October 3, 2008

Picture Perfect Knits

Laura Birek‘s new book Picture Perfect Knits just came out and the title is apt! From Chronicle’s site:

Just what the heck is intarsia anyway? One of the most overlooked knitting techniques, intarsia allows knitters to add graphics—think argyle diamonds or mod motifs—to their knits. There’s no tricky double stranding and knitters can incorporate intarsia into almost any project—be it a cozy blanket or tiny mittens. This handy guide includes instructions to make 12 projects plus more than 50 intarsia graphs that can be used to customize almost any knit.

And I’m not just saying it because I have a pattern in there. (*Cough* pages 113-114 *cough*). My pattern is based on Amy Butler’s Starflower Tiles fabric, one of my favorites — thanks due, of course, to Amy for allowing me to do this for Chronicle — and although it’s complex, you could include it in any number of patterns. How about a messenger bag flap (then line the bag with the actual fabric)? Or a big, cozy sweater? I know for a fact Cascade has great colors available that fit perfectly into this pattern. If you want to know which color numbers, leave a comment. Jamieson’s would be great, too.

What I really love about this book is that although it has pattern patterns in it, it’s really more of an inspirational jumping-off point than your typical knitting pattern book. You get a good dose of clearly-written how-to in the front, enough for any knitter to feel like they’ve got a grasp on the concepts, and then intarsia charts by a ton of designers that you’ll want to put on everything. Are you like me? Do you have that same-old, same-old easy pattern you like to knit when you don’t want to concentrate too hard on details? Put in an intarsia chart or two and liven it up!

Overall review: solid info, great charts, beautifully put together. A keeper!

Buy Picture Perfect Knits here.

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