The pleasure of knitting can be that much greater when you know you’re using the perfect yarn. In A Fine Fleece, designer, knitter, and spinner Lisa Lloyd explores the different qualities of handspun yarn and presents projects that show them to their best advantage. There is valuable information here for every knitter, even if you’ve never considered learning to spin (though you may find inspiration in this book to do just that).
While educating you on the differences in fibers (like Alpaca, Merino, Cormo, Rambouillet, and Suffolk) and the characteristics you can achieve in a handspun yarn by combining fibers according to certain recipes, Lisa Lloyd also shares the three important concepts that enlighten her designs: the use of contrasting color and fiber; scale and perspective (chunky yarns with chunky cable stitches versus chunky yarns with delicate ones); and the creation of “poetic” sweaters that try to capture an emotion.
Each of the 26 projects in A Fine Fleece shows the finished project knitted in both a handspun yarn and a commercial yarn so that you can train your eye to understand how fiber and texture can truly transform a piece.
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Lisa Lloyd specializes in traditional knitting and classic looks. She custom-designs yarns, and her knitting patterns have been published by Harrisville Designs, Interweave Knits magazine, and Wild Fibers magazine. Visit her online at www.afinefleece.com.From Booklist:
It is clear that Lloyd is conducting a love affair with Aran designs (those wonderfully cabled knits from Ireland) as well as with the concept of blending the best of classic design with contemporary sensibilities. What does that mean? It means a judicious use of cables and twists with body-skimming shapes. Moreover, she figures out how to fashion each of the 26 patterns in hand-spun and in commercial yarns, presented beautifully in photographs and detailed instructions. For those unfamiliar with sheep breeds and “outputs,” there is a primer on hand spinning, selecting appropriate yarns, and other topics. The patterns present skill level (with clear definitions), measurements, gauge, materials, step-by-step how-to’s, and, of course, photographs and graphs, whenever appropriate. Dream of these names—Espresso, Le Smoking, October Frost, Gaelic Mist—then begin stocking, er, stitching up. --Barbara Jacobs
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