Monday, March 12, 2007

Knitting Book Reviews - Favorite Socks

Happy Monday, everyone! Thanks for all the suggestions for my Interlacement socks. I had actually been considering something like Feather and Fan, something with an uneven pattern. Then Chris suggested Jaywalkers. Why I never considered this pattern is beyond me, but it is absolutely perfect. Yes, you're expecting pictures, but my camera is experiencing technical difficulties. The problem should be resolved by the end of the week.

For now, a certain online bookstore finally got their act together and got me my new Interweave books - Favorite Socks and Lace Style. So if you want to know what I think, here goes.

First up is Favorite Socks. Several of these patterns I have in the Interweave Knits magazine, but as Jess pointed out, it is very convenient having them all in one place. Also, I've only been subscribing for a couple of years, so there are some I didn't have. There are several offerings from sock (and lace) gurus Evelyn A. Clark and Nancy Bush, including my favorite "Anniversary Socks" which is a lovely lace diamond pattern on the front of the sock. I have done a few pairs of Nancy Bush socks, but I usually modify the socks for 0 needles and a slightly larger foot than she usually writes her patterns for. Also by Nancy Bush are Ilga's Socks (Latvian inspired colorwork), Ute Socks (Ute beadwork inspired colorwork), Meida's Socks (nice little lacy socks), and Eeisti Trail Hiking Socks (more colorwork in heavy yarn for maybe hiking?). By Evelyn Clark, the book features the Retro Rib pattern (a nice different little rib pattern), Go with the Flow Socks (a nice little lace rib pattern), and Waving Lace Socks (zigzag pattern with a little lace). There are other great patterns including Ann Budd's Mock Wave Cable Socks which is pretty much how it sounds and several others. I like how the book shows nice closeups of the socks. My biggest complaint would be that all of the socks use solid colors. I really would like to see a book someday that features patterns for handpainted sock yarns. (Anyone want to write one?) Other than that, I really do like the book and I guess there are lots of solid color yarns I've never tried.

And well, since I probably won't have any pictures for Wednesday either, I'll share my thoughts on Lace Style then. I'll tell you now that I do love the book.

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Blogger skhpottery said...

Judging from their podcast I'd expect the upcoming Lime and Violet sock book to be mostly with variegated yarns.

9:01 AM  
Anonymous Cheryl said...

I love Lace Style too. Especially that cover sweater! And the red hat.

9:19 AM  
Blogger Chris said...

I'm glad the Jaywalkers are working out for you!!

Thanks for the review - looking forward to more detail about Lace Style.

9:27 AM  
Blogger Liz said...

Hmm, well, I can tell you that most of those sock patterns will work just find with variegated yarns. I think they simply took the photos with single colored socks for the ease of capturing the patterns. It's so hard to get good detail photos of patterning when you have a lot of color changing going on.

10:23 AM  
Anonymous JessaLu said...

Great review!

I agree, there is a need for a sock book for variegated yarns.

1:59 PM  
Blogger Debi said...

I love Favorite Socks and Lace Style too! Both are Really nice books and an asset to any knitter's library.

I know I'm the outcast in my opinion but Jaywalkers...feh! They fit poorly and frankly the only nice think about them is the way they work with stripey yarn. Since your Interlacements isn't stripey I think you'd be happier with a different pattern. If it's the chevron look you're after, there are lots of better fitting socks out there...just my opinion!

5:33 PM  
Blogger Opal said...

I'm glad you're working on the Jaywalkers. I'd love to pick your brain about how you like their fit. I see that there is another person who isn't a fan. I'm probably going to hold off on working on them for awhile.

I adore the book Favorite Socks! Nice review.

6:05 PM  
Blogger Beth S. said...

The pair I am probably going to knit first is the Elegant Ribbed Stockings. If you take away the silly ribbon, they're utterly gorgeous! And all the shaping is done with needle changes--I love that. The pattern calls for Dale Heilo, which is a lovely yarn but not superwash, so I will probably substitute. Just wanted to put in a plug for my favorite pattern. ;-)

10:35 AM  
Blogger Irie said...

Don't lose confidence in the face of these bad jaywalker reviews - mine fit perfectly once they are on the foot. The chevron pattern makes them a little less elastic than plain stockinette so they can be a squeeze to get on the foot, but once they are there, they are snug and comfy! Can't wait to see more photos, very nice colors... :)

3:28 PM  
Blogger Brenda said...

Looking forward to seeing the Jaywalkers!

The Anniversary Socks were my favorite also. I'm not even sure why; they just look perfect.

I am curious as to how you liked Lace Style. I got my copy yesterday, and at first look, the smaller item patterns appealed to me more than the larger garments.

6:52 PM  
Anonymous Angel said...

I saw both books at the bookstore the other day- they are definetly going on my "eventually to buy" list- I just love Interweave's books.

9:06 PM  

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