Thursday, March 15, 2007


Romantic Style: Knits and Crochet to Wear or Display by Jennie Atkinson, 2006, Martingale & Company ISBN:1-56477-715-4, 128p. $29.95(USD)

I bought this book last week because I find it charming. I shy away from project-based needlework books more often than not, but this is an exception. As usual, I'm not looking at instructions or the more technical aspects of the book, but I like the photos of the knitted items. Ms. Atkinson uses designs from other designers to good effect, and keeps a very beautiful and delicate theme going throughout. She offers designs for a wide variety of garments and also accessories. I like them all, although I'm inspired by one or two to actually try them or something like them. One of the purse designs grabbed me right away, and I'm sure I'll be riffing on it for some time to come.

Although I'm not following the directions, I'm already working on at least three purses based on that inspiration. It's plain stockinette stitch pattern embellished with buttons, and I've rifled through one bag of buttons in my stash and am actually trying to remember where all the rest of my pounds (oh yeah) of buttons are.

I'll make one technical comment regarding a pattern chart. Laid out on a grid that is SHADED with a dark tan, the one pattern I'd like to try is almost impossible to read. I don't know what posessed the book people to shade this chart but lemme tell ya, it's a very very bad idea if reading it is the purpose. Not only that but it's practically microscopic. Sheesh! You'd think the book designers would have a clue.

Having finished the stockinette piece for the purse, I realized how long it's been since I've made a plain stockinette piece of knitting with plain worsted wool while I was blocking it last night: years and years. I've had quite a trip with novelty yarns. Now that the wool's dry and I've collected my mother of pearl buttons I'm ready to start stitching the buttons onto the wool, and I'm adding some beads too.

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