Let the past sleep, but let it sleep in the sweet embrace of Christ, and let us go on into the invincible future with Him. (Oswalt Chambers)

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Book Review - New Style of Heirloom Knitting

Japanese knitting book with Acorn sweaterHow do I begin raving about this book? I don't own a nicer book of knitting patterns, and I have many. There isn't a single project in this book I don't love.

Ready for a challenge? Not only are the designs complex and challenging, they are in Japanese.

The designs are beautiful. The photography is artistic, but done to show off the knitting with multiple pictures of each garment on glossy paper.

There are six sections:
  • Ganseys (2 sweaters)
  • Fair isles (3 sweaters)
  • Tams (3 fair isle, 2 cabled)
  • Cables (2 sweaters)
  • Lace shawls (3)
  • Entrelac (2 sweaters).

I've picked out my favorite sweater from each section to show you.

New Style of Heirloom Knitting - ganseyGansey
This beauty even has stitch patterning on the underarm gussets.

Each pattern in the book is only charted out for one size. The Japanese assume if you need a different size, you can chart it out yourself. This sweater is charted at 36 inches/92 cm around.

Gauge is about 8 stitches/inch, 10 rows/inch. I figured this out "reading" Japanese and converting from centimeters. I haven't figured out yet how many months it might take to knit, but I'd like to give it a try.

New Style of Heirloom Knitting - fair isleFair isle
The book has three fair isle sweater designs, a pullover, cardigan (in picture), and a vest.

Each sweater has a coordinating tam style hat.

New Style of Heirloom Knitting - cabled Herbstlied Cables
It was when I saw a swatch from this sweater on the Crossed in Translation blog, I knew I had to have this book.

Fortunately the one size provided, 38.6 inches/98 cm, should fit. Only the challenge of figuring out the pattern remains.

The gauge is worsted weight (I think). 5.5 stitches/inch and 8.5 rows/inch.

The second cabled sweater is Am Kamin, the intricate Aran knit featured on the Crossed in Translation blog.

New Style of Heirloom Knitting - shawlsLace Shawls
Here's a peek at all three lace shawls.

The white shawl, Mountainash, has its own Yahoo Group Mountainash.

There are helpful documents in their Files folder on reading Japanese patterns in general and this one in particular. And, there is one breathtaking picture of a finished shawl in the group's photo section.

New Style of Heirloom Knitting - entrelacEntrelac
Think of the color possibilities for this sweater.

Anybody brave enough to give it a try?

Book Title : nitsuto ni koishite shimada toshiyuki no se ta butsuku dentou nitsuto no atarashii densetsu
Author Name(s) : shimada toshiyuki
Language : Japanese
Publisher / ISBN : 4529039927
Release Date : October 19, 2004
YesAsia Catalog No. : 1003858802
Price : $18.49
Link to buy book : here

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