Knitting Teacher's Library

Sorry, this is not a lending library - they are my preeeciousss ....

But, many are still in print and you can buy them for your own library 

 Knitting in Plain English.  This book is printed in black and white and is not new, there are few pictures and a lot of chapters to read before you even pick up your knitting needles.  So why do you need it?  This is an excellent book for beginners, once you've learned to knit and purl, you're ready for this book.  You will learn the skills that make you an independent, more efficient knitter who enjoys the process of knitting as well as the finished item.  There are several learning projects at the end of the book that can be somewhat plain, even unattractive, however, the skills that they teach, and the way they are presented, make them very useful if you want to be a better knitter.  Instead of blindly following a pattern, hoping that it will somehow turn out, you will learn to see the big picture, to think ahead, read your knitting and make adjustments as you go.  

 Vogue Knitting Quick Reference.  This is not a substitute for a class or a teaching manual. It is not a beginner book; What is it?  It's a collection of the major knitting essentials in a user friendly format that is portable. The illustrations and descriptions are the best.  You need a left slanting double decrease but don't know which one to use? Can't quite remember how to do the kitchener stitch? Can't remember how to do SSK? This book shows them to in a compact knitting bag friendly size. It's thin and lightweight and has a spiral binding that lays flat when open. Although, it's a paperback so be careful when tossing it into your bag.

 The Knitting Experience Book 1.  This one covers the very basic steps, casting on, the knit stitch, binding off and picking up stitches.  That's it.  The fact that this book has a relatively narrow focus means that it covers its topics in much more detail. 

You wouldn't think there would be much interesting you could do with only the knit stitch and a single color, but there is. The patterns are cute and wearable plus you get to practice the knit stitch until you've mastered it completely.

I highly recommend this book, and its sequel, The Purl Stitch, for beginners.

 The Knitting Experience Book 2 picks up where The Knitting Experience Book 1: The Knit Stitch left off.  As in the first book, the explanations, how-to photos, and the new skills offered are excellent. 

 Stitch 'N Bitch.  The instructions and illustrations are very clear and easy to understand and the writing style is entertaining and friendly. The book covers casting on, knitting and purling, binding off, cables, intarsia, ribbing, knitting in the round, seaming, blocking, finishing, fixing mistakes, etc. The projects range from simple and quick to challenging, yet still geared towards the beginning knitter.

 Stitch 'N Bitch Super Star Knitting.  Here you will find detailed instructions, pictures and diagrams. You will learn short rows, cables, colorwork, lace, a selection of cast-ons, buttonholes, decreases, increases, steeks, adding beads ... and more. Like the previous book, the writing is entertaining and friendly.  I'm also very pleased that there's a section on creating your own patterns.  

 Knit Fix.  This book is organized with the beginning knitter in mind. It has color photographs, not just drawings, and text along the lines of  "If your knitting looks like this (see picture) then you probably made this xyz mistake... and this is how you fix it. Then it  explains what you might have done to cause the mistake and how you can avoid making the same mistake in the future. 

 The Perfect Finish.  Valuable knitting resource presents each step for finishing a project.  Great instructions, nice photos to demonstrate the steps to finish your hand knits with professional flair.

 Knitting Without Tears.  Elizabeth Zimmermann is the Grand Dame of knitting.  This book, however, will not teach you how to knit, but then that's not it's purpose.  It's NOT a pattern book.  It's a treatise on knitting.  EZ starts with the assumption that you can already cast on, knit, and execute a decrease and then proceeds to make you see your knitting from the most liberating perspective.

If you want to be the master of your own knitting, this book is a must read!  That's the purpose behind the book, that you gain the confidence to be the master of your own knitting. That you aren't afraid to rip out, or drop a stitch down a few rows to fix something, because your knitting is your knitting and it will only do what you want it to do.

 Knitting From The Top.  This combined with Knitting Without Tears, are the only two books you will ever need if you want to master your knitting and start designing your own hand knits.  But, be aware, these books, and in particular this one, are not for 

1.  knitters who like to knit row-by-row patterns.
2.  knitters who like to knit panels and then sew them together.
This is not a pattern book, there are no projects in it with type and amount of yarn and needle size required. This book has no photos of finished projects.

The book is a manual. It teaches you how to knit most styles of sweaters from the top down, to your own measurements, and in your own choice of yarn, color, and pattern stitch. 

 Knitting Ganseys. This is one of my all time favorite knitting books.  It demystifies the process of constructing a traditional seamen's Gansey sweater, offers a clear presentation of techniques, options and pattern stitches you can choose when designing your own traditional sweater.  

 The Sweater Workshop. I would regard this book as being as essential as those of Barbara Walker and Elizabeth Zimmermann.  Clearly explained, clearly depicted knitting techniques and a helpful method for learning the lessons outlined make this book an invaluable addition to your knitting library. 

The point of the book is for the knitter to customize his/her own knit from the bottom, seamless sweater.  

 Knitting in the Old Way. This book takes all of the "mystery and scariness" out of knitting a sweater. You can plan and knit any kind of sweater, regardless of whether it is very basic or complex color stranding, intarsia, or any number of classic ethnic designs. You determine the size, the shape, the style, the texture and become your own designer.  

 The Knit Stitch Pattern Handbook. There are a wide variety of stitches listed and the book not only tells you how to make the stitch, but also how it can be used. The stitches are sectioned according to type (knit and purl, twists, cables, lace, bobbles and leaves, stranded and intarsia, unusual stitches and letters and numbers). Each section is color-coded and rated according to complexity (levels 1 - 3). Instructions for each stitch/pattern are very clear and in many cases given in text and chart form.  

 Knitter's Book of Yarn. If you work with yarn this book will help you determine what fiber is right for what purpose, based on bounce, weight, softness, strength, stitch definition, stretchiness, and more. No knitter or crocheter should ever substitute yarn without this information.  If you're designing your own knits, understanding the properties of the material you'll be working with is critical to a successful finished product.