May 21, 2012

Textured Stitches - a book review

A Playful Day is a wonderful podcast and blog that I listen to / read regularly. According to the host it "attracts fellow crafters, yarnies and small dogs. It's playful because that's what life should be." A statement I heartily agree with!

Following a recent donation incentive offer by A Playful Day I won - a knitting book! Like many of us I LOVE knitting books, have 3 shelves full already and a ton more titles listed on a wishlist. However, I am often a little dissappointed when I actually get new (to me) books, usually because of my personal preferences and not due to any major problems with the books themselves.

The book I received from A Playful Day has been on my wanted list for quite some time: Textured Stitches by Connie Chang Chinchio.
This book is absolutely wonderful!
There are 11 tops/sweaters/cardigans and 8 smaller projects including gloves, hats, a shawl and a headband (women patterns only).
Most of the designs are based on larger areas of simple stockinette stitch but they include wonderful textured details created with cables, traveling stitches, ribs etc.- rather simple means to achieve great results.

What I particularly love about the designs is that most are knit from fingering or DK weight yarn - even the sweaters and cardigans. This means lots of mindless knitting interrupted by areas where you need to pay attention - a great mix in my opinion - but even beter it makes for elegant, drapey pieces.
The finishing of the garnments looks very sophisticated, clean and professional.

The layout of the book is well done: the items are modeled in full in a way that clearly shows the construction, and there is a close-up of each textured stitch pattern.The charts are large enough for comfortable reading and schematics make it simple to modify certain areas of a garnment.

The author lists errata for three of the patterns on a book errata page

I recommend this book to anyone who doesn't mind lots of stockinette knitting and loves tailored fits.

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