before me.

The cover piece is what really hooked me. (No pun intended.) The Iced Ascot scarf is simply lovely and has an easy pattern that works well with both written and charted instruction. As someone who is learning to do both, this was awesome.

The other cool thing about this book are the helpful hints with each project. Like, how to organize yarn to find something for seasonal use. Nice idea to set things up by fiber. I had always done it by color, or whatever giant bin or box I had available.

The next piece that grabbed me was the twist cowl/wrap. You can make it to be either and it is light and airy. Here in Texas, that is a must have for the spring and summer months. Too much and you are yanking it off your neck before long.

The Emma Lace Scarf had me transfixed. It was inspired by a Victorian leather belt and worked in two directions. Done in a red Marino, this is a stunning piece.

If you've always wanted to experience Tunisian crochet, then the neck lattice on page 41 is going to be a small project that is worth the try. I bought myself a hook and am about to see how it goes. Stay tuned for pictures as I go!

As the book goes on you get projects for more than one ball and each of them is a work of art. From a tapestry basket to some quirky hand puppets and my favorite, the giselle vest, you can't miss with this book.

If you love to crochet, then this is the book for you. Great gifts or just for yourself, this collection has practical and whimsical ideas to keep you hooking for quite a while.


Thursday, February 14, 2013

Potter Craft: Boyfriend Sweaters and Knitted Farm Animals

As long as men have had sweaters, women have borrowed them. In BOYFRIEND SWEATERS (on sale 12/18), knitwear designer Bruce Weinstein bridges the gender gap by offering 19 boyfriend sweaters and accessories that are uber-comfortable, stylish, and sized to fit both him and her. Featuring techniques knitters love, including reversibles, cables, Fair isle, and herringbone, these designs will look great on men and fabulous on women.

Kids can’t resist adorable stuffed animals, and KNITTED FARM ANIMALS (on sale 12/11) offers a whole barnyard of them! Knitters of all skill levels will fall in love with designer Sarah Keen’s collection of 15 furry and feathered critters, including a pig, pony, cat, llama, mama duck (with ducklings), and more.

These two books have been fun to review because they both cover some really great projects.

Boyfriend Sweaters pokes fun at the old adage that if you make your boyfriend a sweater, he won't be your boyfriend for long. Not with these sweaters and projects! New stitches I had never encountered before delighted and inspired me. The Reversible Herringbone Scarf on page 103 was particularly interesting. I love herringbone on a sampler and having it on a scarf is awesome!

Other projects with new stitches and stories that will make you laugh and keep you inspired fill this book. I enjoyed reading it very much and may have (almost) conquered my fear of sweater making. The thing I enjoyed most was the sense of humor and attention to detail all through the book. It was a fun read and I can't wait to start on my own Herringbone scarf.

Knitted Farm Animals has a cute collection of 15 adorable farm animals. The baby chicks are the cutest things ever and perfect for a quick Easter present for someone you love. The directions are easy to follow and each row has an end amount of stitches to shoot for. (Great for those of us who still need those type of pointers.) Lol. Perfect for young children, these patterns are full of cheer and just waiting to brighten someone's day.


Overall, both of these Potter Craft books are a great addition to my knitting library. If you are searching for a sweater set for his and hers or just a cute one for yourself or a husband or boyfriend, then Boyfriend Sweaters is perfect. The different techniques of texturing are wonderful and the how to sections are worth reading.


Check out more amazing titles from the Potter Craft website.
I received these titles for review from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.