Reversible Knitting – Lynne Barr with 20+ projects from top designers, including Norah Gaughan, Pam Allen, Wenlan Chia, Teva Durham, Debbie New, Lily Chin, Cat Bordhi, and Veronik Avery – A Melanie Falick Book – Stewart Tabori & Chang – New York – 2009
This is one of the “new” stitch libraries. It is definitely for the knitter who wants the reverse side of their knitting to look as good as the “right side” of the their knitting! Note – I say as good as, not the same as! These stitch patterns are fully reversible, but that does not mean that they look the same on both sides! As well as a stitch library, Ms. Barr has put together a book of stitches and paired them with interesting and reversible patterns. The stitches may hold the test of time, unfortunately the patterns may not. Not because they are not interesting but because they are, (Norah Gaughan’s, Reverse Me, the cover design, is a personal favorite) and because fashion is a constantly changing landscape, what may look great and innovative now, will become dated or boring tomorrow, one of the many challenges that designers face today.
The cover states that this book holds “50 Brand-New, Groundbreaking Stitch Patterns”. This is not an understatement. But by being groundbreaking, some of the techniques are not simple, but the look can be arresting, and well worth the effort.
There are six sections of Stitch pattern techniques and each section is further broken down into particular categories: Faux crochet – the stitch patterns really do look like crochet, so if you want a crochet look but cannot create the stitches with a hook, try the needles instead! Rows Within Rows – This was the most interesting section for me, right side and wrong sides were different, but both were interesting. Openwork – Lace but not lace – the Half Nelson Stitch is particularly intriguing. Divide and Combine – Highly Textural. Picked Up – Adding textural overlay. Double Knit – Not what you were expecting – not quite!
This book allows you to explore familiar concepts in a unfamilliar way. The stitches are a little more complicate than some others, but not quite as complicated as an intricate lace pattern for example. The techniques can be more labour intensive, but the effect is unique. Looking for something special, with a look a little more unique than the norm, this stitch library will provide it!