This month as been the CGOA Virtual Chain Link Conference, and as you saw earlier this summer, I taught 4 classes. The final class I am teaching is July 23, 2021, “Stitch Chart Bootcamp”. I wanted to share on here some of my favorite books from my library that have stitch charts in them. I thought all my readers might enjoy learning about these books as well, especially if you are already comfortable with reading stitch charts.
This post contains affiliate links. I may receive compensation (at no added cost to you) if you make a purchase using these links. Each of the individual photographs are links to where you can see the purchase options for these books on Amazon.com. Some of the titles shown here are also available in Amazon Kindle editions. I personally prefer to have hard copies of my craft books, but if you are on the go a lot, you might want to get the Kindle version. I have not reviewed the Kindle version, so can’t speak to how easy it is to use for the various titles.
English Language Published Books
All of Edie Eckman’s books written for Storey Publishing are fabulous investments for your crafting shelf. Each one contains both written instructions and detailed stitch charts for all the components.
“Around the Corner Crochet Borders” by Edie Eckman is one of my favorites because of how Edie really explains fitting your crocheted border around the corners of projects like afghans. This is especially nice if you like to crochet edgings on fleece blankets. The book contains clear stitch charts and written directions for each border. The start of the book has great tips and tricks for successfully using the patterns in it.
“Every Which Way Crochet Borders, 139 Patterns for Customized Edgings” by Edie Eckman is like taking a master design class with Edie. If you can only purchase one border book, this is the one I would recommend. Once you have read and worked thru the design ideas that appeal to you, you will feel confident creating borders and edgings on all your crochet projects.
“Beyond the Square Crochet Motifs” by Edie Eckman was my first Edie book and my copy is showing how well loved it is. One of my favorite aspects of the book is in the Appendix there are 3 graphs to help you design your own motifs, I use those all the time to help me draw motifs that I want to use in a design. If you are interested in designing your own motifs this is a super book to learn from.
“Connect the Shapes Crochet Motifs, Creative Techniques for Joining Motifs of All Shapes” by Edie Eckman is another master class with Edie. This time she is introducing you to the multitude of ways to make and join motifs. The “Getting Started” and “Getting it Together” chapters at the beginning of the book are an amazing workshop on creating motif based crochet fabric. The chapters following with different motifs and how to join them together have some old friends I recognized from “Beyond the Square Crochet Motifs”. The breakdown about how different shapes are created in each stitch style is marvelous. At the end of the book are actual patterns using motifs from the book. Detailed diagrams and schematics help you understand how to put the motifs and joins you learned earlier in the book to work.
“The Complete Photo Guide to Crochet; 2nd Edition” by Margaret Hubert. Honestly, Margaret has probably forgotten more about crochet than most of us will ever learn. In this book she shares a wealth of crochet knowledge. There are great stitch charts for the various stitch patterns and motifs, but even more than that. If you are a new crocheter or teaching beginning crochet this is a fabulous resource to have in your library.
“The Granny Square Book; Timeless Techniques & Fresh Ideas for Crocheting Square by Square” by Margaret Hubert. This book is a lovely spiral bound volume from Creative Publishing International that is beautifully photographed and illustrated with clear stitch charts for each square. Margaret doesn’t just provide 75 square patterns, the last third of the book explains clearly and with multiple examples how to put those squares together into a variety of designs.
“The Hamony Guides 220 more Crochet Stitches Volume 7” was one of the first stitch dictionaries I purchased. It is packed with a variety of stitch diagrams for All-over stitch patterns, Filet crochet, Motifs, Irish-style crochet and Edgings. Each page is filled to capacity, yet the stitch charts are clear and well illustrated.
“The Crochet Stitch Bible; The essential illustrated reference: over 200 traditional and contemporary stitches with easy-to-follow charts” Betty Barnden. This was my second stitch dictionary to add to my library. The photo link above is for a newer edition that came out in 2013, so may have additional information and editing changes to the version I have. It is a good solid stitch reference that can help you when you are puzzling out stitch charts from non-english language sources. It doesn’t follow all the same conventions of Japanese stitch diagrams, but having the text to refer to helps clarify.
“The new Crochet Stitch dictionary; 440 Patterns for Textures, Shells, Bobbles, Lace, Cables, Chevrons, Edgings, Granny Squares, and MORE” Nele Braas and Eveline Hetty-Burkart. This is my newest stitch dictionary. It is from Stackpole Books and written by 2 German designers. I have been delighted by the content and the quality of the overall book. Each page in the various stitch chapters has a combination of written instructions, stitch charts and a key for the symbols used in the chart. There is even more detailed information for the more complicated stitch symbols used, which is super helpful. The version I have uses US Crochet Terminology, so that is also very handy.
“Crochet Stitch Dictionary; 200 Essential Stitches with Step-by-Step Photos” Sarah Hazel, published by Interweave Press. This is a nice solid dictionary and a good starter book for your crafting shelf. It has excellent information for those starting out crocheting, or those that might need a refresher on some of the stitches. The step-by-step illustrations are really helpful for figuring out how to crochet stitches you may be unfamiliar with, and the step-by-step stitch charts that go along with them are great. Answers that age old question, “Where do I put my hook”. The photos are crisp and clear, so it is easy to see what the finished texture of the fabric should look like.
Japanese Stitch Chart books
“Kyuuto! Japanese Crafts; Lacy Crochet” this slim volume is a great introduction to Japanese pattern styles. There are extensive stitch diagrams and construction illustrations. Since this is a translation of the original Japanese book all the instructions are written in English, making it easier to follow the patterns. It is full of fun small projects crocheted in size 10 thread, but many could be adapted to work in yarn with some ingenuity.
This Japanese book has an English subtitle of “Knitwear with Pineapple Pattern”, but it is all crochet not knitting. It is a really lovely book showing elaborate diagrams of stitches for crocheting various pineapple garments. Included is a large fold out of full pieces of the garments. Unless you can read Japanese Kanji though, you will have to figure out sizing changes and shaping on your own.
This is another Japanese pattern book. It is full of patterns using motifs to crochet all sorts of projects. The construction diagrams and stitch diagrams are ingenious and so fun. It is fully accessible even if you can’t read the Kanji symbols. Between great photos of the finished items and the diagrams you can easily complete the projects.
This Japanese Craft Book has the English subtitle of “262 Crochet Patterns” and is one of my favorite Japanese stitch dictionaries. I was excited to see that this book is available on Amazon. These books tend to be a bit pricey, but you will be guaranteed years of crocheting fun. As a designer I find inspiration in the pages of my Japanese stitch dictionaries whenever I’m hitting a slump.
Another wonderful Japanese Craft Book “Crochet Patterns Book 300” that I use frequently. This one is currently showing at around $26 on Amazon, which is a great price.
This Japanese Craft Book has the English subtitle of “Crochet Patterns Book, Motifs and Edgings”. It really is full of so many motif patterns. All are shown worked in yarn as a single motif and in a joined group. There are stitch charts for the individual motifs and a more complex schematic diagram showing how to join the motifs. Some even include a stitch chart for a “filler” motif when joining the larger motifs.
This Japanese craft book has the English subtitle of “Crochet Lace Doily”. It is full of a variety of doily patterns. Many of the doilies use filet crochet and the stitch diagrams are shown using the traditional graph style for filet, but there are also a large percentage of the stitch diagrams are shown using stitch symbols. Nearly all the Filet crochet patterns use a combination of stitch symbol illustrations to clarify the graphs. Some of the larger round doilies show a “pie wedge” of the stitch symbols to work from the center out.
Thanks for browsing thru these books with me. You can discover more about all of them by clicking on the photographs to go to Amazon. Some of the Amazon listings even show you a few of the inside pages.