Monday, May 2, 2016

The Knitting All Around Stitch Dictionary

At some point, every knitter experiences what I call a "light bulb" moment—that moment you realize all those fancy stitch patterns are just mixes of knits and purls. Though light bulbs aren't quite what they used to be—compact fluorescents and LEDs don't have the graphic punch of the yellow tungsten bulbs that lit my childhood—you can see the image. The moment you realize you can take your knits and purls and mix them up to create something new? Illuminating!

My first stitch dictionary was given to me by a non-knitter. It wasn't a big book, and it turned out to be riddled with errors, and missing important elements like a stitch key to one of the patterns. Despite those challenges, I would study page after page, photograph after photograph, marveling at the many variations of ribbing, the stitch combinations, and how cables and lace translated from chart to yarn. Little did I know, this was the start of the knit stalking that Gayle and I share with you on every episode of The Yarniacs. It was also the beginning of a healthy relationship with something we term "fantasy knitting." You know the drill. See the knitting. Imagine the yarns. Knit the item in your mind. VoilĂ , fantasy knitting!

A stitch dictionary, like an unwound hank of yarn, is full of promise. That lace pattern we spy would look fabulous at the bottom of a sweater. Or that new ribbing would work perfectly on the edge of a hat. The list goes on, because as every knitter knows, there is always another garment or accessory  begging to be made.

Wendy Bernard's second stitch dictionary The Knitting All Around Stitch Dictionary will serve as fodder for your fantasy knitting and elevate your real life knitting as well. The 150 stitch patterns Wendy includes in this book have instructions to knit them top down, bottom up, back and forth and in the round. For knitters, this book gives us the opportunity to personalize our projects. In that voice we have come to love from her Knit and Tonic blog, Wendy makes it sound so easy to create something unique or to change up an old favorite. She even includes some new patterns in the book to try out the technique.

The Honeycomb Smocking stitch pattern shown here is just a little sample of the 150 stitch patterns in the book. If you are a fantasy knitter you might already have some ideas in mind!

This is the Honeycomb Smocking stitch graph for knitting flat.

Above is the Honeycomb Smocking stitch graph for knitting in the round.

Here is the Honeycomb Smocking stitch knit up in a swatch.

The mitts are one of the projects for swapping out stitch patterns and creating something all your own. :)

If you want to read more about The Knitting All Around Stitch Dictionary, read Wendy's post from her blog, and visit the rest of the blog tour listed here.

4/28 - Leethal
5/2 - Yarniacs
5/5 - Mason-Dixon Knitting
5/9 - Craft Sanity
5/11 - WEBS
5/16 - Knitcircus
5/ 18 -
5/23 - Craftgossip


  1. This was a great review, Sharlene.

  2. Thanks for writing that review. I was very impressed with her first one so I am certain this one is great as well.