Have you ever knitted (or hooked) with Noro yarn? If not, then this unique Japanese producer should be on your fibrous bucket list. You might love Noro, you might hate it, but you’re unlikely to be indifferent.
A quickish guide for the uninitiated: Noro produces s-l-o-w-l-y colour-shifting self-striping yarns in various combinations of wool, silk, cotton, and alpaca. Here’s a very old and dodgy photo from my little-more-sophisticated-than-a-chap-sitting-inside-my-phone-drawing-a-sketch phone camera:-
Colours are rich, thickness and texture varies within each ball, and although I don’t have personal experience of this, plenty of folk have reported finding pieces of straw in their skein. Here are some socks that I knitted in a Noro yarn. (Yeah, old and dodgy photo again.)
Anyway, their yarns being unique, a Noro-specific book of patterns seemed like a good idea. And the resulting book was such a success that they’ve just brought out another one, and have kindly sent me a copy. Introducing Knit Noro Accessories 2, by… well it’s by a number of people, but we’ll get to that in a minute. It’s just recently been published by Sixth Spring, so shall we take a wee look?
So what’s inside? Well, there’s a whole hairy load of colour, as you’d expect. (You like your knits plain white? This is not the book for you, dear minimalist.) There are 30 projects, all for accessories: shawls, scarves, cowls, gloves, hats, boot toppers, and a lone pair of socks. They’re bold and pretty:-
The thing about Noro yarns is that they tell their own story, and are best shown off in a simple pattern. There’s nothing more complex here than a spot of cabling and some lacework. Almost every pattern is by a different designer, which at least means that the patterns don’t all feel samey. But this also makes it tricky to summarise the collection. All of the designs are adult-sized, and there’s a massive bias towards patterns for women. Some feel more original than others. For example, the Leaf Lace Fingerless Gloves are striking, but one could put together a reasonably robust argument that the world doesn’t need another cabled beanie:-
This zippered capelet really shows off the delicious green colour progressions in this yarn:-
(Not that I’d wear a zippered capelet, personally, but that’s just me and my prejudices.)
I think the book would appeal particularly to a Noro-loving intermediate-level knitter who plans to make Christmas gifts for a rum bunch of all-different-style friends. I’m afraid that on this occasion, I didn’t make any of the projects, so I can’t directly comment on the quality of pattern instructions.
Visually, the book is a treat for anyone who enjoys a good ol’ colour-fest. I didn’t see any sign of the apocryphal pieces of straw, though.
So would you like a copy of this book, regardless of where in the world you call home? OK, let’s have a giveaway. Sixth & Spring have very generously offered a brand shiny new copy of Knit Noro Accessories 2 to one lucky winner of this blog. (Thank you, Sixth & Spring.) Usual Twisted giveaway rules apply if you’d like to win. Enter by leaving a comment at the bottom of this blog post. To gain a sneaky additional entry, make sure you have ‘liked’ The Twisted Yarn’s Facebook page, and then scroll down to leave a comment on the Facebook post about this contest. I know, I know, I’m making y’all work so hard, but it’ll be worth it if you win the book.
Entries are open worldwide RIGHT NOW, and will close in a week’s time, at 12.00 noon UK time on Tuesday 11th July 2017. The winner will be selected at random using the clever app from random.org, and I’ll contact them to request an address for the publishers to send out the prize. If I don’t hear back from the winner within a week, an alternative winner will be selected at random.
That all OK with you? Right, let’s GO!
(Yes, I was given this review copy for free, but all opinions are very much my own.)