Thursday, August 09, 2007

Knitting Japanese

It's that power of suggestion again...
It started with the Mystery Stole Yahoo group extoling the loveliness of a shawl that Queen Mudd had knit; which showed a project she was working on from a Japanese pattern book; which lead to a search for the book; which found Fleegle's blog; which lead to YesAsia, a bookseller and the ABCs of Knitting; the former of which lead to more books, and so on...

Lots of Google searches later here's what I uncovered about Japanese pattern books. I tried to use ISBN numbers to search, as well as English titles, and where possible copied Japanese symbols. Lacis, in Berkeley, CA and Needlearts Book Shop in Toronto, ON have a selection of Japanese books, including the symbol reference books that Fleegle uses.

YesAsia has a lot of pattern books, but searching is iffy since they use the Roman characters as the enunciation of the Japanese symbols and don't always use the full titles, but a little perserverence did locate some books and for some there are images of some of the patterns. The good news is that they also ship for free on orders over US$55. The bad news is that they ship in 21 days.

Amazon Japan has lots of different books and the exchange rate isn't too bad, but now they ship to the US only by air, so a US$13 book will cost US$20 to ship. It was a good tool, however, for tying images to ISBN numbers and Japanese symbols.

And then there's Kunokuniya Bookstores. At first I found only the Japanese site, but yesterday found Kunokiniya BookWeb. The good news is that they site said where the books were in inventory; the bad news is that most books don't have images. That's where the ISBN number and Japanese symbols come in handy for searching and comparison. I have the advantage of having a local store in Beaverton, OR, but there is danger there because once I was pointed to the knitting/crochet books, I was able to peruse more books and find even more than I'd found on websites and blogs.

The Books
Here's what I've acquired through Kunokuniya and YesAsia. The symbols reference books are on order from Lacis.

Added to my evergrowing "to do" list

Just two reasons to learn to crochet more than edgings
(Reminder: clicking on little pictures brings up big pictures.)

And there are a lot more patterns where these came from...