Monday, February 16, 2009

Reviews of My Knitting Book Library

All the books in this list are part of my private library. If you have any recommendations for new additions, send them in!

99 Knit Stitches (Leisure Arts #2973)
  • Contains 99 stitch patterns, including the multiplier so you can incorporate the pattern into a project of your choosing.
  • Contains instructions on how to complete basic stitches.
  • Projects include: Woman's Muffler, Man's Muffler, Cabled Pillow, Trinity Pillow, Girl's Sweater, Woman's Sweater and a sampler Afghan.
60 Easy-To-Knit Pattern Stitches Combine to Create Sampler Afghans, Leaflet 932
  • The calculations are done for you! 60 different stitches are transformed into 12"x12" squares. Knit 20, and combine them into your very own sampler afghan!
  • Contains instructions on how to complete basic stitches.
  • I am currently working on this project, but stupidly decided to increase the number of squares in my afghan to 30...

365 Knitting Stitches a Year Perpetual Calendar by Ed Martingale
  • This fun calendar is spiral bound, so the pattern of the day can lay flat and be visible (more pattern books should be spiral bound!)
  • The different stitches are in vibrant colors, and are very clear.
  • Since this is a perpetual calendar, it is a perfect gift for any time of year!
  • It is not an easy book to just flip through (since you flip the next page over when the day changes, if you try to use it like a normal book you will have to constantly rotate the book.)
  • This should be a good source of inspiration for projects!

Knitting With Balls: A Hands-On Guide to Knitting for the Modern Man by Michael del Vecchio
  • The introduction contains a history of knitting, descriptions of different knitting tools, yarns weights, instructions on how to cast on and do various stitches, and how to read a pattern. The final chapter includes thoughts about altering and modifying patterns. The tips and hints throughout the book would help even a beginner knitter compete these projects.
  • The book is organized in project categories, with clear markings for beginner, intermediate and expert at the top of every pattern page.
  • Accessories Patterns: Knit wallet and business card holder, Felted military belt, Fisherman's Watchcap and Scarf set, Multi-media cozy, Camo Coffee-Cup Cozy, Aran Laptop Cover, Chu'llu Hat and Scarf, Not-so-Rugged Scarf, Hiking Boot Socks, Sandal Socks, Medallion Mitts.
  • Sweater and Jacket Patterns: Casual Fridays Vest, Bootcut sweater (I must interject here, this sweater is quite low cut for a man...), Hooded Alpaca Parka, Argyle Pullover Vest, Tribal Sweater, Aran Pullover, Knee Length Coat.
  • Home Gear Patterns: Dog Tooth Throw, Beer Cozy, Felted Travel Bag, Utility Cloth,
  • I have done a couple of patterns in this book, including the beer cozys. I would say that the patterns aren't the most inventive, but it is a good source of inspiration for projects for men. I was given this book as a joke, but have found it more useful than the giver imagined.
Pretty in Punk: 25 Punk, Rock, and Goth Knitting Projects by Alyce Benevides and Jaqueline Milles
  • The book jacket contains handy tabs so you can save your place in the book
  • There is a glossary of techniques, which explains terminology, but there are no "how-to" explanations.
  • For the Head Patterns: Punk's not dead - felted earflap hat with icords and mohawk fringe, Lucky 13 - felted earflap hat, Red Baron - aviator cap, God save the queen - felted earflap hat with icords and mohawk fringe.
  • For the Neck Patterns: Ska Scarf, Moral Panic - schoolboy tie, Vamp Scarf, Rude Girl - checkerboard choker.
  • For the Chest Patterns: Goth Girl Jumper, Master and Servent Camisole, Transgression Jumper, Swindle Jumper, The Young One sweater vest, Lolita - ribbed corset.
  • For the arms patterns: Feel the pain - wrist cuffs, Love bites - arm warmers, death or glory - wrist warmers, combat rocker - camouflage lace-up arm warmers
  • For the bum patterns: Route 66 Bum Patch, Union Jack Bum Flap, Dethroned Bum Flap, Ready Steady Go miniskirt.
  • For the rest patterns: Mini Mod tote bag, anarchist felted courier bag, Rockability riot clutch bag.
  • I doubt that I will ever make something directly from this book (especially the bum flaps), but for novelty sake, this is a fun book. I never come across patterns like these when I search online. So whether you are feeling punk, or you want to give a knitting book that you know the recipient would not have, this is a fun book.
Donna Kooler's Encyclopedia of Crochet
  • This book has detailed picture instructions from basic to more complicated crochet stitches, for both the left and right handed. I can only assume that her knitting encyclopedia is just as good for a basic tool. I intend to teach myself how to crochet at some point, and figured that this should help me learn the basics.
  • The book contains history, instructions for stitches, descriptions of tools, color theory, over 20 patterns, stitch patterns, lace discussions and much more (far too much to list). The stitch guides are in vibrant colors and are extremely clear. I personally think that this book (or the knitter's equivalent) would be a great reference for any yarn user.
I cannot wait to add more books to my collection! I wish people would take me seriously when I ask for knitting books as presents...