Whirlwind Book Tour for Tunisian Crochet Baby Blankets

Ah yes, the book tour, in which the author visits dozens of exciting cities, gives talks to adoring fans, has a publicist to take care of all logistics, has all travel expenses paid for by the publisher, and signs record numbers of books. Right? Not exactly, at least not for the authors of crochet titles. Although I'm not on tour myself, my book is enjoying an exciting journey to crochet bloggers all over the country. I'm honored that Tunisian Crochet Baby Blankets has made it into the blogs of these movers and shakers in the crochet world. Here's some of what they have had to say about the book. Read the full reviews at the links shown (remember that some of the giveaways may be finished by now):

I absolutely love this book!  I think that the patterns are all timeless baby patterns, and would work in a variety of colors, not just the ones shown.  Each pattern has photo help to help you understand each special stitch given, so you aren’t hunting on YouTube for video how to!  Patterns are easy to read and the designs are just gorgeous.  I wish I had this book when I was working on blankets for my 2 new great nephews earlier this year!--Karen Whooley, KarenWhooley.com

And from Tammy Hildebrand, VP of the CGOA:

If you haven't seen Sharon Silverman's new book yet, you're in for a treat! Eight beautiful Tunisian baby blankets including cables, ripples, stripes, bobbles and basket weave. There are four "easy" designs, three "intermediate" and one "intermediate plus". There is truly something for everyone. And what's really great is that there are also online technique videos available to help should you need them. -- Hot Lava Crochet

Here's what Eurona posted on her blog:

Another pleasant surprise in Tunisian Crochet Baby Blankets is a jaw-dropping stranded colorwork pattern for those of us who would like to take our stitching skills to the next level. --Hands in Delight

Kathryn Vercillo had this to say:

I was familiar with the basic look of Tunisian crochet before this but had no idea that it could be used to make such a variety of different patterns including popular crochet stitch patterns like the basketweave stitch. Bobbles, cables and ripples are also all included in these patterns, each with a slightly different look from their traditional appearance since they are done in Tunisian crochet. What a great unique gift for the baby who already has a lot of handcrafted items from others!--Crochet Concupiscence

My well-traveled book

No less a luminary than Gwen Blakley Kinsler, founder of the Crochet Guild of America, reviewed the book on her blog:

I love Tunisian crochet and I’ve been doing a lot of it lately. This beautiful book by Sharon Silverman gives me a few more items to put on my “to-do” list!--Crochet Queen

Marty Miller, Past President of CGOA and one of my inspirations--I took her class at the first crochet show I attended in Valley Forge, PA--did a thorough review. Here's some of her evaluation:

Sharon is one of the "stars" of Tunisian Crochet, and her newest book certainly shows that. Eight baby afghans, each one a different Tunisian technique, each one a different Tunisian stitch or combination of stitches....Then, this week, I brought the swatches to class, and showed my students. They all liked the Tunisian stitches with the variegated yarn better than the regular crochet stitches with variegated yarn. And then, I showed them the other afghans in the book – they all oohed and aahed over them, but the two afghans that they were really interested in crocheting were the ripple afghan on the cover, and the Tunisian Full Stitch afghan - Purple Garden.--Not Your Granny's Crochet

Here is the evaluation posted by Karen McKenna, I Hook Design. Karen also swatched several of the projects and includes pictures of her projects:

This has been a great experience expanding my crochet skills, who says you can't learn new techniques. Thanks Sharon and Leisure Arts for making it easy....

I highly recommend this book for beginners and experienced as well.  What I love about the blankets is if you make them a little larger they are all perfect as a throw for yourself.--I Hook Design

And just today, Jocelyn Sass from Cute Crochet Chat/Crochet Cafe posted her interview with me. She asked me how I got familiar with Tunisian:

I discovered Tunisian crochet in a stitch dictionary while I was designing projects for my first crochet title, Basic Crocheting: All the Skills and Tools You Need to Get Started. I learned the basics from that book, then sought out other sources to extend my knowledge of the technique. It was really exciting to see the fabric that Tunisian crochet creates. I never liked projects with rivers of double crochet stitches—too loopy!—and Tunisian had a totally different look.--Cute Crochet Chat 

If you aren't regular readers of these blogs, I urge you to become one. It is refreshing to find thoughtful, experienced crocheters who share their experience so eloquently and generously.

More blog book tour stops are coming up later this month. Please check back here and on my Facebook page, Sharon Silverman Crochet, for information about those reviews and giveaways.

Maybe it's a good thing I'm not on the road myself. With the snow we've had this winter, I might not have been able to make it out of here!

Beautiful snow

New Patterns and More Tour Stops

Ever seen one of those balance boards that are on top of a cylinder? You put one foot on each side and try to keep the edges of the board off the ground.

That's a bit what it feels like marketing a finished project while working on new ones. It's best to go back and forth, not leaning too much to one side.
Some top crochet bloggers have been helping me get the word out about Crochet Scarves by hosting a blog book tour.  In the past few days, Annie Modesitt (www.modeknit.com) and Ellen Gormley (www.gocrochet.com) have blogged about the book. Please visit their websites to learn about their many books and patterns!
I've been pleased that the bloggers understand how the scarves in the book are also teaching tools to help crocheters learn new things. Here is an excerpt from Ellen's review:
Many of the projects caught my attention, but the one I will try first is the above photo, Premium Cable.  This is a simple Tunisian CABLE pattern.  There are 21 photos that illustrate step by step how to do this technique. Don't be scared though, 21 photos doesn't indicate how hard the pattern is, but how thoroughly Sharon teaches!  Have I brought home my point yet? The point is... this book is about learning new things... and scarves are just the vehicle to make great projects in the process. You can apply these techniques and stitch patterns and apply what you've learned to any project.
Coming up shortly are blog stops with Robin Chachula (www.crochetbyfaye.com) on 8/3, then the tour's first international stop with Mary Olivier (www.livredefil.com) on 8/9, followed by a visit to Eurona's wonderful blog, www.handsindelight.com on 8/10.  
So, that's one side of the balance board, marketing the latest book. New designs and projects are on the other side. I've just finished Ripples on the Lake, a pattern for the second kit I've designed for World Wide Yarns. This one in Dyelot Yarns "Recovery Package" set of four yarns in one colorway (avocado). There's one thick-and-thin yarn, one smooth cotton, one chainette-ish yarn, and a lusciously draping rayon. The kit with pattern will be available from WWY on or before September 1; I'll announce the availability as soon as I get the go-ahead.  I really enjoyed working on this!

Next, it's time to return to some UFOs and finish them up. There's the asymmetrical garment in Blue Heron's mercerized cotton "Wintersky" colorway that's almost done; a navy and cream striped sweater that I stowed away and want to return to; and some baby items for gifts and for publication. As my space fills up, I'm also getting ready for a "sample sale," offering some finished items for sale on etsy or elsewhere (haven't quite worked out the best way to handle this yet).

Don't forget to keep up with the blog tour stops and enter to win your copy of Crochet Scarves! Each blogger is offering a giveaway.

Crochet Scarves blog book tour hits the road

Ah, the glamorous life of an author, jet-setting all over the place to promote a new book. Maybe that happens for top novelists or independently wealthy writers, but for the rest of us the blog book tour is a worthy substitute. (How's "My book went on vacation and all I got was this lousy T-shirt" for a new slogan?)

Actually, I don't have any complaints. I'm delighted that some top crochet designers and industry professionals have agreed to be a stop on the Crochet Scarves tour. I've left the format up to them: book review, interview, Q and A...I'll even write a guest blog for them if they so choose. Stackpole Books has sweetened the pot by offering each blogger a book to give away to a fan. I hope you will visit all of the blogs--they have so much information and insight to offer crocheters!

The first one out of the gate was Underground Crafter. She took the time to send me an extensive list of questions, and wrote a very thorough assessment of the book. http://undergroundcrafter.com/blog/?p=6481 It was great to hear from Marie and be reminded that she took a class I taught at Lion Brand Yarn Studio!

Yesterday's entry was from the inimitable Doris Chan. http://dorischancrochet.com/  I knew that she lived nearby but for a long time I was too intimidated to contact her. We finally met this spring and it made me wonder why I had waited so long! She's intelligent, interesting, funny, and a pleasure to spend time with. Her crochet designs are amazing, and I can't wait to see what she comes up with next. Here is a brief excerpt from Doris' post:

The concept of this book is quite brilliant.  In Sharon’s hands, the lowly scarf becomes the canvas for the exploration of various crochet techniques, ranging from mitered squares to lace and colorwork, broomstick crochet and (what I consider to be her specialty) Tunisian crochet. Each of the 21 scarf projects is accompanied by an achingly complete tutorial, including step-by-step images of hands, hook and yarn, stitch symbol diagrams and close-up shots of the fabric.  No matter what sort of learner you are, Sharon’s got you covered. 

I don't think even my own mother could have said anything nicer.

Tour stops coming up are StyledbyKristin.com (Kristin Omdahl) on 7/24; Modeknit.com (Annie Modesitt) on 7/27; GoCrochet.com (Ellen Gormley) on 7/30; CrochetbyFaye.com (Robyn Chachula) on 8/3; Handsindelight.com on 8/10; Crochetville.org on 8/13; Crochetconcupiscence.com on 8/23. There are a few other blogs for which we're working out dates. I'll let you know when those are firmed up.

Meanwhile, I've been working on a throw for a kit, a shawl for another kit, the wintersky Blue Heron Egyptian Mercerized cotton openwork item, and some design proposals. And I check the mailbox every day to see if Crochet Scarves sent me a postcard from the road!