Saturday, February 11, 2012

Seamless Crochet by Kristin Omdahl

As promised, I am back with more on Seamless Crochet with Kristin Omdahl. I hope you are enjoying the book blog tour so far.

As I mentioned in my earlier post, Seamless Crochet is a yet another awesome book by Kristin that you will want to get. You will learn a new technique on how to crochet "granny" squares seamlessly without having to weave tons of loose ends. Kristin's mentioning that the techniques is "old" technique; but it is probably new to most of us.

Blue Skies Bulky Cowl
The projects in this book vary from easy ones such as Radiance Sparkly Skinny Scarf, or Blue Skies Chunky Cowl. These projects offer you a great starting point to learning the seamless technique. Then you can advance to slightly more challenging ones. Though once you get the idea behind how to work granny squares seamlessly, I don't think any of the projects are too difficult to work. On contrary, the patterns are accompanied by charts that are super easy to follow. And if you are more of a follow-the-written-instructions crocheter, you will get that in addition to the charts.

My first project will be the Market Bag. In my area, stores have to charge customers for each bag they will "give" away, so to have a stylish and unique bag handy is a must. :)

And here is the promised interview with Kristin. Before we start I want to say that Kristin is such a nice person - beautiful inside out. Not only she's very beautiful as you can see (she was a model for several years when she was 12-17 yrs old), but she is very, very nice and easy to to talk to. I don't claim to know her very closely, but the several times I've met her, or we went out to dinner with her and other designer friends, she was so, so nice and fun.

Kristin Omdahl
Simona: I have long admired your work, and I am so excited to be doing an interview with you. Seamless Crochet is your fourth book, which is just as great as the first, second and third one. Where do you get your endless inspiration?

Kristin: I love what I do and try to keep an open mind wherever I am. I find inspiration in the strangest of places: I like to incorporate the textures of things around me into my fabrics. Animal skins, leaf and flower patterns, seashells, water patterns, brick patterns, tile patterns, and many more.

Simona: What inspired you to write this book?

Kristin: I saw a 4-color chart for this technique years ago and have been exploring with it for a long time. I wanted to figure out how to modify any crochet motif and even manipulate those motifs to create shaping. My goal was to write the book if I could accomplish all that. I wanted to write a book that could be a reference library addition as well as a pattern book. And the bonus is that I made a 1-hour DVD workshop, included in the book, as an added learning tool.

Simona: How do you chart all your designs? Do you do it all by hand or
you have a special software you use?

Kristin: It depends on how much time I have! I am not an expert at Illustrator, so it takes me a long time to make a rudimentary chart. If my charts are going to be made by someone in-house at the Pulisher’s office, I will hand-draw them. I’m way better at sketching than I am at Illustrator.

Simona: What is your favorite project in Seamless Crochet and why?

Buttercup Baby Blanket
Kristin: I have a couple of favorite projects, for different reasons. The Buttercup Baby Blanket is one of my favorites because it is so feminine! I love the look of the appliqued flowers (even though they are worked seamlessly along with the motifs!!) I would love to make some pillows with this motif one day. A luscious yarn with great halo in a deep red rose color would be gorgeous. The hats are favorite projects for me, too, because it was my way of proving to myself that you can make 3- dimensional projects with this technique. I would love to venture into sweater yoke design with this technique, now that I feel confident with the shaping element after making the hats. 

Simona: How do you invent new motifs? Do you just “dream” them up; do you play with yarn and see what happens; or do you chart out and engineer your motifs first? 

Kristin: All of the above! It depends on how or where I am inspired. Occasionally I need to chart or sketch first to see if it will work geometrically, but most of the time I prefer to grab yarn and get started. Trial & error is a great learning tool. 

Lace Flower Hat
Simona: What is your favorite part of creating a collection and writing a book? 

Kristin: I love coming up with the concept in the first place! The planning part is fantastic because anything is possible. As the items get checked off the to-do list, the accomplishments feel pretty good, too. The surprising part to me is that turning in the manuscript is not a highlight to me. As an entrepreneur, it means it’s time to find a new job. But oftentimes, I have already found one or more! I feel very fortunate about that.
Simona: Besides crochet and knitting, what other passions you have?
Kristin: I love to work out. Playing my piano and guitar are my zone-out times. Singing & playing guitar simultaneously takes just enough brain power to distract me from everything else going on. I love that. I love to cook. And, my new fascination is jewelry making. I’m excited about it and thinking of ways to incorporate it into my knitting and crochet business. I also LOVE to cook and especially come up with healthy modifications and my own recipes. 

Simona: I know you like fitness and lead a healthy lifestyle. If I am not mistaken, you are an avid runner and ran a half marathon? 

Kristin: I actually ran a full marathon 2 years ago (26.2 miles!) That was a one-time deal, though. I still run barefoot on the beach, but I prefer working out with weights in the gym. I’m trying to transform my body right now. I’m working out in a gym 3x a week, doing cardio (running or riding my bike) 3x a week and trying to eat very, very healthy. I am working on a crochet swimwear collection and my goal is to wear it! I figure you can’t talk the talk without walking the walk. I don’t want to be in supermodel shape, but I want to be the best Marilyn Monroe shape I can be. 

Simona: Wow Kristin, you are very inspiring just like your knit and crochet designs! It is amazing that you ran a marathon! Marathon!!!?? Really? I've been running for years but I have not ever thought I could do that. You are very determined and you will get your swimwear bod - no question in my mind. Thank you for sharing!  It will make most of us to want to get to the gym tomorrow. :) 

Thank you for the interview. And I am looking forward to seeing you in Columbus.

Are you also inspired by Kristin? Oh my, I am. I can't wait to see the swimwear collection. 

So if you are ready to give the seamless technique a try, and I know you are, please leave a message in the comments. Let me know what inspires you, what your goals are, or what is your favorite project in this book, or which one is the first one you'd love to make. Please comment by midnight EST, February 19th, 2012. I will draw a winner at random on February 20th, 2012.  Good luck!

Last Seamless Crochet blog tour stop is on Monday, February 13 on Doris Chan's Everyday Crochet blog.

Seamless Crochet BLAD


Katelyn said...

Thanks so much for the review. I think that the first thing that I would want to make out of the book is the 3D flower blanket. I have a new niece in the family and that would be PERFECT for her! I LOVE to make blankets with motifs but hate all then ends so I am VERY excited about this book. Thanks for the chance to win!

MarieAnge said...

Beautiful interview and blog post. I'd make the shawl on the cover first. It looks absolutely gorgeous.

Thank you for the giveaway :)


Malorie Townsend said...

I really liked the interview part of your review of Seamless Crochet. The interview was so neat and different from the other blogs on the tour! The thing that inspires me the most is my family and the first project I would want to do is the buttercup baby blanket. It is so beautiful and I can think of so many babies I would make it for (including my future little girl =)

ajz said...

This book looks amazing!I would first make the scarf that was featured in the Crochet Accessories special issue. I bookmarked that page right away. I am always so intimidated by weaving in ends. this is a must learn technique for me!

Walk-N-Knit said...

Thanks for great interview - I would love to win this book! I've made a few granny square-type projects, but not many, because I don't like all the ends! I'd love to learn this technique - I'd start with the gorgeous shawl on the cover! Thank you for the giveaway! :-)

Walknknit on ravelry

DGITCrochet said...

Great interview...I so want to try that buttercup blanket and like you think the design would be beautiful on pillow! Thanks for the interview and the giveaway

Not So Granny said...

What a great review and interview. I'm very excited to learn this technique as I only work with seamless pieces and would love to be able to incorporate motifs as part of that. So thank you for hosting a giveaway - fingers crossed.

vivid13 said...

I want to try the blue sky cowl. I have had projects stare at me at for weeks because I didn't want to weave in my ends. It is great to have an alternative.

PeacefulPath said...

I am inspired right now by this interview and this technique! I love to try new textured stitches and use them in my shawls and scarves. Thanks for the review!

Simona said...

Vivid13 you are the winner of the Seamless Crochet eBook. Congratulation! Please Provide me w your e-mail here or PM me on Raverly (SiminasDesigns).

Simona said...

My name on Raverly is SimonasDesigns, pls disregard the misspell in prev post.