I got Teva Durham’s book, Loop-d-Loop, out of the library last week. This week, I had some time to look over it. Teva’s introduction was an interesting look into her process:
“I want my designs to reveal the craft at its most elemental and to focus on the experience of forming knit fabric. To do this, I often emphasize a single technique or tradition and blow it out of proportion (such as colossal bobbles or a massive cable) so the hand-wrought is in your face.”
This is exactly how I like to look at knitting, too, and I think that’s why I love her designs so much. My favourite knitting projects have always been those where a) I focused on and learned a particular new technique, or b) the pattern caused me to look at basic techniques in a completely new way. I’d much rather wear something that was fun and interesting to put together, and Teva’s designs never disappoint in the interestingness and process category.
Then again, I think she’s a bit pretentious about her designs at times and talks about how she’s oh so very creative and adults tried to squelch it, etc etc etc. I prefer writing that’s a bit more down to earth, but there are plenty of great patterns in here to make up for the starving artist bit.
The chapters are organized the same way as in Knitting Nature, separating everything by shapes (cycles, planes, etc.). As well as geometry, she seems to love discrete math, talking about binary elements and dualities and such. I love this, mostly because I love math and it lets me geek out. This book is full of fun knitting philosophy.
I also absolutely ADORE the “cover” photo for the Planes chapter. It’s the spitting image of a previous Teva Durham design, the Renaissance Tunic for Interweave Knits. I’ve wanted to knit the renaissance tunic, but was afraid I would screw up the finishing. Seeing as cables are fun and simple and the pattern looks like it could actually turn out looking non-disastrous, I really want to knit it. I’d cut off an inch or two from the bottom, though.
Oh, and for the record, I totally had the idea for the “slinky tree bark rib tunic,” only way hotter. Here are my favourites: