When the weather cools and the leaves fall from the trees, many hands reach for yarn and knitting needles, just as they do for warm drinks and extra blankets. An ancient craft, knitting means different things to different people --- from family traditions to the assertion of independence, from comfort and joy to frustration and disappointment. KNITTING YARNS, edited by Ann Hood, explores the happiness and even the irritation of making scarves, sweaters, hats and other handcrafted goods simply with fiber and sticks.
"KNITTING YARNS is thoughtful and entertaining. The voices of these beloved writers are personal and engaging, and the book is being published just in time to give to your favorite knitter --- the one who always makes you such thoughtful knitted gifts."
Hood gathered essays (and one poem) from 27 popular authors, including Elizabeth Berg, Andre Dubus III, Ann Patchett and Anita Shreve. Many of the pieces relate how the writer began knitting, learning from grandmothers, friends, mothers or partners. Knitting, for several of the essayists, is about connection to the past and memory. But for others, it’s about learning something new, conquering a new skill and meeting new challenges. Knitters knit for themselves and for others, to soothe and heal, or for the excitement of finishing a project. For each of the writers in this collection, the craft arouses an emotional response, and thus most of these essays are poignant and touching.
Lan Samantha Chang, in “The Perfect Gift,” writes about the age-old knitter’s dilemma of making gifts for other people who may not really want the hand-knit item, no matter how much work it entailed. But, she shares, when the recipient of one’s knitted gift loves it, it is the best type of gift-giving there is. In “Teaching a Child to Knit,” Sue Grafton offers solid (and witty) advice for teaching the craft to kids. Kaylie Jones’s contribution, “Judite,” is a heart-tugging recollection of the Portuguese nanny who raised her and showed her love with knitted items. “The Clothes Make the Dog,” one of the best selections in the book, is a