New Books at Knit-O-Matic
Knitting Little Luxuries bu Louisa Harding ~ $21.95
This book is for anyone who likes to make or wear feminine things. The projects are small, which is great because you an get through them fast and get a lot of bang for your buck. All the designs are ornamented in some way, either with cables, lace, intarsia or applique. There's lots of vintage, wearable Victoriana to go around: hats, bags, mittens, gauntlets, wraps, capelets, scarves and a single sweater and tunic-vest (the Winter 2007 issue of Interweave Knits for the Alicia Tabard vest pattern). Some benevolent knitter has also started a Knitalong for the book, so there is moral and knitting support out there (plus pictures of all the projects).
Pretty Knits by Susan Cropper ~ $38
Curtis of This hard cover book is one of those coffee-table-esque ensemble productions that i frequently use for patterns and eye candy. There are a few misses but the majority of the patterns are hits so just close your eyes on the odd ones and all will be well. I really like that the patterns are very pretty without being fussy. Features knit designers include Debbie Bliss, Louisa Harding, Leigh Radford, Nadine Curtis of BeSweet yarns, Kristeen Griffin-Grimes of French Girl Knits, Rowan Freelancer Emma Seddon, Susan Cropper of Loop yarns in London and many more. I think my favorite pattern is an contemporized bed jacket By Any Twigger Holroyd in super bulky wool. My only caveat is that they call for expensive yarns, but most of them are accessible in North America and all can be easily substituted with the gentle guidance of your LYS owner. Now, I admit that I am especially susceptible to chapter headers like "Beautiful Boudoirs" and "Feminine Fripperies", but I think I'm still objective enough to say that Pretty Knits is a great British take on modern femininity.