Sunday, July 17, 2005


My latest book purchase is providing me with inspiration for small projects that will use up all my short strands of yarn. Freeform Knitting and Crochet by Jenny Dowde has lots of interesting tips.

The full citation: Freeform Knitting and Crochet
, Jenny Dowde, September 2004,Sally Milner Publishing Pty, Limited ISBN:1-86351-327-2Softcover (Trade Paper),160p.

I appreciate what she includes regarding design, but feel a little let down by how little it actually is. She invokes the feeling that you should study design, but then really only mentions it. I think what knitters need is lots of ideas regarding design. I feel she explained the technique in a few words and then spent lots and lots of time giving instructions for things like fragments, which she admits should not really be made according to instructions. I think she should have spent the effort more on design and left the basic technique up to readers to discover. Espcially since that's what freeform is all about.

But....I'm always a bit put off by how much space lots of knitting books dedicate to technique. Almost every knitting book editor feels obligated to include basic knitting lessons as though every single book must have them. I disagree. Only the most remotely placed individuals cannot get ahold of knitting technique information.

In Jenny Dowde's case, I think it was a seriously misplaced idea that she should coddle the beginning knitter. The beginning knitter is going to have extreme difficulty doing things she's proposing anyway. They involve a very high level of ingenuity, and beginners are still learning how to hold the needles and yarn at the same time.

But I still like the book, only wish there were more illustrations and inspiring tips for advanced knitters who are leaving patterns behind and taking off in freeform ideas. I also think she does a very good job of describing the techniques that are needed to accomplish projects using the freeform ideas of putting together fragments. Her Funky FX chapter also rocks. I'm definitely going to be adding some funky fx to my knitting in the near future.

This book is in my bed, which means it ranks high.

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