After a long hiatus, I’ve realized that my mission to remove knitting and crochet books from my shelves has really stalled. Got to get back to it in a big way!
This book is a perfect one to start my book removal quest. It’s a nice book for someone looking for classic knits. The Green Mountain Spinnery has a wonderful back story that is worth a read.
Green Mountain Spinnery Knitting Book was published in 2003 by The Countryman Press in Woodstock Vermont.
Before I begin, I’ll start out by saying that I’m moving this book off my shelves. It’s a nicely done book, but not really relevant to my knitting these days.
Where it all began. A 3-page section on the company’s history is a good way to start.
I liked the still life photos. They keep the mainly classic designs from becoming dated.
The instruction pages had a clear layout. There were shaded designer notes, size, materials and experience level. The instructions below were clear and included a schematic drawing with measurements.
Good charts and a side-bar of 4 color ways make this project approachable and easy to follow. One might have to enlarge the chart to make it more readable.
I love these top-down pullovers. The pattern comes in child’s and adult’s sizing – a real plus! I might copy this pattern before I move this book to a better home.
Love these classics that are sized from chest size 37″ to 54″. A great range!
The last project is a group of accessories.
This was something I don’t think I’ve seen in a book of patterns. It’s a very helpful chart outlining everything you need to know before starting a pattern including skill level, gauge, needle size, finished measurements and yarn needed. Great!
Another excellent feature was a page giving some great classic books that definitely should be in a well-rounded knitter’s library.
The 3-page section on yarns would best be described as “a word from our sponsor”. It is after all a book produced and edited by a company who sells. It’s also great for helping a knitter substitute other yarns.
OK – I admit that I’ve fallen off the face of the blog world. I have lots of excuses not the least of which is that I took the photos in Florida and then couldn’t find the book when I got home – sigh! Anyway, I’m back and ready to move some of my books off the shelves.
This book was first published in 2002 in England. It has 8 different kids/baby sizes from 3-6 months to 9-10 years old for a variety of classic unisex styles. It’s meant to allow for a mix and match aspect that gives the reader an opportunity to experiment and be creative.
Is the book for me? I’m not sure. I’m not usually this indecisive I do like the idea of the styles and variations. Let me think and I’ll let you know before I get to the end.
This is good. The mini-layout with call outs is very helpful. The next page in the spread shows how to incorporate style variations into the sweater or sweaters.
My only negative comment on the chart is it seems like old UK & Canadian needles are long gone. Maybe I’m wrong. The book seems more designed for a newer knitter who only see needle sizes in Metric or US sizing.
This page shows the designs for 3-6 months and little schematics of what you will be able to make in this section.
The photos in the whole book are quite good. No surprise as Kate Buller is definitely at the helm of the design/photography of the book.
At first I wasn’t clear about how to use these body charts, but in re-reading the how-to section I got the idea. All the little boxes are places to insert various charts shown in the Creative Library.
Usually I’m not a fan of photos showing techniques, but these are close up and rather good.
I’ve come to the end and I’m giving this one a Thumbs Up! There are many good things about the book and for the moment, I’m keeping it. My thought is once I’ve gotten through all that I own, I’ll go back and make a second pass. This may take the rest of my life!
This book is one of a series of books created by owners of the Yarn Company shop in New York City – Julie Carles and Jordana Jacobs. This one was published by Carlson Potter in 2002.
Before I start the review, I’ll add a spoiler alert. I’m keeping this book and thus a thumbs up. Maybe I’m waffling in my old age or something, but the book does have some interesting designs and I’m almost in the mood to make a sweater. Haven’t done one in a long time.
The illustrations are clear and easy to follow. There are approximately 30 pages of how-to’s including a few finishing and simple crochet edgings.They are much better than photos.
The above page shows weights of yarn used in the book. If I had one complaint about the book it would be that only heavier yarns are included. The lightest weight is a heavy worsted. On the other hand, the projects are quicker to make.
Many of the designs are made with variegated yarns that a perfect for newer knitters.
All the projects are photographed on mannequins that keeps the book from becoming dated.
The pattern instructions and schematic drawings are also clear and easy-to-use.
My favorite project! Would make a nice present for someone.
A few accessories and home dec pieces end the book.
Well done Julie and Jordana!
Another easy week for me. This book is a pattern only book and not one filled with text and technique. With 50 knit and crochet projects, this book is a good value. It’s just not a book that needs to be on my shelf.
On a positive note, I’ve sold 19 books on Amazon so not only are some of my removed books off the shelf, they are gone, gone, gone!
This Sixth and Spring 2001 book is nicely photographed and has really clear, easy-to-understand patterns with good schematic drawings and charts.
Here are a few of the nicer patterns. Most sweaters are for intermediate knitters and crocheters, with a few easy designs.
There are sweaters for kids, mainly as duos with Mom or Dad and none for babies. Some of the yarns are discontinued, but should be easily substitutes.
Bye-bye Family Circle. This getting easier after almost 2 years of blogging!
In my quest to remove books from my shelves, I’ve decided to look at a few quick reads (aka mostly or all patterns). This one is the first of that group. Kerry Ferguson, who I knew as the person at the head of Creative Yarns International and importer of New Zealand yarns, is the author of this book published in 1999.
With 15 simple and nicely done designs, the book has clear photos, schematic drawings and charts. The sub-title is: Knitting Designs Inspired by Nature. That’s a bit of a stretch, but makes a nice theme. Quite a few of the projects feature color work techniques so this is not a book designed for the novice knitter.
Kerry’s clear drawings make a nice introduction to each design and actually look very much like the actual sweater on the facing page.
If I were to make one project from this book, the Aran Pullover would be high on my list. Unfortunately, it’s probably not in my future.
The Mohair Pullover is the easiest project in the book and would make a great “first sweater”.
I have to give this a Thumbs Down for me. It’s not a bad book, but not one I need or can use.
A quick read and discard for today. This is one of those books that made me say – “what was I thinking when I bought this one”. It’s more of my dislike of a book of patterns rather than a book of substance.
This UK book was published in 2006 and I did like that it’s broken down into clear chapters with projects such as accessories, wraps, jackets and bags. It makes it easy to find something you might want to make.
A definite – Thumbs down on this book.
I thought that the hat and hand warmers is an easy good looking project. Each project has a tip box which is especially good for beginning knitters.
Another nice project and good use of a variegated yarn. It’s made in a Noro yarn that’s readily available throughout the US.
I must be on a Noro yarn fan jag! The above sweater is knit from the top down and pretty easy to make in stockinette stitch. A good “bang for the buck” where the yarn does the work.
The book ends with about a dozen pages of techniques. These are well-done and especially good for new knitters.
This is my favorite project in the book. I saw it as more of a throw when shown photographed over a chair on the intro spread. I was surprised when I found that the actual project is called a “Summer Shawl”. At 24 1/2″ wide and 45″ long, it could easily be made a little wider and used as a throw. It’s made in a DK weight (lighter than worsted weight).
The book could have used a few home decor items or those for baby/kids, but I’m sure that the editors plan for this volume was to stitch with women’s fashions.
I had a brilliant revelation this week. I first pulled out Scarf Style and Wrap Style to look a duo and then I thought – why not! I would look at all four of my Style books at the same time. Each time I seriously look at my bookcase, I realize that I’m really moving at a snail’s pace in trying to move my books along. Four books settled seems like a great idea!
Frankly as these books are mainly pattern books, it was pretty easy to whip through them. In full disclosure, Pam Allen, a designer and editor and I go way back to my early days at Vogue Knitting. As an aside – Caitlin Fitzgerald one of the dreamy models in these books, is Pam’s daughter is now an acclaimed actress (notably in Masters of Sex on Showtime). She was once an intern for me at Lion Brand Yarns. History, history!
I’m going to try to cover these by the publication date.
Scarf Style is a nice collection of knit and a few crochet scarves. There were only two scarves that I thought I might make that follow. I’m going to make copies of these and move this book on to a better home.
I love this side-to-side scarf and will make it.
I’m a sucker for chevron patterns and this is a nice pattern for kids and adults.
I’m not wearing and probably not knitting wraps and shawls these days so this was an easy pass.
If you love cables – this is a beautiful piece. I just wouldn’t have a place to wear it.
A nice book, but no “must have” patterns for me!
A lot of color work. There is only one pattern I really love and it follows.
Bottom Line: I’m going to pass on all these books and make more room in my book shelf. I failed to say at the beginning that these books have good Design Notebooks at the end of each and the designers who created the projects are a “who’s who” of creative designers from the knitting world.
Love the wraps and shawls, but I don’t think I would make any of them. One that I love by Norah Gaughan follows.
I’m going to cover two chapters in this blog. Both were easier to get through than one of the previous chapters. The good news is that I’m down to Chapter 8 (final chapter) plus and addendum!
Chapter 6 – The Classics was a bit disappointing. In the first couple of pages Deborah talks about what I call “real” classics – Aran pullovers, tennis sweaters, twin sets, Fair Isle sweaters and Icelandic circular-yoke sweaters. The rest of the chapter is an inspiration gallery that is not any of these classics.
There is a section in this chapter on the sketching process that I found really interesting. I’ve never been able to sketch or draw and finding a way to break it down was an “ah-ha” moment for me.
I liked Deborah’s inspiration on the classic Chanel jacket plus skirt.
One of the non-classic ideas was the spread on making a Chinese robe. Beautiful knitting, but not so much what I’d call as classic.
Chapter 6 ends with a knit motorcycle jacket. It’s an amazing accomplishment and it’s why Deborah Newton is such a fabulous designer!
Chapter 7 is called Themes and Samplers, but I’d call it Stitches & Samplers as it’s all about various types of stitches and putting them together.
I really liked the way Deborah introduces stitch types and talks about ways that the knitter can create their own version of this stitch.
The first section is about slip stitches, twisted stitches, lace stitches, cables and bobbles.
The section on creating your own cables and lace is really helpful in understanding how the stitches are formed.
Chapter 7 ends with a sample of color work and embossed leaf patterns meshed together to create another one of Deborah’s masterpieces!
Ah, Chapter 3. This chapter almost killed my blog writing. I didn’t think I’d get through it. Don’t get me wrong – good info – amazing info as a matter of fact. The problem for me was that there was so much text. In this blog I’m glossing over lots of stuff about ease, fit, armholes, sleeve types, but I didn’t want to loss the reader. It was all covered in this chapter.
OK! You get the idea about the text. It made me appreciate Deborah Newton so much more. What a mind that could put this all down on paper. Although there were charts and illustrations, I wish that some of the explanations would have been a bit more point-by-point or in more charts.
The neckline chart is well-done. As you can see, I took to underlining various sections that I thought were important. It helped to get through this information.
The Skeleton Chart was brilliant. Graphing actual body measurements and then graphing the actual sweater over the skeleton makes a visual to help you see how the sweater will fit on a knitted sweater.
This page boils down the 30 + pages of the chapter to the essential. What you learn is how to design or alter your own sweater.
Learning to take and record body measurements is essential to designing a sweater. Deborah gives good advice about taking these measurements. Notice that I’ve underlined the cross shoulder measurement. I must admit that I never knew where this was found on the body.
Onward to Chapter 4 that focuses on designing with Knit & Purl Stitches. I know that this will certainly be easier and I promise gather steam and not to fade into the woodwork!