Crochet Collage Garden Book Review

Crochet Collage Garden book cover with balls of crochet thread and crochet hook

Crochet Collage Garden Book Review

Today I would like to share my thoughts and impressions on a beautiful new book by Chris Norrington called, β€œCrochet Collage Garden.” I was so happy to have found it in the craft section of my local bookstore! I often sit and look through crochet books and magazines and work on a variety of crochet projects while I spend time amongst the books.  The atmosphere of a bookstore is relaxing and peaceful. And, of course, I have fun perusing the crochet section! Thank you to Chris Norrington and her publisher, David and Charles Ltd., for giving permission to use these photos. πŸ™‚

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Woodland glade collage from book crochet collage garden showing purple and pink flower, mushrooms and ferns

Gardens, Flowers and Crochet!

One day this summer I found Norrington’s book, Crochet Collage Garden, and I was so impressed by its concept and layout that I just had to get it.  I also love gardens and flowers and think her idea is so clever!  I took her book with me on my summer vacation and thoroughly enjoyed crocheting the 10 motifs in one of the collages – it was relaxing and therapeutic to work on someone else’s designs and to be able to complete so many so quickly.  (I’ll share some photos of my project and give you some tips at the end of this blog post)

Spring awakening chapter in crochet collage garden book showing daffodils and other yellow flowers in a white crocheted vase

Overview of Crochet Collage Garden

Crochet Collage Garden is a colorful book full of 10 exquisite flower collages all made with crocheted flower and leaf motifs.  Each chapter has a theme and coordinating color-scheme.  At the beginning of each chapter you see the final collage expertly photographed and then you see each motif photographed separately with a number near it.  On the following pages are all of the written instructions for how to make each motif.  These instructions are written with the UK terms but a stitch chart/diagram is also provided for each flower or leaf as well.

Chris Norrington with her new book Crochet Collage Garden

Unique Crochet Flower Projects

Chris Norrington lives in England and was inspired by her own real garden of flowers when she started creating her flower collages. I love that her book includes several photos of her garden mixed in with the photos of the crochet motifs. The projects in the book, Crochet Collage Garden, go through the seasons of the year, starting with Woodland Glade and Spring Awakening and ending with Autumn Wreath and MidWinter Magic.

Most flower and leaf patterns people make are used to applique on another crocheted item (and, of course, you can do this with these as well) but I think using them to make the collages in the book is a great new way to use crocheted motifs. Chris has a wonderful sense of color and composition that shows in every one of her gorgeous collages. Make sure to check out her Instagram chris.made.this (here) and Facebook (here) pages for more inspiration from her!

Various photos of flowers in a garden with the crocheted motif held up next to them

Stitches and Yarns Used

Most of the stitches used for the flower motifs are basic crochet stitches so I think even a beginner would be able to have success with this book.  Plus, each motif comes with a very clear stitch diagram that helps you see where to put each stitch and how the stitches cleverly create all the nature-inspired shapes.  Chris recommends using yarn from your stash and I love that!  Since each flower and leaf require a very small amount of yarn, it is easy to find colors that match the collage themes in the book – at least it was for me! πŸ˜‰ Chris also shares many little tips along the way about how to work the stitches, change colors, weave in ends and put together the final collages.

Flower meadow chapter in crochet collage garden showing pink and yellow flowers arranged on a light green wooden background

Layout and Colors of Crochet Collage Garden

One of my favorite things about Crochet Collage Garden is the layout and colors – it is just so pretty to look through! Everything is color-coordinated and crystal clear.  Each collage has a color-scheme which is carried throughout the entire chapter.  The text is in an easy-to-read font and each motif has a number by it that is inside a colored circle. I think that anyone would enjoy looking through this book even if they didn’t crochet!

Terracotta pot collage showing flowers in reds and oranges in a paper pot

My Favorite Collages

My favorite collages of the book would be the Flower Meadow, Cottage Garden, Spring Awakening and Terracotta Pot. Each collage is a beautiful work of art with its variety of flower colors, petal designs, leaf shapes and balanced compositions. I decided to crochet the Flower Meadow collage and I love how it turned out!

Collage of crochet flowers in various colors - yellow, pink, green and purple

My Project from Crochet Collage Garden

I looked through my stash of Size 10 and Size 3 cotton crochet thread and picked out all the colors I could find that matched Chris’ Flower Meadow Collage in the book.  I enjoy working with this size yarn/thread so I had a lot of colors to choose from.  I put all of the yarn in a reusable shopping bag and kept it by my side as I worked on all of the motifs.  I mainly used the Size 3 (which is a little thicker and seems to match the yarns Chris used in her collages) but if I didn’t have the color I needed in the Size 3, then I found it in the Size 10 and used a double-strand!

Blocking a bunch of flower motifs

UK terms vs. US terms!

After the first motif it became easier to β€˜translate’ the UK terms into US terms in my head but the chart at the back of the book was helpful for that. Plus, all the stitch diagrams helped and I discovered it was easier and easier to work with the UK terms the more motifs I made. If you are really struggling with this step, I suggest photocopying the pattern you are working on and marking it up with a pen to change the stitches into US stitches. (Of course, photocopying would only be for this personal use and not to give out to friends – encourage them to buy the book for themselves!)  I collected all of my completed motifs in a small bag and then wove in all the ends in one sitting. (There are a lot of ends but it went quickly because I used some of the techniques and tricks I share in this Youtube video on my channel. ) Next I took the time to block each motif (as Chris recommends) and then had a lot of fun arranging them following Chris’ example in the book.

Autumn wreath collage from the book Crochet Collage Garden showing crocheted fall leaves and mushrooms

I Love Crochet Collage Garden!

I love this book, Crochet Collage Garden! It is everything a crochet book should be: beautiful, clear, thorough, colorful, and inspiring. And even if you don’t crochet, you can visit Chris Norrington’s daughter’s website, Tosca’s Corner, to enjoy already made flowers put to images & artwork on paper products. Chris’ daughter is a designer and maker that also creates beautiful artwork and the mother-daughter duo have combined their creative genius to make a variety of greeting cards and other products featuring Chris’ flower collages and Becky’s whimsical creatures.

I highly recommend purchasing the Crochet Collage Garden for yourself especially if you love flowers and gardens. And if you know someone who loves to garden, then the collages would make a great framed gift for them. This book has become one of my favorite crochet books and I know it will bring me much enjoyment in the years to come. 

Thank you to the publisher, David and Charles Ltd., for sponsoring the giveaway for my newsletter subscribers!

Check out some of my other book reviews here.

Happy crocheting!

Jennifer

Copyright – Jennifer E Ryan- www.celticknotcrochet.com- all rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, distributed or transmitted in any form or by any means, including photocopying, recording or other electronic or mechanical methods, without the prior written permission of the publisher. Special thanks to Chris Norrington and David and Charles Ltd. for giving permission to use the photos posted in this post.

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57 thoughts on “Crochet Collage Garden Book Review

  1. What a beautiful book. I love the patterns and color combinations. You can tell so much thought went into this book. Some of the patterns are different from what I have seen. Thank you so much for this giveaway.

  2. One of my crochet goals this year is to use some of the crochet thread I have stashed. This would be perfect for that. Thanks for reviewing the books and spreading the joy.

    1. You are welcome! Great idea – these motifs are perfect for using your stash of threads! When I used the Size 10 thread, I used 2 strands and I liked the size of the flowers better with a little more thickness. πŸ™‚

  3. OMG, these are just stunning! I have seen these types of crocheted. flowers before but nothing like this. How wonderful these circlular wreath would be framed, for the different seasons of the year. I am a little slow & rusty right now but I think, this fall & winter I will be picking up the stick alot more often. I have been inspired. I think I would love a copy of this fabulous book! Again, just lovely!

    1. So glad to hear you like the book – I agree, it’s stunning. I hope you enjoy making the flowers from it this winter. πŸ™‚

  4. What an absolutely beautiful book! I love gardens and a crochet garden would be so much fun. Thank you for the review of this stunning book!

  5. Thanks so much for the great review of what looks like a beautiful book! I would love to own this book to add to my collection for sure. I absolutely love crocheting flowers and plants.

  6. Thank you for writing such a comprehensive review and including photos from the book. I have several books with patterns for flowers but the flowers and leaves in the photos look much more realistic. One question, when you make one of the wreaths, do you then transfer the designs onto a Styrofoam wreath that you have covered or are these meant to be put in a picture frame. I think either would work well.

    1. Glad you like this review and the book πŸ™‚ Great question and I think you could do both as you mentioned! Chris gives several tips on finishing the flowers and how you can use them to create all kinds of projects. πŸ™‚

  7. Oh my, I love the fall wreath and the amazing designs she has. I love seeing crochet flowers, can’t wait to get my hands on this book. Greatly appreciate the review!

  8. This book has some lovely work. I love crocheted flowers, whenever I see a pattern for one, I always think of my Granddaughter. She loves flowers! Thanks for the heads up about this book!

  9. I can’t seem to keep many plants alive till they bloom, but I CAN crochet!
    This book would help me have the beauty of flowers and plants, without the guilt of killing them.
    Thanks for the opportunity to win a copy!!

  10. Your review has made me want to buy this book even though its one I would of gone straight past on the book shelf. I thankyou so much as I would of missed out on such joy. I will now look at things like flowers and maybe wreaths with new and inquisitive eyes.

  11. This is another book to put on my wish list. As someone else said, it is an art book but, also inspirational in the varied ways the patterns can be used. Big plus the crochet thread is inexpensive compared to most yarns and not nearly as expensive.

  12. That is a most extraordinary crochet book. It is an art book. I would love to make one of her collages. I have a brown thumb but maybe I can have some forever plants with these gorgeous patterns. Thanks for the pictures and the review. I would love to win that book from you.

  13. Just thinking of all the projects which could be made from these patterns. Could be made into wreaths, framed pictures, put in scrapbooks or on cards. Nice book!!

  14. Wow , so much detail in each blossom and greenery. I’d love to use these to add to quilted table runners and wall hangings. TY for the review and giveaway.

  15. Beautiful dainty flowers and leaves. All of them made me want to go to the yard and plant some more seeds for next year already. The book was a delight to see and to read. I have not crocheted many flowers but after viewing this I will most definitely start now. Thank you Jennifer for reviewing Crochet Collage Garden and bringing this book to my attention. I have one question, did you starch your flowers after crocheting them to make them stiffer or are they on a flat surface? Thank you BT

    1. So glad to hear that you like the book and review. To answer your question, I did not use any starch – just blocked the motifs and laid them on the flat surface. But Chris does recommend spraying the motifs with a little starch to help them look their best. (You could also use fabric stiffener but it would probably depend on which type of project you are making πŸ™‚)

  16. I appreciate the pictures in your review! Your descriptions and ideas of how to incorporate the projects are helpful and give a greater reason to choose this book. The suggestion for how to use your scraps to create the projects is very enticing for those of us who have quite a few yarns scraps hanging around. I appreciate investing in a pattern book that has many projects and uses. This book sounds particularly useful by representing multiple seasons. Thank you for your intriguing review on this versatile book.

  17. Wow! Such beautiful floral motifs and collages! I love to crochet flowers and I love flower gardens! Crochet Collage Garden is a gorgeous and inspiring crochet book. Thanks for your review of the book!

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