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on October 9, 2012
I recently bought this book and have been crocheting up a storm of snowflakes. I love the gallery section (Snowflake Showcase) which allows you to preview all 100 snowflakes. It is fun to see them in not just pure white, but also in pastels. The project gallery in the back offers photo ideas of ways you can use your finished snowflakes, such as coasters, notecard embellishments, as well as ornaments. This section has inspired a couple of holiday gift ideas for me. I have also made one "snowflake" in worsted weight yarn and can see potential in using some of the patterns in a larger scaled project, such as an afghan.

The instruction section is arranged with three levels of difficulty. There are 30 beginner patterns, 40 intermediate and 30 advanced. Each pattern has a clear, colored photo of the snowflake. The instructions are very clearly written and so far I haven't come across any errors. In addition to the written instructions, each snowflake pattern has a symbol chart, which I find helpful. Very uniquely and adding to the fun, each pattern in this book has a snow or ice related name, such as Droxtal, Ice Prism or Boreas, along with a short definition of the name. And of course, each snowflake has exactly six points. (I mention this, because of another crochet pattern book that features snowflakes with more than six points.)

This is a wonderful book, both as a pattern book and as a picture book.

2-NOV-2012 UPDATE: During my recent surgery recovery, I gave myself the goal of making all 100 snowflakes. I can now report I have done this....I've made all 100! I used Size 3 thread and a 2.25 mm hook for all snowflakes, so mine are a bit bigger than those in the book. Depending on the complexity, each snowflake took me somewhere between 15 and 45 minutes to stitch. (Weaving in ends and blocking added another few minutes each.)

I've uploaded a few photos to Amazon, including a series of photos taken of snowflakes before, during and after blocking. I highly recommend blocking! I used heavy spray starch, spraying them while they lay on a cloth, then pinning them to the blocking boards I made using the book's instructions. The spray starch gave the snowflakes a bit of body and helps them hold their nice shape, without making them stiff.

I did want to report my experience with the patterns themselves. I used a combination of the written instructions and the charts, sometimes relying more on one than the other, but generally consulting both. With only a few exceptions, I had no troubles with either. Considering that there are 100 patterns, the fact that I found errors on only five of them, is quite remarkable. ~ On Snowflakes #21, #43 and #73, the written instructions did not agree with the chart on Rounds 5, 2 and 5, respectfully. Snowflake #66 had an unnecessary written "fasten off" instruction on Round 3, the pattern having been an expansion of the previous snowflake. And Snowflake #74's chart had an unnecessary "floating" chain 3. (13-JAN-2013 Update: Pattern #84's written pattern does not match the chart on Round 1)

And, if you are wondering what I'm going to do with 100 snowflakes, most will be going to my church's annual holiday bazaar, but a few will grace my own Christmas tree. Happy Stitching!
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on September 18, 2012
I had no idea how to crochet when I bought this book, but I brought it along to pass the time on a weekend car trip. Within an hour or so, I had learned the basics of crochet and was well into my first snowflake! By the end of the trip, I had made ten different snowflakes - they came out beautifully, and I was amazed by how easy it was to learn how to create them.

The patterns are lovely and unique - the fact that the author created 100 truly distinct patterns is very impressive; each one is gorgeous, and they all really are different (just like real snowflakes!). And if 100 isn't enough, there is even a section in the book with advice on how to go about inventing your own original snowflake designs.

The Showcase section is a great visual guide that you can use to pick out which design you'd like to try, or if you're just learning, you can start with the first pattern and work your way forward through the book, because they are all organized by difficulty.

This book would be a wonderful gift for the crocheter in your life (or someone who might LIKE to crochet), and is also a perfect way to create your own handmade gifts. I love this book, and look forward to using it for many more crochet projects!
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on September 7, 2013
First, the good things: (1) Great production value -- nice heavy pages & excellent photos; (2)a "gallery" of snowflakes in many colors so you can see the variety & which ones appeal, (3) really excellent instructions with both written instructions and a diagram, (4) some of the "advanced" snowflakes are as pretty as any I have seen, (5) everything is well explained to newcomers in snowflakes and/or thread crochet, (6) many of the snowflakes hold their shape well and that provides instant satisfaction.

The things that I was not happy with: (1) With a hundred snowflakes, I would have expected a lot of variety, but instead they are all very much alike. They change in the details, and they're nicely designed, but if you compare them with other snowflakes out there (search "crochet snowflakes"), they are way too similar. (2) None of them have any spires. Complex borders are one of the coolest (haha) things about snowflakes, spires included, but these are just missing. In general, the borders are solid and similar. (3) They have a very limited vocabulary of stitches. For example, there might be one approximation of a picot loop/fan in the whole book, and there is not a single cluster stitch. For people who are new to this and don't know what I'm talking about, these techniques are not hard, and you could easily learn them from the basic skills in this book. Why on earth does she not include these beautiful and easy to learn types of stitches/pattern elements? That would make for more variety. (4) The "beginner, intermediate, advanced" snowflakes should really be called, "small, medium and large." I am not the greatest crocheter in the world, but IMO there are no advanced snowflakes in this book. (5) These snowflakes seem to be designed for instant gratification (which is why they have no spires, which take longer to complete than non-spire patterns). There could really have been a progression from easy to advanced, introducing new elements as you went along, but the patterns are all meant to be completed in an hour (depending on your speed, experience and skill) and that means there can't be some of the best elements in snowflakes. (6) The section on designing snowflakes is useless, except for the part that suggests you use these as a base and add your own borders. Now if only they would show you some of the neat things you can do on borders, that would be great.

I'm glad I got this book and have made a number of the snowflakes in it, but I was frustrated because it wasn't what it could have been.
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on December 29, 2016
I've been crocheting snowflakes for 2 decades and have made hundreds of them. I am always on the look out for interesting patterns even though I create my own as well. This book is chock full of great patterns! It has a section on "The Basics" that covers everything you need to know to get started. The graphics are really awesome in this section too! One thing I really loved about the pattern section is that the author has included the drawn graph as well as the written instructions for each snowflake. I like to refer to both when I make them and it makes it easy for beginners to learn how to follow the pattern. The book is divided into "beginner, intermediate and advanced" patterns as well. I consider myself advanced but made snowflakes from every section. There is also a project section in the book with some really cute and modern ideas in it. Anyone, beginner or advanced, will love this book!
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on October 22, 2017
I happen to be fascinated by snowflakes and I love to crochet. When I feel the urge to crochet, but have no time to work on larger projects, I crochet snowflakes. Caitlin Sainio has organized her book very well. At the beginning of the book we find all the basic tools and materials needed to crochet, how to work all the stitches, and how to block and stiffen the finished snowflakes. Before going into the individual patterns, Caitlin presents us with a beautiful, 20-page long color photograph showcase of her creations. Each pictured snowflake is labeled with its name and a reference to its pattern page. I love that the snowflakes are not all just pictured in white or cream beige, but come in all kinds of different colors. The written instructions are easy to understand and come with a chart for each pattern. The projects at the end of the book are all beautiful to look at. I especially like the gift tags/cards and the blizzard scarf.
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on September 10, 2012
I am absolutely in love with this book. The snowflakes are absolutely adorable and rather easy to make. I made 2 in the first hour after the book arrived. I showed it to my sister, who doesn't crochet, and now have orders for a bunch of different snowflakes. :) I might have to order another book...as I foresee this one getting used until the pages fall out!
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on January 9, 2013
Absolutely wonderful pattern book--gorgeously illustrated with very clear and complete instructions--both text and diagrams, the pictures are so clear and detailed that you could crochet from the picture without even needing the instructions. There are also a lot of detailed "how-to" extras for beginners. Before my book arrived I had already made several, like White Dew and Plane Dendrite, posted as free samples on craft web-sites and they all worked up and blocked beautifully--and I am now in the process of making my fourth Polaris to give as Christmas gifts to my church friends--fast, easy, beautiful. The flakes tend to be small enough (2"-4") to make perfect Christmas Tree ornaments or be strung together for under-the-mantle garlands--none of those elaborate but useless 6-7 inchers that won't fit anywhere. My one criticism of the book, just a matter pf personal taste more than a criticism, is that I prefer flakes that look cold and spiky rather than gentle, pretty hexagons--and too many patterns in the book fall into the latter category. However, it is no difficulty at all to borrow the last row from Polaris, Buria, Snowstorm, or Autan Noir (obviously, those are my favorite patterns) or simply make up an extra row or two of my own to make the hexagons and pretty flakes into a nasty, frosty, spiky hybrid flakes. I am doing mine in the usual #10 white crochet cotton and size 8 thread hook, which is working out perfectly. I have been collecting crochet snowflake books since the 1970's and this book ranks up there with 99 Snowflakes as my favorite and most useful snowflake pattern book.
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on January 1, 2013
As other reviewers have reported, this book of 100 crocheted snowflakes would delight anyone who is learning to crochet snowflakes as well as those who are experienced in the art of crocheting. I am guessing that this talented author, who is a trained mechanical engineer, studied actual photographs of snowflakes and based her own designs on those originals.

Among the 100 snowflakes in the book, the author's first book, there are some "snowflakes" that, while hexagonal, do not have the six exaggerated points on the commonly seen or imagined snowflakes. But the hexagonal designs sans the exaggerated points, are indeed close replications of actual snowflakes--as photos of snowflakes have shown.

When I crochet some of these designs, I use the fine crochet threads that have a metallic thread running through them. I have the threads in off- white colors that have sparkly gold metallic threads running through them, and silver-grey thread with silver metallic threads running through them.

I usually hang them among the branches of my indoor Christmas tree close to tree lights where they sparkle beautifully. For some of the larger snowflake designs I hang elongated, clear crystals from Italy on the front of the snowflake to add to the tree's sparkle.

With golden yellow threads, the only other color I use for any of the designs in the book, I usually crochet six-pointed snowflakes that resemble the Star of David, and send them along in pale blue cards and envelopes to Jewish friends, who enjoy receiving them. Finally, I strongly recommend this book: If you do not know how to crochet, the book will show you how.
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on January 15, 2013
I think this book was inspired by someone who must have studied snowflakes in school for science/lab or something. I couldn't, on a good day, come up with even 10 original patterns for these lovely creations by nature let alone 100. The book is easy to follow and the instructions are simple. The photos are in color and easy to recognize. The book is divided into four parts. The first are the instructions and materials list you'll need for each project. The second part is a photo layout of all the snowflakes in all their glory, complete with names for each one. The third part are the instructions for each snowflake with an actual photo of the snowflake done in any variety of colors, in easy to understand language. The book folds out and stays put to the page you desire. The forth part of the book is an idea layout of the possibilities you can create to utilize your little beauties in an artful as well as useful manner. I would definitely recommend this book to anyone who has a bit of whimsy in their hearts. I think it would make a lovely gift for those winter birthdays in your lives too.
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on December 2, 2017
All of the snowflakes are pretty but... too much space is taken up with diagrams and pictures. The printed pattern font is extremely small. I’ll have to use a magnifier to view ten comfortably. The wording of the printed pattern is not as easy to understand. Not Leisure Art quality.
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