Hi, I’m Deb Boyken. I’ve been knitting since 1987, and have accumulated quite a collection of knitting books over the years. I figured it was about time that I put my library to use and shared some helpful information with the rest of you–because, who doesn’t appreciate a chance to read reviews of their knitting books before putting their money down to buy them? Or to get other opinions?
I don’t necessarily stick to knitting books, either. I also spin my own yarn and have been known to crochet, embroider, quilt, and sew over the years, so branching out to other types of books can happen. (Spinning, actually, is already a given.) Because, well, it’s fun.
As I say, I’ve been knitting since 1987. I live in New Jersey, but spent a semester in London while in college and was entranced by all the yarn I saw everywhere. Beautiful yarn at great prices in wonderful wool, and I was just kicking myself for not knowing what to DO with it. I couldn’t justify spending any of my money on yarn I might never do anything with–starving college student, you know–so, in December, I headed home swearing that I wouldn’t let that happen again. I bought myself a copy of Maggie Righetti’s Knitting in Plain English and have never looked back.
I thank the knitting books for that. Elizabeth Zimmermann was a huge influence, assuring me that it was a GOOD thing to try new things and not let yourself be limited. After all, it’s only yarn, so why not be brave and daring? Reading everything I could find was a huge help in that regard. I got a copy of Vogue Knitting‘s great reference for Christmas the year it came out and spent hours sitting with it, some needles, and some yarn, experimenting my way through the book, and getting a feel for each technique.
Knitting videos abound, the internet is chock-full of great resources, and you can almost always find someone who can answer questions, but I still say you can’t beat having a really good book. Whether it’s a reference book, a stitch dictionary, a book of patterns, or just something inspirational, there’s something wonderful about paging through a really good book.
But, how can you know which are the good ones? Well, all I can do is give you MY opinion and then try to back it up. I hope you’ll find it helpful!
Did I mention I love books? Not just knitting books, either. I’ve got over 3,000 books in my own personal library and read even more than I knit. I’ll read almost anything, really. So, really, how could I resist the urge to combine two of my favorite things? Knitting and Books?