Brilliantly Creative / Crafties

Book Review | Lily Chin's Crochet Tips & Tricks

My 8-week B-block classes begin next week, and I am drowning in class preparation. Who knew that condensing a 16-week course into an 8-week course is like completely redesigning the original class?! Anyway, I’m so fed up with my inability to crank out a blog post, that I am biting the bullet today and giving you something. Something is better than nothing, right? Bleh!

I haven’t exactly seen my crochet hooks since I started teaching in January, but I know they’re still there. And I have a small handful of projects that I want work on for funsies when classes slow down (or when I slow down, not sure which). I’ve been meaning to review this book for a few weeks, and now I’m making time to do it! I bought Lily Chin’s Crochet Tips & Tricks this fall after reading a review of it in one of my crochet magazines. If you are a crocheter, here is why you should buy it:

  1. It’s orange, which is my favorite color. Not that I ever need a reason to buy a book, but the cover sealed the deal for me.
  2. It’s well organized. It starts with explanations of your tools (hooks and yarns) and instructions for basic stitches. Chin then follows the creation process to starting, working, and finishing a project.
  3. It’s a quick read. Seriously, I read it through in an evening.
  4. It’s a good reference guide. Once I read through the book, I found myself coming back to some sections, so I could practice Chin’s speedy techniques.

In particular, I found the section about yarn weights most informative, and I’ve already used that information for selecting yarns for my projects. I’ve also put to good use the sections about blocking and joining. My favorite tip?

Bread-tie bobbin. Of course you know what happens when you add extra yarn to the chain, right? You wind up working with the tail of the seaming yarn rather than the yarn from the skein. To avoid this, many crocheters roll the long tail into a ball, which either gets all knotted up or falls apart. To keep the seaming yarn separate, clean, and tidy while you work, use the notched plastic bread tie that comes with plastic-bagged bakery products. Think of them as free mini-bobbins, perfect for wrapping seaming yarn.

Actually, the whole seaming section is really good, now that I review it.

I learned to crochet as a 4-H project when I was in elementary school. My instruction didn’t go much past the basic stitches, so it was up to me to learn how to seam, join, block, etc. This book would’ve been really handy to have. That said, if you’re a new crocheter (like I was a million years ago) or if you’re an experienced crocheter (like I claim to be), this book will fit nicely into your crocheting library.


2 thoughts on “Book Review | Lily Chin's Crochet Tips & Tricks

  1. Thanks for this review! I am a basic crocheter myself and am looking at ways to increase my knowledge of this wicked awesome talent! I think I shall go grab this book… looks like it’s just what I need.

  2. Ten bucks says you start getting some SEO hits here for the search “long tail.” 🙂

    Oh, and this sounds like a great book!

    @Nigel: I didn’t know you crocheted! We should all have a crochet bee some night. Think they’d allow that at Patton Alley? 🙂

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