First off, thank you to everyone who entered the giveaway for the pattern collections and subscriptions to Knitcircus. The winners of the pattern collection are:
Anne, Dana, Diana C., Pat L., Kae, Denise, Lynneth, Tara, Amy, and Sarah.
I have emailed the link to download the collection to you all, so if you think one of those people is you, check your email.
And the winners of the subscriptions are Sandy H. (happy birthday, Sandy!) and Ardosa.
I have forwarded your email addresses to Jaala at Knitcircus and she will arrange for your subscriptions.
Thank you, Jaala, for supplying these goodies for the give-away.
Next on the agenda, I was sent a fabulous new book to review.
This is Charts Made Simple: Understanding Knitting Charts Visually by JC Briar.
You may have noticed that more and more, knitting patterns are eschewing written out instructions for stitch patterns and relying on charts. The majority of my patterns are charted: charts correspond well to the way I think and I think are far less likely to have errors because an error in a chart jumps out at you far better than does one in a written-out line of instructions.
But what do you do if you have no experience knitting from charts?
JC Briar to the rescue!
Charts Made Simple is small in size (just over 100 pages) but it is packed with everything you need to know to be able to knit from charts. The book has 6 main sections:
- The big picture
- Staying on track
- Cable symbol sensibility
- Charts that show shape
- Counting stitches
- Repeated stitches
I have read this book cover to cover (Hello — I can’t knit right now. What else can I do with my spare time?) and I can’t think of a single aspect of charting that isn’t covered. Everything is explained in clear, straightforward language and illustrated with lots of pictures and — you guessed it — charts.
I really like the way the book is organized — each chunk of information is set out on one or two pages in an easy-to-read format.
As far as I know, this is the only book around that de-mystifies knitting charts and teaches you how to use them and make the most of them. Long overdue, in my opinion.
JC very kindly offered to send a copy to one of my blog readers. Who’d like it?
To be entered in the drawing for the giveaway, leave a comment to this post. The Random Number Generator will select a winner from among those comments on Wednesday, February 9 at 4:00pm Eastern Time, so get your entries in before then.
Contrary to what some of you think (judging from the comments), it is my hand that’s broken not my wrist. Thanks again for all your good wishes. It’s still broken. I still can’t knit as such, as I have no strength in my hand and very limited range of motion. But just this weekend I’ve noticed some slight improvement in my range of motion, and it seems less swollen. But I still have a long way to go before things are back to normal, I think.
However, since the accident I have designed a line of patterns that I’m thinking about publishing as an e-booklet entitled The Winter of My Discontent. All designs are cabled and there are six patterns: two hats, mittens, fingerless mitts, a cowl, and socks. And several of my lovely friends are knitting up the samples for me.
Where would I be without my friends?
I’m all ready to watch the Superbowl!