Sunday, May 19, 2019

Raffia Crochet

 Raffia Crochet is a tutorial guide for 10 crocheted projects (13 including alternative finishes) using Ra-Ra Raffia, a proprietary yarn from Wool and the Gang. Due out 18th June 2019 from Sewandso,  it's 72 pages and will be available in paperback format.

Wool and the Gang's catalog and this tutorial book are full of punny music related titles (Worn This Way hat, Paper Gangsta market bag, Money Honey clutch, and more). Even the company name is a play on the iconic Kool & the Gang. I appreciate the 'hipness' of the tutorials and I sincerely wish them luck in convincing a new and vibrant generation of fibrecrafters that these are not-their-grandma's-market-totes.

10% of the page content is given over to an introduction of the difficulty categories in the book as well as the company and materials. The following 70% includes the 10 tutorials as well as tips and alternate finishing techniques. The final parts of the book include a comprehensive how-to-crochet tutorial, finishing techniques, a company statement, and a short index.

Ra-Ra Raffia is 100% biodegradable wood fibre and put-up is 100gram/250m balls. The aesthetic is very young, urban, and fashion forward. As far as I can tell with a project search on the designer's website and Ravelry, several of these projects are unique to this book and not available elsewhere. Approximately half of the patterns are available individually from the website as kits (including the raffia yarn). The price of the kits on W&tG's website would more than cover the purchase price for the book with just one project; in other words, the pattern instruction prices on their website for one project, paired with the yarn cost about the same as the entire cost of this 10 project book (+ the yarn). It also should be said that one of the included projects is for a macrame plant hanger. That is made with chain-crocheted strings though, so it could be said that it's crochet also. (pic below).

I was not supplied with yarn for the review, but I did test out some of the patterns with another yarn I had lying around and found no factual errors in the tutorials.

This would make a really great gift for a fashion conscious young person (young adult, professional, etc) who wants to learn to crochet. The tutorials are simple enough for complete beginners; advanced crocheters will likely find little here to challenge them.

Four stars.

Disclosure: I received an ARC at no cost from the author/publisher for review purposes.

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