61/100 Stephanie Pearl-McPhee Casts Off: The Yarn Harlot’s Guide to the Land of Knitting by Stephanie Pearl-McPhee

If you are at all interested in knitting or the fiber arts, and have a decent sense of humor, then this is the book for you. A light hearted ‘tour guide’ to the world of knitting, this is a great way for beginner and advanced knitters to learn a little something without worrying about taking notes. If you think you are the only knitter in the world, don’t know how to reach out to other knitters, or simply take your crafts too seriously, then consider listening to this book. If you are a non-knitter, or pre-knitter (it looks neat, but I don’t think I can do that), then consider reading or listening to this book so that you are better able to understand the knitter in your life.

If you think that the opinions in this book are too extreme/unrealistic…you don’t know, or really know, any knitters.

Go find some, they rock.

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59/100 Easy Stuff to Make with Fluff by Gillian Harris

My first impression of this book was that it over simplified a lot of different crafts, giving a brief overview of them and how to go about creating them.  It did not go into different properties of wool, what types of wool should be used, or even why she prefers Merino.  The directions for creating the crafts she includes are decent, it helps a bit if you have an idea of how the craft is supposed to go.  There is a mention, and a couple of pages, about how to spin ‘wooltops’ into yarn.

If you are interested in some of the fun things that can be done with wool roving, that is not spinning it into yarn, but don’t want to commit to a felting book, then this is the book for you.   It is a bad idea to create a footstool from roving, you cannot wash it and it will felt and get ratty.  It is a bad idea to create fluffy embellishments for bags that you intend to use, see footstool.  If you’re never planning on washing that stole, then go ahead.  Ditto that pot cover, rug, pillow, etc.  Personally, I hope that these fiber intensive crafts don’t become a fad ‘wooltops’, or how I’ve always heard it roving, is expensive enough already.

29/100 Yarnitecture by Jillian Moreno

Okay, when I say I read this, I do admit I did not read every word of every glossary and index found in the back. There were several really neat knitting patterns in this book. I enjoyed reading the tips, the graphics were wonderful, I have a much better grasp of how to spin fine after reading this book. I also have a much better understanding of what I am looking for in a knitting yarn and why yarn is spun in a particular manner. I think that if you are a dedicated knitter hoping to get into spinning this is certainly a book for you. If you are a spinner that wants to spin knitting yarn then read this book and watch the video ‘Spinning for Lace’ they both have great tips.
If you are a spinner that spins for fun and knitting is a very far back burner hobby, then this is not the book for you.
All in all an interesting read!

76/100 Intertwined: The Art of Handspun Yarn, Modern Patterns, and Creative Spinning by Lexi Boeger

This is an author with revolutionary theories on handspinning, as well as a bent toward political agendas.  I really enjoyed reading this book, it was completely hilarious.  I really enjoyed how serious this author was with her revolutionary and artistic ideas toward spinning.  I had just finished the book, Spin Control, how to spin with a purpose to get the yarn you want/need for a project, so this book talking about letting the fiber tell you what it wants to be, is quite the change.  This book actually reminds me of a psychology teacher I had in college.
She was supposed to be teaching us about gender studies.  She spoke about how breasts are just lumps of fat, so she shouldn’t feel bad that she doesn’t have any (her words, not mine).  She spoke about how she spent some time wearing a fur coat she found at a salvation army until she realized that one of the people she was trying to impress probably donated the coat in the first place.  She also showed us one of those videos that PETA tries to propagate about how chickens are treated in One of the companies.  I had the audacity to ask what this had to do with gender studies, she fluffed it off, something about how men treat women.  The only class I ever came close to failing.
Needless to say this author and her very artistic ideals trigger some bad memories.  Despite this, she does have some good ideas, and decent descriptions for creating various yarns.  She does say in the beginning of this book that you need to be able to create a balanced yarn before you can begin breaking the rules.  She does always seem to be breaking every rule and since most of the yarn she creates on purpose looks a lot like early mistakes, it really does make a person wonder how much is justification…but to recreate things over and over you have to have some skill.
This is certainly a book to get your creative juices flowing, and if you are conservative have a good laugh at the same time.

62/100 The Practical Spinner’s Guide – Wool by Kate Larson

This is a great book for the beginning spinner.  If you are someone who was thinking, “oh I know someone with sheep, I’ll buy a fleece from them and have yarn in no time!”  This is an eye opener.  Also, if you were thinking something to the effect of, “That raw fleece is half the price of a prepared fleece, I’ll save some money and be able to spin more.”  This is eye opening.  Not that buying a raw fleece is always a bad thing, but after reading this book I have a better understanding of what it really takes to get that raw fleece to a place where it can be spun.  I loved the section about conserving your fleeces and what bugs to look for, even though it made me itchy for a while.  The history and characteristics of different fleeces was not only eye opening, but though provoking.  If you are thinking about getting started in spinning, then this is a book to look at.  It really does contain a ton of information and can be pretty overwhelming during the first read.  I certainly consider this a staple for a spinners library.

52/100 Start Spinning by Maggie Casey

If you are thinking about spinning, interested in fiber arts, or just want to know where yarn comes from then this is a good book!  It does get technical in places, but if you want to start spinning some technicalities come in handy.  I really enjoyed this, the author spoke of her own experiences as well as things that she does differently.  While she looks at all aspects, there are places where her bias toward methods is obvious but ignorable.  The glossaries and resources pages are great, it is good to have a definition when she starts talking about rolag and batts, she does define them in the text but something else to look at is nice too.  The illustrations of each step are wonderful, it might as well be a ‘how to’ video in spots.