There is almost nothing I love better than to get a book in the mail. In its first printing, if it’s out of print; new or used–it doesn’t really matter. And if it’s a knitting book … Well, let us just say that there might be a tiny bit more enthusiasm.
I also must make another disclosure: I am a great admirer of Hunter Hammersen, the knitwear designer that can wield the word “marvelous” just as good as she can knitting needles.
So, naturally, I was quite excited when she released the details of her newest book, Fine Things for Plain Occasions, a collection of fifteen patterns inspired by vintage guides to proper behavior. (I’m not crazy, either, but confession is good for the soul: I preordered it the first day it was available for preorder.)
So, about the book. It is hardbacked. It has a ribbon to mark your place. It is stunningly designed, in every aspect. It is, in short, a book that not only wants a place on your shelf, but needs to be on your shelf.
There are a few patterns that I know will be knit as soon as the zoo that is Christmas Preparation is over. (I mean, I love Christmas, but it can be so hard to take a moment and enjoy it, you know?)
One is a lovely pair of socks, that goes by the name of “Knowledge of What was Sensible.”
I like the sample so much, I think I’m going to get the recommended yarn from Shibui, Staccato (which I’ve worked with before and is an absolute luxury) in the recommend colorway, Caffeine. And maybe a new pair of boots, too?
Another pattern which looks really fun to knit, but wouldn’t be intended for my use is “Distinct Moral Support.”
I’m feeling the lack of Downton Abbey episodes right now, and one can only cure that by watching Downton Abbey. But it might be sated for a few moments by knitting a hat in the style of those worn in the 20s.
It is very difficult choosing another pattern to be a favorite, as I admire them all, but the next on my list would have to be “Essential To Perfection.” This is another one that I’d want to knit in the same yarn and color, which in this case would be one of my favorite yarns in one of my favorite colors, Quince and Co. Finch in Iceland.
Don’t they just look squishy and warm? I know exactly the person to give them to once they are completed.
The last one I want to mention is “By Naughty Design.” It would seem that long ago, ladies would only show their ankles “by accident, or naughty design,” which, although sort of funny, makes for an interesting design, pun absolutely not intended. (I think.)
If you are in need of a new project to procrastinate to, or have miraculously planned out your Christmas knitting over the year and have already finished, you will want to be inspired by this marvelous book. You can find it on Amazon, Hunter’s website, and Ravelry.
[All photos, except for the one at the top (c) Zoe Lonergan. Used with permission.]