This week I launched my first ever ebook – How to crochet clothes that fit (and you actually want to wear). I am super excited to be able to bring you crochet resources in a new way.
The eBook feels like a very natural progression but is new territory for me so there is always a certain amount of fear and trepidation which comes with that.
I keep reminding myself that this is a normal part of the learning process. If you feel that way when you start crocheting garments, remember that you are in good company!
I would love to tell you a little more about what motivated me to write this book and explain what it will do for you.
Why write a book on how to crochet clothes?
I hadn’t been designing garments for long when I noticed the resistance that existed in the crochet community towards making clothes.
I could see, from social media comments and conversations, that people wanted to give crochet clothes a go, but were resisting. Largely because of the fear it would go wrong (it wouldn’t fit, it would be a waste of time / yarn) or a misplaced perception that it was somehow only for ‘advanced’ crocheters.
I remembered back to my first experiments with garments and realised I had felt the same way. (The same as I am feeling with this new venture – learner discomfort is unavoidable, but an important part of the journey!)
When it comes to yarn, I have always been one who likes to give things a go, without being overly concerned if they don’t go right the first time. So I had a go and fell in love with making garments after one hit!
However, I quickly realised that there were some barriers I hadn’t anticipated. I am a YouTube-taught crocheter without a dressmaking background, and found that a lot of patterns assumed knowledge I simply didn’t have.
They used terminology I didn’t understand, which made me feel like an outsider, that this place wasn’t for people like me.
I wrote a bit of an essay about the impact of language a while back.
That said, I have a curious nature and a bit of a stubborn streak, so if I don’t understand something that’s important to me, I will google the heck out of it until I do. (Though that does not guarantee I won’t forget it the next day!).
So I battled my way through this forest of unfamiliar terms and educated myself from any source I could find. This, along with lots of experimenting, is how I have developed, and continue to develop my knowledge year after year.
I knew from the outset that I wanted Dora Does to be for anyone and everyone. I certainly didn’t want to make people feel excluded through my use of language. That is one of the reasons I put together the Jargon Buster.
And you know what? Those words aren’t actually so complicated once someone just takes a moment to explain them to you.
I began sharing my knowledge on all those topics that had baffled me, from the fundamentals of yarn weight, to unpicking what gauge was all about to demystifying garment construction. I wrote as I learned, which is still how I write many of my posts.
I saw a comment on a facebook group recently that it’s often better to learn from people who are only a few steps ahead of you. This really resonated with me because, although I research my posts a lot and do my homework, I am no oracle!
I have written a lot of posts on crocheting clothing but I knew, as I wrote them, that one day I wanted to collate this knowledge in one place. In a guide that would take crocheters through the process of making garments from start to finish, explaining everything they needed to know as they go.
And I am so happy it is finally here!
How it will help your crochet journey?
My goal when writing this ebook was to take away the fear, uncertainty and hesitation that you can feel when crocheting garments. It is a new way to learn how to crochet clothes that fit AND that you actually want to wear.
It will guide you through the choices you need to make in order to create a garment that is right for YOU (or for the person you’re making it for).
I recommend that you read the ebook through first and then work through it again with your chosen pattern. After reading it you will be able to approach crocheting clothes with way more confidence because, if I have done my job right, you will actually understand the steps you need to follow.
I believe that confidence is contagious and that, by getting into the habit of stepping out of your comfort zone with crochet, you build confidence which you can apply to other areas of your life.
What’s in the book?
Using the approach I have developed over my years as a maker and designer, the book will walk you through the process of crocheting garments in easy to digest chunks. It will help you to create beautiful clothes you will wear with pride, and love for years to come.
I will teach you the essential knowledge you need to crochet a garment as well as sharing all the secret tips and tricks I use.
I start by explaining the all important concept of gauge in simple terms. Then walk you through what you need to do before you start the making process, including swatching and how to choose suitable materials. I explain the most common ways of constructing crochet garments without you needing any prior experience.!
In the third section, I guide you through the making process including sections on seaming, blocking (which can be optional by the way, so don’t let that put you off!) and how to adjust your garments to fit.
For clarity, this is not a pattern book or a book that teaches garment design. It is a framework which guides you through the making process using any pattern of your choice. It is more like a course which focuses on explaining the essential concepts as, and when, you need to know them.
Oh, and before I forget, I should mention that if you purchase the book via the links on this page, you get a coupon code which entitles you to one free crochet pattern of your choice from my ravelry library. I want you to have something to practice on (though you don’t have to choose a garment pattern if you don’t want to!)
One last note on the content. The initial structure of the eBook was based on my blog post how to crochet clothes that fit, though it evolved significantly as I wrote it and at 50 pages, the eBook covers a lot more information!
I appreciate that not everyone has funds to purchase add free resources, so if you start with this post and read a lot of the related posts, it will give to a good grounding too.
Who is it for?
This book may not be for you if you are a pro at crocheting garments, you understand gauge, construction and know how to adjust your garments to fit.
How to crochet clothes that fit: eBook FAQs
Since it’s release a few days ago, I’ve had the same questions pop up, so I thought I would address these here.
What level of crochet experience do you need?
The book is written with the intention that a relatively new crocheter can understand it. I assume a basic knowledge of common crochet terms, and that you are able to follow a pattern but nothing more.
Note that if you struggle with reading crochet patterns, you may find this post helpful. I also explain my personal pattern writing style (which is fairly common I think) here.
Regardless of your level of crochet experience, if you want to crochet your own wardrobe and are willing to follow the guidance, then this will help you to make that happen.
Is this book suitable for budding crochet designers?
Yes and no! It is primarily aimed at makers. However, if you are interested in crochet design, especially garment design, then you will need to understand its contents.
The latter part of the book has a section on adjustments, which introduces some of the calculations a designer would use to calculate stitch and row counts. It does not address pattern grading. (That one is coming next!)
If you are interested in crochet design, you may find my designer tips posts section interesting.
Is it just digital or is there a paper version?
The ebook is delivered as a PDF download (available through your confirmation email), which can be read on a mobile device or computer.
There is no formal paper version at the moment. Should you wish you can print it at home. There are some images throughout which help to illustrate points, but it is not especially image heavy if you are trying to reduce your ink usage!
If you have any questions drop them in the comments and I will answer and add them to the list!
I hope that you enjoy this ebook and I cannot wait to see all the amazing crochet creations you will make once you have the knowledge and confidence to get going!
I would love to hear your feedback, so please do let me know what you think. You can tag me on instagram with #MyCrochetWardrobe, join the My crochet wardrobe facebook group and share your efforts there, or, if social media is not your thing, drop me an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
Now go forth and crochet your wardrobe!!