If you want to decrease the number of books you own that pertain to your chosen fiber craft, do not ask a community of several hundred thousand fiber enthusiasts (ravelry.com) which three books they would take with them if they were stranded on a desert island.
The scenario I posed was this:
If you were going to be stranded on a desert island for the rest of eternity and you had access to endless yarn and hooks but could only have three books with you, what three books would they be?
There was a lot of interesting input, but what I learned was that even though I have an extensive collection of books and magazines that pertain to crochet, there are a lot of books I don’t yet own that have a lot of interesting techniques that I have yet to master.
One such volume that I did not own at the time my book destash began was 100 Flowers to Knit & Crochet by Lesley Stanfield.
Normally, I do not buy books that are for knitting and crocheting because I don’t knit. However, after thumbing through the pages of this book several times at various bookstores, I finally succumbed to the siren call of Ms. Stanfield’s fiber garden and bought the book.
The book itself is well organized and easy to use. First, there is a catalog of photographs of the various flowers shown in their actual sizes if you use the suggested weight yarn, hook size, and are able achieve the correct gauge.
The pictured flowers are numbered 1-100. From there, you can flip to the mid-part of the book where the directions and diagrams are. Within that section, the first part is devoted to the knitted objects in order of increasing difficulty to complete, followed by the crocheted objects arranged by the same principle.
So today, while I was waiting for my son’s choir practice to finish, I completed 4 flowers, and found only one error in the written directions, which didn’t much matter because the diagrams are so good. I used a worsted weight yarn rather than the suggested DK weight, so my flowers came out much larger than the ones pictured in the book.
The flowers I completed are as follows:
#44 Lazy Daisy
Any imperfections you see here are mine. The directions were letter perfect, even if my execution of said directions was not.
Again, these directions were letter perfect.
Despite my concern when I began the second round of this flower that I had overlooked something in the directions, I had it exactly right, and by the time I got to the 7th or 8th stitch of the second round, the stitches began to fold over to the back side of the flower giving it a unique edge and making it less flat.
#65 Old-fashioned Pink
While Ms. Stanfield’s books contains many wonderful flowers, this is the one that penetrated any resistance to purchase that I had left and got me up to the cashier to buy the book. It also had one teensy error in the written directions. The directions written for the second row of the petal do not indicate that the flower needs to be turned at that point to make the next series of stitches. However, that only stopped me for the briefest of moments, and I figured out that I did need to turn the work in order to move forward, and I completed the flower, ends woven in and all, before choir practice ended.
While I have set aside the idea of 3 desert island picks for the time being, this book is well worth considering adding to your collection. While I cannot speak to the quality of the knitting directions, the directions for the crochet are of the highest quality.