Hall of Finished Projects 2016-All

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Austenatious Crochet by Melissa Horozewski - A Review

"36 Contemporary Designs from the World of Jane Austen"

Now I will admit, I am a fan of Jane Austen. I love her books and the art from her times, but not always the clothes that are designed to be crocheted and knitted. Sometimes they are too short or stodgy. The short problem is again here, which is probably a style point of the era but still not my favorite lengths of jackets. I downloaded this book on my Kindle (whether smart or not I'm not sure). Now with a Kindle you can access your books on your computer and with books that have large pictures or graphics that is what I suggest. Besides, it's easier to open my laptop and go to the book then it is to try and prop up my Kindle, whether small sized or the largest size (as I'm using now as I broke the screen of my old Kindle.. boohoo). Another advantage to viewing it on the computer is that the pictures are more clear and in color. I'm not knocking black and white but sometimes a little color can bring out the contrasts so we can see the designs a little more clearly.

  The book is split into 7 long chapters that have several designs in each. At the beginning of each chapter is a theoritical conversation between the characters of the famous Jane Austen books and Jane Austen herself as she's writing them. It's very humorous and cleverly done, good job Ms. Horozewski! There are trivia in the chapters (which is always fun) as well.

  The patterns are well written and clear, I threw together a few easy ones (I will post pictures once I get my computer camera fixed and running). Lyme Regis Scarf worked up perfect (be careful counting all 219 chains.. phew), and was fun to do a scarf from side to side instead of lengthwise. All Buttoned Up was just wonderful and as long as you check gauge (especially if planning on using a different yarn brand) is also very easy and the buttons are a great touch! I used yarn I had hanging around in my stash.. Have to do something with it, after all. So in general, I believe that the patterns will work out. Take your time, breathe, grab a cup of tea.

  One problem I did have with the book was the placement of the pictures. Normally a picture of the item to be described and pattern written out is at the very beginning of each pattern, instead this author has them a few pages in. Whether this is the Kindle or not, it is very annoying as it requires some backtracking.

  In general the book is clever, well thought out and fun. I'm looking forward to getting my hook's into Emma's Hood, the Wicked Wickham jacket (though I will be making it longer), and the Eat Your Heart Out Willoughby (just for fun, as well as the matching skirt). If you love Jane Austen, would like to crochet some fun pieces or perhaps fun costumes, this is worth it and I give this book 4 1/2 stars. Keep in mind that the half is taken off for the picture placement which, on my Kindle, drove me mad :P and may not reflect the physical book in your hand.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Clouds Lifting

Okay, I know, I've been extremely down and very depressed for over a year; dealing with cancer and a sick pregnancy just sucks so forgive me as I am human. Had my Abigail Rose on August 22nd, she came the day before my scheduled csection haha. All of the stress from the first pregnancy was pushed aside for a few good reasons:

   A) My husband stayed up and took care of Abby every night for the first two weeks after I got home.

  I know, that is amazing and not many husbands do this. It actually made me very grateful to him and him appreciative of what I went through during my first pregnancy. I was so rested that people I ran into outside of the house actually remarked on how rested I looked for having had a baby recently haha. Also, losing all of the weight I gained while pregnant helped.

  So things are looking up, I still have to deal with the cancer, but after what I've gone through over the past year and a half I feel as if the hard part is over. I likely do not have any more surgeries in the near future and taking a pill or two that makes me radioactive in a way that I really won't notice (unlikely to have nausea) is not as bad as the damn spinal they worked on giving me.

  Speaking of which, has anyone else had a spinal done that hurt their back? Mine has not been the same since..

  Back to tangled, or untangling haha. I'm working on the Augusta cardigan from New England Knits again, the two fronts are almost done and all I have left are the two sleeves. My knitting and crocheting bug has reappeared in full force and I can retrieve the yarn from the bags I hid it in during my pregnancy so it doesn't make me sick (yes, just looking at yarn made me sick). I'm reading the Yarn Harlot again (such a funny and great book) and planning school attendance in the Spring..

  I miss my kids, I'm at work, and life is not perfect (as in I don't have a car and bills are still being scrambled to be made) but as usual, I can do this and part 1 has passed (the pregnancy).

  By the way, my Abby is freakin fantastic.. How do I get so lucky as to have the best little girls in the whole entire world?