Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Knitting: going beyond the basics

I know that some of my regular readers are very interested in knitting. Here are some books: when you're ready to go beyond a simple garter stitch scarf.

1. Melissa Leapman's new book, Knitting Beyond Scarves has wonderful illustrations and directions for increasing, decreasing, purling, reading directions, etc. Her projects are a bit "young" but I really liked a few of them and thought they'd be fun for new knitters to try. She's got a style that is very attractive but easy to follow.

2. Knitting School: A Complete Course is also excellent and should carry you pretty far in learning all the ins and outs. This book covers lots of things that many of the other how-tos don't. I like this as a reference-shelf book that you'd look into when you're stuck or don't understand a particular instruction.

3. Knitting in Plain English by Maggie Righetti is a chatty, really well-done book about how to knit, follow directions and make things. This is great if you want a gentle approach. It's a classic that doesn't have the glossy, fancy pictures but definitely covers ALL the basics. A fun book to read (ok, if you're a knitting-geek, that is!).

4. Debbie Bliss' How to Knit: The Definitive Knitting Course includes some great projects. She walks you through the process quite nicely. This is the one my teenaged daughter uses alot when she has a question about how to do something or for a simple project. She covers doing things like cable patterns and color-work ... but starts the reader out with baby-steps to earn confidence.

5. And, I'd be remiss in not mentioning my own book, Great Yarns for the Close-Knit Family. I included a knitting primer in the back of that book that should be of help too. Also, the projects within my opus include lots of little details that are often missing in the knitting books and magazines that are on the market nowadays. You can check out the projects at the Great Yarns blog and post questions/problems there, too.

So, you now have NO EXCUSE to deny the knitting-bug. Go get the needles and yarn out of the closet and give it a shot. Be careful, though; you'll find knitting can be pretty addictive!

The above should help anyone trying to go a bit further with their knitting. There are so many knitting books on the market now that it can be hard to find those truly worth buying and keeping. Please post in the comments section if you have any other books that are "must haves".

1 comment:

JennGM said...

I really enjoy Maggie Righetti's books. Her revised edition of Knitting in Plain English is so much meatier that I feel the pressure to get the new version. ;-)

I also bought a used copy of her Universal Yarn Finder and although there are so many new yarns and fibers, the beginning section was so helpful for me to understand weights and sizes and fibers and how to read labels and adjust patterns.

Thanks for the other recommendations!