I’ve accumulated a few books in the last couple of years so thought I would do a wee review of them all, in case anyone fancies purchasing one of them. I have included a short summary of the book, some of the pros and cons, and some photos if I have made anything from their patterns. These are my honest opinions of the books, and I am not affiliated with any of the authors or companies! I have posted links to places where you can buy them, but it’s worth doing your own search to see if you can get them cheaper. If you have any recommendations then please post in the comments sections. Aileen x
201 Knitting Motifs, Blocks & Idea by Nicki Trench. The first part of the book is dedicated to block patterns which allow you to try out tons of techniques and stitches. The second part includes loads of fab projects and the third part covers basic techniques.
- Pros: I love this book. It has something for everyone, from novice to skilled knitters. I love the patterns and it really helped me push myself, trying various different techniques.
- Cons: I don’t really think there are many cons with this book. The third section is quite brief, and I’ve never found it massively helpful, but parts one and two more than make up for it.
Crochet: The Complete Step-by-Step Guide This book was recommended to me by someone and I absolutely love it. The first section covers various stitches and techniques, with interspersed patterns to demonstrate them. The second section gives you loads of additional patterns to try.
- Pros: The first part is a really helpful reference guide and there is a great variety of patterns, with recommended difficulty level. It’s well laid out and the patterns are easy to follow (well as easy as any crochet patterns are to follow!)
- Cons: Not a problem for me as I’m a novice, but there are no patterns for advanced crocheters, so might not challenge people who have been crocheting for a while.
Little Sweet Peas (332) by Sirdar. A collection of patterns for boys and girls, from birth to 7 years.
- Pros: There are some lovely classic patterns in this book, and I like that they provide instructions for them all from birth to 7 years. The patterns are easy enough to follow, although I’ve needed advice from more experienced knitters a couple of times.
- Cons: The instructions are quite densely presented and the pictures are at the beginning and the end of the book, so you need to keep going back and forth to check you’re on track. I think it would be better if the patterns and the pictures were displayed together.
Lullaby Knits by Vibe Ulrik Sondergaard. This book has a collection of Vest, Cardigan, Sweater and Accessory patterns for children aged birth to 24 months.
- Pros: the patterns in here really are lovely. I’m a big fan of cables and other textured stitches and there are loads of these in here. Instructions are easy to follow and well laid out.
- Cons: some of the patterns are only written for tiny babies (and seriously, who gets round to dressing their newborn in anything other than a baby grow…) so it would be nice if it also included bigger versions. Similarly, it would be good if it went past 2 years, although I suppose you could resize it yourself. I am admittedly a very tight knitter, but the two patterns I have tried have knitted up super small, even using bigger needles and doing a larger size than needed, so it’s worth bearing that in mind.
Stitch ‘n Bitch the Knitter’s Handbook by Debbie Stoller. The first part of this book covers pretty much everything you need to know about knitting and the second part has various patterns and information about the designers.
- Pros: when I first started knitting, I used this book all the time. It has so many useful bits of advice and she writes really clearly so it’s very easy to follow. I still reference it, especially when I’m trying something new. I would say it’s a must for any new knitters out there.
- Cons: the patterns are a bit dated (it was written in 2003 so no great surprise) so I haven’t really been tempted to try any of them out, but they might appeal to other people.
Vintage Modern Knits by Courtney Kelley & Kate Gagnon Osborn. My husband bought me this book for Christmas. It has a collection of knits for women (e.g. sweaters, gloves, hats, shawls) with a lot of the patterns drawing on nature and the different seasons.
- Pros: the patterns are lovely and there are lots of explanations and tips throughout.
- Cons: I haven’t actually tried any of the patterns yet so I don’t want to draw too many conclusions. The patterns look fairly advanced and I’m not sure my skill set is up to them yet. Definitely not for novice knitters!
Wild Wild Wool by Rico. A collection of knitted and crocheted hats, scarves and bags for men and women (some of the patterns also have instructions for doing them for children and teens). In the second picture below only the blue cowl is from the book – the russet scarf was a fee online pattern.
- Pros: I like that this has both knitting and crochet patterns with some nice ideas for both (you’ll particularly like it if you’re a fan of pom poms). The patterns are easy to follow and have some great pictures showing what they should look like finished.
- Cons: the instructions are written in really small font, so they can be tricky to see – not ideal when you’re using both hands to craft, and have to keep putting your work down to pick up the book to read the next part!
I hope this has been useful. Please add any of your own recommendations – I’m always looking for new ones to buy! x