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Inspired Cable Knits: 20 Creative Designs for Making Sweaters & Accessories

by Fiona Ellis

Rating: 4 1/2 sheep

Let me start this month's book review with a bit of a digression.  Any of you who know me well are aware of my awesome and much adored niece, Emily.  Emily and I are two peas from the same pod, thirty years apart.  She looks like me, thinks like me and likes many of the same things I do.  So as you can imagine, a sweater for her must be amazing.  I promised her one for her last birthday and have been mulling it over in my mind since February.  YUP.  February.  I finally decided to do a denim blue turtleneck with a very interesting cable pattern up the center front.  I found just the right things to inspire the cables in this fantastic book.  Ms. Ellis' designs are simultaneously classic and up to the minute trendy.  The charts and explanations make cables and twisted stitches appear to be easy and are not difficult to follow.

My favorite project in this book is the Practice Makes Perfect Scarf.  It takes a beginning cable knitter from a simple four-stitch cable to fairly complex ones.  One drawback is that you make two pieces that go through the simple to hard progression and then graft them in the middle, although if you like to graft you will like that part as well.  This makes the cables match on both sides.  There is also a nice jester-shaped hat that coordinates with the scarf.  All the directions for this pattern are given in both chart and text form.  There is a great selection of sweaters, but also more unusual items such as the pillow cover that evokes sand dunes and the yoga mat carrying bag.  The photography is well done and shows fairly good detail of each garment.

Ms. Ellis introduces each chapter and each garment with a short discussion of her inspiration.  While unnecessary to the pattern they are pleasant to read and make the patterns come a bit to life.  This book is a bit on the pricey side with a retail of $35.00, but if you go through the Guild's website to Amazon.com, the price is about $23.00 and the Guild gets a small commission on your purchase.  (Recommended with four sheep and a lamb with the price being the only thing preventing the full five sheep).

Respectfully submitted, Ginny Zschau

Buy this book from Amazon.com


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