Friday, June 14, 2013

Friday Inspiration - Older Needlework Books

One of my many fiber related addictions is collecting older needlework books - I have quite a few!  At first glance, many of the patterns seem dated, but just making a few changes can make them more current.  The first thing I generally have to do is imagine using a different color - I have several crochet books from the '70's when avocado, orange, and yellow seemed very popular!  It's amazing what the same item looks like in a nice delft blue or forest green.  Changing size or type of yarn/thread is another way to make nice updates.

Where do I find these books?  Used book stores and yard sales are good sources, as well as online websites such as and  Amazon doesn't actually carry older and out of print books, but has a group of book sellers who list and mail them.  I've had good luck with using these!

My latest find is a Leisure Arts book Crochet Collection, printed in 1994 (ISBN 0-942237-46-3).  I love the cover afghan and  the same techniques could be used to change it into the flag of other countries.  I can just see cozying up on the front porch with this on July evenings!

I've been wanting to make a couple of bedside rugs that look like giant doilies, have looked at several patterns and this is the one I'm going to use.  It calls for a worsted weight yarn - I'm thinking I'll use a washable cotton.

When I was growing up, all my grandmothers had needlework scarves on their dressers - it seemed very elegant to little me!  I love this one, but to make it less "chunky" I think I'll change the thread from size 10 to 20 and add more squares to put the length back in.

I love these pineapple coasters!  They'd look great using some of the newer thread colors.  I've found the best selection of colors on Red Heart's website here.

This stuffed witch doll would be really cute in a soft acrylic/wool blend yarns, like Plymouth Encore (one of my favorite baby afghan yarns too).  This seems to be a common yarn in several yarn stores I frequent, but for a full array of colors go to

And finally, my favorite pineapples again, this time in an edging.  I've been working on a pineapple edging off and on for over a year and haven't been able to get it quite right.  Here it is already done!

Hmmm .... this should keep me busy for a long time!

Happy Creating!  Deborah

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