Today I’m excited to share a review of a fabulous new book from my friend and colleague, Karen Whooley. As many of my long time visitors know, Karen was my mentor when I got started as a designer 8 years ago. The photo above was one of our first attempts at a “selfie” back at the 2014 CGOA conference in Manchester.
Karen and I have always shared a love of designing wearables, especially wraps. In her new book “Garden of Shawls” Karen has created 12 beautiful wrap designs worked in lightweight yarns. She has a great eye for creating fun balances of lace work and solid fabric that will have you grabbing your hooks and yarn to get started on these shawls.
I love the lay-out of this book. Each project has stitch charts and super clear schematics as well as concise written instructions. This means you can have a very clear picture from the start of your project to the end about how your shawl should work out.
If you are like me, you likely have been to a fiber festival where you just couldn’t resist purchasing a couple of gorgeous hanks of lace or fingering weight yarn. Karen has designed most of these shawls using 1 or 2 hanks of yarn so you can finally take those lovely hanks out of your stash and turn them into a beautiful wrap that you will wear for years.
I had a hard time deciding which of the 12 Shawls in the book were my favorites. Currently I’m voting for these four…
Breeze – This shawl is the style I associate with Karen the most. She has a knack for end to end construction that creates a lovely border on the one side of each row. You reach the end of the rows and your shawl has a gorgeous border all done. So clever! Many of the wraps in the book use this technique.
Solar – This shawl just struck me with its happy color choices, but even in another color series it would be lovely. The radiating spokes of the top-down construction combined with the eyelets that showcase the “ripple” style patterning are eye-catching and entertaining to crochet.
Drift – Another top-down shawl that uses gradient changing colors for a dramatic border. I love the textural interest Karen created in this shawl by including post stitches.
Ecliptic – a more traditional top-down Triangle shaped shawl with graceful columns of shells ending in a soft scalloped border.
Print copies of this book will become available in Apirl, but you can pre-order your copy. She has a couple of ordering options, you can get an Ebook version only or a print version + a free Ebook. You can place you order here on her website.
Best of all, if you live in the USA and place an order during the month of March you will be entered into a drawing to win one of these awesome Goodie Bags from Karen. You can find out more about those by clicking here to visit her blog.
I hope you get a chance to check out Karen’s book and that you decide to add it to your library. It is definitely a good investment. If you would like an opportunity to win a complimentary Ebook copy of the book leave your name in the comments on this blog post by Sunday March 19, 8 p.m. Mountain Time and I’ll announce the winner on March 20th here on the blog.