Recently, I’ve been playing around with the Loom Knit Stitch Dictionary, but I’d been wondering if I could find a useful traditional needle knitting book that would give me more stitches to play with. I browsed online then thought about checking out our second-hand craft store. Unfortunately, when we went to the craft store, it was closed for reorganizing, so we made other plans for the day.
We happened to stop by Tuesday Morning, where I was fortunate to find several skeins of superwash wool yarn in blue and in white. I got a few black ones, too, but the blue and white were actually available in large quantities, which is not very common at this discount store.
Next to Tuesday Morning is a book store and my mother-in-law wanted to go in, so I decided I’d browse for a knitting book. I glanced through a few but the ones I grabbed didn’t have what I was looking for. Then I picked up The Knitting Bible by Peter Pauper Press. It was wrapped in plastic, so I hesitated on buying it, plus the actual wrapper had a warning note on the back that made it difficult to read the back blurb. But, something intrigued me, so I decided to look online and see if I could find a review.
I waited for the results to load and at that moment, my MIL came by to check if I’d found everything I was looking for. I mentioned that I was debating on whether to get this knitting book and she told me to just get it and that we could return it if it wasn’t what I was looking for.
It was exactly what I was looking for!!
It has lots of color pictures, showing every stitch, and there are stitch charts included so you know which stitches are on the right side of the work (which helps because the main difference in loom knitting vs needle knitting – apart from using a loom – is that we only work the right side of the project). The Knitting Bible also offers some additional knit and purl stitches that the Loom Knit Stitch Dictionary didn’t have. The caterpillar stitch is an interesting one, but I can’t wait to try the pique stitch.
The book allows me to either follow the chart or I can use the needle pattern and just do the reverse of the stitches in the even numbered rows. I bought a grid lined notebook so I can convert stitch patterns and design my own projects.
I’m hoping to write a more detailed review later on after I’ve had a chance to play with it.
A few days later, when the second-hand craft store had it’s re-opening, I found two more knitting books. One Ball Knits and a 1970s knitting dictionary from Mon Tricot.
The Mon Tricot Knitting Dictionary: 1030 Stitches Patterns has a combination of needle knit and crochet patterns as well as needle knitting techniques. Most of the images are in black and white, but there are some color pictures for granny squares and several of the multi-color stitch patterns. It looks like you can still find this book used at Amazon and Etsy.
One Ball Knits is a combination of knitting techniques (the first third of the book is about basic knitting techniques), knitting terms, and things you need to know about yarn, from weight to needle size, dye lots, yarn gauge, and substituting one yarn for another.
The book has 20 knitting patterns, which include scarves, shawls, gloves, socks, bags, belts and even a necklace and a felted hat. Each pattern includes the written instructions and a knitting chart. They also tell you the yarn used, the needle size, and the gauge so you know if you’re on the right track.
Once I get a bit more comfortable with knitting charts (and converting written patterns), I might try a couple of these. I like the kimono shrug and the Moebius shawl (though I think there are loom knit patterns out there for a similar Moebius shawl).
While I like some of the designs much better than others, I do think the book gives you an idea of the variety of things you could make with one skein of yarn.
I might look for some other stitch dictionaries. I don’t know if they will be quite as good as the Knitting Bible, but it’s helpful to know which stitches are common stitches and which are newer creations.
Hope you’re having a great start to the year!
Do any of you like to use needle knitting books or patterns for your loom knitting? Do you read the knitting charts or convert your pattern by hand?