Saturday, 21 July 2012

My Grandmother's Knitting



Book Depository Link, Ravelry Link Dublin City Public Libraries link

Errata Link here

I borrowed this from Dublin City Public Libraries, who pay my day-job wages.

A book with a slightly different slant,  a variety of knitting designers describing their relationship with their grandmothers, grandfathers and other ancestor and designing something inspired by their relationship with the knitting those who came before them taught them.  There are also some other patterns created by designers without a full story attached.


They're quite a bit of a mix of patterns and many of them echo older times, there are a few I would be interested in knitting but it's more of an interesting introduction to some of the designers, some known, some lesser known.


The first half of the book are the stories, the second is the patterns.
Designer and pattern links are to Ravelry.


Larissa Brown introduces it with her own story, the remainder of the stories are written in the third person.  Her pattern is the Family Tree Afghan


First up is Wendy Bernard who talks about her grandmother and her sculptor grandfather, finishing with her sadness in not being able to share her success.  Her pattern is Helen & Wendy's Slippers


Pam Allen discusses the memories her grandmother incorporated into her quilts and offers a Chickadee Cowl, a big lush cowl that reflects her mission to rescue the New England Mill that makes the Quince & Co yarns now.

Meg Swansen discusses her famous mother Elizabeth Zimmermann and about learning to knit and the legacy of such a famous mother.

Ysolda Teague discusses her grandfather who knit and who skewed her view of who knits in a family. He handcrafted violins and programmed using punch-cards for the paper mill he worked for.  Her pattern is Fiddler's Mitts

Jess Marshall Forbes is interviewed as one of the brains behind Ravelry, something which has changed the world of knitting.

Kay Gardiner is half of the Mason-Dixon Knitting blog and she talks about the example of simplicity that her grandmother left her with.

It came to me as no surprise that Joan McGowan-Michael had a stylish grandmother and that she was an inventive creator of her own clothes.  There was a tradition there that gave her support.  She offers the Angelina Shrug

Kirstin Spurkland  talks about her father and his Norwegian heritage that still inspires her. She designed the Rose & Cross Pullover

Teva Durham talks about her bigger-than-life grandmother Minerva who taught her that if she had to try and see vision and make it happen.  Her Minerva bonnet is inspired by a picture of her grandmother.

Jared Flood talks about his father's relationship with creativity and about how the wallpaper creativity of his mother's quilts became art as he studied  art and realised how they actually were beautiful in their own right.  His design is the colourful Tilden Baby Hat

Nora Gaughan talks about growing up in a house of artists and how if she thought of doing it that it was possible and how hard it was for her to have patience to learn how to knit.

Anne Hanson whose grandmother knit her an afghan that she still has.  Her pattern is the Crocus Patch Blanket

Leigh Radford remembers her honorary aunt Edna who taught her that it was okay to knit and how playing with fiber or playing with paint she regards it all as art.  Her pattern is Edna Slouch Hat

Chrissy Gardiner remembers gardens.  And while she doesn't remember learning to knit but remembers working with yarn.  Her pattern is Twining Vines Pillow

Adrian Bizilia remembers her grandmother carving out time to knit every day.  Inspiring Adrian to create yarn and complex patterns.

Kirsten Kapur whose life was full of women who created  and worked with colour so her concept of colour reflects these colourful women.  Her patterns are crayon cowls

Emily Johnson talks about her family trunk project, where she explores her family's past and creates patterns inspired by the people from family.  Her project is the 'Olina Socks

Keepsake Scarf by Rodger P. Murry - designed to use up some memory yarns
Vintage Gloves by Robin Melanson  - while her grandmother was a little overfond of bobbles she reckons she would have like to wear this when she was younger.
Concetta Cardigan by Cirilia Rose - an update of a family heirloom
Ice Skating Cape/Skirt by Cosette Cornelius-Bates is based on a heirloom
Grandma's Fan dishcloth by Judy Becker is a nice balance between lace and plain and had me want to reach for my needles, found inspiration in inherited lace medallions.
Conover Mittens by David Castillo inspired by his grandfather, one is a negative image of the other
Wan Jai Socks by Cookie A has lines inspired by the travels of her family to reach the US and are named after her grandmother.
Storm Cloud Shawlette by Hanna Breetz is a small piece that's reminscent of older times.

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