A Knitting Wrapsody
by Kristin Omdahl
You can definitely see the crochet influence in this book of knitted patterns. I’ve seen Kristin Omdahl on Interweave’s Knitting Daily show giving crochet tips, but hadn’t realized that she’s a knitter as well.
Crochet background or not, this collection is made up of knitted patterns for scarves and shawls, as well as skirts. Some of the designs are readily recognizable as “knitted” objects, but a few really stand out as unique because of the designer’s crochet background. The Infinity “cardi-wrap,” for example starts with a knitted infinity sign on the back and then works from there. The Lelani shawl starts with a series of medallions that look like they could have been crocheted and then connected for the rest of the shawl.
I appreciate the creativity behind that. One of the advantages of crochet is that you can work in almost any shape you want–circles, squares, oblongs–whereas knitting tends to be more linear, primarily rectangle-based. Most knitters wouldn’t think to start with a completely different shape, (and it certainly is easier to crochet some shapes than to knit them) and I like the hints of crochet-legacy here to remind me of other possibilities.
So … all these new ideas. Are you worried that some of these techniques might be beyond you? Never fear–the book comes with an instructional DVD to demonstrate many of the techniques.
Hosted and narrated by Kristin Omdahl, the DVD shows many of the stitches used in the book’s designs. This is a great advantage, especially since some of these ideas might be entirely new to some knitters, and it’s interesting to hear how the designer came up with some of the patterns and their names.
All in all, this is a nice book, though I still don’t get the conceptual link from “wraps” like shawls to skirt patterns, but that’s not important. The included DVD is a nice touch, too, though the written descriptions seem quite clear. But then, I’m a word-oriented learner. If you do better with visual aids, you’ll appreciate the DVD even more than I did.
Reviewed by Deb Boyken
Deb has been knitting since 1987 and has accumulated quite a collection of knitting books over the years. Her website, Knitting Scholar, can be found at http://knittingscholar.com.