2012: The Year to Improve My Knitwear Design Skills

3KCBWDAY6 Improving myKnitwear Design Skills

I think my subconscious is trying to tell me something.  The last three books I went out and bought are all tools to improve my knitwear design.


Mmm, lovely books...

Actually that’s a lie.  I asked for Ysolda Teague’s ‘Little Red in the City‘ for Christmas after seeing the copy that the girls in my knitting group had bought themselves at Knit Nation.  And oh my! This is the book that I wish I’d written – it’s just beautiful!  I do appreciate a nice design – the pictures, layout and the hand drawn style text in here are gorgeous, and when I first received it I couldn’t even look in it out of sheer jealousy that I hadn’t got it together years ago and made something this lovely myself.


Ysola's book is really inspiring'

Little Red in the City, 3kcbwday6



I love the design of this book!

I’m over that now and I realise I have a lot to improve on before I can write anything like this – sure I can knit, but the mathematics of writing a pattern, getting it to fit right, and sizing it up is an artform that can’t be learned overnight.

Ysolda explains all of it, talking about different body types, how darts affect the garment, and different ways of creating drape depending on your shape.

After Christmas I treated myself to a copy of Stitch ‘n Bitch Super Star Knitting – Go Beyond the Basics. (I would rather link to Debbie Stollers website than Amazon, but it wasn’t on there)

Stitch 'n Bitch Superstar by Debbie Stoller

Debbie Stoller's Stitch 'n Bitch Superstar

I purchased this book because I wanted to learn two handed fairisle, but also because I’d learned to knit with the help of Stitch n’ Bitch, and crochet with The Happy Hooker, so I figured I couldn’t really go wrong!  The book includes loads of techniques and skills I wasn’t even aware of, such as knitting with a colour on each side – in theory it sounds crazy but after I’d read about it I wondered why I’d never worked it out.


Two handed Fairisle

The third book I bought was the mighty ‘Principles of Knitting‘ by June Hemmons Hiatt.  Now this baby is going to take some reading.  Prompted by a thread on Ravelry, and the tweets by Math4Knitters, I took the plunge and ordered yet another book to improve my knitwear design skills.

The Principles of Knitting, 3kcbwday6

The Principles of Knitting

The Principles of Knitting, 3kcbwday6

The Principles of Knitting

Of course I can’t give any of these books a proper review, as I’ve failed to mention I haven’t actually read them yet.  All of the information is there, but somehow it’s easier to spend time blogging and knitting than it is learning new skills.

So this summer, I’m going to sit down, read these books and take notes.  It’s easy to stay in your comfort zone when it comes to designing, but I think to improve my skills I’m going to have to push the boundries a little bit!

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6 thoughts on “2012: The Year to Improve My Knitwear Design Skills

  1. buttons and beeswax Post author

    I’m after a Zimmerman book too, but I’m going to make myself read these first before I can buy anything else! (Though I reserve the right to dip in and out of the Principles of Knitting, it’s not really bedtime reading is it!)

  2. Keri

    The Stitch ‘n Bitch books were my bible when I started knitted. The original is so dog eared that I think it might fall apart.
    Anyway, sent you a message on Rav about the EBI.
    Happy Knitting.

  3. affiknity

    I too bought Principles of Knitting recently and haven’t read it yet. As you said, it’s not bed time reading. I second BW’s Knitting from The Top.


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