Saturday, July 11, 2009
Sock Innovation by Cookie A; Country Weekend Knits by Madeline Weston
Cookie A is a great sock designer. She brought us one of the most popular and fun sock patterns of all time--Monkey--and now she has an entire book of creative designs, Sock Innovation. She is known, I think, for doing very interesting, cool things with cables; she also has a real talent for writing patterns very clearly, which I love. Sock Innovation has socks for a range of skill levels; the hardest ones are way beyond anything I'd dare attempt at this point, but there are several I feel willing to try. In fact, I have tried one pattern, "kai-mei," and I thought it produced some very pretty socks.
At the beginning of the book, Cookie A includes design information--you can learn how to design your own socks or how to alter the sizes/patterns for the one's she's provided here. Each pattern in the book is named after someone she knows, which gives the socks personality, and which I really like. All in all, a great sock book; I highly recommend it. The irony: hardcore knitters, all of them, probably already own the book!
Madeline Weston's Country Weekend Knits is exactly the kind of knitting book I love: it presents classic styles (in this case, from the British Isles, including Aran, Gansey, Fair Isle, and Shetland lace) and a brief history of each type of knitting. The sweaters are just gorgeous, and I am longing to knit a gansey soon. Have not yet tried any patterns, but they seem very easy to follow. The photography in the book is as beautiful as the sweaters.