My current work in progress:

Seaforth designed by Alice Starmore, knit in British Breeds 5-ply Guernsey Wool on US 3 needles.


Knitting a Kiss in Every Stitch

Nicky Epstein has a new book out: Knitting a Kiss in Every Stitch: Creating Gifts for the People You Love.


You may know Nicky Epstein from her many designs that have appeared in Vogue Knitting and other magazines over the years, and from her fabulous edging and flower books. I own a couple of her knitted edging books and the knitted flowers book. (There are also crochet edging and flower books for you crocheters out there.)

This new book is a collection of projects to knit as gifts for loved ones — perfect timing for holiday knitting. It is divided into chapters according to recipients: kids, girls, guys and special friends.

The kids’ chapter has several adorable hats, a baby blanket, a cute little hoodie, and some girly beaded socks. All of these projects are fairly quick knits, so you could whip a couple out as last minute gifts. My favorite project from this chapter:


The Meow Kitty Cap. How cute is that?

The girls’ chapter includes several pretty wraps and a scarf, some bags, a hat, legwarmers, and mitts. I love this tote:


The Cable-and-Leaf Tote, with an appliqued leaf that makes it distinctively a Nicky Epstein design.

The guys’ chapter includes gloves, scarf, socks, a throw, and a cap.

The gloves are Fisherman’s Gloves:


Great for keeping the hands warm while maintaining dexterity for fine motor tasks, perhaps tying a fly?

The Special friends’ chapter is my favorite. It includes a lovely afghan knit in blocks, so it would make a great charity project for a group to knit. There’s also a microwavable neckwarmer, footies and socks, spa cloths, a doggie hat/scarf combo, travel tags, and a scarf. And this:


A kitty play mat, complete with knitted mice. You can felt the mat, or leave it unfelted. Most cats love wool so this is a great idea for a present for your furry little friend. I’m betting Lucy would enjoy snuggling up on a mat of her own.

In the back of the book there’s a guide to organizations that accept donations of knitted items. There’s also a nice glossary of abbreviations, techniques, and sources.

My overall impression? This is a great book for someone who wants to knit for others. You will find something for everyone on your gift list (as well as for yourself) within its pages, and the projects are all original and fun.

As a bonus, here are a couple of tips from Nicky Epstein:

Tip 1: Simple Storage Solutions
Use an empty “Altoids” or any candy or cigar tin for storing T-pins, stitch markers and any other knitting paraphernalia that will fit in the tin.

Tip 2: Yarn Tracking
When using the long-tail cast-on, pull off the extra yarn for the tail to prevent running out of yarn and having to start all over. This extra yarn can be tied up and used for sewing seams later. Also, place a marker every 25 stitches in case you lose count of the cast-on stitches.

Now, I was sent two copies of this fun book — one for me, and one to give away!

Want my second copy? Leave a comment on this post by 4:00pm Eastern time on Monday, November 16, and we’ll draw a name at random to receive the book.

It’s been cold and rainy here for that past couple of days, which means this is what Lucy looks like most of the time:


When she is not in my lap, that is.