Do you have a reputation for being a knitter or crocheter who always gives the really good stuff as gifts at Christmastime? Do you enjoy knitting or crocheting unique, colorful, spectacular presents for the people in your “inner circle”? And do you also enjoy knitting for the other holidays and special occasions too — Easter, Halloween, weddings and loved one’s birthdays?
If gifts and holiday projects are what you enjoy knitting most, there’s a brand new book you absolutely need to know about. It’s called Arne & Carlos: Favorite Designs — Greatest Hits & New Inspirations: Balls, Dolls, Slippers, Sweaters, Scarves, Mittens and More.
This treasure of a book was originally published in Norway; and with the Scandinavian design aesthetic being at the height of fashion right now, it’s the perfect time to grab the brand new, ultra interesting English-language translation of this book.
Scandinavian style permeates every element of this book, from the colorful knitting motifs to the interesting little glimpses of the Norwegian landscape and home life that are sprinkled throughout the pages. In addition to being an exciting collection of knitting, crochet and craft patterns, this book is also an interesting look at what life in Norway is like. So if you would like to take a mental trip to Scandinavia without actually having to pay for a plane ticket, leafing through the pages of this book could be the next best thing.
I’m simply enchanted by this book — and if you enjoy knitting, crocheting, crafting, holiday decorating, or armchair travel, I’m positive you’re going to LOVE it, too!
Knitting, Crochet and Craft Projects Included in This Book:
According to the back of the book, there are 85 designs included in the book all together. I attempted to count them to confirm the number of projects — and found it challenging. I kept losing count. There are SO MANY of them! Seriously — there are enough projects in this book to keep you busy knitting, crocheting and crafting for years. It took Arne & Carlos, the authors, at least 15 years to put all these patterns together.
The majority of the projects in this book are for knitters — but there are also crochet and embroidery patterns included as well.
Knitting Patterns Included in the Arne & Carlos Favorites Book
The projects pictured above give you an idea of the sort of imaginative knitting patterns you’ll find in this book. Some of the other knitting patterns included in the book are as follows:
- Christmas knitting patterns: Christmas ornaments, Christmas stockings, Rudolph the red-nosed reindeer slippers, Christmas coasters
- Easter patterns: Stuffed Easter bunnies, Easter egg ornaments
- Patterns for making knitted toys: dolls, doll clothes, stuffed toy mice, colorful teddy bears
- Knitted birds — you could use these as Christmas ornaments or children’s toys.
- A tea cozy that matches one of the knitted birds
- Scandinavian style clothing and accessories: Sweaters, socks, a scarf, a hat, wrist warmers, mittens
- A knitted dog sweater pattern
- Pillows & cushions
- And more!
Crochet Patterns Included in the Arne & Carlos Favorites Book
This book includes a couple of truly spectacular crochet blanket patterns plus a fantastic mix of other types of home decor projects to crochet:
- A retro, granny square inspired butterfly blanket that’s likely to give GenX’ers a case of the “warm fuzzies”; it looks like something your grandma might have crocheted in the 1970s — only much cooler.
- Primrose throw — You crochet bunches of colorful flowers and join them as you go to make this stunning blanket.
- Flower and leaf appliques for one of the pairs of slippers (feel free to use the appliques for other sorts of projects, too)
- Crochet flower coasters
- Chair cushions
- Edging for a knitted placemat
- Edging for a knitted kitchen towel
Important note: This book includes helpful symbol crochet charts that are a great representation of the crochet instructions you’ll use for working these projects. They’re a little different than the symbol crochet charts you might already be familiar with — but they’re similar enough that you should have no problem following them.
Embroidery Patterns Included in the Arne & Carlos Favorites Book
- A rocking horse cushion, which was inspired by authentic vintage 1950s wooden rocking horse toys
- Pansy table mats
- Embroidered details on numerous knitting projects including a rose embroidery for one of the pairs of slippers and embroidered detals on some of the dolls
Other Topics Covered in the Arne & Carlos Favorites Book:
- Knitting patterns designed in the setesdal knitting tradition
- A double knitting photo tutorial
- An illustrated tutorial for how to do the long-tail cast on
- An illustrated tutorial for increasing and decreasing
- An illustrated tutorial for how to make a hanging loop for a Christmas ornament using crochet
- Multiple illustrated tutorials for various embroidery techniques including back stitch, flower embroidery and embroidering instead of pattern knitting
- A photo tutorial for how to make pompoms
The Best Things About This Book
This is a playful, fun book that will encourage you to flex your creative muscles. If you want to explore design possibilities that will allow you to express your own unique personality, this is the book for you!
These designs are fresh, fun and original, offering you a new twist on familiar, traditional themes.
The toys included in this book are adorable! Who’s going to have more fun — you, knitting them? Or the children you’ll gift them to? It could go either way.
The clothing and accessory patterns included in the book are stylish and sophisticated. They look like they’d be worth the investments of time and yarn.
The book includes bunches of helpful charts, schematics and photo tutorials in addition to the written-out text instructions. There are bunches of different pages that show step-by-step photography sequences. For example, if you aren’t sure how to hold double-pointed knitting needles, you’ll probably get a BUNCH of fantastic insights from studying these pages — because the trickiest bits from these projects are photographed for you, step by step.
The styling in this book is simply exquisite! The toys are thoughtfully presented in fun vignettes that will capture your imagination. For example, you can see a couple of the toy mice and a couple of the dolls photographed in a charming, fully furnished dollhouse.
Elsewhere, there’s a doll photographed in her closet, with doll sweaters and pretty accessories stacked and piled in delightful disarray all around her.
Knitted birds are pictured in lots of imaginative scenes — some adorning Christmas wreaths, and another perched atop a teapot wrapped in a perfectly coordinated tea cozy.
It must have taken hours upon hours to style these wonderful photographs for your enjoyment.
Vintage design inspiration is incorporated into the pages of the book in places. For example: On the inside front cover, there’s a montage of colorful Victorian-era and contemporary butterfly motifs that whets your appetite for working on the delightful crocheted butterfly blanket featured later in the book. Some of the Easter pages incorporate gorgeous Victorian and Edwardian-era Easter greeting cards as backdrops to show off the lovely knitted Easter egg projects you can learn how to make. Pictured alongside the Rudolph slippers, you’ll see a nostalgic reindeer toy and illustration.
The sturdy hardcover book format is likely to withstand many years of frequent use.
Things to Be Aware of Before You Buy This Book
This book has a table of contents, but it isn’t all that useful for finding the projects you want. There are 8 different sections specified in the table of contents — which is not a lot considering the massive volume of patterns included in the book. I DID mention there are 85!!! projects in the book, right?
But, I wouldn’t think this minor detail would be much of a deterrent if the book appeals to you otherwise.
What will be of more concern to some readers: This book includes patterns that are also available in other books. So, if you already own other books by Arne & Carlos, you probably already have some of these patterns in your stash. There are at least 15 patterns in this book that you are unlikely to find anywhere else, so you’re guaranteed to find some new material in this volume. If you’re a hardcore Arne & Carlos fan, the new material will no doubt be worth the purchase price of the book — but you should definitely be aware before you buy that there might be some overlap between the contents in this book and some of their others.
If you’re new to Arne & Carlos craft patterns, this book is an excellent introduction to their work. It gives you the opportunity to own all their favorite designs, some of their best sellers and also a bunch of brand new design work. And if you’re a longtime Arne & Carlos fan who would like to introduce others to their work, this book is a fantastic choice for making the introduction.
Arne & Carlos Favorite Designs is simply delightful! If you want to be charmed, inspired and entertained as well as instructed by your pattern book, this is a book you’re really going to want to own. I’m delighted to recommend this book to other knitting, crochet, embroidery and craft enthusiasts. The book is an exceptionally good value for crafters who enjoy several different crafting techniques and would like to use them for making holiday projects or gifts. But, even if you don’t knit for the holidays, you’ll find plenty of appealing projects to make using the patterns in this book; it includes a fantastic mix of holiday and everyday patterns.
Where to Buy This Book:
Important Details You Should Know About the Arne & Carlos Favorites Book:
Authors: Arne Nerjordet & Carlos Zachrison
Publisher: Trafalgar Square Books
Copyright Date: I’m reviewing the English language translation of the book, which is copyright 2018.
ISBN 13: 978-1-57076-881-1
Book Format: Hardcover without dust jacket
Number of Pages: 266
Similar Knitting Books and Related Resources
Knit Yourself In — If armchair travel and Scandinavian knitting appeal to you, you’ll want to check out Knit Yourself In, which is another book featuring imagery from Norway plus colorful Norwegian knitting patterns. It’s one of my favorites — I highly recommend it!
Christmas Knitting and Crochet Patterns — Want to knit or crochet your Christmas gifts this year? Or make Christmas decorations for your home? If so, check out our list of Christmas knitting and crochet patterns.
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This page was last updated on 3-26-2019.
Arne & Carlos Favorite Designs: Greatest Hits & New Inspirations
Patterns and Project Ideas10.0 /10
Book Format9.0 /10
- Fresh, playful, fun and appealing projects
- Fantastic charts, schematics and step-by-step photos
- 85 delightful projects could keep you busy for YEARS!
- The book includes outstanding gift ideas for everyone on your holiday gift list
- Sturdy book format oozes quality and value!
- Some of these patterns are also included in other books, so if you already own other Arne & Carlos titles, there might be overlap between them.
- There's a table of contents, but it isn't too detailed.