Monday, January 08, 2007

Opinions Are Like Assholes...


...almost everyone has one.

So Do I
I get one question most often from newer knitters than most any other question...

"What books should I have in my knitting library?"

Marilyn has answered this question before, and she and I are in pretty close agreement about most of the types of books that are used most often. I put my knitting books in one of four categories:

1. Basic techniques and beginner instructions
2. Stitch dictionaries
3. Basic pattern books and specific knitting techniques
4. Inspirational books

Here's my Amazon list of books that all knitters should have in their library.

For a basic/beginner book, almost any will do. I chose the Vogue Knitting book, but there are lots out there that will tell you everything you need to know. The internet provides all this information as well, and for the most part, I rarely reference my basic technique books.

For stitch dictionaries, I prefer the Barbara Walker Treasuries, although the Harmony Guides are good as well. I have both, and refer to them often when I'm looking for a design idea.

For basic pattern books, I look for any book that will give me basic dimensions for a simple pullover. For children's knitting, I love the MinnowKnits and the Knitting from the Top is great for a lot of basic sweater ideas. As for specific techniques, such as Fair Isle or Sock knitting, I have included a couple of my favorites that I have used over and over. I also love looking through Lace Knitting books and Marianne Kinzel and Sharon Miller are my favorites.

Finally, for inspirational books, I love the Simply Knit series, and the Unicorn Book/Jamieson Shetland books as well. I also refer often to my Kaffe books for inspiration.

Current Knitting
It was a short weekend, with lots of things jammed into it, so I focused mainly on the dark tweed pullover.



I've finished about 11 inches on the back, and I'm hopeful to finish the back this week.

7 comments:

Carol said...

I'd like to hear more about what got jammed into what.

Now off to peruse your list.

ted said...

Yes, Joe, but why do you prefer the BW Treasuries to the Harmony Guides? What's the difference that makes the difference?

Gail said...

I would probably including a finishing book in my list, like Nancie Wiseman's "The Knitters Book of Finishing Techniques". I find its really handy, and it improved my finished garments immensely.

nancyneverswept said...

I'm surprised you don't include any of Elizabeth Zimmermann's books, especially Knitting Without Tears!

Marilyn said...

Yes. That's about as perfect a list as you can get. I might add some of the EZ books too.

Now, that said, I own every one of those books. Yikes.

Gail said...

I think the EZ books are perfect for folks who taught themselves to knit, or are somehow outside the "knitting culture". I taught myself out of a book, and didn't know another knitter for at least a year - the EZ books told me, for example, that folks who tell you that you knit weird are full of crap. Which was reassuring to read, after reading bits of Principles of Knitting.

Geraldine said...

I like the Patons 'Classic' series for basic patterns to adapt, and I find them useful for both hand and machine knitting. for inspiration it is hard to go past Mr Fassett though. About the twisting wool business with the cones, I think it is a myth, I have never had a problem with it either with hand knitting or on the machine. Possibly the belief arises because someone has had slanting knitting happen and blamed it on the cone when it is most likely to result from the actual yarn being unbalanced. That is a problem that happens in the spinning and as far as I know the knitter has no way to fix it other than to chuck it out!

By the way, that multicoloured jacket did turn out well! You must be pleased!

Oh, and I noticed on the BBC News online that there was a protest in England against Gay rights which united Catholics, Protestants and Muslims! Strange bedfellows indeed. I am still trying to work out what it all means. I don't think Paris Hilton was there though, so I suppose it could hardly be considered news?