Knitting with wire is a lot of fun, but it can be a little intimidating for people who have never tried it before. Annie Modesitt may not bring down the intimidation factor much with her book Twist and Loop: Dozens of Jewelry Designs to Knit and Crochet with Wire, but she does give crafters a great look at what's possible when wire and knitting (or crochet) are combined.
For those with a little bit of experience knitting with wire, this book will show you the amazing possibilities and give you inspiration for designing your own jewelry projects.
Basics and Beyond
While I think this book would be a little intimidating for someone who has never knit or crocheted with wire before, it does provide a good bit of instruction on how to get started. You just have to flip toward the back of the book to find it.
Modesitt explains different methods for casting on, making stitches, adding beads, increasing, decreasing and binding off. She also includes tips for knitting with wire such as how to block on the needle, get a more even tension and make the stitches easier to work.
These tips are valuable (there's a similar section for crochet, but since I can't crochet, I can't speak to its quality) as is the information on selecting wire and tools for wire knitting.
The book includes 21 patterns, four of which are sets (such as a granny square necklace and matching bangle bracelet). Eleven of the patterns are for knitting, ranging from the Very Simple Wire Necklace, which combines knit wire with sari silk and beads, to the very intricate Falling Water Necklace, which calls for hundreds of beads to decorate.
There are a couple of projects that could be successfully completed by those new to wire knitting, but the really gorgeous ones will require a bit more experience.
In addition to the necklaces, there is an easy rhinestone studded bracelet, a more complex bangle made with silk ribbon and mahjong-tile beads, a matching cuff and necklace, earrings shaped like wreaths and leaves and a knit flower pin.
The beauty of this book is not so much in the patterns themselves (though several of them are really stunning) but rather in the window of creativity the book should open up for you. Even if none of the patterns really appeal to you, you're likely to see in them something you could make that you would like and that could incorporate materials you already have in your house.
That's the mark of a really successful knitting book to me: it makes you want to go out and create something. Even if you don't want to make something exactly as spelled out in the book, you're sure to pick up some tricks and some inspiration just flipping through its pages
Publication date: October 2006.