BOOK REVIEW – SOCK KNITTING MASTER CLASS

 

The sock-knitting book you’ve been dreaming of

It’s finally here: Sock Knitting Master Class, Innovative Techniques + Patterns from Top Designers published by Interweave Press. It’s another instant classic by best-selling author Ann Budd and it’s definitely worth the wait. This time around she has collaborated with 15 other top designers to produce 17 stunning new sock patterns, all of which beautifully incorporate the signature elements and techniques each designer is famous for.

Contributing Designers

Devoted knitters will recognize the work of these master knitters:

  • Cookie A.
  • Kathryn Alexander
  • Véronik Avery
  • Cat Bordhi
  • Nancy Bush
  • Evelyn A. Clark
  • Chrissy Gardiner
  • Priscilla Gibson-Roberts
  • Anne Hanson
  • Eunny Jang
  • Melissa Morgan-Oakes
  • Deborah Newton
  • Clara Parks
  • Meg Swanson
  • Anna Zilboorg
  • and of course, Ann Budd herself

The patterns in Sock Knitting Master Class are divided into two main categories:

  • top-down
  • toe-up

Within each construction type, you’ll find:

  • lace
  • cables
  • stranded colourwork
  • slip stitches and
  • twisted or travelling stitches.
I’m drawn to squishy textures like cables and lace and my personal faves from the book are Melissa Morgan-Oakes’ Terpander (which I’ve cast on already), Cookie A.’s Asymmetrical Cables and Ann Budd’s Mock Cables and Lace:
Cookie A’s Asymmetrical Cables

Terpander socks by Melissa Morgan-Oates

Mock Cables and Lace – Ann Budd

 

 

 

 

 

 

Everything you need to know about sock knitting

In addition to how-tos for the various cast-ons/bind-offs (including the brilliant Judy’s Magic Cast-On and Jeny’s Surprisingly Stretchy Bind-Off), there are chapters on mastering the elements of good design: fit, comfort, yarn and gauge, needle choice, heels, toes and aesthetics. To borrow a quote from a recent KnitPicks podcast, this book makes me want to drop everything and knit something from it right now!

Why should you buy it?

What sets Sock Knitting Master Class apart from other knitting books is that it’s perfect for newbies or intermediate knitters and anyone in between. If all you want are gorgeous new patterns, look no further. If you want knitting instruction, that’s here too.  Beginners can learn about socks from the ground up and the adventurous will be inspired to pull up their socks and take their knitting to the next level. Everything you could possibly want to know about knitting and designing socks is in Sock Knitting Master Class. Helpful insider design tips and notes accompany each pattern, including yarn suggestions and tips on how to customize to suit your preferences.

Oooh, there’s even a DVD included!

The book includes a bonus 95-minute instructional DVD in which Ann Budd brings Sock Knitting Master Class to life by discussing and demonstrating tips and techniques, including cast-ons and bind-offs, which can be difficult to learn “off the page”. It’s very easy to skip ahead chapter-by-chapter on the DVD if you want to pick and choose topics. It’s not necessary to watch the entire presentation if you only want to see a specific technique demonstrated.

To paraphrase Knitty.com, this is the best sock book that has been published so far. That is all. Go buy it.  I couldn’t agree more. After all, it’s what you’ve been dreaming of.

Question? Comments? Let me hear from you!