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Crochet Saved My Life: The Mental and Physical Health Benefits of Crochet Paperback – July 1, 2012

4.3 out of 5 stars 82 customer reviews

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  • Crochet Saved My Life: The Mental and Physical Health Benefits of Crochet
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  • Hook to Heal!: 100 Crochet Exercises For Health, Growth, Connection, Inspiration and Honoring Your Inner Artist
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  • Contemplative Crochet: A Hands-On Guide for Interlocking Faith & Craft
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Kathryn Vercillo is a San Francisco based freelance writer, blogger and crochet lover. She is the author of two previous books (Ghosts of San Francisco and Ghosts of Alcatraz) and has been a contributing author on other book projects. Her work has been published in magazines including Latina Magazine and Skope Music Magazine. Kathryn has worked as a professional blogger for numerous websites including PC World, Dial-a-phone, SF Travel, and Houzz. Her online articles about crochet have been published around the web on sites that include Crochetvolution, Crochet Liberation Front, SF Indie Fashion and Handmadeology. Her Crochet Concupiscence blog was voted one of the top 5 2012 craft blogs in Inside Crochet Magazine and was a 2011 runner-up for a Flamie award from the CLF. You can visit her crochet blog at www.crochetconcupiscence.com or learn more about the author at www.kathrynvercillo.com.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (July 1, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1478190450
  • ISBN-13: 978-1478190455
  • Product Dimensions: 6.7 x 0.7 x 9.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (82 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #228,336 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Crochet Saved My Life starts out with Kathryn's history of depression and moves into the science of healing from mental illness. This book is filled with story after story of people healing from tragedies and illness all with a hook and yarn.

I saw myself in each story and I applaud the women for being brave enough to share in such a public way.

My preference was for the stories so I did gloss over the science of depression and other illnesses. That was a bit of a slower read for me. But I enjoyed it because it's great that science is taking notice of something crocheters have known for a long time, Crochet heals.

Stopping by to move my rating of 4 stars to 5 stars. Loved the book - have read it 3 times now and each time I love it more. A must read for anyone who crafts.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Kathryn Vercillo is working on a second book on this subject that will, no doubt, be just as important as this one. Her collection of stories, including her own, are as real as it gets. I personally know some of the people who shared their experiences. They are real. The stories are real. True as truth ever gets, it is so uplifting when you realize you are not alone. However, you must participate in your own recovery. This could very nearly be looked upon as a medical manual because of the research behind it and the realization that it can help so many.
Crochet is being taught to people with Alzheimer's and children with behavioral problems. The rhythm and tactile comfort can help anyone with thought processing problems. It is self nurturing that can be taught simplistically.
Vercillo's suffering, findiing help and using everything she could find to help herself is not an uncommon story; people will do bizarre thing to end their pain. Her realization that she might be able to help others is the amazing part.
Every one of us knows someone that this book could help. It is profound.
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Format: Kindle Edition
This is a fabulous book detailing not just the author's, but many others', personal struggles with mental illness and highlighting how crochet (and crafting, more generally) served as a shining light.
This book weaves personal stories with scientific research in an easy-to-read style. And, let me say, her personal story is shocking and fascinating!
If you (or someone you know) struggles with a mental illness, you will instantly relate to the people featured in the book. And as a crocheter myself, I completely acknowledge the healing ability of the craft. However, the author's key point is that doing concrete, hands-on work is therapeutic, and therefore would apply to a wide number of crafts/skills: gardening, cooking, sewing, painting...
My only regret is the title of the book... I think having 'crochet' in the title limits the perceived audience of this book. It's much bigger than just crochet!
A wonderful read. I highly recommend it.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I'm not sure how interesting the book would be if you don't have any personal investment in either crochet or mental health issues, but I enjoyed it.

I wanted to love it, because of its mission, but I found the structure really off putting. Mostly, I wish there was more. The individual vignettes were barely even glimpses into the stories of these people, and it would have been nice to just know more.

I did, however, very much enjoy reading the author's personal story. I think attempting to balance her own story and the stories of so many others overwhelms the book. If it had chosen one way or the other, it may have been more successful.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I liked this book. A friend of mine recommended it to me because we're both mentally interesting and we both crochet. I knit too, but that's neither here nor there. I like though, that this author addresses knitting as well as crocheting in her writing.

The book is a bit repetitive, but that's to be expected I suppose since she discusses the people she's writing about then says "read more about so-and-so later on under the title so-and-so's story." Plus the purpose of the book is to imply strongly that crochet is helpful for dealing with several medical and physical disorders, so it's to expected that there would be some repetition as the author talks about how crochet helps with each of those disorders.

Despite the nature of the writing though, I still think this is a powerful book. I've recommended it to several friends of mine, and they've found it to be very inspiring. I'm sure they've also passed on the recommendation to their friends.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
As a crocheter myself, I get what the author was trying to convey about the repetitious movement of crochet having a soothing effect on a person. However, I think that there was way too much repetition in the prose.

I'm only giving it the third star because of the effort and the honesty.
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Format: Kindle Edition
I was most impressed with the thoughtful, compassionate sharing of such personal details in the articles relaying the situations of other people. I found the additional information interesting and informative. The author shares her own personal experiences, the experience of a select number of other individuals, and also research studies done by others.

In a section related to Alzheimer's, one line that popped out at me was "The great thing about crochet is that there is always something new that you can learn." My dad and two of my aunts had Alzheimer's so this is a subject close to my heart. The studies mentioned in the book note that keeping the brain active may be a way to delay onset of this terrible disease. Of course it's always a good idea to keep your brain active.

If you need something calming, however, the author notes that you can create beautiful projects with the repetition of one or two stitches as well. My takeaway was that crochet has something to offer which can aid everyone, no matter the skill level or the physical, mental, or emotional challenges he or she is facing.

I found the book to be thorough and honest in its coverage and would recommend it.
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