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Colour and Design Freeform Crochet Freeform Knitting Wire and Beads How to make Buttons and Closures using polymer clay Funky FX (special crochet and knit stitches) How To section Putting it All Together; Resources Suggested Reading
Jenny Dowde has participated in Australian Textile Fibre Forum computer design workshops. She has also made polymer clay buttons for a designer knitwear company and taught polymer clay workshops at various Fibre Forums in Australia. In 1997 she discovered the wonderful medium, "scrumbling" or freeform crochet, with the only equipment required being a hook and lots of yarn! She now combines knitting with crochet in her freeform work.
Waterstones Newsletter:How much do I love this book? Actually, not quite as much as I love the idea of it. The beginning of the book is great, with an introduction to colour theory (always useful when thinking in terms of design!) and a separate section on design itself (not quite as comprehensive). This is followed by a detailed secion on how to knit and crochet 'fragments'. A similar number of pages as dedicated to all these things combined, towards the back of the book, details 'FUNky FX', both knitted and crocheted.I guess the thing that I don't quite love in the book is the middle section, more than twice the length of the bits described above, which is purely project based. I guess the trick is (if, like me, you don't really want to be replicating designs) you use the projects to learn additional elements of design, and just extract from each pattern the section that you want to learn. There are some interesting bits such as knit & crochet with beads & (separately) with wire; and although most of the projects don't actually inspire me greatly, at least they are not prescriptive and unoriginal like the majority of knitting/crochet books around. Project-based or not, at least the book encourages people to experiment with design, and to look outside the box.Even though I don't quite love this book in its entirety, it is still a brilliant starting point, that will hopefully kickstart inspiration within people who would like to explore knitting and crochet with a bit more creativity. The same author has written another volume, 'Freeformations', and the same publisher has recently published another similar title, 'Freeform Crochet & Beyond' by Renate Kirkpatrick (which I haven't seen, yet). For even more creative flexibility and inspiration, I highly recommend 'Have You Any Wool?' and 'Wool'n'Magic', both by Jan Messent and recently re-issued by Search Press. Hurrah! As the artist Paul Klee once said, one of the greatest creative pleasures of drawing is 'talking a line for a walk'. Well, this book aims to introduce you to the wonderful world of 'taking your yarn for a walk'! Exploring colour and texture through the medium of crochet has never been so much fun - or so liberating. This book will get you looking at crochet as you never have before. Freeforming in crochet and knitting is known as 'scumbling' - the name itself gives you a sense of the fun factor in this activity - and it's guaranteed to free up your design sense and encourage you to think beyond what author Jenny Dowde describes as the 'paint by numbers' approach to fibre arts that many of us are accustomed to. Freeform crochet is really a form of wearable art - it has an abstractness and self-contained purpose that's refreshing in what can be a very traditional world. If you're interested in exploring your crochet wild side, this book is definitely worth a read.-Inside Crochet