Tuesday, August 21, 2007

New Pathways Indeed

I've been knitting socks for about a year now, and though that may be too short a time to know everything there is to know about socks, I thought I knew a thing or two. Over the past twelve months, I've knit socks toe-up and top-down, I've knit them using dpn's and on two circular needles (a technique that even had my LYS owner perplexed). Like I said, I'm by no means an expert, but I though I'd at least learned enough to be considered an intermediate sock knitter.

Then, after reading the review for Cat Bordhi's new book on Knitter's Review, I decided to order the book. I mean, it seems like everyone who's "in the know" about sock knitting (pause to snicker about that last statement - OK, I'm back) is raving about this book, how it's going to turn the world of sock knitting on it's head. Huh? We are talking about knitting socks, right? Foot coverings? This, I thought, I've got to see.

So I ordered the book from the Needle Arts Book Shop (a wonderful resource for all you Canadian readers), and it arrived yesterday. And Dudes, there are no words.

My first sock was knit from a pattern in Sensational Knitted Socks, a book I thought was pretty complex my first time around. But after reading the introductory chapter, I understood how the book was designed, and I got the hang of it pretty quickly. Bordhi's book, however, despite being superbly written and the author being a born teacher, left me feeling "like a blundering novice". See, this book isn't like any other pattern book. You can't just say "My, what a pretty sock, I think I'll knit that" (at least, not at first glance, anyway). As the great Yoda once said "You must relearn what you have learned". Increases are now La-Link's and La-Rink's (left-leaning increase and right-leaning increase), stitch legs now have winners and losers, and you must constantly keep the designs' "sockitecture" in mind. What???

The patterns really are beautiful, though, and I know that once I have the time to devote myself exclusively to sock-knitting (when Mystery stole is finally done), I'll feel like a reasonably intelligent knitter once again.

P.S.: The subtitle of New Pathways for Sock Knitters? Book One. Aaack.

1 comment:

Stephanie said...

I just saw it too, and I'm pretty blown away. Cat Bordhi is a genius.