I’m thrilled to be the final stop on author Linda Permann‘s blog tour for her delightful book, Crochet Adorned! If you have a penchant for turning wardrobe basics into boutique-worthy pieces, and you love quick crochet projects–then this book’s for you. It’s fresh, fun and full of inspiration for even the most fickle of stitchers. Here are a couple of projects to give you just a glimpse of what I mean.
Q&A with Linda
VH: What, if any, influence did your former job as an editor of the beloved Adorn Magazine have on the projects and styling of your book?
LP: Our main focus with Adorn was embellishing and quick projects that multi-crafty people would enjoy making. While working on the mag (RIP), I always wanted to throw in a crochet project or two. It was so easy to throw in a beading or sewing project, because “anyone” could do those—but I think that anyone can crochet, too. I want crochet to be one of those crafts that everyone can do when they need/want to—so I liked the idea of doing little bits of crochet, the juxtaposition of fabric and crocheted lace/motifs/trims really hilights the hand work.
As for the styling and photography, I owe that to my lovely art team—they did a wonderful job! They practically read my mind and made the book look just how I envisioned it, without a whole lot of discussion, and I’m really pleased with the results.
VH: Are there particular types of yarn that you feel crochet up into the best embellishments?
LP: I think almost any yarn can work for an embellishment, but it there are a few things to consider when choosing the yarn. First off, there’s yarn weight (the thickness of the yarn). If you’re crocheting a project for a tee, you probably don’t want a super huge bulky embellishment. I mostly chose yarns that were DK weight and lighter, and I recommend saving thick yarns for coat, bag, and hat embellishments.
The second thing to consider is fiber content. In my world, the reality is that I don’t usually have time to hand-wash things. Especially things like t-shirts. So, I tried to use a lot of washable yarns in the book. I still probably wouldn’t put any of these projects in the dryer (to reduce any chance of shrinkage) but having washable stuff means having wearable stuff.
VH: What do you think the biggest misconception about crochet is amongst the fashion forward set?
LP: I always hear that it’s stiff and stands up on its own—totally untrue! If you work with nice yarns and use an appropriately sized hook, you can create a wonderful drapey garment. Crochet lends itself to really pretty openwork and lace patterns, and I tried to make projects that highlight those strengths.
VH: Since jersey is probably the most common, casual fabric right now, would you mind sharing with our readers your tip on working with stretchy fabrics?
LP: My best tip is simple: go slow and take your time when it comes to sewing your embellishments in place. Generally, hand sewing is best. Although it’s tempting to zip througha project by sewing on trims with a machine, if you mess up, it can be a real pain to rip the sewn thread from the yarn. Keep your stitches a little loose so that the jersey has room to stretch if you’re embellishing an area where the garment needs to stretch (ie a neckline).
VH: What do you hope that people take from your book, that they may not find in other crochet books?
LP: I hope people get inspired to use the motifs/trims and stitch patterns in their own ways—which is why I included so many extras in the stitch dictionary. I’d love for the book to help people who want to tap into their inner designer. Crochet is a lot of fun when you improvise, and even though I give thorough step by step instructions, I hope readers feel free to make changes where they see fit, and even venture into their own design ideas.
Get your very own FREE copy of Crochet Adorned! Post your favorite item to adorn (Pillows? Bags? Something unexpected?) on this blog, and I’ll choose a winner at random.