I was excited to review Jen Lucas' latest book of accessory patterns, and who can resist a collection that's engineered for stash-busting? Most knitters have a considerable amount of stash, and if you're like me, the thought of how to put those pretty skeins of yarn to good use is often on your mind....until you see something shiny and new!
Cozy Stash-Busting Knits is the perfect way to refocus those efforts - after all, once you knit down your stash, you can buy more yarn guilt-free, right? The patterns are arranged from front to back by yarn weight, and range from DK to Bulky, so it makes stash -diving all the more easy. While some of the projects require multiple skeins of yarn, there are also just as many that you can knit with just those oddball skeins lurking in your stash. You also have the option of knitting any of the patterns in different weights of yarn (there are tips included to help you do so successfully). If you are looking to destash sock yarn in particular, you could totally substitute that in for many of these patterns; I also I recommend checking out Jen's previous book, Sock Yarn Accessories, which I reviewed here.
What I like about the designs in this book - and honestly, Jen's designs overall - is that they are all simple but interesting to knit. Each has an interesting stitch pattern or other design elements that are easy to pick up and memorize; someone in my knitting group decreed this "comfort knitting," which I think is the perfect way to describe these patterns. Nothing is going to be so crazy complicated that tears would be involved!
When I took this book to my knitting group, it caused quite a stir. Every single person agreed that they would knit at least 5 patterns from the book, which makes it worth adding to their knitting library. I absolutely couldn't resist casting on for a few projects immediately once this book arrived! First, I started a pair of Merope Mitts in some Powder River yarn from Mountain Meadow Wool (I'll be sharing my FO photos of these on Friday of this week!):
Next, I cast on for the Astrid Hat using a spring-y skein of a new yarn from Kraemer Yarns, Naturally Nazareth:
I have already planned my next project from this book, which will be the Grivola Shawl using some of my hanspun yarn, which brings me to my next point: a lot of these patterns would be perfect for handspun yarn! After participating in Spinzilla for the last three years, plus the occasional Tour de Fleece, I find that my handspun yarn bin overfloweth. I am really excited to start stash-busting in the handspun arena, too.
|Grivola Shawl by Jen Lucas|
There are seven shawl patterns total in the book, and to be totally honest, I kind of want to knit them all! I also realized that they could just as easily be knit from multiple colors of yarn if you truly wanted to stash bust. With all of the colorblock and gradient projects popping up on Ravelry, I think it's pretty easy to get inspired to give this a try, and a top-down shawl really lends itself well to this type of modification.
|Garnett Shawl by Jen Lucas|
I"m still very much into knitting hats and cowls, and there are 3 of each to keep me going this summer; if scarves are your jam, there are two to choose from, too. I'm not big on rectangular scarves these days, but the next time Tyler needs a new scarf, I will probably give one of these a try - Crawford looks particularly intriguing since its knit on the bias.
|Lacon by Jen Lucas|
Rounding out the mix are a couple of cute headbands, two fingerless mitts, and two super-fun mittens designs.
|Flanner by Jen Lucas|
I'm really glad to have this book on my shelf (and many thanks to Jen for sending it my way for review). It's filled with excellent projects that will make great gifts for the holidays, and I know I will enjoy knitting them along the way.
You may like to know: This book was sent to me in exchange for a review; all opinions are my own.