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

Published By: Potter Craft

Book Category: Non-Fiction, Crafts & Hobbies

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Reviewed by Janelle Martin

Fiona Ellis' debut knitting book Inspired Cable Knits: 20 Creative Designs for Making Sweaters and Accessories is a work of art that is aimed at both novice and experienced knitters. More than just a collection of sweaters, this beautiful book takes the reader through Ellis' creative process, lifting designs and textures found in the natural world and translating them into cable patterns. Inspired Cable Knits features very clear charts, as well as written instructions for those who prefer not to work from stitch charts.

For the uninitiated, cables are the knitting stitches featured on traditional cream-colored Aran, or Irish, sweaters. Highly textured stitches, they are created by moving stitches in front of, or behind each other.

Divided into four sections--change, nature, energy and time--each highlights a different theme incorporated into her designs. The section that called out to me most strongly is the one labeled "inspired by time," which focuses on the value of slowing down. Ellis took elements of the classic garments that are worn over and over and gave them modern twists.

Cable knits are my favorite type of knitting and Fiona Ellis obviously has a feeling for them. She states in her introduction that, "I love their crunchy, nubbly textures." The traveling stitches require close attention as they build a complex, highly textured piece of fabric. Most likely the fascination for me is in the mathematics required to accomplish this type of knitting. These same characteristics make many knitters throw their hands up in terror.

Ellis believes that all knitters will benefit from the journey exploring cable knits and that the focus required leads to a contemplative state of knitting and mindfulness of the entire process and organic nature of knitting. To help knitters toward this goal, she has included a "mindfulness" pointer with each pattern to engage the knitter's mind in the process of creativity.

I know my copy of Inspired Cable Knits won't languish long before I pick up the needles to cast on (begin) a project taken from its pages.

Armchair Interviews says: Inspired Cable Knits is a beautiful book that will provide many hours of pleasurable browsing and dreaming of future projects.

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