Today's post features six free projects from some of our favorite books to set you up for the weekend, and to get our Craftside UK readers in the mood for the Knitting and Stitching Show in London!
First up is a great tutorial on a jog fix when knitting in the round from the book:
This step-by-step technique reference introduces and thoroughly explores several styles of knitting that involve color/yarn changes to create intricate patterns and designs. With Colorwork for Adventurous Knitters, you'll delve into exciting methods including striping, slipstitch, mosaic, stranded, and intarsia knitting and duplicate stitch and embroidery embellishment. This volume is an inspiring addition to any knitter’s library.
Lori Ihnen is a professional fashion designer of both hand-knit and sewn clothes, with a degree in clothing design from the University of Minnesota. She specializes in designing intricate stranded designs, often inspired by nature, and her hand-work is so intricate and precise that it is often mistaken for machine-produced knitting. She lives in Mounds View, Minnesota.
Next up, try your hand at this contemplative sketchbook exercise from the book:
This book takes you where creativity and wonder intermingle to show you how to live a creative and balanced life while moving toward your goals. You’ll find ideas for keeping your creative well full, an illustrated guide to healing herbs and plants, basic yoga poses and breathing exercises, and tips for moving your artistic career forward.
Alena Hennessy is an artist who has long been fascinated with nature and the outdoors. After art school, Alena did an independent study in Florence, Italy, where she began to get down to what she loved in art and in life: simplicity, stillness and a sense of little things relating to one another, all peaceful and quiet. Since that time, Alena focuses on what she loves best, making art and thoughtfully designed products available to people everywhere, everyday. Visit her online at http://www.alenahennessy.com.
If embroidery is your thing, you'll want to check out the tutorial on how to applique and machine embroider tea towels with fun words and Sycamore pods (templates included!) from the book:
Knot Thread Stitch presents a modern, experimental, and creative approach to thread and embroidery projects. You'll find fun and surprising project ideas, a unique artistic approach, and unconventional mixed-media materials such as stamps, paint, sequins, paper, and shrinky dinks.
Profoundly interested in the idea of hybridization (sparked from her hapa heritage), Lisa Solomon’s mixed media works revolve thematically around domesticity, craft, and masculine and feminine triggers. She is drawn to found objects altering them conceptually so that their meanings and original uses or intents are re-purposed. Visit her online at http://www.lisasolomon.com.
If you enjoy felting, try this technique for attaching cords and spikes to a project from the book:
This is a comprehensive reference for various felting techniques, including needle felting, wet felting, and nuno felting. With these easy-to-follow, step-by-step directions and hundreds of full-color photos, you’ll be able to explore these easy projects that provide fun opportunities for you to try the techniques. Galleries of unique felted designs and creations by renowned fabric artists act as beautiful examples and inspiration to pursue the hobby yourself.
Ruth Lane is a self-taught fiber artist who loves to “play” with a wide variety of materials, including wool, silk, fabrics, yarns, and threads. Creating one of a kind fiber art pieces to share with the world fulfills her creative passion. She lives in Kalispell, Montana. Visit her online at http://ruthsfiberphotos.blogspot.com.
Love knitting? Knit a Sami hat with this tutorial featured in the book:
This is a beautiful collection of patterns for sweaters, hats, scarves, mittens, headbands, and bags, all inspired by the historic textiles housed at the American Swedish Institute in Minneapolis, Minnesota. You'll find vintage photographs of Swedish immigrants, recipes, and photos of the artifacts that inspired the designs, along with a short history of knitting in Sweden. Bohus, twined knitting, and Swedish mittens are some of the many featured techniques.
Sue Flanders' knitwear designs have been published in many magazines and books over the years, including Knitting In America and Kids Knitting. She lives in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Janine Kosel has been knitting since her mother taught her as a young girl. Both reside in Minneapolis, MN.
Written with the absolute beginner in mind, this engaging book teaches all the basics for learning to crochet with step-by-step instructions and photographs. Crocheting skills are learned by working on projects, beginning with something very easy and getting progressively more difficult as the reader works through the book. New skills are explored in depth as they are introduced. This is the most comprehensive beginner’s book available!Deborah Burger is a professional member of the Crochet Guild of America, teaching crochet and designing from Western North Carolina. She shares her ideas and sells her designs on Ravely as well as her own web site, Crochet: the Extraordinary Realm (http://cerdeb.googlepages.com). She also works as an educational consultant, speaker and author within the homeschooling community. She lives in Brevard, North Carolina.