Book Giveaway: Brioche Chic

Book: Brioche Chic: 22 Fresh Knits for Women & Men

Author: Mercedes Tarasovich-Clark

Publisher: Interweave/F+W; $26.99

So the word brioche brings two things to my mind: French pastry and knitting. I had heard of brioche knitting before but I had stored it in the file cabinet of my brain as likely just some fancy stitch pattern. Boy, was I wrong.Brioche Chic - jacket art

When my reviewer’s copy of Merecedes Tarasovich-Clark’s new book, Brioche Chic, arrived, I was blown away. Brioche Chic isn’t just a pattern book. It’s a book that takes you from A to Z in the fascinating technique of brioche knitting. Mercedes Tarasovich-Clark covers basic brioche stitches, preferred cast-on and bind-off methods, increases and decreases in brioche, reading brioche charts, 2 color brioche knitting, and brioche cables. This is a book that can really walk you through a new technique from absolute beginner to advanced-level work.

Brioche Chic - Norwegian-Style Hat close up

Photo courtesy Interweave.

Just like the instructions, the projects range from basic to more advanced. I think I’m going to get my feet wet with the Basic Brioche Cowl. (225 yds of worsted weight yarn? I’ve totally got that!)

Brioche Chic - Basic Brioche Cowl beauty shot

Photo courtesy Interweave.

Brioche Chic - Diamond-Pane Camisole beauty shot

Photo courtesy Interweave.

The garment projects pair brioche with regular knitting to create beautiful, modern pieces.

Brioche Chic - Openwork Triangle Shawl beauty shot

Photo courtesy Interweave.

While the texture of brioche knitted fabrics screams out to be fondled and squished, I’m equally mesmerized by the look of the Openwork Triangle Shawl.

Thanks to the fine folks at Interweave, you have a chance to win your own copy of Brioche Chic. Just comment on this post with what you love about brioche knitting (or brioche pastry!) before 11:59pm EDT, Monday, October 13th. With the help of, I’ll choose one commenter at random to win the book. This giveaway is open internationally.

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Sick Day

Nothing says “welcome to autumn” like the onset of allergies and a sinus infection. For the last few days, I’ve spent every moment that I could curled up in bed. And, yes, I’m one of those people who is whiny when they’re sick. About the only thing more comforting than chicken noodle soup is some easy knitting. I’ve been spending my rest time in bed, watching tv on the laptop, and knitting.


Laptop, knitting, and antibiotic nasal rinse. What more can a girl ask for?


This is a really basic shawlette I’m making for myself with some great Done Roving DK Frolicking Feet yarn that I picked up at New England Yarn and Spindle. It’s a fairly easy pattern with garter stitch inner and a pretty little border. So far I’ve been able to knit through my mental fog, although at some point I did start increasing on wrong side rows instead of right side rows.

Still, I’m happy with it. And I’ll be much happier once I start feeling better.

Here’s hoping everyone has a great weekend!

ETA: Need a sick day project of your own? Try Kate Atherley’s Sick Day Shawl

© Gillian Martin

© Gillian Martin

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Rosh Hashana

Dip the apple in the Claudia Handpaints honey colorway yarn. Happy new year to those who celebrate!

rosh hashana yarn apple

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Book Review & Giveaway: Tunisian Crochet for Baby

indexBook: Tunisian Crochet for Baby
Author: Sharon Silverman
Publisher: Stackpole Books

Recently I had the chance to check out a reviewer’s copy of Tunisian Crochet for Baby by Sharon Silverman.

What’s my favorite thing about this book? Tunisian stitch diagrams! I’m a huge fan of crochet diagrams in general, and I’m psyched that this book takes the time to chart out the Tunisian patterns too!

My favorite project is the Checkerboard Blanket. I can easily envision a larger version of that in my living room.

Photos courtesy of Stackpole Books

Photos courtesy of Stackpole Books

You can learn Tunisian entrelac with the Harlequin Blanket, and make the cutest little Thumbless Mittens. Check out pictures of all the patterns on the online look book.

Photos courtesy of Stackpole Books

Photos courtesy of Stackpole Books

If your Tunisian skills are a little rusty, don’t worry. The book has great, step-by-step photos for the stitches that are used.

Thanks to Stackpole Books, you have a chance to win your own copy of Tunisian Crochet for Baby. Just leave a comment here by Monday, September 22nd (11:59pm EDT) telling me what you like about Tunisian crochet. Open to US residents only.

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New Crochet Video Tutorial: Back Bump Single Crochet

One of my favorite variations on the standard single crochet stitch is the back bump single crochet. Yesterday, I sat down and recorded a video to show you how to do this stitch.

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Discovering Purls

I’ve been doing some digging around online to look at different methods of making a purl stitch.

First is the Continental Purl ….


Then I discovered the Russian Purl…

Finally, I spotted the Norwegian Purl…

So far, my favorite is the Russian Purl, but it orients the stitches in the opposite direction of what I’m used to. I’m definitely going to keep doing some more playing around with methods of purling. Do you have a favorite way to purl?

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Featured Pattern and Sneak Peak at a New One

I was scrolling through Facebook the other day, when I was surprised to see pictures of two of my patterns staring back at me.

The first was the Alex Adorable knit vest. It was featured in the Stitch Sprouts blog post on back to school projects. I really loved making this.  It looks like complicated color work, but through the magic of slip stitches, I only had to use one color on each row.

alex adorable childs knit vest pattern

The second surprise was sneak peak photos of my Chanukah Afghan design for Mainly Crochet. I designed it, and my contract crocheter, Ann, did a great job at stitching.

chanukah afghan

Photos courtesy of Mainly Crochet

chanukah crochet pattern

Photos courtesy of Mainly Crochet

The Chanukah Afghan is in production, so the pattern isn’t available just yet. But in the meantime, you can check out the other neat patterns at Mainly Crochet.

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Book Review and Giveaway: Crochet for Baby All Year

cbaylBook: Crochet for Baby All Year: Easy-to-Make Outfits for Every Month

Author: Tammy Hildebrand
Publisher: Stackpole Books
List Price: $21.95

Get ready for more crochet baby cuteness than you can imagine! That’s what happened when I found my reviewer’s copy of Tammy Hildebrand’s newest book-   Crochet for Baby All Year: Easy-to-Make Outfits for Every Month – in my mail box.

The book is arranged by months, and each chapter includes designs for both a boy and girl in the theme of that month. The projects are designed to work up quickly, and they are super adorable.


Photo courtesy of Stackpole Books

The patterns are written for sizes up to 12 months. You can create a special crocheted outfit for each month of baby’s first year! See all the designs in Crochet for Baby All Year on the PDF Look Book.

Photo courtesy of Stackpole Books

Photo courtesy of Stackpole Books

Ready to get stitching? Thanks to Stackpole Books you have the chance to win a copy of Crochet for Baby All Year. Leave a comment on this post before Friday, August 8th at 11:59 pm, telling me what you love about crocheting for babies. I’ll use a random number generator to pick a winner.

PS: I just got to see Tammy Hildebrand at the Knit & Crochet Show last week!

Tammy is awesome!

Tammy is awesome!

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Last Thursday at the Knit & Crochet Show, I took a class on tatting* with Susan Lowman. I’m really enjoying this new craft (and new use for all the crochet thread I’ve stockpiled over the years).

It took about 4 class hours for me to learn to tat and complete this butterfly.tatted butterfly

Since then I’ve played around with some motifs from the book, New Tatting: Modern Lace Motifs and Projects , and I’m working on making myself a bookmark.

more fun with tatting

I obviously need practice to get my stitches more even, but I’m having fun along the way :-)

*I spent the whole class sitting next to fellow designer Linda Dean. She and I had a blast, and she was wearing one of her designs that I tech edited.

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Drift Ice Shawl Crochet Pattern – New Photos

Any pattern is a collaborative work between designer and  yarn, but sometimes it goes a bit further. I was flattered when Stephanie of SpaceCadet Yarns asked to borrow the Drift Ice Shawl (made with her Oriana yarn) for a photo shoot. Here’s a sampling of the photos she took. Aren’t they gorgeous?

Adjusted-1161 (Medium) Adjusted-1179 (Medium) IMG_1187

Make this beauty for yourself. Click on the link to get the Drift Ice Shawl crochet pattern.

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