Saturday, 24 March 2018

2018 in books (part two)

I've already mentioned my bookshelf here before.  When I first started knitting, I had a few books - which then grew to a few more.  This became a shelf, which then outgrew itself.

Last year I moved everything on to a bookshelf in the spare room.  However, because there was space on the shelf, I felt the need to fill it.  I made a list of all the books I bought in 2017 - and there were around 26; certainly more than one a month.  That doesn't include supplements sent with magazines.

So, this year - I set myself a challenge to curb my book buying habits, which I've totally fallen apart at, before realising how ridiculous I was being.  I've already mentioned the book Icelandic Handknits, bought when I went to Unravel.  It may be years before I knit any of the patterns in the book, but I've had great joy in reading about the history of handknitting in Iceland, and I know it's there when I want to go back to it.  The same is true of Victorian Lace Today  It may well be some time before I knit any of the projects in it, but I'm looking forward to reading about the history of Victorian lace knitting, and expanding my knitting knowledge. 

This morning, I piled up all the books I've bought so far this year - and they nearly reached my knee.  That's nearly-a-knee's worth of patterns, and history and techniques and gorgeous photos.  That's nearly-a-knee's worth of other people's ideas and solutions, which could easily give me inspiration for mine.  

Yes, I have knitting books on my Kindle too - but I'm old fashioned enough to want the paper and glue version to hold on to, and flick through.  At least three of these books have been signed, so not only am I collecting a knitting library, I've got a personal record of creative people that I admire.  Oh, and if you've ever tried reading a cable chart from a Kindle, you may also understand the love of paper! 

Cable Chart from The Knitters Almanac by Elizabeth Zimmerman

When I was a teenage, my mother forbade me having a clothing allowance, as I'd spend it all on books.  I think this is highly influential in my avoidance of clothes shopping as an adult, and possibly why these four arrived at the end of March....

Books bought from Brityarn - before it all closes down

So, what's in your knitting library ? 


  1. I always have fun seeing what knitting books are at the used bookstore. I do hold back. I have so many books that haven't been dented or even touched. I am tempted to buy Stephen West's new shawl pattern but I'm waiting a bit to see if he'll address the error a few knitters had found.

    1. If there's a secret to to holding back - please let me in on it!

  2. For the most part my patterns are in Ravelry and on my iPad in Knit Companion. I have to say that the Knit Companion app has totally revolutionized my knitting and I much prefer to knit charted patterns that way instead of using paper. So much so that I scan patterns from books now to bring them into Knit Companion.


    There are still several knitting books on my shelf:
    • Sock Innovation by Cookie A
    • Knit. Sock. Love by Cookie A
    • Op-Art Socks by Stephanie van der Linden
    • Knitting Vintage Socks by Nancy Bush
    • Knitting on the Road by Nancy Bush
    • Silk Road Socks by Hunter Hammersen

    and then a couple of Vogue Stitch dictionaries and every single book I have ever found from Alice Starmore (who I hero worship). Maybe someday i'll work up the nerve to buy a sweater quantity of yarn and knit one of her gorgeous Fair Isle Sweaters!!!!

    1. I've only ever seen Alice Starmore patterns and you're right - they are gorgeous!
      I read Hunter's blog and have wondered about some of her books and Sock Innovation is on my wish list.

  3. I have the same problem! An overflowing shelf ...


Once Upon a Sock: February

Each month I come here to write about socks and think 'I really must blog more' - and then put that thought to bed, until the follow...