Friday, January 28, 2011

Friday book review

"Yummi 'Gurumi: Over 60 gourmet crochet treats to make" by Christen Haden & Mariarosa Sala
ISBN: 9780740792601

US crochet terms

Last week my copy of this tasty looking book arrived all the way from America and I sat up with it gazing at all the yummy looking treats inside. My favourites to look at were the pretty looking cakes in the last section, that was until I read that they were all made with crochet thread and so would probably take quite a bit of work (as well as a whole stash of crochet thread in a large number of colours) to recreate.

Slightly disappointed I decided to give some of the fruit a try - starting with strawberries. Apart from there being a confusing error in the pattern I was very pleased with how mine turned out and before long I had four juicy looking strawberries so I started on some of the other tropical fruit on offer. I tried to keep to some of the more recognisable fruits as these were destined to be play food for little ones (there were also patterns for a persimmon slice, peach slice and pineapple slice) and after a few issues with a couple of the patterns I ended up with a lovely collection of tasty looking fruit.

Because I wanted my fruits to be easily recognisable I had to alter some of the patterns a little, my orange segments have a white pith and an orange rind - which though a little more of a fuss does mean they look more like orange slices. I also made the white centre in my kiwi slices a little larger and I embroidered far more black seeds in mine to try and make them look more real.

After all this healthy food I decided to give a sandwich a go, and because I loved the look of the tomato slices shown in the book I decided to make up a BLT. Again I found a problem with one of the patterns, the instructions for the lettuce were slightly wrong and were quite hard to figure out how to fix. After reworking it a couple of times I really loved how it looks and think that the design is lovely, but the instructions need rewriting. My bacon got real crochet streaks of fat as I felt that the running stitch shown in the book looked a little naff. And because I ran out of time I didn't make up the slices of bread and just used some of the bread I had made previously that was tucked in my son's play food box.

This book was sadly not as good as I was hoping it would be. There are a number of errors in the patterns that would make it very confusing for a beginner to use - which is such a shame as more pattern testing would have highlighted all of these. The patterns all look lovely, though because this focuses more on adult food tastes like sushi and a fun looking cheese board, there is little that I would end up actually making. I just don't know anyone who could use a crochet bottle of wine or a crochet stir fry.


- said...

Thanks for the review and I think you compromised very well. I no longer buy new crochet books for this very reason. I only buy ones that I find in craft sales and flea markets in case I am not pleased with the overall patterns. There is such a wealth of online patterns now too. I take time out now and again and just bookmark away!

Lakota [Faith Hope and Charity Shopping] said...

You're so clever - I love the sandwich! Boy2 has some wooden play food that sticks together with velcro, maybe you could stick some onto the back of the sandwich pieces so they would stay put when a child was playing with it. Or would that end up pulling the crochet out of shape?

Mrs Twins said...

Jess, oh Jess!
I'm popping over because I've seen your work on Flickr.
You've made such a wonderful job here.
Just wondering what your son would think if you put these in his box for school instead of the real thing! Bring a few smiles to their faces I think.
Your work is lovely. You'll be in competition with Orange Zoo soon!
Love to you and have a great weekend,

Kylie said...

Hi Jessica

Your fruit platter and blt are amazing! I could only dream of making something like those!

Despite the fact that your new book wasn't so great you've done an incredible job x

Found your blog via Lakota