Monday, February 20, 2017

Book Review and Giveaway - Garter Stitch Revival

*** We have a winner! It's handmadebysue @ravelry. Sue, please contact me to claim your prize! ***

This is a review of the book, Garter Stitch Revival (Interweave/F+W; $24.99 [CAN $30.99]; February, 2017). Focused on the first stitch that new knitters learn, Garter Stitch Revival presents 20 patterns that focus on the qualities of this versatile stitch. From accessories to garments, each pattern highlights garter stitch in a unique way. It’s a great book for the newer knitter looking to broaden their horizons.

This book celebrates the beauty and sophistication of this simple stitch. The book divides patterns into three categories, patterns that feature garter stitch as a detail, patterns where garter stitch is in a supporting role, and those with garter stitch all over.

It can be noted that most of these patterns use a solid or semi-solid yarn. I have found that a variegated yarn can look kind of muddy when garter stitch is used, as the different tones mix together and the beauty of each color is lost. Garter stitch has a characteristic of lying flat, which makes it perfect for hems, edgings, and cuffs of garments.

Here are some of the patterns that caught my eye.
1. Be TrueFingerless Mitts. These use DK weight yarn and are very attractive. Just note that this pattern uses a chart, not written instructions, although it is quite a simple straightforward pattern.

2. Seashell DolmanTee.  This also uses a DK weight yarn. I find that the dolman sleeve style creates too much bulk under the arms and can look a little awkward.

Having said that, it has a simple flat construction that is perfect for beginners. 

3. Argyle Diamond socks. These use garter stitch enclosed in diamond shapes, mimicking the classic argyle sock. This pattern is also charted only. 

4.  The Flapper Cloche.  Knit in worsted weight, it has an ingenious construction and really is cute. 

5. Just Peachy Cardigan. This one is in a bulky weight and uses garter stitch trim for the hem and the cuffs. 

6.  Boardwalk Brioche Cowl  This design uses garter stitch and brioche in a two color pattern. It has a very pretty rolled edge.

7. CottonCandy Mosaic Yoke Cardi.   This is a really pretty sweater. I hate to nitpick but the neckline is too wide – it looks like the sweater might slip off the shoulders. The pretty yoke colorwork makes this a really attractive sweater. It looks like maybe the sweater is simply too big for the skinny model. I'm sure it can be adjusted to fit properly or just worked in an appropriate size. 

8. Coney Island Shawl.   This pretty shawl uses mesh stripes and garter stripes in an asymmetrical shape and features a lace edge. 

9. Santa Monica Cardigan.  This sweater is done in fingering weight, and is a long comfy sweater. Be aware that the garter stitch does have a tendency to stretch and sag, so the sweater might get longer as you wear it! It is very flowing and graceful and uses a rolled edge collar.  

10. The Festival Halter Top.  This one uses short rows to create a really pretty curved him.  It is done in Aran weight cotton, and because it's garter stitch, again it might have a tendency to stretch out. However in the pictures it is nicely form fitting and very attractive.

In summary, I thought this book was a great compilation of garter stitch patterns. There were quite a few that I would love to make for myself, and I'm sure you will find some that you love as well. I would heartily recommend this book.
Disclosure: I was given a copy of this book to review.

Now for the giveaway information. If you post a comment on this blog entry stating which pattern is your favorite, and sign up for my newsletter, you will be entered into a giveaway to win your own copy of this book, plus I might just throw in a skein of beautiful yarn from my large stash
Be sure to give a Ravelry ID, or an email address -- or even your Instagram handle will do -- so that if you win I have a way to contact you! Don't forget
I will select a name in 2 weeks time, on March 6.

Pantone Color of the Year 2017

Jill Wolcott had a great post about the Color of the Year, Greenery.  She describes what is so great about this particular color (think spring leaves) and how to use it - alone or with other colors. She has provided some suggested color palettes as inspiration for your next project. It's a great read.

Tips for Knitting with Lace Weight Yarn

A while back I wrote some tips for working with lace weight yarn. Here they are, in case you need that info .... Learn from my experience!

That's all for today! See you all next time.

 P.S. Don’t forget to sign up for my newsletter to stay informed of future giveaways, knitting tips, test knits, and pattern news.