I received my review copy of Crochet Boutique right before I left for a two week vacation with my family. I wasn’t taking any craft books on the trip with me so I knew it’d be a little whlie before I could get to the review. Once I did get back, I saw that quite a few other people had already given thorough reviews to this book, so I had to figure out how to make mine different from the information that’s already out there. The only way to do that, in my opinion, is to crochet the projects in the book and share my own unique experience of working through the patterns. So that’s what I did … I sat down for a full day with some hooks and yarns and worked on several patterns to get a good feel for the book.
The Things I Loved
At the end of my full crochet day, here were the things I’d say I really loved about working with Rachael Oglesby’s Crochet Boutique patterns:
- The patterns are quick to work up. Most are worked with bulky yarn and a large hook. They’re small items so this combination means you can easily complete a project in a short amount of time. That makes this a great book around this time of year when people are looking for fast projects to crochet as gifts for the holidays.
- Most of the patterns don’t call for color changes. If you know me then you know that I love seeing color changes in other people’s work but don’t much care for doing them myself on a regular basis. The patterns in this book typically don’t call for color changes and are designed to look good in a single color of yarn. I like that.
- There are lots of crochet cowl patterns. The patterns in this book are divided into four sections: hates, scarves/ cowls, other accessories and home decor. The scarves and cowls section has the most patterns (ten of them). Scarves and cowls tend to be the accessories I make most and use most so it was nice to see so much of the book devoted to these patterns.
- The patterns were clear and easy to understand. I didn’t have any problems with the projects I tried. I should note that there are no pattern charts; just text instructions. That’s fine by me but it’s of note for some people who learn better visually.
The Things I Loved Less
You aren’t going to like everything about a book, of course. So what didn’t I like as much? I think the main thing is that I felt like some of the projects were sort of “throwaway” projects. For example, there’s a granny square cushion pattern. Don’t get me wrong; I love a good granny square cushion and I think the colors chosen for the project are really cute. Still, that’s a pattern that almost anyone could easily find for free online so it seems unnecessary to add it here. Likewise with a simple crochet bow. But there are only a few of these projects in the book and that book includes a full 30 projects, which is more than most crochet pattern books, so I wouldn’t let that deter you from enjoying the book.
The Things I Made
In my day of crocheting I completed two projects and got most of the way through a third project, which is pretty good for a single day of crochet. Let me apologize in advance for the not-so-great photos I took here … my wonderful expensive camera broke this week and has been shipped off for repairs so I’m relying on my phone and iPod temporarily for taking pictures. The patterns I did were:
Openwork Beanie: I like that it’s openwork but still look wintery
Infinity Circle Scarf
The Patterns I’ve Bookmarked
Although I haven’t made them yet, I’ve bookmarked a few more patterns to complete from this book soon (images from the book):
Triangle Fringe Scarf
Overall I think this is a good crochet pattern book. It’s especially great if you are looking to make a lot of small but good items really quickly, such as for your holiday crafting, and want to find a bunch of patterns for that task all in one place. Hats make up about one third of the patterns and cowls/scarves another third so it’s even better if you specifically want patterns for those accessories.