I bought this little book for our 4 year old for Christmas. I had no intention of featuring it on KnitLove, but this book is so dang cute. I just had to.
I chose this book because my kids are monster crazy lately thanks to MoshiMonsters.com. I figured they could make cute little characters to play with, and even though it came with yarn, I knew we could make zillions of little monsters with all the ball remnants around our house.
If you are a knitter, particularly one with kids, with small remnant balls this book is a great way to use them up.
Pom-Pom Monster has really great step by step graphic for how to make a pom-pom, and how to trim your monster’s shape.
The simplest monsters are demonstrated first. Each new technique has it’s own monster with step by step instructions. Once all of the techniques have been demonstrated there are several other monsters with simple instructions on how to make them.
At the back there is a section on how to use up the scraps of yarn you snip off, fixing mistakes, as well as some little tabs for adding hair if you over thin or want to add a long hair piece. Yes that’s right – pom-pom monster hair extensions!
This book has some amazing little critters. Normally I see a book like this and think “Oh, I could come up with those myself” But April Chorba has some really great ideas. Ideas for several hairdo’s and monster types, multi coloured monsters, and great ideas for accessorising.
In fact, not only does this book come with five colours of yarn, it also comes with the pom-pom maker, a comb for teasing the yarn to make super fluffy hair, googly eyes, hair bows, glue, foam teeth and tongues, and several pages of paper punch out accessories. You need to dig up your own scissors.
The yarn amounts are fairly small, I’m not sure I could get two monsters out of one colour, and it’s very basic acrylic (a la Red Heart Super Saver), but since I knit I’m not worried about running out of yarn.
The comb is a fairly good one. Honestly a cheap comb I had in my bathroom with thinner tines did a better job teasing the hair. Swap the comb out if you have one of lesser quality.
The pom-pom maker is excellent! If you have used a pom pom maker in the past you know about threading the yarn through the center each time you make a wrap. This pom-pom maker separates into two halves eliminating the center. Wind the top half, wind the bottom, then snap them together and voila! The pom-pom maker also has marked sections for wrapping just the right amount of yarn in the right place for making multi coloured monsters. It’s limitation is that it only makes one size, about a 2 1/2 inch pom-pom untrimmed.
At the back of the book there is a number for ordering exact replacement supplies. Honestly, eyes, bows, yarn, and glue are going to be cheaper, and for far bigger containers, from the craft store. The teeth and tongues, I would snip from sheets of craft foam . If I lost the pom-pom maker I would order one from Klutz, but nothing else is unique.
It is recommended for ages eight and up, and I think they got that about right, if a kid were to make a monster start to finish by his or herself. I bought this book for my four year old fully expecting to make the monster then have her do the trimming and gluing. That’s what happened, and she was perfectly capable of a few well directed snips,and putting her eyes and accessories on herself. I think four is as young as I would purchase this book for.
In the end my 6 year old daughter asked to make one too when see saw how cute the first one turned out, and now my 6 year old son can’t wait to make one either. While this book is certainly geared towards girls with the beauty salon theme, and pink and purple yarn. I really think this could be a great boys crafting book as well. There are several great accessories that are monster feet, bat wings, horns, and glasses as well as your typical girls’ beauty salon type stuff like tiaras, bows, and sparkly barrettes.
These little monsters make great toys. I see them instead of bows on birthday presents, on popsicle sticks as puppets, glued to a picture frame (maybe with an our little monster quote with a picture of your child in the frame, or for a Halloween picture), and they would make the most amazing toppers to a simple child’s touque. So much fun!
So all in all: A great book. Awesome pom-pom maker. So-so supplies, but they are included. Well worth the money I spent.
Get yours at Amazon.com.