Today we gave my daughter's piano teacher the slippers we made for her. She was pleased for several reasons. It was good timing because she had just worn some holes in one of her pairs of slippers. But also she appreciated their softness. Apparently someone in her family used to knit slippers for her, but they were scratchy.
We knew these weren't scratchy because Gwen gave them a test run. She almost didn't take them off . . .
I want to give my daughter's piano teacher an end-of-the-year gift. She gives lessons at her home and has many different slippers and house shoes, so I thought I would knit her something from Katie Startzman's The Knitted Slipper Book.
My daughter and I chose these pompom flats as slippers she would probably enjoy wearing. They were a very quick knit---but then there are the pompoms to make.
I have never had good luck making pompoms. They're supposedly so simple, and I thought with my daughter's help and Katie's photo tutorial I could easily make enough for these flats.
I was mistaken. Out of several tries each day, I was lucky to have one good one to show for it. What was the problem? I couldn't get the knot tied tightly enough, even with my daughter's magic touch assisting.
Finally I got the idea to wrap the yarn in as narrow a strip as possible---not necessarily tightly, just on top of itself. And for whatever reason, that worked for us. We finished five pompoms in one sitting.
Now I just have to sew them on. . . .
The Knitted Slipper Book by Katie Startzman, photography by Mika Nakanishi, pub. Stewart, Tabori & Chang, 2013
My daughter is adorable. She's pretty (everyone says so), charming, and outgoing---but she's also smart as a whip, full of helpful information, new ideas, and a great sense of humor.
This book is like my daughter. Okay, maybe it doesn't bake awesome bat-shaped chocolate chip cookies or look especially good in her purple paisley dress. But in addition to being well laid out, with excellent photography and sweet finishing touches (like the little running stitches bordering occasional photos and headers), it's packed with, well, helpful information, new ideas, and a great sense of humor.
Before even getting to the projects, Katie guides us through choosing a style, choosing yarn, gauge for felting, sizing and fit, and felting itself. If you're an experienced knitter, you might want to skip this part, but don't miss the sections on soling (four methods), lining, and slipper care and repair.
After all this information come the thirty delightful projects. But oh, ho! There is more information sprinkled throughout!
Before and after photos of felted slippers, wonderful process photos of the slippers being embellished, an incredibly cute method of making mini pom-poms, beading! thrums! needle felting! cardboard liners! curled pointy toes!!!
The outrageous red cuffs on the Recycled Fringe Slippers are made from an unraveled thrift-store sweater. I will not say they are my favorite slippers in the book, because I simply refuse to choose.
Disclosure: Stewart, Tabori & Chang sent Kangath a free copy of The Knitted Slipper Book for review. Kangath was not compensated for the preceding review. All opinions expressed in the review are the blog author's and are not necessarily the opinions of Stewart, Tabori & Chang or Katie Startzman.
Publishing companies often send me their books to review, and indeed my book reviews are among my most popular posts. (Other contenders being my Inkscape Schematic Tutorials and muffin recipes, the latter mostly being popular with my family at breakfast time. . . . )
Visit these sites to see trailers for books I will be reviewing later this fall:
The Knitted Slipper Book by Katie Startzman (an adorable video with handmade sets and characters)
Lena Corwin's Made by Hand (showing the variety of projects detailed in the book)
And now, back to knitting!
Hi! I'm Kangath---
knit designer, musician, writer, and mother
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