Friday, March 26, 2010


I oversee a knitting group that meets here at the library once a month.  The other day, I had a phone call from a Girl Scout Troop leader who would like to bring her group by; they have to learn knitting, crocheting, or embroidery for a badge.  So I'm looking for books for kids 7-13 on basic stitches.  Here are a selection from my library's Children's Department:

Start To Embroider, by Claire Buckley.    The projects in here are easy enough, and would appeal to the age group.  I like that there are only a few girls used as models and that they look like regular girls, not super gorgeous or glamorous.  This book does a good job of explaining steps, the pictures are clear, and there are enough facts to be informational.

Kids Learn to Crochet, and Kids Learn to Knit, both by Lucinda Guy and Francois Hall.    This would probably be ok for some of the younger Girl Scouts I'm anticipating, but I'm not sure I'll use it.  It's illustrated by cartoon drawings of mice, with the occasional photo of work.  The pictures of the steps are actually pretty good, but there are no projects in here that I think would interest young girls: they are the kind of busy work and practice that you do just to learn.

Get Your Crochet On! Hip Hats and Cool Caps, by Afya Ibomu.    This has some cool patterns, but it is definitely not for beginners, or probably readers under 12. 

The Kid's Knitting Notebook, by Cindy Craig.  This one looks like it's for a younger audience, and it does have some cool projects, but it is also not for noobs.

Kids Knit! Simple Steps to Nifty Projects, by Sarah Bradberry.    This is perhaps the best one so far.  The instructions are simple, the pictures and diagrams are good, the patterns are actually things girls would like to make and use... excellent.

Crochet: Fantastic Jewelry, Hats, Purses, Pillows & More, by Jane Davis.  Some of the projects in here were pretty cool, if somewhat outdated (CD player carrier?  with giant plastic headphones?)  The instructions and pictures are clear, though, and the projects are appropriate for a range of experience, from beginner through middlin'.

The Jumbo Book of Needlecrafts, by Judy Ann Sadler, Gwen Blakley Kinsler, Jackie Young, and Biz Storms; illustrated by Esperanca Melo, June Bradford, and Jane Kurisu.   This tries to cover too many topics (knitting and crocheting and embroidery and quilting (mostly applique) and hand- and machine-sewing).  Because of that, none of the area got really proper coverage.  The instructions were very basic, but only one or two techniques and a few projects were shown.  Not a big winner.

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