Monday, September 18, 2017

Marly Bird's Yarn Pooling Made Easy Book Review and Giveaway!

I was provided a complimentary copy of this book from Leisure Arts to complete my review, but was not financially compensated in any way to write a favorable review. All opinions expressed in this post are my own.

I'm beyond thrilled and excited that I was able to be apart of Marly Bird's Blog Tour of her New book called Yarn Pooling Made Easy!  How could you pass on the opportunity to review a book that is full of "new craze" patterns that are very easy to follow, by none other than the spokeswoman for Red Heart Yarn, follow blogger, hosts the Yarn Thing Podcast, and has many publishings under her belt, the one and only: Marly Bird?!  Can't think of anyone? Ya, me either! 

 Guess what else???

You can WIN a copy of this book for yourself on my blog, one of the other bloggers apart of this tour, or through Marly's YouTube channel.  (I'll go into more detail about how to enter towards the end.)

What is Yarn Pooling?

Yarn Pooling, or also known as planned pooling or color pooling, is a technique used with variegated yarn to achieve different color variations to form a pattern, mainly an argyle one. This "craze" hit the crochet world a little over a year ago, and it definitely peaked my interest.  So being very green to the whole process, I researched just a tad on how to do it, and then set out to try to make something that would look argyle.  Now my first attempt was a Huge failure! I thought I was doing pretty good with my 2nd attempt, until the pattern went wonky and was no longer argyle (see photo on left below).  This was BEYOND frustrating to me, and I'm not one to give up on something, until I achieve the goal I was after!  So I was some what satisfied with my final product (see photo on right below), but I knew it still wasn't right.  I then pushed planned pooling in the back of my mind, until Marly made a mention of her new book she was releasing.

Yarn Pooling Made Easy Review:

After my previous failed attempts, I was so pleased to see how Marly broke it down in the book to achieve the perfect argyle look, Every time, with different variegated yarns!  She took the guess work out of how to create stunning visual items; and for that, I'm thankful.

I felt like a kid on Christmas morning when the mailman dropped off my copy of Yarn Pooling Made Easy!  In fact I was so excited, I ripped open that package while I was walking to pick up my oldest daughter from school.  
As I thumbed through the book, I was instantly drawn to the TWO baby item patterns in the book, since I'm in the final stretch of my pregnancy to welcoming our 4th bundle of joy!  Right off the bat, I decided I wanted to tackle either the Baby Cocoon on page 17 or the Car Seat Cover on page 13.

Aren't those the cutest designs ever?!

But after wrestling with my gauge and going up quite a few hook sizes then what is recommended in the book to achieve the correct size for the item, I decided to go with the Baby Cocoon on pg 17. 

I love that each design in the book provides the pattern's skill level, a finished item size, shopping list of materials needed, gauge information, stitch guide, the pattern, plenty of notes, and finishing/edging sections.  If you're curious to what colorways were used in the book, then simply turn to page 32 for  all the yarn information for all 10 patterns in the book. 

When shopping for some variegated yarn to complete my review, I fell in love with Red Heart's Wildflower.

But I was weary because this colorway wasn't used in the book.  So I figured, oh what the heck, and got it anyways for my project.  Thankfully, Marly goes over yarn pooling on her YouTube channel, as well as on her blog, since I needed it broken down for me.

I honestly don't know if it was pooling correctly while attempting to make the Baby Cocoon.  It just seemed kind of "off" to me. You can be the judge (see the photo below).  I ultimately think that my color pooling stitch counts were off, or my tension was way off somewhere.  Either way, I wasn't happy with how it was turning out.

So I frogged it all :-(  and decided to revisit the gauge section and try another pattern from the book. Honestly, planned pooling is all about the numbers in your color sequence.  You have to really pay attention to your sequence number, the hook size you use, what kind of yarn, and then write it all down.  Once I did that, I was able to successfully apply my numbers to the Full Scarf pattern on page 3 with the colorway Wildflower.

The pattern layout looks MUCH better!  Don't you think?  
Remember that yarn pooling has a learning curve, and it's OK to keep trying until you get it right!  I know for me personally, it was really tough to change my tension in the middle of a row in order to make my colors fall where they needed to - but that's how planned pooling works.

You're probably saying to yourself, all this info about your journey discovering yarn pooling is great, BUT how do I WIN my own copy of the book???


Not Only do you have the chance to be entered to win a copy of the book on my blog, but you can also stop by any of the other blogs on the tour for a chance to win, or stop by Marly's YouTube channel to win. [Giveaway available to persons 18 years or older, living in the US.]

Enter for a chance to win here:

If you can't wait to get your copy of the book, then click HERE.

 BONUS - Red Heart Yarn is getting in on the fun too!
 Watch Marly's video ~ 1 lucky winner will receive a copy of the book PLUS all the yarn needed to make Every single pattern in the book!  That's pretty amazing!

Blog Tour:

Make sure you stop by the other lovely ladies apart of this blog tour for more chances to win, and to see what their journey was with yarn pooling!

Calleigh's Clips & Crochet Creations: September 5, 2017
ACCROchet: September 6, 2017
The Stitchin’ Mommy: September 7, 2017
Crochet Memories: September 8, 2017
Pattern Paradise: September 11, 2017
5 Little Monsters: September 12, 2017
Yarnutopia: September 13, 2017
Same DiNamics Crochet: September 14, 2017
Nicki’s Homemade Crafts: September 15, 2017
Looping With Love: September 18, 2017
Underground Crafter: September 19, 2017

*NOTE: Winners will be chose at the discretion of each blogger host, and by their rules. All winners will be notified within one week of the last tour date. All winners will need to respond to the host with their information by 9/25/17 or they will forfeit their prize. All books will be sent at the same time at the end of the tour, regardless of when the winner was chosen. Winner must have a US address.

I can't wait to see what you make! Please share with me on my Facebook :-)

Friday, August 25, 2017

NEW Pattern Release! And more to come!!!

It's been awhile since I've been punching out patterns to be tested - yes, multiple patterns ;-)  
Maybe it's the crazy pregnant hormones kicking in, or me starting to nest, and realizing I only have 7 weeks left to get everything in order before our bundle of joy arrives!  Either way, I have 1 pattern that is being released today, another that is still being tested until Sunday, and then 2 more patterns currently being typed up from my chicken scratch into my pattern format, and then I have about 5 or 6 more designs floating in my head that I need to work out on paper and in yarn - then of coarse type them up to share with you :-)

Summer may be coming to an end, but that doesn't mean that this isn't the perfect time to start making some oversized dishcloths/washcloths!  Especially with Christmas *gasp* only EXACTLY 4 MONTHS AWAY from Today!!!  That's seriously not even that far away from a crafter's perspective. 

This pattern uses the wonderful texture of the Blanket Stitch; which is great for gently exfoliating your face, or acting as micro scrubbies to get your dishes sparkling clean. 

Can you keep a secret???
Keep your eyes out for my Next pattern to be released, because the pattern being released today, the Oversized Dishcloth, along with my next pattern release, Not Knit Soap Saver, will be perfect to pair together with a nice lavish soap, fizzy bath bomb or warm sugar scrub, maybe a scrumptious candle, all in a pretty woven basket to create relaxing spa gift basket. A quick, easy, elegant present to stock up on for potential holiday gifts that are around the corner ;-)

Now until 11:59pm EST, the Oversized Dishcloth is HALF OFF, No Coupon code needed!

Head on over to Ravelry for this pattern, while it's still Half Off!
(Just click the colored word above: Ravelry, and you'll be redirected to the pattern listing.)

As always, I'd LOVE to see your finished items that you make from my patterns!  So please make sure that you add your items to the "Project" section of the pattern.  I can't wait to see what colorway you choose!!

Happy Hooking :-)

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Giveaway Time!

Now that I'm no longer working a 8-4, Mon-Fri, for over the past year and a half, I'm EXCITED to be back in Full swing with Looping with Love!

Facebook now has the option to link a group you admin to your business page.  So I thought, what better way to share Exclusive pattern codes, giveaways, and CALs then with my very own Looping with Love Crochet Group on Facebook!

To really get the group up and running and active, I thought a giveaway would be the perfect opportunity to kick off the group!

Here's how it works:
- If you're not a member of Looping with Love's Crochet Group, then join HERE!
- Once you're a member, add all of your crochet and knitting friends to the group!  (Please make sure that said friend actually wants to be added to another group.)

Giveaway will run until 11:59pmEST on Fri, July 21st, 2018.

So you're probably asking yourself - what do I get for adding members?

There'll be 2 winners from this: a first place winner and 
a runner up!

First Place Winner: is the member that ADDS the MOST new members to the group, please check with the person first that they'd like to be added, will win a choice of 2 free pattern from my Ravelry shop OR a free polymer clay handle covered hook ($15 value for free, but winner would be responsible for the shipping cost, if they're not local to the Western Mass area)

Second runner up: is the member that adds the 2nd most members to the group, and  will receive a choice of 1 free pattern from my Ravelry shop OR 20% Off a polymer clay handle covered hook, and winner would also be responsible for shipping as well, if they're not local to the Western Mass area.

Soooo who's gonna win??? 

Disclaimer: Facebook is in no way affiliated with this giveaway.

Looping with Love