Shibori Knits – The Art of Exquisite Felted Knits

Author: Gina W. Wilde

Publisher: Potter Craft 2008

ISBN: 978-0-307-39354-8

Reviewer: P. Shannon Evans

Shibori Knits – The Art of Exquisite Felted Knits is an artistic exploration of the art and craft of incorporating shibori weaving techniques with knitting.  Author Gina Wilde takes the reader on a transformational exploration where old myths about texture and finishing are abandoned and results in the reader reinterpreting their own creative responsibilities. Old stereotypes for color and content are abandoned as author and reader embark on parallel journeys of discovery of “new” techniques and combinations of wool, color, and creative uniqueness.

A clear-cut, easy to follow resource guide for the serious as well as the more casual knitter this work guides the reader through the maze of felting and non-felting fibers.  The techniques and directions covered help readers to develop an awareness of their own knitting preferences as well as to enable them to navigate their own interpretations of patterns and fibers with confidence and grace.   This inspiring book gives unparalleled insight into the intricate challenges of fusing fabrics through felting and expands the possibility to create new combinations of felting and non-felting fibers.   

Influenced by her physical environment as well as by her own professional experiences weaving and sculpting, Wilde has applied her artistic skills in new ways to create sophisticated, intricate knitted designs. Facing the monumental task of fusing her love of color, texture, and nature Wilde wanted to create designs that were transformational and innovative. She slogged through the process without the benefit of any guidebooks or resources learning through trial and error and even accident to mix colors and fibers. As she went through the process she began creating combinations and permutations that resulted in innovative designs that resembled works of art rather than embellished knitwear. As she went through the methods over and over Wilde refined her processes and began to create more checklists to help her and others with the herculean task of designing manageable patterns for others to follow. Soon she had a straightforward, well developed plan for each shibori knit design. Based on her more than 200 previous designs and her vast experience at fusing textures and color, Wilde methodically approached each design included in this book.

Shibori Knits provides a sensation laden introduction to this ancient Japanese artistic philosophy of color and texture.  Wilde’s own flirtatiously sophisticated personality shines through in each interpretive design making this book sparkle and stand out from the many other knitting books on the market today. Versatile, sophisticated, and unique, each pattern will provide the knitter with an unforgettable garment and a truly personal creative experience.  This book sets a new standard for process and design books in knitting resulting in a positive transformation for future audiences.  Wilde’s Shibori Knits – The Art of Exquisite Felted Knits is more than a knitters ‘how to’ book; it is a deeply satisfying experience of color, texture, and technique that brings a new depth of dimension to knitting design books. 

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