I recently got a copy of Carol Sulcoski's new book, Sock Yarn Studio. I've really been looking forward to this book. Like so many knitters, I love sock yarn and I'm intrigued by finding great new ways to use it.
This book assumes a few things. Like that you know how to knit. I'm good with that. I don't believe that every book needs to teach the fundamentals. There are marvelous "learn to knit" books. If you are new to the knitting world, do yourself a favor and pick one of those up. Everyone should have one of them in their library. Mine is a dog eared copy of Vogue Knitting:The Ultimate Knitting Book. I reach for it all the time.
Carol has a nice writing voice. She comes across as both knowledgeable and friendly. Which she is in real life too. She begins the book teaching us what sock yarn is. Why they are skinny, why many of them have nylon, are superwash and tightly twisted. All of this is good stuff to know.
She then goes on to categorize them by how they are dyed. She uses Solid, Patterning and Multi Colored as her three basic categories. The discussion within each style gives you some insight about how you can use them to their best advantage. There's also a nice discussion of making yarns work for you. She tells you how to examine a skein of yarn to see how it is dyed and learn how to take advantage of those dye patterns or avoid things like pooling if it doesn't make you happy.
There's also a great little section on substitution. Carol is all for it and gives us permission to branch out. She gives us some guidelines to do it successfully too.
Then there are the patterns. This are split into One, Two and Three+ skein projects. I got a giggle about how many of the designersI knew from just their first name; Franklin, Veronik, Tanis, Hunter, Brooke and Wendy. Can you fill in the last names?
Two of the patterns feature our yarn. The first is Varese Shawl. This is Carol's design and uses our Shepherd Sock yarn in the edging. I like this pattern because it uses a full skein of a solid color but then that edging is knit using leftover bits of four other colors. You could really have fun with it.
The kid's sweater below is called the Gumdrop Raglan. It's another of Carol's designs. She's used a nearly solid, 3ns Grapevine, in the body and then a striping yarn, Jungle Stripe for the sleeves. It's pretty sweet. (So is Carol's daughter, the model.)
I think this book is a winner. It's smart. It's beautifully styled. And it takes you lots of places with sock yarn that aren't socks. All of that is good.