Do you enjoy seeing how people in other countries dress and accessorize? Wouldn’t you love a chance to go shopping for clothes in another country — perhaps Japan?
For those of you who knit and / or crochet, you now have an exciting opportunity to “armchair travel” to Japan and select from 23 appealing Japanese needlework patterns that have been translated into English. While looking through this book might not be as exciting as actually getting in the airplane and taking off, it’s a far more affordable alternative — and it gives you a glimpse at Japanese living that you might not be able to experience otherwise.
I couldn’t be any more excited to introduce you to this brand new book called Japanese Knitting: Patterns for Sweaters, Scarves and More.
The author of this book, Michiyo, is a legendary pattern designer in Japan. She has been designing knitting and crochet patterns since 1998 — a remarkable 20-year career. During that time, she wrote more than 20 knitting pattern books. This is the first one of her pattern collections to be translated into English. Don’t miss it!
What You Need to Know About This Knitting and Crochet Pattern Book:
Author: Michiyo; Translated by Gayle Roehm
Publisher: Tuttle Publishing
Copyright Date: This is the English language translation of the book, which has a copyright date of 2018.
ISBN 13: 978-4-8053-1382-4
This book is available in the following format(s):
- Softcover With Perfect Binding
- Digital download: Kindle e-book edition
Number of Pages: 112
Skill Level: Individual skill level ratings are not included in each pattern; however, the front cover of the book says “Knits and Crochets for Experienced Needle Crafters”. Most of the patterns in the book do seem to require some skill, but not all of them look to me as if they’d be that difficult. For example, there’s a textured wool crochet cowl pattern that is basically a long strip of an interesting stitch pattern — no complex shapes and no fitting difficulties to worry about. To my eyes, it looks like an easy project; the stitch is varied enough to be interesting, but it doesn’t look like it would be much of a challenge. But having said that, there’s no doubt that advanced knitters and crocheters will definitely get the best value out of this book.
Knitting Projects Included in This Book:
1. Solid-Colored Knit Cardigan in 2 Sizes
This cardigan features a loose, easy shape and interesting cable-knit sleeves. You won’t need to do any shaping to succeed with making this sweater. The author recommends it as a first-time sweater if you’ve never knit one before.
2. Knitted Pullover Sweater With Patterned Sleeves
This interesting design features a Nordic textile pattern on the sleeves and a starkly contrasting body.
3. Tennis-Style V-Neck Pullover With Cables
This cabled pullover is knitted without the need for any shaping.
4. Asymmetrical Striped Pullover
This knitted pullover has a diagonal hemline and striped sleeves. Part of the body is solid-colored and part is striped.
5. Poncho and Cardigan
This unusual, and comfortable-looking, garment looks a bit like a poncho, but it has sleeves.
6. Hooded Pullover Sweater
This cute pullover sweater has a hood that’s trimmed with faux fur.
7. Seamless Knit Shawl
The main portion of this shawl features a striped design. The border is a wide, appealing lace pattern.
8. Japanese Style Cabled Slippers
These cute slippers have a distinctively Japanese style about them.
9. Bolero and Scarf
This unique garment can be worn two different ways — as a shrug or bolero, or wrapped around the neck like a scarf.
10. Dress and Long Vest
This feminine design is stylish and rich looking. It features an intricate cable detail at the waist.
11. Two-Part Vest
This unique garment features two complementary sections that are knitted separately and then joined.
12. Snowflake Cardigan
Pictured in the book are two different colorways of a lovely Nordic-inspired snowflake cardigan. You work it from the neck down.
13. Raglan Knit Cardigan
This cardigan is basic, but the interesting little details keep it from getting boring.
14. Seamless Colorwork Poncho
This patterned poncho features a Lopi-style colorwork pattern knit into an ultra simple shape.
15. Bulky Winter Tote Bag
Hefty tube-shaped handles and a mix of several yarn colors give this knitted tote bag a distinctive look.
I counted 15 knitting projects in the book all together.
Crochet Projects Included in This Book:
1. Raglan Cardigan With Stripes
The upper portion of this short-sleeved cardigan features a striped design.
2. Seamless Crochet Hat
This textured hat looks like a reasonably straightforward crochet project. You work it in the round starting at the center top.
3. Seamless One-Piece Crochet Poncho / Vest
This unique poncho is crocheted using an appealing, richly textured puff stitch variation. It has a collar for a tailored look; it could do double duty as both career wear and casual wear.
4. Seamless Vest and Stole
This vest is crocheted using an interesting multicolored stitch pattern you can create using only one yarn color at a time.
5. Gathered Crochet Cardigan
3/4 length sleeves, an interesting crochet stitch pattern and a gathered shape work together to make this cardigan an interesting crochet project.
6. Textured Crochet Cowl
You can crochet this hefty cowl using an interesting stitch pattern that incorporates bobbles and scallops.
7. Twisted Half Double Crochet Coat
This coat features a tailored, businesslike style that would make an appealing addition to your career wardrobe.
8. Basketweave Crochet Wrist Warmers
These crocheted wrist warmers are a bit more sophisticated than the ones you usually see around. They have well-defined thumbholes and unique details like buttons.
I counted 8 crochet projects in the book all together.
8 crochet projects + 15 knitting projects = 23 fabulous projects all together.
The Best Things About This Book
These garments are extremely creative — especially the pieces that are designed to be worn in more than one way. You can make one piece yet have different ways to incorporate it into your wardrobe — a definite plus.
The book is packed with knitting charts, symbol crochet charts, detailed schematics and diagrams to help you understand how to work the projects.
The styling in this book is creative and compelling. Models are wearing each of the garments. This is ideal for helping you understand how each piece should be worn. The environments are lovely and interesting without being overly distracting.
I think this book is an outstanding value for its asking price. This book is about the same length and has about as many patterns as the typical knitting or crochet pattern book, but the cover price is only $16.99 — much lower than the average price for this type of pattern book (typically $24.95 – $29.95.) Then, on top of that, you can often find retailers like Amazon discounting it even further. Folks, this book is a bargain. If any of these patterns appeal to you, definitely consider adding it to your pattern library.
Things to Be Aware of Before You Buy This Book
Some of the garments feature boxy, boyish shapes that are more flattering to some types of figures than others.
Crochet enthusiasts, please be aware that you will need to know how to read symbol crochet charts in order to work these patterns. In many cases, the written instructions refer you to the chart rather than giving you step-by-step stitch instructions. If you’re new to symbol crochet charts, don’t worry; they are really intuitive and easy to work from. In my experience, crocheters tend to get hooked on using them once they know how to do it.
I’m delighted to recommend this book to other knitting and crochet enthusiasts — particularly to advanced crafters who are looking for unique and challenging projects that can’t be found anywhere else. I think most of these projects look as if they would be well worth making.
I’m an advanced crafter with a degree in textile design. I’ve owned a LOT of pattern books, yet I learned quite a bit just from looking through this book. I look forward to making several of the projects in it, and I am sure I will learn even more when I do so.
I think other crafters will also find themselves wanting to make more than one of these creative garments, either for themselves or as gifts. Many of the crochet projects, especially, look gift worthy to me — the hat, the wrist warmers and the cowl could all be unique gifts for beloved family members or friends.
Where to Buy This Book:
Similar Knitting Books and Related Resources
- Japanese Knitting Stitches From Tokyo’s Kazekobo Studio
- 250 Japanese Knitting Stitches: The Original Pattern Bible by Hitomi Shida
- Keiko Okamoto’s Japanese Knitting Stitches: A Stitch Dictionary With 150 Amazing Patterns
- Japanese Knitting Stitch Bible
- Visit our main directory of knitting books
Knitting Tools and Supplies
We invite you to sign up for our FREE knitting and crochet newsletter if you’d like to receive updates about all our latest knitting book reviews, crochet book reviews, free patterns and other knitting and crochet news. Our newsletter subscribers are usually the first to know when we post new patterns, book reviews and author interviews online.
This page was last updated on 1-9-2020.