Sunday, February 19, 2006

BOOK REVIEW: Knitting Rules! The Yarn Harlot’s Bag of Knitting Tricks by Stephanie Pearl-McPhee

This spring will see the publication of several new knitting books from knit “bloggers”. Knitting Rules! The Yarn Harlot’s Bag of Knitting Tricks is the third volume from Stephanie Pearl-McPhee, best known for her knitting blog “The Yarn Harlot”. This new work features her trademark wit and light-hearted view on a much beloved pastime, although sadly it features none of her infamous open letters to her collection of yarn, known only as “The Stash”.

Pearl-McPhee’s first two books, At Knit’s End: Meditations for Women Who Knit Too Much and Yarn Harlot: The Secret Life of a Knitter are very reminiscent of her blog. With Knitting Rules! The Yarn Harlot’s Bag of Knitting Tricks she moves into new territory and provides a comprehensive look at the foundations of knitting. There are a few basic patterns included but more than that, this book offers advice/recommendations on everything from picking the appropriate needles for knitting in movie theatres, to what to stock in your knitting bag (and why you should have one in the first place), to choosing a spouse.

Her irreverent style is a delight for anyone with true knitting passion - “I can think of several times in my own life when knitting kept me from slapping some fool upside the head” – yet her tone can soften to write glowingly about our addiction, speaking about fiber the way others talk about a lover. The power of knit bloggers to influence a wide audience was evidenced again recently with Pearl-McPhee’s creation of the 2006 Knitting Olympics, possibly the largest ever knit-a-long, with more than 4,000 knitters around the world participating on teams designed to coincide with the Torino Winter Olympics. She expected a handful of knitters to join her and her friends and suddenly this viral experiment took on a life of its own – receiving publicity in a wide variety of media outlets including NPR and a variety of print publications.

Part reference book, part how-to manual, part tribute, and part beginner’s manual, this essential book is a must purchase for every level of knitter. Think of it as your own personal knitting guru or new best friend.

See the review as it appears at Armchair Interviews - Knitting Rules!.


Heather said...

Ooh - you've got me looking forward to the book. Thanks for posting your review!

Janelle Martin said...

You're welcome Heather! It is really a great book and fun too. Once again, Stephanie outdid herself.

Chris said...

Thanks for the review!