Guest Author - Marjorie Colletta
The card set by Interweave Press, 101 Stitches to Knit is a very nice addition to your knitting library. There are, as you might imagine, 101 individual cards detailing 101 different stitches, plus an index and chart key, and a fold out card with knitting basics. The cards are all contained in a flip-top box and color coded by type of stitch, purple cards for knit/purl combinations, green for cables & arans, and pink for lace & eyelets. The front of each card is a large very clear picture of the pattern stitch and the back of each card has both a chart and written instructions.
I have been a Barbara Walker, Treasury of Knitted Patterns fan for a long time, have hand charted a lot of the patterns from there, but having this set with both the written and charted instructions is a real find. The Walker books are much more extensive and I hope Interweave puts out a “101 More Stitches to Knit” set of cards soon, but this set will be just fine for now.
Stitch pattern books are a great resource when you have a plain vanilla pattern and want to add a little pizzazz to the garment or project. Stitch pattern collections are also a great learning tool if you want to experiment with stitches, and the swatches you make can eventually become an afghan, pillow, scarf or just a record of your knitting progress. This particular collection of cards have 101 patterns to choose from and that is a great start.
The pros of this set are the great (big and very clear) pictures and the written and charted patterns. The cards are 16 cm. tall by 12 cm. wide or 6 1/4” tall by 4 3/4” wide. They are stiff and easy to work from since they are individual cards, unlike a book that you work from that keeps closing. The only cons is that there are only 101 of them and there is no difficulty rated noted for each pattern.