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Folk Mittens: Techniques and Patterns for Handknitted Mittens Paperback – 1 Sep 1997

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Product details

  • Paperback: 120 pages
  • Publisher: Interweave (1 Sept. 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1883010349
  • ISBN-13: 978-1883010348
  • Product Dimensions: 21.7 x 23 x 0.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 323,180 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Product Description

About the Author

Marcia Lewandowski spent her first twenty-five years in Minnesota where the long winters taught her to appreciate warm serviceable mittens. She currently resides in the south of Bolivia where she is working with the Mennonite Central Committee to strengthen women’s groups.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By "em_kuntze" on 21 April 2004
Format: Paperback
This is the third book about mittens that I have bought, but ultimatelythe only one I really needed. The introductory section about the historyand evolution of knitting mittens is very interesting but the bulk of thebook, featuring designs native to different cultures is simply wonderful. Many different styles and tastes are catered for (other books purchasestend to feature the same patterns but change the design motifs) and the'how to' section features instructions for different methods of knittingmittens, both tip-up and cuff-up, all of which were very clear. The listsof materials needed were also simply put; whereas some other books specifyparticular brands of yarn making it difficult to substitute if the make isobsolete, or in my case, if you are in a country where the make doesn'texist, this book gave genereal requirements. All in all, a veryinspirational book that should be on any keen knitter's bookshelf
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By jammikins on 7 Feb. 2011
Format: Paperback
This book is suitable for the experienced knitter.At the start of the book there is a detailed section explaining various cast on methods, decrease techniques and advice on various stitches also a very good section on joining the thumb to the main mitten.There are patterns from all over the world, Albania, Scotland, India , Iceland and other places besides and a small section on their history. Another reviewer commented on her somewhat tenuous grasp of Geography, which may be true, but you know what I did'nt buy it for that but for the gorgeous and varied patterns.There are about thirty patterns in this book, so I also think its good value. The patterns may be a struggle for those who have not attempted complicated patterns and/or mittens before that is why I think this would be a useful addition to your collection if you are a more experienced knitter. All the patterns have pattern and colour charts on one page and then a short written instruction beside for the cast on and main mitten details, but they are clear, well laid out and actually easy to follow once you have read through them a couple of times.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By "em_kuntze" on 25 April 2004
Format: Paperback
This is the third book about mittens that I've bought, but really the onlyone I needed. The art of knitting mittens has been interpreted by manydifferent cultures and folk traditions, each lending something unique towhat could be purely a utilitarian item. The author clearly explains thevarious methods of mitten making (yes, there is more than one!);instructions are clear and pictures and charts well set out. Each mittenstyle is introduced with anecdotes and histories of that specific culture,a little trivia that makes each project even more interesting.
Other mitten books fall down on the fact that the designs are too similar;this book features many styles of mitten, using many types of yarn andmany design motifs. There truly is something to suit all tastes here andthe variety of designs will keep even the most speedy knitter happy.
This is an absolute must for any keen knitter, new or not to the art ofmitten making. Buy It!
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12 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Simon P. Howes on 25 Feb. 2005
Format: Paperback
Very good patterns but marred but odd commentaries about the origins of some of the patterns - doesn't seem to have been researched very well. Under the quaint heading of ' Northern European Fisherfolk' the American author seems unable to refer to 'England'. No fisherman ever wore gloves. Gloves and seawater don't go together very well! She refers to Jerseys and not the standard term Guernsey. Although the Dutch and Baltic states wore similar types of sweater, patterning traditional of Guernseys is predominently found around the North Sea coastal areas of England and Scotland not 'the communities that lined Europe's (sic) atlantic coast'. I can't verify her statements about other patterns but this rather casts a cloud over their accuracy.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 21 reviews
48 of 48 people found the following review helpful
A really good book of patterns 18 Jun. 2003
By M. Thoresen - Published on
Format: Paperback
This book has lots and lots of nice patterns for mittens. There are fancy mittnes and plain mittens, many colored mittens and some textured mittens. There is also a "basic mitten" pattern, which is nice for people who either have never knit mittens before, or who wish to have a template from which to branch off in designing their own mittens. The informational sections preceding the patterns from each country, though not extensive, are interesting.
For sheer number and variety of mittnes, this book can't be beat. My personal favorites are a beautiful pair of cabled aran mittens and a fairly simple but elegant two-color pattern from the Faroe Islands. I do, however, have one criticism. The section on thumbs is, well, pathetic. The different kinds of thumbs are each given a short paragraph, but there are no diagrams or proper explanations as to how to go about knitting them. Thumbs are not terribly difficult, but as they are particular to mittens and gloves I do think that a book devoted entirely to the mitten should cover their construction clearly and thoroughly. A relatively new knitter, or even an experienced knitter who has never made mittens before, will likely need a step-by-step book with diagrams or a personal teacher to show them the thumb on their first attempt at mittens.
Thumb section aside, this book is very fine, with simple but clear photography that more than adequately shows what the mittens really look like. No specific yarns are listed for each pattern, but the weights and gauges used in ihe models are listed, so unless you want to make an exact copy of the model (and where is the fun, or for that matter the "folksiness" in that?), it should not be a problem. Overall, I highly recommend this book.
17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
great book 19 Oct. 2005
By T. Lewsey - Published on
Format: Paperback
I gave this book 5 stars because the mitten patterns and the history behind each mitten is awesome but....frankly her explaination on how to knit them, especially the thumbs is rather pathetic! I have been knitting for quite a few years and have knit many pairs of mittens, and knitting these mittens, or at least just the thumbs were rather difficult to figure out. At least I think so. If her explaination on how to knit the thumb gussets where better explained, I don't believe the mittens would be very difficult to knit. The graphs in the book are very good. Very easy and not confusing. Even with the thumbs being confusing...I think it's definately a book worth buying. You can always go to a local yarn store to get help on the thumbs if you need to. The finished mittens are beautiful and I know I'm glad I took the time to figure out the thumb gussets.
17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
One of the best mittens books I've found... 5 Jan. 2001
By "rottweilergirl" - Published on
Format: Paperback
OK, so I haven't really found that many mitten patterns at all, but I looked almost everywhere before I discovered this book. This book gave me a multitude of patterns ranging from the very complex to the very easy...I ended up knitting Halland mittens for myself and am going to make the Norwegian Selbu mittens too. The charts are easy to read but I was slightly confused by the description of thumb gussets (gores) and how to knit them. It seems that she slightly glossed over their descriptions, although you can extrapolate (to a degree) what she means. The patterns are nevertheless gorgeous and generally straightforward. Aesthetically, the photography is beautiful too. I like the fact that this is a collection of mittens from around the world, & doesn't just focus on one particular region so the selection is large.
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
Wide world of mittens 17 May 2005
By Linda Pagliuco - Published on
Format: Paperback
If you're looking for unusual, beautiful mittens to make, this is the book for you. The patterns are adaptations of traditional styles and designs from around the world, with well-written directions and explanations of various techniques. Most of them, however, require time and patience to complete, so if you're trying to whip up a few pairs as gifts, these are probably too complicated. But any of them would make a very special gift. Lovely collection.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
An excellent addition to the knitter's library 29 Dec. 2003
By Amazon Customer - Published on
Format: Paperback
I love this book! This book is the best (only?) mitten book I have ever seen. The patterns were clear and easy to read, the color charts were easy to follow, and the stories behind every mitten were interesting to read. I read the book cover to cover before I knit a single pattern. The book is also laid out well, with great photos and diagrams for each mitten.
This is not a book for inexperienced knitters, however. Some prior knitting knowledge is required, because many patterns have color-work techniques that are difficult to master, and some patterns' charts could be very complicated if a beginner were to attempt them.
Over all, I thought the book was fantastic. It is also a good reference source for charted designs to include in other knitting projects. It is a must-have for the well rounded knitting library.
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