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Vintage Crochet by Susan Cropper

Susan Cropper has pulled together 30 vintage inspired crochet projects for her book, Vintage Crochet. Susan is the founder of the fashionable and popular London yarn store ’Loop’ and has worked with international designers to provide an eclectic range of projects.

The Projects
Each project has its roots firmly in the past and would not look out of place gracing an antique home style book, yet each has been created using modern yarns and techniques. As you would expect from the owner of a leading edge yarn store, a great emphasis is placed on matching yarns to projects making sure that they work well together.

The projects stretch from garments and accessories through to household items. Each one is far from ‘run of the mill’ and the vintage inspiration is easy to see. A dress has been adapted from a 1960’s design and crochet motifs are have been used to create a shrug.

Designers of the projects include such international names as Bee Clinch, Alicia Paulson and Kristeen Griffin-Grimes.

The projects are varied. Within the home accessory section, designs for a café curtain, picnic blanket using strips of fabric and pot covers sit side by side with a table cloth and papillon canopy. The clothes or ‘boho style’ section includes dresses, tunics head scarves and jewelry. The range of projects ensures that there is plenty to inspire.

Techniques
There are many techniques used, and experienced crocheters will find that there is plenty of interest. One project uses Oya for instance, which is a Turkish form of crochet. Beginners will also feel well catered for as many of the projects use simple stitches and shaping. Some of the big projects may seem daunting however as with any large project, breaking it down into manageable chunks makes it much more achievable.

This is not a ‘learn to crochet’ book, however any unusual or different techniques are explained with illustrated instructions.

Yarns
Yarns are specified for every project and a wide range of beautiful yarns are used. Gauge is provided for each project which means that it is possible to substitute yarns. This is important as many of the yarns used might not be widely available or the cost may prove prohibitive for some crocheters.

The Pros
This is a lovely book to look at and the photography has been well styled. There is plenty to inspire and a creative crocheter could take many of the ideas and develop or adapt them further to create their own unique work. Some projects use stitches and techniques that often get overlooked and it is great to see these being given an airing and this also offers the chance for crocheters to learn new things.

The Drawbacks
It would have been nice to see suggestions for substitute yarns given. A project for a lampshade, for instance, looks stunning in a silk and alpaca mix, however a suggested alternative that was more affordable might open up these lovely designs to more people.

For More Information:
Title: Vintage Crochet, 30 Gorgeous Designs for Home, Garden, Fashion, Gifts
Editor: Susan Cropper
ISBN: 0-8230-9976-8
Publisher: Watson-Guptill


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