Every Tuesday I try to do a book review of a crochet book that I’ve enjoyed or have recently discovered. This week I want to share Crochet Master Class: Lessons and Projects from Today’s Top Crocheters. This book is by Jean Leinhauser (RIP) and Rita Weiss.
Who this Crochet Book is For
Crochet Master Class is a really unique crochet book. It is designed to provide you with an introduction to and overview of a diverse range of advanced crochet techniques. Each technique is taught to you by a master in that technique, so that you end up with a book that teaches you not only about advanced crochet but also about the people who are good at it. This makes it a great book for people who truly love crochet and want to know as much about as possible (hands up, anyone?!) I would not recommend this book for beginners because it jumps straight into these advanced techniques. But it’s a great book so if you’re a beginner I’d recommend that you get it, put it on a shelf (after flipping through it for inspiration) and then get a little stronger with your crochet skills before going back to it.
Format of this Crochet Book
This book has a very brief introduction by the authors and then it jumps straight into the lessons.
Each lesson, or chapter, includes the following:
- Type of crochet that is featured in the chapter
- Name of crochet master and a short bio of his / her work.
- Quote by the crochet master about this type of crochet.
- Photos of the master’s work – not necessarily in the same type of crochet that they are a master in but instead showing some of the breadth of their work.
- A basic “how to” for the particular technique. This may include general instructions, row-by-row instructions, tips, etc.
- A project with a photo of the finished work. Most of these are organized in traditional crochet pattern format including skill level, size, materials, gauge, special notes, row-by-row instructions and finishing information. However some types of crochet, such as freeform, aren’t as conducive to such clear instructions so this can vary from chapter to chapter.
- Jenny King: Woven Crochet
- Jennifer Hansen (Stitch Diva): Hairpin Lace
- Carol Ventura: Tapestry Crochet
- Jane Snedden Peever: Aran Crochet
- Joyce Wyatt: Entrelac Crochet
- Margaret Hubert: Fashion Crochet
- Julia Bryant: Tunisian Crochet
- Hartmut Hass: Filet Crochet
- Darla J. Fanton: Double-Ended Crochet
- Nancy Nehring: Tassels
- Bonnie Pierce: Bullion Stitch
- Melody MacDuffee: Overlay Crochet
- Lydia Borin: Bead Crochet
- Tatyana Mirer: Bruges Crochet
- Ferosa Harold: Painted Crochet
- Prudence Mapstone: Freeform Crochet
- Maire Treanor: Irish Crochet
- Nancie Wiseman: Wire Crochet
Favorite Crochet Projects from this Crochet Book
Feather and Fan Cardi Wrap, hairpin lace project, by Jennifer Hansen
Hearts and Roses Centerpiece, painted crochet, by Ferosa Harold
Glittering Gold, fashion crochet, by Margaret Hubert
Other Special Notes
If this book interests you and you want to learn even more about it, a really terrific resource is Underground Crafter. Marie is blogging her way through this book for her Year of Projects. This means that she regularly posts about different sections in the book, telling us more about them and showing off what she’s learning and doing as she works through the book. She even has an interview with Julia Bryant, master of Tunisian crochet!
CONCLUSION: This is a great addition to a crochet library. It introduces you to some terrific crochet masters and a range of different techniques so that you can keep on expanding your skill and exploring the craft.