Thursday, November 25, 2010

Arctic Lace by Donna Druchunas


Arctic Lace is a well-crafted, informative book. Far more than a knitting book it is a book of discovery. In it we are introduced not only to work in lace but to the rich northern culture.
Traveling "north" is a treat that due to the expenses incurred not all may enjoy. Yet while reading Artic Lace I felt I was there. Donna takes us with her to Alaska,. We meet the people, hear their stories, experiences their culture.
One of the stories Donna shares is of the Oomingmak Musk Ox Producer's Co-operative. As a rural woman I know how hard it can be to make a living. The story of the co-op speaks of ingenuity, perseverance, and dedication.
Donna also introduces us to the gentle creatures whose luxurious fibre every knitter longs to knit.
Then in the final chapters Donna's thoughts turn to lace. A knitter inexperienced with working in lace may be apprehensive. Donna addresses your concerns and puts them to rest. She outlines steps to ensure your experience is rewarding. Her lace-knitting workshop in words and pictures is clear and concise. The patterns included offer hours of knitting enjoyment for knitters of all skill levels.
I highly recommend Artic Lace to both those who dream of artic travel and to those who like to or long to knit lace.

After reviewing Arctic Lace I couldn't wait to get my hands on Donna Druchunas' latest book. Ethnic Knitting did not disappoint. It serves as both a design primer as well as an exploration of knitting traditions. These diverse topics are skilfully knit together.
In Ethnic Knitting's introduction, Donna clearly states the book's objective: "'With the skills you will learn in the following chapters, you will be able to design and knit beautiful, one-of-a-kind sweaters that fit perfectly."
Chapter 2 serves as a knitting design primer. The lessons include but are not limited to basics about sweater shapes, silhouettes and sizes.
Chapters 3 to 6 serve as an introduction to the knitting traditions of the Netherlands, Denmark, Norway and the Andes. Each of these chapters ends with an invitation. Donna invites you to use what you have learnt in chapter 2 to design and knit projects, which adhere to the knitting traditions of each country, you have visited.
To learn more about these and the other books Donna has written, please visit: www.sheeptoshawl.com
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