“Crochet Every Way Stitch Dictionary” is by Dora Ohrenstein and was published in 2019 by Abrams Publishing.
If you’ve been following me for very long, you will know that I’m a huge fan of stitch dictionaries. I have about two dozen of them, published all over the world and in several different languages. I feel like I’ve seen them all, but nothing could have prepared me for Dora Ohrenstein’s new stitch dictionary.
What is a Stitch Dictionary?
A stitch dictionary is a compilation of stitch patterns. The stitch patterns can be written in text only for step-by-step instructions. Some will have symbol charts available. They usually have nicely-sized swatch photos so you get a clear visual. They all give the number of foundation stitches you will need to know so you can begin any project you would like from afghans to scarves to shawls to sweaters.
What Makes This Book Unique?
Dora has included something in this book that I have never seen in any stitch dictionary. She includes how to increase and decrease along the side edge or with internal increasing, like you would if you were to make a corner.
Right before I started writing this post, I sent Dora a little message, asking her how long it took her to write the book. The research and commitment she has given to this book is an awe-inspiring, jaw-dropping lifetime embodiment of work as far as I’m concerned. Just a few pages in, I could see how much work went into writing it.
I’m going to let you in on a little secret. The most difficult part of designing garments, whether top down, bottom up or side to side, is figuring out how to increase or decrease for shaping. You need shaping to form armholes, increase from the neck in a top down design and to shape the sleeves. You may think that designers just know how to do this, but I assure you that’s not the case.
We struggle with shaping and that’s the reason you can find so many sweaters with a bodice of single crochet or other plain stitch with the rest of it being a fancier stitch pattern. We can easily do the shaping for single or double crochet, but trying to get a more extensive stitch pattern to cooperate isn’t easy.
125 Different Crochet Stitch Patterns
There are 125 stitch patterns covered in this 286-page book and, to be honest, it’s like Dora has designed 125 different sweaters. For nearly two years, she poured every ounce of her heart and soul into writing this masterpiece.
Here is an example of the genius of this book. You see the row by row Peacock Shells Stitch on the left. It’s very pretty and I can easily visualize it as the bottom of a sweater. I can honestly say that I wouldn’t even have thought about trying to do the exquisite internal increasing Dora has done with it on the right.
If you look at the one on the right, you can now visualize using this stitch in a top down, seamless garment, not just in the lower portion but in the entire thing.
Imagine the possibilities! This book is not only a tremendous tool for designers, but it will turn everyone into a designer!
“Crochet Every Way Stitch Dictionary” is a huge accomplishment and an amazing contribution to the crochet world from Dora. Since I’m giving away this one, I’ve already ordered one for my own library as well.
Disclosure: A copy of this book was provided, free of charge, to me by Abrams Publishing. My words, however, are my own and receiving the book free of charge did not influence anything I have said about the book.
If you can’t wait for the drawing, the book is also available on Amazon.
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