Autumn is new book season, and October has brought with it a righteous haul of excellent books. I list them here with great excitement. As always, some of them I’ve seen, and some I’ve yet to see, but all are worthy of a knitter’s consideration.
This month, the textile-generating population is blessed with intriguing books in three categories: knitting books, knitting e-books, and not-knitting books.
I was waiting for this one. I can now convert all sweater patterns into my current favorite shape. Or if I’m too lazy for pattern conversion, Amy has provided beautiful ready-made patterns. This one is going on the permanent reference shelf.
Japanese stitch patterns never cease to amaze. From familiar building blocks come mesmerizing patterns.
250 Japanese Knitting Stitches: The Original Pattern Bible by Hitomi Shida
If you’ve accumulated stacks of Interweave Knits magazine over the years, this book is a godsend. One hundred patterns, culled from so many amazing designs. You can finally think about recycling all those back issues. Kudos to the designer who chose the arresting and unexpected cover image.
Martin Storey is a favorite Rowan designer, whose signature is stunning cables and classic silhouettes. I’m excited to see his latest.
Easy Cable and Aran Knits: 26 Projects with a Modern Twist by Martin Storey
E-Books by Independent Designers
We can barely skim the surface of all the new independently designed collections appearing on Ravelry, but here are a few of our favorites.
Beloved MDK contributor Kirsten Kapur has designed a collection for mYak, a line of exquisite yak and cashmere yarns sourced in Tibet and spun in Italy.
The designs are fresh and colorful.
Simple and elegant.
The River Stroll pullover is sized for women and kids.
Stay tuned for more on this one.
Vibrant Connections by Kirsten Kapur (photographs by Gale Zucker)
If you liked I Knit New York, you’ll adore I Knit Paris, a new collection of Paris-themed patterns by France-based designers, using European yarns.
One of my favorites is the Tuileries Pullover by Julie Knits in Paris, with its clean lines, trim fit, and twisted-rib sleeves.
I Knit Paris by Kathleen Dames, Alice O’Reilly and Clara Ferrand
Jill Draper has a new yarn, Kingston, a tweedy wool that comes in eight saturated colors. To celebrate the launch of Kingston, Jill has designed a collection of rustic, casual garments and accessories. The book is called Here, and the designs are modeled by Kingston, New York artisans and business owners, and photographed by Gale Zucker.
Dancing in Wildflowers Leg Warmers.
Here by Jill Draper (photographs by Gale Zucker)
Not About Knitting (But Not to Be Missed)
If you have not seen this book in at least ten jubilant unboxing photos on Instagram, you are not following enough Slow Fashion October and handstitching people. This is the It book of the modern make do and mend movement.
Mending, for all its homespun simplicity, is mysterious to me. I’m sure I know how to do it already, just from knowing how to thread a needle and make a running stitch, but somehow I hold back. What’s the technique for putting a patch on the back of a hole? On the front? Do you need some kind of darning egg thingy? In this book, Katrina Rodabaugh tells all, with beautiful and detailed photographs to illustrate her teaching. (She even tells you how to repair holes in awkward places that are not going to make it onto Instagram.)
This is the mending book I was waiting for. I’ve already devoured it, and I’m ready to thread that needle.
Mending Matters: Stitch, Patch, and Repair Your Favorite Denim and More by Katrina Rodabaugh
We knitters think we know the burden of too much stash. Fabric collectors have it harder, I think, because fabric, especially print fabric, is so specific. I’ve collected a bit of print fabric in my hot and cold flashes of quilting (ahem), and it’s fun to turn the pages of this book looking at ideas for quick ways to put it to use. Will I rev up my trusty Janome Jem Gold and make any of them? Only time will tell.
The Spoonflower Quick-Sew Project Book is the sequel to The Spoonflower Handbook, which is a wonderful book on many counts, but forever dear to my heart as the source of one of my all-time favorite kooky craft projects: pet tribute cushions in honor of your Kermit and Elliot (of blessed memory), and my Olive. Every time I see Pillow Olive sitting on the sofa, I laugh: at her, and at myself.
The Spoonflower Quick-Sew Project Book: 34 DIYs to Make the Most of Your Fabric Stash by Anda Corrie.
And that’s a wrap for October 2018 books. Let me know if there are any good ones that I missed, and stay tuned for November. Spoiler alert: MORE BOOKS.