On the Bookshelf, July 2016

I had a bit of birthday money to squander, and so, what’s a girl to do? Why, buy some fiber-loving books, of course. In the past, I have purchased a few books that have not really served me well in terms of the long-haul (more on that in a later post); but my errors have taught me a lot about what I really want on my bookshelf. Here’s a brief review of a few of the volumes I am obsessing over this month.


The Sock Knitter’s Handbook by Charlene Schurch and Beth Parrott

Why I wanted it: I love books that give me options and provide explanations about why I might make one choice instead of another. This book checks all the boxes. It’s not exactly a pattern book or a technique book, but somewhere in between. Most importantly, it contains tons of info about sizing, stitches, repair, construction (top-down and toe-up), and excellent, color photos  of many, many heels and toes.

Why I purchased it: It’s an excellent reference guide that will expand my sock-making repertoire and grow with me–offering explanations for the things I already do, and offering options for ways to shake things up.


Learning to Weave by Deborah Chandler

Why I wanted it: My dear partner, Spencer, has taken to weaving like a fish to water and I want to encourage him to keep at the loom and have some fun while doing it. That means that I’m usually in charge of the behind-the-scenes learning and pattern deciphering that allows him to weave-on! And, once I finally get a shot at the loom–which will be years from now methinks–I want to be prepared to weave! Finally, I just like learning new things and I find weaving to be challenging to understand. Hopefully this book will educate me, as it’s a textbook-like read that does not teach via patterns. Instead, the focus is on technique.

Why I purchased it: As with the next book on this list, my local library does not have a lot of weaving books on hand–what?! you may ask! So, no hope of borrowing as needed. Plus, and more importantly, these weaving books are essential reference material that I would want by my loom in a permanent-kind-of way.

The Handweaver’s Pattern Dictionary by Anne Dixon

Why I wanted it: See above . . . but also, and in the case of this book, my guild-mates Debbie and Beth wholeheartedly recommended it. I can see why. This book is a treasure trove of patterns, 600 to be exact, for a 4-shaft loom. As Beth pointed out in my first pattern-reading lesson, with our treddle tie-ups, we can weave many, many different twill patterns and that’s just the beginning.

Why I purchased it: Again, see above re: library lack. But also, this book is the kind of refernce that you want to have with you while you learn and when you think you have accomplished a lot on the loom. Just ask, how lobg would 600 patterns take me?


“Bulky” Ply Magazine’s 13th fabulous issue

Why I wanted it: Three words: I Love PLY. I have a subscription, so as far as purchasing, this was a no-brainer. But more than automated mail-delivery led me to include this issue here. PLY has a way of focusing on specific topics that is unique and really, really helpful. Other issue themes have included “BFL” “Woolen” “Color” and “Fine”; and for many of us, “Bulky” is something we used to spin, but don’t often spin any longer. It’s a great challenge, as it turns out, and this issue provides all the tips and tricks for getting (back) into bulky yarns and loving every spinning moment.

Why I purchased it: I am an indie-magazine geek and I love supporting small businesses, such as PLY and Taproot. If you know of other indie crafty magazines, please post in the comments so we can all share the love.

This entry was posted in books, community, learning, PLY, review, socks, weaving. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s