Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Cold Feet!

A few weeks ago I posted about listening to books and knitting at the same time and I mentioned that I would occasionally review a knitting or embroidery book. So here goes. Let me know what you think.

Much to my delight, knitting is becoming popular again. I don't think it will ever go completely out of fashion, but it's popularity comes in fits and starts. There are many young designers out there at the moment who are introducing fun new patterns and right now, with internet accessibility to amazing yarns and patterns, there is a bit of a revival going on, and I'm all for that. I have been knitting for many years - made my first sweater when I was 16 (it complimented the first dress I made at the same time) and I've never looked back. I mostly knit sweaters, with a liberal amount of hats and scarves thrown in - but up until about a year ago I had never knitted a pair of socks. OMG, how much fun they are to knit. I don't know if it was the speed at which they knitted up or the amazing self-striping yarn I was using, but I had a blast.

Now I do admit that you have to have at least a basic knowledge of knitting before you start on socks, but with the right yarn and a circular needle all you need to do is knit!

Author: Ann Budd
Released: 2007
Publisher: Interweave Press
# Pages: 136
Copy provided by: Me

I discovered this book when I was in the book store a few months ago and bought it with very little internal struggle. It is full of basic information, clearly set out, with lots of pictures and step-by-step diagrams to explain the details. Not sure if you can handle double pointed needles? Don't worry, this book gives you an additional 3 ways to use circular needles - 5 options in all, so you're bound to find one method you like. The TIPS are wonderful- if you already know how to knit, they might seem a little basic, but not everyone knows about marking your rows to help you count, and other useful hints.

"TIP: Matching Leg and Foot Lengths
Do you ever wonder how knitters make two socks exactly the same size? The secret is in counting rows. This is the best way to be assured that the second sock will be a perfect mate to the first. I use the markers that look like tiny safety pins to mark every 10 or 20 rounds as I work the leg and foot. Then it's a simple matter to count markers to make the second sock match the first." (page 27)

There is a chapter on 'Basic Sock Instructions' which shows you how to adapt your pattern to different yarn weights. Want a pair of warm thick socks to wear with your boots, or a pair of fine lacy ones to wear in the summer? No problem with 'Getting Started Knitting Socks" There are also chapters dealing with colour and texture, and there are several different stitch directions if you want to progress beyond plain socks.

I thought this was a wonderful book to tell you all about the basics of sock knitting, but I feel honour bound to issue this warning: Sock Knitting is Addictive! Try it, you'll see.

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