Knitting by Nature: 19 Patterns for Scarves, Wraps, and More by Sherly Thies is a book that was born of a dream of spring. Looking through a seed catalog, she was inspired by the shapes of plants to design these patterns featuring natural motifs on scarves, shawls, shrugs and other knit items.
These are projects to knit in the winter doldrums to remind yourself that warmer weather is coming -- times when you'll want to wear a ruffled scarf, an airy shawl or a lightweight shrug.
About the Book
- Pages: 80
- Format: paperback with cover flaps
- Number of patterns: 19
- Skill level: none given, but Thies says the patterns are for all skill levels because they are simple shapes with minimal finishing; knowing how to read a chart would be helpful
- Illustrations: full-color photographs
- Knitting lessons: a techniques section covers casting on and binding off, increasing (but not decreasing), finishing and basic crochet skills used in the patterns
- Publication date: May 2012
The 19 patterns in Knitting by Nature are inspired by and named for different plants. There's Bleeding Heart, which uses a lace pattern that looks like those flowers on a shawl that also has a Seed Stitch loop to thread the other end of the shawl through. The shrug on the cover is Colorado Blue Spruce.
Bean Sprouts is a mohair ruffle, while Ornamental Corn is a pretty, three color wrap made from super warm baby alpaca.
Some of my favorites include Clematis, a leafy lace scarf in pretty purple; Hop Vines, a subdued triangular shawl with a somewhat textured lace pattern and crocheted edging; Ostrich-Plume Fern, a lovely fan similar to Feather and Fan on a wide rectangular shawl; and Zebra Grass, which features V-shaped lace motifs and interesting loopy fringe.
The patterns are pretty and photographed in attractive ways that are sure to draw knitters in.
If you're a fan of shawls, wraps, shrugs and scarves -- particularly of the lacy variety -- you're sure to enjoy this book. There's nothing too terribly complex here but they are still pretty projects that knitters who are newer to lace knitting and following charts can handle. (The patterns are also described in words, so you don't have to read the charts if you don't want to.)
It's fun that this book takes nature as its inspiration, so these would be great projects to knit for the gardener in your life or anyone who likes a natural look. There are pieces here that can get you through a lot of the year in lovely knit style if you're a person who loves to layer.