Lots of knitting projects -- socks, hats and sweaters, to name just a few -- are pretty much only good for one purpose; they can only be worn one way.
But Kristin Omdahl thinks knitting should be more versatile than that, and she's come up with some designs that turn a cape into a coat, sweater pieces into a cape and a capelet into a scarf or collar, just to name a few.
A Knitting Wrapsody: Innovative Designs to Wrap, Drape, and Tie is heavily influenced by crochet techniques and exploring what happens when you try to recreate the look or feel of crochet in knitting. It makes for some interesting pieces you're sure to be intrigued by.
A Knitting Wrapsody includes 18 patterns -- five scarves, six wraps, five shawls and two skirts -- all of which have intriguing twists and are built around the theme of garments that wrap, drape or tie.
Not all of the projects are quick-changers, but many of them can be worn in multiple ways, meaning they're not only interesting to knit but fun to wear and more versatile than a lot of knitting projects out there.
There are no skill levels given on these projects, but most are probably best suited to intermediate to advanced knitters. There are a lot of techniques here you haven't seen before (because Omdahl developed them) -- so much so that there's an hour-long DVD included with the book that has demonstrations of techniques that might be unfamiliar.
(I had a couple of problems with the portion of the DVD I watched, but it may have been my player rather than a fault of the DVD itself.)
The multitude of large, colorful photographs showing different ways to use the projects will entice knitters to want to make many of these projects.
Some of my favorites include the sweet I Do Diamond Lace Shawl, which can be worn over the shoulders or tied around the neck; the Infinity Cardi Wrap with Sleeves, which has a huge infinity symbol on the back and a cool drop-and-cross stitch pattern on the front; the relatively easy Serpentine Reversible Shawlette, worked in Garter Stitch with yarn over increases and a scalloped edging reminiscent of hairpin crochet; the Tide Pool Spiral Lace Shawl, inspired by a nautilus and a versatile square shape; and the Arcelia Gypsy Wrap Skirt, which also functions as a top in an open mesh pattern.
I think both the Echo Reversible Drop-Stitch Mobius (which features a chunky cable and buttons on both sides so it can be worn looped, flat or as a scarf) and the Ring of Cables Oval Shrug picture d on the cover are going to need to be on my needles soon.
A Knitting Wrapsody is a lot of fun for knitters who are looking for something a little different in their garments. If you enjoy crochet as well you'll like seeing how crochet has been turned on its head and adapted to be worked in knitting. But if you don't like crochet, don't worry, there's not a lot of actual crochet in the book.
These garments are interesting in their look, the techniques involved and in the ways you can use them. It's a great book for inspiration and getting you thinking about how knitting works and some fun ways you can jazz up your wardrobe.
Publication date: February 2011