Wednesday Observations: Follow The Yarn! Book Review

Tattoo this on your eyelids! This book is really really good.

Copyright of Reba Linker
Copyright of Reba Linker

I love Ravelry, I love Ravelry groups even more. If you stalk hard enough, you might find an opportunity to review a pattern, tool or book. This usually entails receiving the item for free and having a deadline for testing it out, or in my case reading it, then you write a review post on it. It’s fun! You get a free thing, a free awesome thing. I’m so glad I participated in the Blog Tour for Follow The Yarn by Reba Linker.

Follow The Yarn is a new kind of intro to knitting book (at least to me). The basics of knitting,knitting techniques, knit wear care and how to get started are sandwiched in between anecdotes about Linker’s first knitting teacher, Ann. Linker describes Ann as an elderly woman who, despite failing health, devoted much of her time and money to voluntarily teaching knitting at the local Y. A woman with great self confidence, seemingly infinite knowledge of all things knit, great humor, and traditional “New York gruffness”, Ann helped bring Linker out of a slump in her life by simply whole heartedly and genuinely accepting her for who she was. Sadly, Ann passed away in 2010 and this book is dedicated to her.  I promise if you give it a read you’ll fall in love with Ann. She reminds me so much of my LYS owner and boss, even down to how she jokingly heckled her students. “You! Go to the corner!” I’ve heard that a lot. Hah.

While Follow TheYarn does give very nice pictorial explanations of basic knit stitches, I wouldn’t really recommend it as your starting point for actually learning how to knit. However, I would recommend it as a handy reference book to give to a knitter, newbie or not. There is so much good information in this book about yarn selection, knit wear care, and finishing. And all of that information has a funny or endearing anecdote about Ann or Linker’s knit class to go along with it. Do you know how to figure out the fiber of an unlabeled yarn? Did you know there is a simple cast on trick to ensure nice, neat, seaming up? Do you know how to make lace knitting not drive you nuts? Do you want to know why no one will ever ever mess with Ann’s car? Read the book!

I’ve yet to buy a finishing or reference book for knitting. I’ve simply determined that anything I need to know can be found on the magic that is the interwebz. However, I never considered that there were things I didn’t know I needed to know.  For example, I never even considered how to wash my knits. If its durable you throw it in the washer/ dryer, if it’s delicate you hand wash it, right? Right…kind of. There is an entire chapter in this book dedicated to how to wash your knits. Then more  detailing how to take care of your yarn even before you knit it up. In short, this is the first reference book where I thought “Oh…I actually don’t know how to take care of my stuff that well”.

In short, I think this is a great book. It’s got everything going for it; funny stories, heart warming anecdotes, awesome information about how to take care of your knits, and a mass of other little facts and details that range from interesting to ‘ohmergawd how did I not know this???” It gets an A+ from me! Give it a read! While you’re at it, check out the Blog Tour for the book. It features interviews with the author, more book reviews, and lots of yummy give aways! Also, a portion of the proceeds from this book will be donated to the Celiac Disease Center at Columbia University in honor of Ann Sokolowski. A good book and a good cause. Sounds perfect to me. 

All the goody details:

Learn more at All who sign up for Reba’s newsletter from now to the end of the tour will be automatically entered in the Tour Contest for a chance to win Great Prizes.

Extra chances to win will be given out at and…

Follow the Yarn is available at…

And if you want to check out the other blogs on the tour (which you totally should do) here are all the links:

Mon, Nov. 11: guest post,
Mon, Nov. 11: radio interview, Sharon McWilliam’s WiseWomanSoulRadio (details to follow)
Tues, Nov.12: review,
Weds, Nov. 13: review,
Tues, Nov 19, 6pm: radio interview,
Thurs, Nov. 21: radio interview,http://blogtalkradio/JaiKaur
Fri, Nov. 22: interview by Marie,
Mon, Nov. 25: book give-away,
Tues, Nov. 26: podcast book reading,
Thurs, Dec 5: review by Renee at
Mon, Dec 9: interview by Marcy Nelson-Garrisonat…
Tues, Dec. 10: review at
Plus, month-long book giveaway at

Happy knitting! 🙂