Thursday, March 31, 2011

Beadweaver's Big Book Giveaway: Tapestry Bead Crochet

I received a copy of Tapestry Bead Crochet in the Fall from Lark Books to review. I've always wanted to learn bead crochet so you can imagine how excited I was to receive this book. I held onto it until I had time to sit down with crochet hook, thread, and beads in hand, and really use the book to learn the skill. I did that and here is what I think!

Ann Benson is a great teacher. She's known for her website BeadsEast where beaders can find all sorts of tutorials, patterns, and kits for beading. The first chapters in Tapestry Bead Crochet describe the tools necessary for bead crochet including the techniques and stitches required. I purchased a size 7, 8, and 9 steel crochet hook to learn with (size 10 seemed a bit too small for me!). I sat down with #10 crochet cotton and began hooking. It was a wonderful experience. Her diagrams were straightforward and easy to follow. Because I am an absolute beginner, I got a bit confused with crocheted tubes and the "step up" technique but found the bonus DVD extremely helpful in terms of understanding how to do it. 

The remainder of the book explores using bead crochet and patterns to create a variety of beautiful purses. After getting through the first chapters, I was excited to look through the patterns to see what I'd like to try. The very first pattern is a beautiful dragon purse. In the section on "Techniques" I found the information for reading patterns. She also takes care to note on her patterns which direction the threading of the beads should go. 

For flat crochet (not crochet in the round) the directions on how to read/thread your beads are located amidst the flat crochet pattern - "Listen Up Pouch". If you couple that with how to bead crochet "Back and Forth" from prior sections, you're set to go. (Note: you may also want to view her DVD to see how to crochet the beads on the front vs. the back of the fabric). 

The book comes with a bonus DVD that shows the various techniques used for purse construction. I found the DVD to be extremely useful. The DVD shows how to step up at the beginning of a new row, how to create a round "Hex" base, and how to read the patterns, in addition to the basic techniques. It also really helped me to understand the techniques involved and is indispensible to the book. 

Overall I liked this book. Ann Benson does a wonderful job of presenting a wide variety of bead crocheted patterns to create purses. And many of the purse styles are based on old antique beaded purses. Her patterns are beautiful and there is a wealth of knowledge in this book regarding purse construction. If you have some experience with bead crochet then you'll love this book. If you're a novice, like I am, then you will definitely want to watch the included DVD to understand the techniques and basics of purse construction before you get started on a project.

How You Can Win A Copy

I have one copy to give away. Here's how you can win it:
How To Enter:
1. If you're on my mailing list, you're automatically entered to win (yay!).
2. If you're not yet on my mailing list, you must subscribe (you can always unsubscribe later). Follow this link to sign up and enter: Beadweaver Mailing List
3. Be sure to check your email to confirm that you've signed up.
4. Deadline to enter is Midnight, April 4th (Monday next week!) - That's 5 days from now!
For any questions about Beadweaver's Big Book Give-aways, please read the comments below for the FAQs. Good Luck!

6 comments:

SuzyQ said...

And now for the FAQs:
*How will you draw the winner?* I use a service that randomly chooses a randomly assigned number: random.org

* Will you post my private email address on your blog?* No. Only the lead name of the winning email address will be announced (the name before the @).

*I signed up but Feedburner asked me to verify my request. What do I do?* You must verify your email address. Feedburner will send an email to the address you gave it. Please respond to this email request to activate your subscription. You can deactivate it at any time too.

*Will I get advertisements or spam by signing up for your posts by email?* No. You will only get my Beadweaver blog posts by email when you sign up for this list. That's it. And I will never share it with anyone either.

*If I win, do I have to pay for shipping?* No. I'll send it to you via our U.S. postal service.

*I live in Timbuktu. Can I enter?* Yes. As long as you have a reasonable postal service available to you that does business with our postal service, chances are I can get it there.

*Why do I have to sign up for an email service?* Because it is the simplest way I have of contacting you and keeping your email and identity private. You can always unsubscribe.

*What if I don't want to be entered to win this book but I want to be on your email list?* You can either send me an email now and I will remove you from the tally for this book or you can wait to see if you won before letting me know. I usually pick a sequence of random numbers in case the winner has dropped out of sight.

Mandy said...

Wow this is great! Thank you for reviewing this book in so much detail. I recently learned to bead crochet both tubular and turkish loop. I love it!

SuzyQ said...

Thanks Mandy! It's a great book and the patterns are beautiful.
Susan

Kristen said...

I know I haven't told you yet but you post great reviews and I thank you for that!

Neil lane said...

Lovely patterns, colored stuff is my favorite

SuzyQ said...

Thank you Kristen!