January 4th, 2008

The Librarian

Also back in print ...

For those buddies who have uttered "I wish I knew how to knit" (or crochet or whatever), the book that has served me best as learning and reference tool is currently back in print: The complete encyclopedia of stitchery, by Mildred Graves Ryan. This gem thoroughly covers crochet, embroidery, knitting, macramé, rugmaking, sewing, and tatting, and, unlike newer books with their colour photos that often obscure detail, each how-to and stitch has been meticulously hand-drawn so that every detail is visible and you can see exactly what you're supposed to be doing and how, and what the final result should look like. Clear and well-written directions accompany it all.

My hardcover copy, acquired on the cheap as a first purchase from a book club back when I was in college, has a multiply broken spine (but, thankfully, still has all pages firmly fastened in), and looks battered, tattered and worn, and I wouldn't trade it for anything ... it's the reason I know how to do most of what I can do and is the best teacher I ever had. :-) Even if you're a pro, this one is worth having ... there are quite a few oddball, obscure and forgotten designs and techniques within.