Lorna Miser creates and knits with an open heart, and she shares stories of the connections knitting has given her to other people in her debut book, Faith, Hope, Love, Knitting: Celebrating the Gift of Knitting with 24 Beautiful Patterns.
The book tells the stories of friendships made because of knitting and includes patterns that commemorate those important moments and people.
Knitting on Faith
As you might guess from the title, Miser's Christianity plays a big role in the book. She writes a lot about knitting as a gift from the creator that we squander when we don't use it or fail to have confidence in our ability and at least a little pride in our work.
The stories often contain a touch (or more) of divine inspiration -- being in the right place at the right time to make a new friend for life, or giving a difficult problem to God to solve, with a better solution appearing than Miser ever could have come up with herself.
The development, rapid growth and eventual sale of her popular yarn line, Lorna's Laces, is told with a heavy emphasis on how her faith worked to help her make the right choices. Fans of the yarn will enjoy getting an insider's look at how the company got started and grew through the years.
All of this religion talk might be a bit much for readers who lack Miser's faith, but it's unlikely someone without such faith would be drawn to a book called Faith, Hope, Love, Knitting anyway. But even if you didn't read the stories in this book, you'd probably still get some use out of the lovely patterns.
The book includes 24 patterns, each inspired by a person who has shaped Miser's life and her knitting life as well. There are simple baby booties that aren't much more than a square, gloves, mittens, sweaters, shawls, socks and a fun project that becomes a memento of a trip or a way to show off a bunch of great yarn from your stash.
There are projects for men, women, babies and girls. Three are ranked for beginners (that includes one project for making knitting needles), seven are easy, nine are for intermediate knitters, five for experienced knitters and one project is rated advanced.
Most of the projects with sizes have four or five options.
There are some really lovely patterns here, including Grandma's Lace Shawl, inspired by her grandmother's love of knit doilies; Michelle's Southwestern Motif Sweater, a mostly plain sweater with a dramatic series of colorful cabled rounds around the hem and sleeves; the Kid's Two-Toned Zippered Hoodie worked in Seed Stitch; the intriguing Multidirectional Socks, in which the cuff is knit sideways and the foot in the normal way (sized for babies and adults); the Silver Linings Tote, another project worked sideways in a multitude of yarns and using a lining technique I never would have thought of; and the Comfort Pillow, the advanced project, it's a lace pillow adorned with fancy beaded trim.
Faith, Hope, Love, Knitting is an inspiring book about the way knitting touches our lives that should hold meaning even for those knitters who don't feel the pull of religion as much as Miser does. The patterns are beautiful, and the stories attached to them makes them all the more meaningful.
A section in the back of the book contains information on knitting charities you might want to give some of these gifts of comfort to, but whether you knit them for yourself, a loved one or a stranger, they're sure to be appreciated.
Publication date: March 2009