Reviewed by: Renae Beardmore is the owner of the whimsically named suzy hausfrau yarn store, a Canberra (Australia) based online yarn store specialising in gorgeous unique and artisan yarns, with a focus on natural fibres and textures. Renae is passionate about sourcing quality products that will inspire and enable people to undertake their own creative journey. You can read more about Renae’s own creative adventures over on her blog.
Any book featuring Madeline Tosh yarn on the cover has me at ‘hello’. Textured Stitches: Knitted Sweaters and Accessories with Smart Details (Interweave Press January 2012) by Connie Chang Chinchio does that very thing, and then goes on to surprise and delight throughout.
Connie like many of us fellow knitters, leads a bit of a double life. Working as a consultant during the day, designing patterns and clicking the sticks at night. Her patterns in ‘Textured Stitches’ reflect her strong technical background and her mastery of the art of knitwear design.
The pattern on the cover, Intaliata Henly is a standout not only for the yarn she has used, but in how easy it makes up. The body and sleeves both knit in the round, and you know what that means. Minimial seaming – yay! The patterns in the book include small textured-knit projects such as hats and gloves, through to tunics, tops and cardigans. This book also includes a wide variety of textured stitches, such as lattice stitch, cables and more. I can’t stop dreaming about the Gioielli gloves pattern, with the most divine smocked cuffs. Sublime!
The recommended yarns in the book read like every yarn tragic’s wish list – Madeline Tosh, Malabrigo, Louet, The Fibre Company and it goes on. Connie has brought out the best of these yarns, particularly the semi-solids by her pattern design and garment construction techniques.
You also get a lot of helpful information such as how to read charts, step by step instructions on knitting gloves, and written and pictorial descriptions of stitches included in the book. This book is suited to the intermediate-advanced knitter, or a confident beginner who is ready to take on a challenge with Connie holding their hand.