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Follow Irene Waggener into the High Atlas Mountains of Morocco to learn about a knitting tradition that stretches back in time through generations - possibly to the very origins of the craft.
In this collection of 7 essays and 13 patterns, readers are given a glimpse of life in a High Atlas village where knitting once played a key role in surviving harsh, snowy winters.
The knitting patterns in this book include traditional designs by shepherds who want to share their knowledge with other knitters and future generations. The patterns are presented alongside essays that provide the cultural and environmental context in which knitting was practiced in the High Atlas.
In addition, Irene’s research takes the reader backwards in time as she examines the history of knitting in Morocco and North Africa. Through historical accounts, linguistic clues, and museum artifacts - some of which have not been available to the general public until now - Irene presents a holistic view of knitting in North Africa from Morocco to Egypt. Her research is accompanied by knitting patterns inspired by historical sources, bringing to life once again the skills of early North African knitters.
As requested by the shepherds who contributed to this book, a portion of the proceeds from the sale of this book will be donated to the women’s cooperative, Cooperative Ibilou. The cooperative will use these funds for community development projects that will benefit everyone in their village.
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64 reviews5 out of 5 stars
I just love this book! I’ve only had time to read a few chapters but I’m completely fascinated by how the story ties the patterns together. And the photographs are so amazing! You are truly taken on a journey through the history of fiber and knitting in the region in modern times. I can’t wait to get more time to complete the reading and try my hand at some of the knits. Shipping was super speedy!!
Fantastic narrative of an amazing place and it’s rich wool craft traditions. I’ve gotten to experience just the basics first hand and am thrilled to have Irene take us behind the scenes. I cast on the shabka socks as soon as the book arrived and am learning some amazing new techniques! It’s so freeing to have the directions result in a project that fits instead of just following and counting, following and hoping. I can’t wait to give a second copy to a dear friend. Thank you Irene - this isn’t just a story, it’s the heritage of our craft.
Love this book! We live in Morocco at the moment and it is so fun to read the essays and learn about the cultural and historic aspect of the patterns. I have not seen any books like this. The pictures are beautiful. Can't wait to try out the patterns. Should be a fun gift for anyone that loves textiles and crafting. Awesome job, Irene!
Absolutely stunning book. Extraordinary photographs combined with fascinating stories of a land, a people, and how all is intertwined with their flocks, yarn and knitting. Family patterns complete a treasure of a book that I will read and enjoy for years to come. Our knitting connects us on so many levels, and this beautiful book is proof of how this craft ties us all together. The book was shipped and arrived much quicker than expected, and I am thrilled with my purchase !
Photos from reviews