June 01, 2013

Bookish. - Issue 2

Bookish. - Issue 2

This time I am going to showcase some of the technique books I have in my bookshelf.  They are a bit “dorky”, yes, but they will bring your knitting techniques to the next level.

I can’t remember exactly how I got hooked on these technique books. Perhaps I was avidly stalking Jared Flood’s blog at one point, before he started to publish patterns, and he often wrote about Elizabeth Zimmermann. Then I found other books as well (I’d love to talk about Elizabeth’s book, but I will save it until the next issue. So, just a cover photo this time.)



Mary Thomas taught me how to knit pockets, how to do colorwork, how there are different techniques and interpretations. Japanese technique books are more like reference books, they only show you one correct way of increase or decrease. Her narrative way of explaining various methods from choosing yarn to finishing a project was an eye opening experience for me. Highly recommended!

Of course they are English and cannot recommend to just anyone (who cannot read in English), but these are excellent examples that knitting techniques evolves and being innovated every day around the world.  This is not something very common in Japan.


Second, since Ysolda talked about stitch pattern books and so on, I surfed through Amazon to see what are available. I bought these two books relatively recently. Mary Thomas’s book is about how you can actually design something with different stitch patterns, showing in images of finished fabric, in chart, and in written description. T

he other is a sort of “a chart reading for dummies” type of book, I never actually felt the need of this kind of books, but realized that it could be useful when you design something with stitch patterns.


The third group is stitch dictionaries, naturally.

Since I don’t design myself, I only bought these two out of curiosity. The Vogue Knitting series is pretty popular, but, I found this Japanese stitch pattern dictionary more useful. It has more advanced patterns across different topics (lace, cables, eyelets, even crochet!) in one book, and also has a few example of how you adopt a pattern into knitting a project. If you don’t have any stitch dictionary yet, and are considering to buy one, I highly recommend this book. It’s a stitch dictionary, so you don’t have to be able to read Japanese, right?