Noro yarn is luxurious, with beautiful, legendary colorways. Itís also expensive Ė and due to its self-striping status, somewhat difficult to knit. Itís not surprising, then, that patterns for accessories using Noro yarn are popular. Sixth and Spring, the publishing company connected with Vogue Knitting magazine, has published several pattern collections associated with Noro Yarn; as the title suggests, Knit Noro Accessories II is the second in a series.
Thirty patterns are included here, for shawls, mitts and gloves, hats, and neckwear. Only one sock pattern is given, which could reflect the reluctance of knitters to use luxury yarn on such a workaday item. Each pattern is written in the same format: skill level, knitted measurements, materials needed, gauge, pattern stitch information, notes, and directions. One inconsistency between patterns: some include charts, but others donít. When the pattern stitch has a one-row repeat, itís easy to see why thereís no need for a chart; however, some of the projects use stitch patterns with eight-row repeats and written directions only. Committed chart readers will find this annoying.
The patterns are well written on a number of levels. Itís good to see that enough information is given in the materials section that the patterns can (gasp!) be used with non-Noro yarns if desired. That said, care was obviously taken to create patterns that show off Noro's self-striping yarns to their best advantage. Many of the patterns combine two or more different colorways to stunning effect, a feat thatís difficult to do with yarns this bright and busy. In particular, the Tuck Stitch scarf uses intarsia to really emphasize the play of colors inherent in the yarn; the Reversible Cable Scarf uses knit-and-purl cables to create swirls of color and subtle texture.
Many pattern collections for self-striping yarns tend towards the overly obvious (yet another pattern for 2x2 rib socks) or towards the extremely funky (multi-mitered shawls using every colorway possible.) This collections avoids these pitfalls; the designs skew classic, emphasizing clean lines without being overly ďcreative.Ē Every pattern in this collection creates a wearable, striking, yet not over-the-top accessory.
Certain Noro lines are better represented than others, with the different weights of Silk Garden and Silk Garden Solo used for fully half the designs in the collection. Kureyon, Kureyon Air, Taiyo, and Kureopatora are also used a few times. It's nice to find projects that show off the depths of the solo color lines by themselves.
Because these are accessory patterns, sizing is generally not an issue. All the same, itís good to see that the Leaf Lace Fingerless Glove pattern is given in several sizes; unfortunately, the other mitt/glove and the sock pattern are all written for one size only. This means that these patterns may not be useful for those with especially large or small feet or hands.
The book is beautifully produced, with lovely photography that appears to give a realistic idea of the finished product. As is usual for Sixth and Spring books, the models are young, beautiful, and wearing high-fashion makeup and perfectly coordinated outfits. This isnít reality, but it makes for a visually stunning book.
The patterns appear to be well-written, and will appeal to those who like classic styling, clean lines, and striking use of color. At $24.95 for thirty patterns, the book is well-priced if you like what you see. In short, knitters who love Noro yarns, or those who love good pattern design will enjoy this book.
Seifort, Jacob, ed. Knit Noro Accessories II; Thirty More Colorful Little Knits. Sixth and Spring Books, New York, 2017. ISBN: 978-194202-145-2.
Disclaimer: I was given a review copy by Sixth and Spring.I received no financial compensation for this review. My thoughts and opinions are my own.