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Knitting from the Center Out

A Revolution in Knitting

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Knitting from the Center Out

Knitting from the Center Out by Daniel Yuhas.

Stewart Tabori & Chang.

The knitting world is vast and full of creative people with a wide range of obsessions. Some people get heavily into lace or cable knitting, embellishments, double knitting, top-down design, and on and on.

Daniel Yuhas has a thing for what he calls revolutionary knitting, or what the title of his book less poetically describes as Knitting from the Center Out: An Introduction to Revolutionary Knitting with 28 Modern Projects.

Here knitters will find shawls and blankets worked from the center out, top-down hats and toe-up socks, of course, but also accessories made of I-cord, cone-shaped hats, mittens that start with the thumb and an awesome pair of socks that begins at the bottom of the heel.

About the Book

  • Pages: 160
  • Format: hardback
  • Number of pattern: 28
  • Skill level: none given, but most patterns are best for intermediate and advanced knitters
  • Sizing: most patterns are for accessories, but the three sweater patterns (all for adult women) range from 3 to 7 sizes
  • Illustrations: full-color photographs
  • Knitting lessons: a tutorial section in the back covers special cast ons for center-out knitting and the different methods for circular knitting
  • Publication date: November 2012

Magic Numbers

This clever book is a lovely guide to the world of knitting form the center out, and while it includes many beautiful and fun patterns knitters will want to make right away, it's also full of great tips so you can design your own center-out projects.

It begins by talking about the mathematical principles behind making knitting grow from the inside out and what sorts of shapes you get depending on how many times you increase and how often.

Just this information will make adventurous knitters want to pick up their needles and start playing, but stick around and see some of the magic these numbers can do.

The Patterns

The projects are presented in general categories: I-cord wonders; hats, mittens and socks; toys; shawls and blankets; and sweaters. Each section has three or more projects showing different way to use center-out knitting for that sort of project.

For instance there's a standard toe-up sock, one that uses dropped stitches to create a fishnet effect and the aforementioned heel-up socks, which you can see on the cover and that involve what Yuhas calls an "origami moment."

There are so many pretty and intriguing patterns here that knitters will have trouble deciding what to play with first. Even relative basics like a top-down ribbed hat compel you to explore.

For example, one of my favorite pattern sin the book, the Coral Necklace, is also one of the easiest. It's jut long strands of I-cord connected and the beginning and end and twisted to give a cool wrapped effect, but when finished it's really dramatic looking.

Other standouts include the Sorting Hat -- like a witch's hat but worked in a luscious nubby gray wool-mohair blend; the adorable Octopus, which starts as an octagon pleated and tucked into a bulb shape before the legs are worked; the bold but delicate Sunflower Shawl, which uses Fibonacci numbers to make a naturally attractive swirl; the Star baby Blanket/Playmat, an irresistible project worked in ribbing and a big, bulky yarn; and the Geometric Shawl, which adds sleeves to octagon shapes to make a pretty, versatile wrapper.

Bottom Line

It's not often I find myself wanting to knit a whole bunch of projects from the same book, but there are plenty of things here that would be fun to explore in the knitting and that I'd enjoy wearing and using as well. I'd knit all the toys for my daughter if I had time, for instance.

Even if you're not a parent or knit toy lover there are a lot of really interesting and beautiful projects here that will show you the boundaries of what we can do with knitting are probably further out than you imagined.

Publisher's website

Projects on Ravelry

Disclosure: A review copy was provided by the publisher. For more information, please see our Ethics Policy.
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