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The Magic of Shetland Lace Knitting Paperback – 29 Oct 2013

4.8 out of 5 stars 52 customer reviews

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--This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
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Product details

  • Paperback: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Griffin (29 Oct. 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1250039088
  • ISBN-13: 978-1250039088
  • Product Dimensions: 19.1 x 1.2 x 24.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (52 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 406,646 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

The delicacy and beauty of traditional Shetland knitted lace has enchanted people over the years, including designer Elizabeth Lovick, who has created many beautiful patterns for knitters to try. Now she has brought together all her knowledge in her inspirational new book. Her techniques guide covers all the fundamentals of Shetland lace knitting, including knitted-on edgings, blocking lace, and fixing mistakes. She then explains how to go about designing your own lace projects, looking at different construction methods, putting motifs together and charting out your design. Next up is a comprehensive stitch directory, starting with an at-a-glance stitch selector, and instructions for more than 80 lace stitches. All are charted and most are written out, too. Elizabeth also provides seven projects, including shawls, mitts, socks and a baby set. This excellent book will be treasured by lace knitters who want to try their hand at designing their own unique creations.-The Knitter I love fair-isle and lace knitting, both hailing from Scottish islands. That's not to say I am traditional when it comes to knitting, I like my knitwear to have a contemporary twist. This book looks at Shetland lace - those incredible shawls that are so fine they can pass through a wedding ring. Of course, many knitters these days opt for the quicker, the better, which means chunky yarns and big needles. Yet there is something special about Shetland lace. Intricate, delicate and so fine. I would put the Shetland shawl at the top of my list of accessories every woman should have. It's refined and a true heirloom. Shetland lace patterns can look so complicated, that none but skilled knitters would attempt them, so Elizabeth has set out to show that even novice knitters can. Techniques are clearly shown, with clear step by step instructions and charts. There is a stitch dictionary, so you can design your own items. There are projects too, not just shawls but socks, fingerless gloves and a baby set. I love the Crescent Shawl, but I can't work out the pattern and I have knitted many lace projects in over 40 years. I like the stitch directory and techniques sections and the fact that there are variations on the stitches for the projects. Charts are not always easy to follow, especially when a book closes on itself, it needed to lie flat. I would much have preferred row by row written instructions.-Yarnsandfabrics.co.uk/crafts This is one of those rare books which make you feel as if you are at a serious workshop while retaining a friendliness and accessibility which is essential for nervous knitters and newbies. The first section is quite exhaustive. She covers the history of Shetland lace and story of the sheep breeds on the islands, complete with stunning photos and a description of arriving on the plane - 'We bank sharply and lose more height, the runway comes into view, jutting out into the sea, the rolling waves breaking on to the tarmac. We land safely.' All the basics are covered, yarn, needles, knots, reading a chart (a whole page), joining in colours, picking up stitches, dealing with mistakes and dressing lace (blocking). Then she starts advancing a little more and branching out into designing, constructing shapes, charting and putting motifs together. At this point you're thinking 'this is quite awesome, a whole page or two on how to chart my pattern, wow'. But then there are pages on designing with frames, designing a stole, a scarf and a christening gown. Pretty satisfying. I would definitely say all my questions about lace were answered in this section. Next comes the stitch directory which contains around 70 edgings and traditional Shetland motifs displayed very clearly and knitted in beautiful yarn in delicious colours. At the end of the book you get seven patterns to practice your skills, which of course can be knitted in a different lace pattern to the one shown using the stitch directory. Overall I would definitely say this is a fabulous buy if you are a beginner or an intermediate knitter looking for a new challenge. Lace isn't so difficult, and the only thing you may struggle with is reading charts but Elizabeth expected this and solved it with her page on reading charts. She also has full website details at the back of the book.-Sewingisforgirls.blogspot.com The delicate beauty of Shetland lace knitting is conveyed perfectly here. As you can see from the cover, it's a technique that produces very intricate patterns, but everyday knitters shouldn't be put off - if you can knit, purl, cast on and off, you can master this technique too. Allow Elizabeth to guide you through your first project, to increasingly more complex ones, with her easy-to-follow step-by-steps. Before you know it you'll have a collection of elegant accessories made just by you.-Knit Today --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

About the Author

Living in Orkney and frequently travelling to Shetland, Elizabeth Lovick has spent many years researching and knitting Shetland lace. A teacher by nature, she enjoys giving knitters the help they need to expand their horizons. She regularly contributes patterns and articles to knitting and spinning magazines in the US and UK. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.


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4.8 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is the book I wish I'd had when I started out knitting Shetland Lace. It's great for the beginner and is laid out very clearly. There are a few pages on the history and culture of Shetland lace knitting, before moving on to essential techniques. Double page spreads cover the following topics: 'Tools and equipment'; 'Yarn'; 'The basics'; 'Working from a chart'; 'Edges and seams'; 'Picking up stitches'; 'Dealing with mistakes'; 'Dressing lace' (stretching it out); and 'Designing Shetland Lace'.

Of use to the beginner would be the comprehensive guide to yarn overs and the kinds of decreases used in lace knitting. The diagrams are clearly drawn, and the text instructions are clear and simple too. Also useful to the beginner would be how to read lace charts. There are handy tips - like using a lifeline - that a beginner wouldn't necessarily know about.

Intermediate knitters will be more interested in the design section, what the author calls "putting the right patterns together in the right way". She covers construction shapes, charting, and putting motifs together. There are short sections on designing a stole, a scarf, and a christening gown.

The best feature of the book - and its real selling point for Shetland lace enthusiasts - is the stitch directory. The author categorises stitch patterns not in terms of "difficulty" but in terms of "concentration level" (because as she rightly points out, lace knitting is easy when you know the stitches but some patterns require more concentration than others!). Motifs include traditional Shetland ones like 'Cat's Paw', 'Fern', and 'Print of the Wave' as well as some others from the author's own experience. There are motifs for centre sections, edge insertions, and lace edging.
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Format: Paperback
This is a well-thought out book for those who want an adventure into lace knitting. The sampler of hexagons, pictured in purple as one of the items on the front cover, certainly made me go "wow", and want to knit it.

There are some pages where the photography of the lace stiches has not done them justice. For example, the photos on page 53 are as clear as a bell, on page 54 distinctly out of focus. The page on picking up stitches from edges has excellent "after" photos" but none "before". I do rather feel that the author put in a lot of work and then the publishers restricted the number of pages she could have. This is a pity. I am puzzled over the inconsistency of some patterns having both charts and written instructions, while others don't. The projects at the end are not as inspiring as one would hope, but I did enjoy the short explanation of names under each pattern.

I would have liked more on the history of Shetland lace, to explain the "magic" of the title, why it became so successful, and a small map showing trade routes. Many atlases curtail the sea, making the islands look just off the Northern edge of Scotland. In reality the sea voyage is many hours. It was the fishing industry that opened up the communications of these otherwise remote islands, and ought to have been mentioned.

These are only little niggles about a long-awaited title from a very talented knitter. I am learning a lot from this book, and really pleased to have it, and to recommend it.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is the perfect introduction and reference manual for Shetland lace knitting, gathering together the major Shetland-style lace knitting stitches in one place. It is well-written and easy to understand, with patterns both charted and written. It gives instructions on how to construct your own lace shawls and scarves, and gives enough information to enable you to understand more advanced charts. I started in reverse with difficult books like Gladys Amedro's, and wish I had started with this one.

The projects at the end of the book are just to get you started and show you how to use the stitches, so I don't believe they detract from the quality of the book.

Definitely worth buying if you want to try your hand at lace knitting, or expand your range.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I very good book to start your journey into shawl knitting with 1 or 2 ply yarn. I have my next project from the book lined up, yarn came today. The book arrived well within the time frame, well packed. An absolute must for learning about fine shawl knitting.
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By K. Platt TOP 100 REVIEWER on 17 Oct. 2013
Format: Paperback
I love fair-isle and lace knitting, both hailing from Scottish islands. That's not to say I am traditional when it comes to knitting, I like my knitwear to have a contemporary twist. This book looks at Shetland lace - those incredible shawls that are so fine they can pass through a wedding ring. Of course, many knitters these days opt for the quicker, the better, which means chunky yarns and big needles. Yet there is something special about Shetland lace. Intricate, delicate and so fine. I would put the Shetland shawl at the top of my list of accessories every woman should have. It's refined and a true heirloom. Shetland lace patterns can look so complicated, that none but skilled knitters would attempt them, so Elizabeth has set out to show that even novice knitters can. Techniques are clearly shown, with clear step by step instructions and charts. There is a stitch dictionary, so you can design your own items. There are projects too, not just shawls but socks, fingerless gloves and a baby set. I love the Crescent Shawl, but I can't work out the pattern and I have knitted many lace projects in over 40 years. I like the stitch directory and techniques sections and the fact that there are variations on the stitches for the projects. Charts are not always easy to follow, especially when a book closes on itself, it needed to lie flat. I would much have preferred row by row written instructions.
Comment 18 of 19 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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