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119 of 121 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Belongs on every knitter's bookshelf
Barbara Walker outdid her own classic reference book in the "Second Treasury". It's cram-jammed, chock-a-block with patterns that make your fingers itch to get hold of some yarn and let your creativity run wild. Unlike the reader in Arlington, WA, I would never categorize this book as a "professional reference"; it's a must for anyone who likes to knit, from novice to...
Published on June 8, 2002 by JLind555

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars I ended up sending this back. It was hard ...
I ended up sending this back. It was hard to see the stitch patterns in the black and white photos and I don't see myself choosing to browse through this book over others that I own.
Published 4 months ago by Kristin


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119 of 121 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Belongs on every knitter's bookshelf, June 8, 2002
This review is from: A Second Treasury of Knitting Patterns (Paperback)
Barbara Walker outdid her own classic reference book in the "Second Treasury". It's cram-jammed, chock-a-block with patterns that make your fingers itch to get hold of some yarn and let your creativity run wild. Unlike the reader in Arlington, WA, I would never categorize this book as a "professional reference"; it's a must for anyone who likes to knit, from novice to expert.

The genius of Barbara Walker's knitting books is her crystal-clear instructions and explanations; she makes it easy for anyone to follow. Many of the designs in the "Second Treasury" are quite simple and any beginner could do them with no trouble; once you develop more skill and experience, you can move on to some of the harder patterns. There are enough designs in this book to satisfy the rankest novice or the most experienced pro. I also found the black/white photographs very helpful in showing the design details much more clearly than color photos would. (In fact, some knitters make the mistake of combining too many pattern stitches with too many colors in one garment, and ruining the effect.)

Like the first "Treasury", the "Second Treasury" is very well organized into different pattern groups, and includes some new groups such as mosaic patterns, which are really quite simple but the color effect is stunning. Both "Treasury" books are invaluable references that will provide enough inspiration for a lifetime of enjoying this craft.

Judy Lind
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49 of 50 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb collection of knitting patterns, August 5, 2005
This review is from: A Second Treasury of Knitting Patterns (Paperback)
This book is more than just a collection of knitting stitch patterns. The Introduction is an essential read as it contains many helpful hints and tips, and the introductions to each section and accompanying text describing each of the patterns also contain a lot of valuable information.

I do have concerns about the two Dura Europos patterns - these are probably not originally knitted but made using a technique known as sprang. However it's an interesting interpretation and Ms Walker's knitting pattern versions are worth attempting as the end result is attractive and coherent.

Unfortunately some of the colour photographs are not very pleasing to look at but they were taken in the 1970s so the colour combinations and yarns chosen reflect that. However the black and white photographs of the stitches are extremely clear and provide good detail, showing every stitch of the patterns.

I regard this wonderful collection of patterns as an essential, whether it's for designing and making your own garments or as a reference tool in deciphering a mistake or a printed pattern which is not clear. Browsing through it to look at the different stitches and choose different ways of working some of them is as interesting as actually knitting the designs.
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65 of 68 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars For all knitters, May 12, 2000
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: A Second Treasury of Knitting Patterns (Paperback)
The Second Treasury is, if anything, even better than the First. Barbara Walker's directions are clear, she gives many helpful hints, and there are photographs of each knitted swatch. The stitch patterns range from simple (but lovely) knit and purl variations to designs that will challenge the most expert.
If you have gone beyond following the directions in knitting magazines, and would like to start designing your own sweaters, this is a book you should definitely own.
The section on cables is particularly stunning--if you are looking for ideas for Arans, this is a worthwhile investment.
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34 of 34 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best stitch dictionary ever, April 10, 2006
This review is from: A Second Treasury of Knitting Patterns (Paperback)
I've heard great things about the BW Treasuries, and when I saw this second volume on sale, I snatched it. I am so glad I did! There are about 700 stitches in this volume, including: cable stitches; lace stitches; mosaic color stitches; color stitches in a couple of different techniques; dropped stitch designs; knit-and-purl designs. There are all-over lace and cable stitches as well as panels of cables or lace. There are several edging stitches, as well. The lace and yarn-over stitches seem to predominate, so this book is a lace knitter's dream!

While the pictures are in black and white, they are so crisp that it's very easy to see what the pattern should look like. The instructions are very easy to follow. I've tried several stitches from the book without a snag.

My favorite part about this book, though, is that the patterns are very unique. I've never even heard of some of these stitches, and the different techniques used are amazing. It really opens up your creativity! For example, I used to think that Fair Isle and intarsia were the only color techniques out there. The various dropped stitch and knotting techniques are very creative and unusual, as well. Compares to some of the other stitch guides I've seen, these patterns are really one-of-a-kind, and I can see myself wanting to make nearly all of them. You really can find stitches for nearly anything you'd ever want to make!

BW also includes neat little introductions to each section of stitches, as well as a blurb on each stitch itself, including recommendations for what types of finished products these stitches would work best in.
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24 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful reference for knitters!, December 23, 2000
This review is from: A Second Treasury of Knitting Patterns (Paperback)
I am only a novice knitter, but Walker's book is so clear and friendly that it has improved my work noticeably.
Stitch patterns are arranged and described well, and it is easy to use the book to find patterns to use in a project. Walker gives interesting information and suggestions for use for many of the stitches, and notes many that are especially easy, difficult, or pretty.
Walker has a glossary of common knitting terms with instructions that are clear and useful, explaining both how to do a technique and why it would be used, so that the knitter can make changes to printed patterns intelligently. Even without charts, this book is a treasure and well worth the cost.
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33 of 36 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful fun - and educational!, February 15, 2004
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: A Second Treasury of Knitting Patterns (Paperback)
My mom taught me to knit when I was 8 years old. Lucky for me, she owned Barbara Walker's "Treasury of Knitting Patterns" as well as this second volume. I remember many a happy hour spent knitting swatches of interesting patterns. How many times did I knit the Gingerbread Castle? Too many to count. And besides enjoying myself, I was learning skills that would serve me well all my knitting life.
By encouraging variety and exploration in texture and color patterns, this book is invaluable to any creative knitter.
My only complaints involve the photography, specifically of the color patterns. Showing a color pattern in black-and-white is not the best arrangement; unfortunately, the few color photos in my hardback version depict dated color combinations that induce nausea and make it difficult to see the merits of the patterns that produced the swatches.
Fortunately, black-and-white photos are perfectly adequate to demonstrate the texture patterns that I love best, and I love the fact that in many cases (specifically in the cable patterns) more than one pattern is shown in the same swatch, demonstrating how they can combine.
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Most useful knitting book I have ever come across., June 12, 2006
This review is from: A Second Treasury of Knitting Patterns (Paperback)
I have both the first and second books, picked up at used book stores. In my 30+ years of knitting, these are the most useful knitting books I have ever come across. The sheer number of stitches is astounding, and I have yet to come across a mistake in the instructions (pretty unusual in a knitting book, in my experience).

The photographs are a little dated (who does B&W any more?) but still very usuable.

This book is a Godsend for knitters of every ability level.
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I'd give it more stars if I could!, June 24, 1998
By A Customer
If you knit and you like to design, this book is a must. Mind you it isn't a "do this" to "get that" type of sweater book. It is strictly filled with pattern variations. Everything from cables to lace to ribbing. All of the patterns were tested and include pictures along with written out instructions.
If you can get your hands on it, get it. It is a true reference book for any knitter.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars no really, it's that good, March 11, 2007
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This review is from: A Second Treasury of Knitting Patterns (Paperback)
I couldn't wrap my head around how great a stitch pattern book could be until I got this! I'd always looked at other similar books and thought I could have come up with something like that on my own, or that I'd seen the stitch before in every other book. I ordered this and the first book sight unseen. I'd heard so many positive reviews that I decided to bust out the big bucks and add them to my library. True the pics could be a bit clearer (they are in black & white), but I still could see them and get a good idea of what I'm looking at. I found lots of inspiration and new ideas. So exciting! If you need to just have one book, the first or the second would be great. The second book has some cool edgings not found in the first, but otherwise they are equaly fantastic. Worth it!
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21 of 24 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant contents, horrible printing!, July 30, 2007
By 
M. Yu (New York, USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: A Second Treasury of Knitting Patterns (Paperback)
The contents deserve 5 stars, but the horrible printing deserves none! I gave it 4 stars because I didn't want to mislead people to think there's anything wrong about the contents.

I took out the original edition from the library and was enthralled by the brilliant patterns. I was happy to learn that it (along with other volumes in the series) has been reissued by the Schoolhouse Press. I quickly ordered this and the first volume. However, I was disappointed (no, make that disgusted) by the poor printing quality. In the original edition, patterns with 3, or more than 3, colors are printed in colors, which makes sense, because it's the only way to show the color patterns properly. Some people have commented on the "not so tasteful" color combinations in the original edition. But colors are a matter of personal taste and can be easily changed. At least one should be able to see how different colors interact in a pattern. In the reissue, they're in B/W and are impossible to make out! Even the 2-color patterns that are B/W in the original edition came out dark and muddy. Had I come across the reissue in the library I'd have bypassed it and missed out on a treasure. It's such a shame because Walker's books are timeless classics and should be in the possession of every serious knitter--novices or veterans. My suggestion: If you can, take out the book from your local library and make photocopies of the patterns you like. Then pray that some day some conscientious publisher would do justice to Walker's classics.
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A Second Treasury of Knitting Patterns
A Second Treasury of Knitting Patterns by Barbara G. Walker (Paperback - June 1998)
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