Thursday, February 7, 2013

Simply Crochet Review

Hello everyone!
How is your week progressing?  I hope it is all going well for you wherever you are!

I got a nice surprise the other day in the mail, a copy of the new crochet magazine Simply Crochet, sent to me by the publishers.  
Occasionally I get offers for things through my blog and I usually don't follow them up as they don't interest me, or I don't think they are relevant to my blog and the things I talk about.  But I thought a crochet magazine would be right up my alley ( and yours!), so was happy to accept the magazine and the chance to review a new player in the crafty magazine scene. 

I am sure most of you would have seen this magazine by now, here in Australia I haven't seen it in the shops yet, but it has been available in the UK for a while I think.  It is produced by the same people responsible for Mollie Makes, and has a similar feel to the styling and layout, I loved it!
So here are my thoughts on what's inside!

There are lots patterns throughout the magazine, some wearables, blankets, motifs, amigurumi and homewares, so a little bit of everything.  The patterns are all fairly easy, so beginners could find lots to enjoy.  
 I am not really interested in crocheting clothes, so found the other patterns of more interest, and I will probably give one of the motifs a try soon. 

Personally, I enjoy the inspiration pages the most in crafty magazines, and I really liked the Notebook page by Jane Crowfoot, I hope that is a regular feature.  
I liked the 'hooked' pages of inspiring snippets of crochet and yarny news, some things I had seen before on blogs and pinterest, but it was nice to have them all together in one place. There were also some interesting interviews with some talented crafty ladies, and an article on the online crochet community (hello us!).
There is also a 'getting started' guide to crochet with nice clear instructions on the basic stitches, another good thing for beginners, but less interesting for more experienced crocheters. 
(although it is nice to have as a reference, I discovered I have been working stitches into my foundation chain wrong all this time!!)

I am jealous of all the wonderful yarn shops in the UK, the advertisements are lovely eye candy too! 

I hope this magazine does well, it feels like a Mollie Make for crochet, so I am sure it will go from strength to strength and just get better with time.  The more resources out there for crocheters, and places to share the crochet  love, the better! I really enjoyed reading Simply Crochet, it is the type of magazine you can dip into for a bit of crochet inspiration, and not feel that the projects are beyond reach.  I will be keeping an eye out for the next issue, although we get magazines long after they are issued in the UK.

Cute newsy stuff, nice to see Coco Rose's hot water bottle covers there :) 
I  like this note book page, I keep an ideas journal like this too.
Nice bracelets..... 
This would be cute in a little girl's room, or my hallway! 
Clever crocheters
I love these cycling gloves, how chic !

Amigurumi love!!

So what are you guys reading at the moment?
Do you read magazines? 
Do you read crafty magazines?


  1. Hi, Jules! Loved your magazine review and the pages you chose to show. We don't have crafty magazines here in India, but plenty of them in my native country. So well, I don't read magazines, yet. If I get one, it'll be enough for me for a long time. I wish I had more time for crafting as there are many ideas which still await their incarnation.
    Have a nice day and happy crocheting!

    1. Hi Hindustanka, at least with no magazines to distract you, there might be more time for actual craftiness! And the internet is kind of like one massive magazine constantly being updated anyway! Have a good week, J x

  2. Oh I read something about that mag the other day and was dying for a peek inside.
    It does look gorgeous and so much like MM doesn't it.
    I hope you and your boys are having a lovely week.

    1. Yep, it's definitely related to MM, like a yarn obsessed cousin I think, but quite lovely.
      Same to you and your girlies Kate! J x

  3. Een heel mooi blad, leuke voorbeelden staan erin

  4. Hey Julie, what fun to have crafty mags sent to you....great review.
    I actually found this magazine in a news agents on Monday, had a quick flick through it.
    Lots of great pics and projects. I buy MM and really enjoy that and there's enough in that to keep
    me engaged for quite a while.........
    Im sure this new crochet magazine will be quite successful.

    Claire :}

    1. You've got a better newsagency than us Claire! I very rarely find the UK mags around here, I have to keep a look out when I'm in town. J xx

  5. You actually had the first issue I think, I've just got the second because I've subscribed for 3 for £5. It's brand new here too.
    I liked it a lot but thought that the tutorials for beginners were written in not such a clear way and disliked the white yarn as didnt think it showed up. I wonder what newbies thought and if it did teach them?
    My OH loves it as he had an hour plus of silence while I read it cover to cover!!!!! X

    1. Yep, I had the first issue, I don't think I'll be seeing the second one for quite awhile around here. 3 for 5 pounds sounds like a good deal! I hadn't really thought about the yarn colour, but I see what you mean, it is kind of hard to see what they are doing. Cheers to an hour of peaceful magazine reading! J x

  6. I have an issue with these mags. Firstly, by sending you a copy, you then advertise it (most people only mention something on their blog if they like it; there is an etiquette which I have read that bloggers only give positive reviews of things they have been sent or stay silent, and with the rare exception this does seem to be true). That has saved them an absolute fortune in advertising, as you reach an awful lot of people - I only know about the magazine as you are the third blog I have read about it on, otherwise I would be none the wiser. Bloggers should be paid for that; (the magazine gains tremendously from you.) Advertising is hugely expensive, yet the only person not to profit in any way is the poor hard working blogger.

    Secondly, I believe these kind of magazines exploit bloggers. For instance, I recognise the hot water bottle picture. Just because people get a bit of a write up, and people feel flattered, it doesn't mean that the people (bloggers)should not be paid for content, and they are generally not. (It annoys me because other pictures will be bought and paid for, using the 'professionals' who demand it and rightly so. Yet a blogger will even be interviewed for free.) A blogger is no less professional in their standards so should be treated in the same way - obviously content is seen to be of a high enough standard for inclusion, so why do they not pay for it? Bloggers keep costs down. A blogger choosing to give content on their own blog freely, is very different from a magazine making profit from taking this content free of charge. For instance, free patterns are often available under the terms that they are for personal use only - in other words, the blogger doesn't want anyone to profit financially from them. Yet a magazine can apparently lift whatever they like because they use flattery to get material and profit a lot from it. Yes, it gives a blogger perceived kudos and flatters them, but they really are being played by the magazines. I personally find it demeaning to see my favourite bloggers reduced in this way, when they are captains of their own ships which they usually sail admirably well.

    Thirdly, bloggers are exploited because their content makes up significant amounts of the magazine and consists of images and content us readers have seen already, usually ages ago for free. Plus I hate how they over use the same people all the time in paid articles, usually those that are seen as professional but also have blogs - just a handful of lucky people, but it gets tedious to read the same people all the time - yet those who are even more popular and/or talented do not get paid articles, just regular swiped pictures etc.

    Bloggers set trends in crochet - the mags are usually very behind times, yet they give little credit and just pilfer away. Bloggers don't need them to survive as they do so on their own merit, but the mags do need them. Blogs are a lot more interesting, have more character and style than any magazine I've seen so I will not be bothering with them.

    I totally understand that many people do not blog for the money and are kind and sharing people. I get that, but it is all the more reason why others should not exploit their good will and make money off the back of that very same ethos. Thank you for the work you do on your blog.

    1. Hi Anonymous, thanks for your thoughtful comment, I agree with a lot of what you say, it would be great if payment was offered for blogger's content in magazines, and to be honest, I just presumed you would be paid something if your work was shown in a mag like this, I must be naive! Personally I chose to review the mag because I was curious to have a look at it and knew it probably wouldn't be sold in my area, I guess I could have said negative things if I had wanted to, they couldn't have done much about it. I will be thinking a bit longer about the things I agree to put on here and their commercial implications in the future! I must admit I get some weird offers sometimes, I can't believe anyone would take them up. Maybe I'll just stick to posting about the crochet, yarn and crafty stuff, that's the bit I like anyway! Have a great day! J x

  7. I love this new magazine. It's only been out here a couple of months and issue two comes out today in the UK. I am looking forward to getting my hands on it. I love the designs and patterns and showcasing talented crocheters.
    Jo xx

  8. I've seen both issues here in the UK and, to be honest, I think it a bit disappointing. It is very pretty but there's not a lot I haven't already seen for free on the Internet. It's going to need some more challenging projects, I think, if it wants to keep experienced crocheters reading.
    Also, there's more than one way to crochet into a foundation chain so you aren't doing it wrong you're just doing it differently!

    1. I've only seen issue one and I agree that more challenging projects and innovative projects are needed.

  9. Do you happen to know if this magazine will be available around the U.S.? I live in the Mid-South (Arkansas) and would love to get my hands on a copy!

  10. I have this magazine also and I really like it as well, it's such a pretty magazine I think but with some sweet projects too. It's nice to see more crochet magazines coming out I think. By the way, I have finally finished my very own 'pippi' scarf very much inspired by yours and your lovely blog! It is on my blog if you feel like taking a peek...
    M xxx

  11. Thank you! I have seen this magazine around the interwebs and investigated, but 83 British Pounds to subscribe seemed a little indulgent, and I haven't seen it in any shops in my part of Sydney yet. I will have to keep looking.

  12. Looks like great crochet eye-candy!! I'm knee-deep in magazines (although not this one, trying to find the Aussie distributor) having just taken over the running of a newsagency!! Thanks for posting about it. Love Mollie Makes and am eager to see this one too : -) Trudy

  13. I have ordered the offer on this magazine. £5 for three editions. I will have to wait until the third edition one though! Cant wait!!!

  14. Great to see you were able to grab a copy and review it. I think it's always nice to see a new mag on the shelves. I've always had a problem with crochet magazines. I have always found their content 'stale' and page layout unattractive and extremely uninspiring. I was interested to see what this magazine would be like as it was from the makers of Mollie Makes. Whilst I find with some issues of Mollie Makes that the 'make' content is not to my taste, visually, the magazine is well produced and I find I am inspired in other ways through its design and layout. I have just got hold of issue 2 of Simply Crochet and I like it better than the first. There is more that I feel I would like to have a go at making. I hope it continues to raise the crochet bar! I'm ready for a decent crochet mag.

    I was interested to read the comment by Annoymous. I agreed with a lot that she said also, but it's all down to personal choice isn't it. Whilst I do think it would be lovely for all to be paid for any contributions to the magazines, the reality is it wont happen, and I think most would think that there are mutual benefits. They get their free advertising and you get a new magazine to look at. They get a pic from me and someone might be interested to look me up and get a half hour read they might enjoy. It was never my intention to make money from my blog. I don't sell patterns. If I wanted to and make it a business, I would, and maybe i'd feel differently, but at the moment I don't and I have no qualms about supplying something for a mag if i'm asked and it doesn't mean I have to do much! . It's also easy to forget that there are still many people who aren't tuned in to the world of blogging, so for them, this is all new and not re-hash already seen from blog posts. It's just a way of putting more people in touch with other like minded souls, and I don't think that's a bad thing. I've found a lot of new blogs that inspire me through the magazines, so I'm not complaining! ha ha!

    Have a super duper day my lovely xxxxxxx

  15. I'm thinking about ordering the mag, I've seen various positive reviews about it! Can't find it in the stores anywhere here though so I'm gonna have a look and see if I can order anything online!

  16. My first visit to your blog and I loved it! soooo inspiring!

  17. It is so depressing seeing all the ads for great UK yarn shops... Why, when wool is such a great export of ours, do we have such a lack of great yarn stores? Actually, compared to the amount of wool we produce we don't even have that many fabulous local wool brands to choose from...
    Maybe it's the weather?


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