I forgot to tell you about these. For my thirtieth birthday, my good friend Alex who is faithfully good at indulging my passion for knitting, gave me some wonderful surprise books.
This Haiku Knits book by Tanya Alpert is incredible. It has designs in the most unusual shapes, and is very inspiring. You're going to see examples of my attempts at some of them in the years to come.
The Norwegian Handknits book has some beautiful traditional intricate designs, many of which we will all recognise, but it is also a great read. The two authors (and knitters) have taken inspiration from the Vesterheim Museum in Decorah, Iowa and proivided modern knitting patterns for many of the ancient and delicate pieces they found on view there.
It's fascinating to read about the history of the Norwegian immigrants to the States, and to learn about individual crafting women, men and children, the stories and hand-made garments they passed down through the generations. I've been reading it on the bus to work each day, and would really recommend it. One day I must tackle one of those flower-star designs (though I incorporated one into a Christmas decoration I designed, years ago).
This Elsebeth Lavold book is also very interesting, and has lots patterns involving complicated twisting celtic cables.
Am I a lucky girl or what? Actually, now I'm 30, perhaps I can't be called a girl any more? I went for an eye test yesterday and have been told I now need glasses for television and the computer screen. Is this just the start of the slippery slope into old age? Aagghh!