Over the past few years, we’ve been developing and expanding our reach into the world of making, by offering both programs and resources.
What exactly is making? Well, we actually helped craft a formal definition for it for library staff across the nation. But the short answer is pretty simple: it is the process of being willing to get your hands dirty and learn while you create whatever you want to make to accomplish a task or just have fun. Do you cook? Do you craft? Do you invent? Do you build? Do you fix things? You are a maker!
In fact, some are even talking about making as at the core of a new type of literacy: invention literacy (i,e, the ability to look around you and figure out how human-made things work). Like any type of literacy, you can never be too old or too young to start your making journey and nurturing the growth mindset on which all making depends. You also can never have enough tools in the forms of books to get your creative juices flowing.
So, this year we plan to highlight all of the various making resources we have–which range from needlework to Legos to more. February is all about yarn . . . mostly, as we cover knitting, crocheting, and macrame resources.
Carri Hammett’s First Time Knitting: The Absolute Beginner’s Guide (2014)
This introduction to knitting is very easy to follow and project-based. Essentially, each chapter builds on skills learned in a previous one and features an actual knitting project to apply the new material you’ve learned. The projects for each chapter range from scarves, table runners, shawls, to baby blankets.
Ros Badger’s Creative Makers: Simple Knitting: 30 Quick-to-Knit Projects for Stylish Accessories (2013)
This book also covers the basics of knitting, including techniques and tools to use. The knitting projects included are all designed to be simple and are accessory-focused. So, lots of hats, cowls, mittens, bags, and more.
Carol Meldrum’s 30 Min-Knits: What Can You Knit in Half an Hour or Less? (2012)
If you love knitting but never seem to have the time to knit, this book might be the solution to your problem. It focuses on small projects that you can make in under thirty minutes. It will teach you how to make things ranging from coffee mug cozies to neck ties to cell phone cases to finger puppets.
Debbie Bliss’s The Knitter’s Book of Knowledge: A Complete Guide to Essential Knitting Techniques (2015)
If you want a veritable encyclopedia of knitting, this book is the way to go. It is perfect for both beginners who want to learn and experienced knitters who already know a lot. It covers everything from various techniques to texture to color to how to correct and finish projects.
Sam Elliott and Sidney Bryan’s How to Use, Adapt, and Design Knitting Patterns (2010)
If you enjoy knitting but never find the patterns to be exactly what you want or need, try this book. It’s very focused on how to adapt and create workable knitting patterns. You’ll learn how to adapt patterns for different body shapes and sizes, as well as how to adjust neck and hemlines and even how to change up yarns.
Iris Schreier and Laurie Kimmelstiel’s Exquisite Little Knits: Knitting with Luxurious Specialty Yarns (2004)
If you’re using more luxurious yarns–like cashmere, mohair, or angora–you may have noticed that it can be hard to find patterns that use these yarns. This book is all about specialty yarns and how to use them. It features lots of patterns for scarves, shawls, and hats.
Vickie Howell’s New Knits on the Block: A Guide to Knitting What Kids Really Want (2005)
If you want to knit for kids but have exhausted your repertoire, this book is chock full of fun, imaginative projects. Knit hats, clothes, and more for little Vikings, kings, princesses, mermaids, and pirates in your life.
Rosemary Drysdale’s Miniature Crocheting and Knitting for Dollhouses (1982)
This book covers both knitting and crocheting but for a very specific purpose–for creating items for dollhouses. It can be hard to find patterns for miniatures, but this book has you covered. Some of the designs are very dated, but this is such a niche aspect of both knitting and crocheting that it’s a wealth of knowledge for dollhouse craft aficionados.
Deborah Burger’s First Time Crochet: The Absolute Beginner’s Guide (2014)
If crocheting intrigues you but you don’t even know where to begin, try this book. It teaches how to read patterns and the general basics of the craft. You’ll also learn how to crochet cowls, beanies, slippers, and more.
Crochet to Calm: Stitch and De-Stress with 18 Simple Crochet Patterns (2016)
This book is for those who already have some crocheting experience and knowledge, but it features good, straightforward patterns for scarves, arm warmers, coasters, and more.
500 Crochet Stitches: The Ultimate Crochet Stitch Bible (2015)
Everything you’ve ever wanted to know about crocheting is probably in this comprehensive book. It talks about tools and how to do edges and trims but where it really shines is its coverage of 500 different basic and advanced stitches. It includes illustrations and instructions.
Bethany Barry’s Bead Crochet (2004)
If you’ve ever wanted to crochet with something besides yarn–or if you like beadwork and are looking to apply it to another craft form–this book might be just what you’re looking for. Bead crochet is it’s own niche within the art of crocheting, and this book breaks down everything you need to know to get started.
Crochet Stitches in Motion (2006)
If crocheting appeals to you but books on the subject leave you confused, this handy DVD may help you learn the different stitches more effectively. It covers 12 different stitch patterns and 5 projects. You get to see the stitching up close and personal, and you can stitch alongside the DVD. It’s [crochet] poetry in motion!
Vanessa-Ann’s Victorian Lace Crochet: 38 Exquisite Designs for the Home (1989)
If you want to put your crochet skills to retro use, this classic craft book includes patterns for making your own lovely Victorian lace projects. It features lots of afghans, sachets, and doilies.
Vintage Crochet for Your Home: Best-Loved Patterns for Afghans, Rugs, and More 1920-1959 (2010)
If you want to do retro crocheting but not quite so retro as the Victorian period, this book includes a range of patterns from the 1920s, 1930s, 1940s, and 1950s adapted for modern crocheting terminology and supplies. There’s a pretty nice mixture of variety in the projects, too, covering rugs, afghans, potholders, dishcloths, and more.
Fanny Zedenius’s Macramé: The Craft of Creative Knotting for Your Home (2017)
If you want to try your hand at macrame, this book is the perfect introduction to the art of knotting. It covers the basics of the craft and includes 22 projects, ranging from wall hangings to place mats.
Are you a knitter, crocheter, or macrame maker? What’s your favorite hands-on making activity? What’s your favorite making resource? Tell us in the comments! As always, please follow this link to our online library catalog for more information on any of these items or to place them on hold.