Good Morning Knitters! (And welcome to any non-knitters stopping by too!)
Last week I promised my next post in this series would be a list of book resources for knitters.
Have you ever found yourself in need of some knitting-related help but your computer was turned off?
Or maybe you’ve been knitting while traveling and didn’t have access to the internet?
Books (even eBooks!) can be great resources for learning knitting techniques!
A basic search for knitting books will bring up more to choose from than even I know what to do with. I’ve distinguished 5 different types or categories of knitting books–you could probably come up with more!–and am going to give you my recommendations for each.
I hope my little list will give you some good ideas for starting your own knitting book library.
My Top 5 Types of Knitting Books (with recommendations)
- Basic Knitting Help: The Knitting Answer Book by Margaret Radcliffe and The Knitter’s Companion by Vicki Square are just a couple of the many basic knitting help books available. These both have drawn illustrations and helpful information for when you need to learn or re-learn a technique. I personally chose to buy The Knitting Answer Book because I liked the smaller size (it fits well in my knitting bag without taking up a ton of room) and once I had it, I really didn’t need any other. With the deluxe version of The Knitter’s Companion now including DVDs, it might be worth getting if you’re a visual learner and could easily pop a DVD into a player and watch when you need to learn something.
- Knitting Stitch Patterns: I have three of these. Interweave’s 101 Stitches to Knit was the first that I purchased. I love that it’s a set of cards rather than an actual book. Just take out the card that you want to use. Very nice if you want to toss it in your knitting bag without the extra weight of a book. My second book is Super Stitches Knitting by Karen Hemingway. It’s a nicely written book with a good variety of stitch patterns to choose from. Another good one to have on hand when designing or looking for a texture to knit is Beautiful Knitting Patterns by Gisela Klöpper.
- General Pattern Books: There are tons and tons of these. When I purchase one it’s usually because it has patterns for plenty of items that I’d like to make. There are so many different styles and tastes that I highly recommend checking your public library for what books they have before you buy! I’ve previewed several knitting books this way! I really love my public library for this! Or spend some time in the knitting book section of your local bookstore (if you have one). There are several I’ve put on my “wish list” because I really like the book but I can’t quite afford it at this time. The book currently at the top of my general pattern wish list is The Knitter’s Handy Book of Patterns by Ann Budd.
- Specific Pattern Books: Lace, socks, sweaters, shawls, hats, baby stuff, blankets, toys. You name a specific technique or hand-knit item and I’m sure you’ll find at least one book entirely dedicated to that subject! One of the first books I received (as a gift from my hubby) happened to be a sock knitting book. I love love love knitting socks! And 2-at-a-time Socks by Melissa Morgan-Oakes has been my go-to resource for knitting a pair of socks from the top down ever since. I can’t say enough how much I love having both socks finished at the same time (as opposed to having to start all over again with the second sock). I have yet to master the toe-up method, but that’s why I got Wendy D. Johnson’s Toe-Up Socks in a Box. Another set of handy take-with-you cards instead of an actual book, this one has 20 patterns plus essential techniques particular to knitting socks beginning at the toe. And I simply can’t mention sock knitting without talking about my newest resource: Ann Budd’s Sock Knitting Master Class which has 17 sock patterns with a huge variety of toes, heels, and other sock design elements. It’s a fabulous book plus it has an instructional DVD (which I have yet to actually view but I’m sure it’s fabulous too)! I hope to have time to actually use this one soon! Then there’s lace knitting which I’m learning to love more and more. I bought Wendy Knits Lace–also by Wendy D. Johnson. So many beautiful designs! And Knitted Lace of Estonia by Nancy Bush is on my wish list too!
- Knitting Humor: What would life be without a little humor? I don’t want to know! My favorite knitter-writer who happens to fall into this category is Stephanie Pearl-McPhee. Perhaps I love her because we share the same first name. Or maybe just maybe it’s the fact that when I read her writings I can’t seem to stop giggling! I’ve even been known to read portions of her books out loud to my husband because if I am enjoying it so much then surely he must enjoy it too! Known as the Yarn Harlot, Stephanie writes about knitting and being a knitter in an absolutely wonderful and downright-hilarious way. I love her book Knitting Rules! and will re-read it from time to time. Just because it’s that good.
So there you have it!
These are my Top 5 Types of knitting books and a few of my faves for each.
How about you? Which knitting book(s) do you recommend most?
Let me know in the comments below!