Handmade Crafts Blog, DetNews.com,
August 5, 2011
'More Tapestry Crochet'
a must-have book for learning the needleart!!!
"More Tapestry Crochet," Carol Ventura's second book on the techniques behind this amazing method for crocheting that creates
a tapestry fabric look-alike, is a must-have for anyone serious about learning the needleart.
Ventura does an excellent job of providing the reader with clear instructions for teaching oneself.
Those new to crocheting will definitely appreciate the detailed information on the basics which are clearly
illustrated with line drawings near the beginning of the book.
There's also information on increasing, decreasing, shaping, working in a spiral and creating design motifs
using graph paper she developed specifically for tapestry crochet. Her graph paper reflects the tendency
for the stitches to slant, allowing for more control over the look of the crocheted motif, leaving little, if any,
room for unexpected results.
A variety of patterns are included with easy-to-follow,
step-by-step instructions that crocheters of all skill levels
should be able to follow. Patterns featured are for round, spiral, flat and tubular projects,
as well as one for a beaded bracelet and necklace.
Ventura has also included facts about different natural fibers, including cotton, linen, silk, alpaca and wool,
all of which are excellent for use with tapestry crochet.
There's also information on "the history of tapestry crochet" that covers Europe, the Middle East,
Africa and the Americas. This information will, no doubt, add to one's fascination with the needle art.
"Tapestry crochet is not found everywhere, although it is becoming more widespread as people
move around the world," writes Ventura.
The book, priced at $30, is available through her website.
Jocelynn Brown, The Detroit News
More Tapestry Crochet is Carol's second book on the subject.
All the how-to instructions that were in her first book are included plus all new projects.
Both left-hand and right-hand illustrations are provided for how to tapestry crochet.
The project graphs are for right-handed people only. I never did well with using a mirror; however,
if you follow the pattern as is; it will simply face the opposite direction.
Most of us lefties design backwards from righties anyway.
These projects include amulet pouches, pillow, bags; shawl/throw, hats, baskets,
scrunches, scarves, circular spheres and small tapestries made using various tapestry techniques.
Carol also included a beaded tapestry crochet rope, necklace and bracelet. The projects have motifs
incorporated into the patterns such as diagonal waves, giraffes, hearts and cats.
The techniques include working in the round and in rows, to make circular spirals,
tubes, squares, spiral oblongs, spiral circulars, forming two and three dimensional tapestry art.
Many of the motifs are steeped in history and others contemporary.
There are in-depth instructions for working a motif in a project;
how to check for stitch gauge; and every row/round is listed one at a time, not all grouped together
in one big paragraph. You can use a ruler or paperclip to work down each row/round in a project.
I often have to rewrite a whole pattern when crocheting or knitting because the pattern is in one big paragraph
and it is easy to lose my place. If the pattern does not make sense, I rewrite it, figuring it out as I go.
Carol's patterns on the other hand, are very easy to follow just as they are written.
You will be amazed when you can make patterns within your project and do not have lose threads on the back
(wrong side), and both sides will reflect each other.
While teaching you tapestry crochet, you will also learn about
the history of tapestry crochet;
where it first emerged, and the type fibers used, including those from sheep.
There are several photos of tapestry crochet from around the world, along with photos of some of the makers
while they are crocheting.
Carol made a self-portrait and then replicated it, using different thread colors
to teach color theory and personality in her classes. Some of these portraits are included in this book
and are printed in various white-to-gray-to-black scales. I found her study to be of great interest.
More Tapestry Crochet is an excellent addition to Carol's first book
and stands alone as a complete instruction book. I would highly recommend you purchase each of her books
on this subject, and keep them for reference in addition to the projects. Lydia Borin, Tampa, Florida
Knits Crochet, Special Issue 2004
More Tapestry Crochet, an updated version
of Carol's first book, Tapestry Crochet, repeats with a few refinements, the
instructional material in the earlier book. This new work includes a history
of tapestry crochet with photographs of examples from Switzerland and Africa,
expanded information on natural fibers, a chapter on design, and more new
projects, including a baby blanket, scrunchies, and a beaded bracelet.
Spindle, & Dyepot, Volume XXXIV No. 3 (135), Summer 2003
This self-published book is a valuable
addition to the crochet enthusiast's library. Less known than many other needlework
techniques, tapestry crochet is rarely touched upon in other "how-to"
crochet books. The author wrote a previous book on this subject, but the current
volume is sufficient by itself in spite of the "More" in the title.
The book begins with a brief history
of tapestry crochet throughout the world. Ventura was first exposed to this
method when she was a Peace Corps volunteer in Guatemala. Later she began
experimenting with the form, creating original art works in series. Her development
of special graph paper for charting designs in tapestry crochet is extremely
useful, and she presents examples of each type for easy copying by the reader.
These graphs are excellent planning tools for any project using colorwork.
Also included are several graphed alphabets especially for use with tapestry
crochet, crochet hook size charts, a supplier's list and a bibliography, as
well as brief instructions to the various available natural fibers.
There are large, clear illustrations
of the stitches with well-written directions and diagrams that a crocheter
with very minimal experience can easily follow. The best manner of holding
a crochet hook and the yarn for this method is carefully explained and will
definitely require practice. Readers will find the manner of holding the hook
essential but can easily choose another method of yarn tensioning. The explanation
of how to use multiple colors in a piece is quite precise - a helpful tip
since directions often state only to "change colors and proceed."
One of the best uses of tapestry crochet
is sculptural. It can produce a firm fabric in three dimensions quite suitable
for bags, hats, and baskets or items such as whimsical stuffed animals. It
A number of projects for the different
tapestry techniques are accompanied by clear directions, charts and photographs,
primarily in black and white. There is a center section where projects are
shown in color.
It would have been desirable for the
book to be spiral bound. However, this is a minor drawback to a very well
written and useful instruction book. Judith Freed, Pacific Palisades, California
Crochet Fantasy, February 2003
More Tapestry Crochet,
Carol Ventura's second volume on this fascinating crochet method is a comprehensive
guide to this technique. The book offers clear and detailed instructions and
illustrations to ensure your success.
There are twenty varied projects to crochet:
scrunchies, a hacky sack, purses, baskets, bowls, pillows, a blanket, a scarf,
a shawl and even a beaded spiral necklace.
Carol's guidelines for designing your
own unique tapestry crochet projects make it easy for anyone to be a designer!
Carol has developed special charts that represent the unique shifting tendency
of sc and help make your designs come out the way you envision them.
The author has done extensive research,
traveling around the world, and presents a brief history of this technique
along with photographs of examples of the craft from Europe, the Middle East,
Africa, and the Americas.
Library Journal, December 2002
In tapestry crochet, the artisan works
with smooth yarns or threads in a variety of colors and a comparatively small
hook in relation to fiber size. Those colors not currently in use are carried
within the piece until needed again. The result is a dense fabric somewhat
reminiscent of woven tapestry. Ventura first discovered tapestry crochet as
a Peace Corps volunteer in Guatemala when she acquired some of the colorful
tapestry-crocheted shoulderbags that are part of traditional Maya male attire.
Her first book on the subject was Tapestry Crochet. The present
work repeats much of the instructional material of its predecessor but includes
an illustrated history of tapestry crochet, expanded information on natural
fibers, and many new projects, including hats, baskets, bags, and pillows.
An excellent choice for textile collections and public libraries.
Crochet! November 2002
While serving as a Peace Corps volunteer
in Guatemala, Carol Ventura was inspired by the colorful tapestry crocheted
shoulder bags made there. Since then, she has explored the design potential
of this technique and has developed a system of diagramming patterns. She
shares this technique in More Tapestry Crochet in which she
features a variety of flat and dimensional projects. Carol holds a Ph.D. in
art, an M.A. in ceramics, and an M.F.A. in printmaking, papermaking and book
arts. Widely published in both scholarly journals and magazines, Carol's latest
book is 176 pages filled with illustrations, photographs, projects and history
of the technique. Instructions are included for both right and left-handed