Have you heard about this?
Sometimes all the information that is currently available to us as knitters and crocheters seems endless. But that hasn’t always been the case. Of course we all know that knitting existed long before the internet and we can still continue to knit if the internet disappeared tomorrow. Today I want to bring your attention to a treasure trove of information about yarn and tools and the person who produces this treasure. Clara Parkes and Knitter’s Review
Clara Parkes started Knitter’s Review way back in 2000. Her vision was to provide reviews of yarn and how it behaves once it is knit up and subjected to use. Her format has remained the same for the most part all this time. She choose a yarn to review, sometimes they are sent to her by a company but more often she reviews yarns that appeal to her as a knitter or intrigues her in some way. She then pulls out her needles and starts swatching. After knitting, she washes the swatch and blocks it. Then in the section titled wearing, Clara rubs, pulls or otherwise “uses” the swatch. All this time, Clara talks about how different yarns are suited for different projects.
I have learned so much about yarn from Knitter’s Review and Clara’s books, The Knitter’s Book of Yarn and The Knitter’s Book of Wool. My mom and I were just talking about substituting yarns and my mom was commenting about how she has learned to be much more mindful of the characteristics of the original yarn in the pattern before she makes a substitution. Knitter’s Review can really help in this process.
Clara does review other items for Knitter’s Review such as books and tools. But the yarn reviews are what I find most useful and enlightening.
On a very personal note, one of my favorite things included in the yarn reviews is if the yarn in question can be knit by touch alone or if you need to watch your knitting. I like to knit a lot of garter stitch and plain stockinette stitch and often knit by “feel”. If Clara says that it is not possible to knit a yarn by touch at least some of the time, I know that it might be a challenging choice for me. Of course if the pattern demands that I watch my knitting, this is less of a concern.
Nearly every week, there is a new review. I encourage you to subscribe. It is worth adding to your inbox. At the very least bookmark this resource.
Happy knitting and reading!
PS. Tell me, do you often knit by touch and if so does it affect your yarn choices?