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Alt Fiber: 25 Projects for Knitting Green with Bamboo, Soy, Hemp, and More Paperback – September 1, 2008

3.5 out of 5 stars 6 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews


“An inviting introduction to the world of fibers whose origins come not from hairy four-legged beasts but from the earth itself--things like soybeans, legumes, milkweed, agave, corn, and the humble cotton plant.”
--Clara Parkes, publisher of Knitter’s Review and author of The Knitter’s Book of Yarn

Alt Fiber is a book that takes after my own eco-friendly heart! During a time when we as a society are searching for environmentally responsible ways to live, books like this one help spread the word that we can do the same when we craft. Come for the soy, stay for the sweaters!”
--Vickie Howell, designer, author, and host of Knitty Gritty

“Shannon is on the leading edge. Alt Fiber is a gift to all of us who love new and earth-friendly fiber. This book is informative, interesting, and stuffed full of fabulous patterns that make eco-luxury knitting ultra hip!”
--Jonelle Raffino, co-founder of South West Trading Company, Inc.

“If No Sheep for You had a sister book, it would definitely be Shannon Okey’s Alt Fiber. Shannon has brought an ecological focus to my favorite topic: non-wool yarns. The section on natural dyes covers everything from ingredients to process (fabulous!) and the pattern selection is fresh and vibrant.”
--Amy R. Singer, editor at Knitty.com and author of No Sheep for You

Winner of the PETA 6th annual Proggy Award for Most Animal-Friendly Craft Book - "What do you get when you cross a love of animals with a love of knitting? You get Shannon Okey’s new cruelty-free craft book! Packed with fun and unique knitting projects suitable for newbie knitters and pro purlers alike, Alt Fiber focuses on alternative animal- and eco-friendly fibers, including seaweed, hemp, and soy-based yarn (a tofu byproduct). Tailor-made for people who want to knit but don’t want to hurt sheep, this book is a must-read for anyone interested in joining the cruelty-free craft community." —PETA

From the Publisher

Twenty-five projects to knit and crochet using environmentally friendly plant fibers from a popular craft author, teacher, blogger, and shop owner. * Tips for working with fibers made from wood pulp, pineapple, ramie, kenaf, flax, milk proteins, linen, corn, and more. * An innovative collection of projects contributed by such renowned designers as Knitbrit's Andi Moon Smith, Acme Knitting Company's Jillian Moreno, Julie Armstrong Holetz, Sivia Harding, Laura Chau, Kate Jackson, Keri Williams, and others.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Ten Speed Press (September 1, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1580089151
  • ISBN-13: 978-1580089159
  • Product Dimensions: 9.2 x 0.4 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,536,686 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Shannon Okey is a designer and the author, co-author or editor of many fiber arts-related books, including Knitgrrl, Knitgrrl 2, The Knitgrrl Guide to Professional Knitwear Design, Spin to Knit, Felt Frenzy, Crochet Style, Just Socks, Just Gifts, AlterNation, The Pillow Book, How to Knit in the Woods, the second edition of Knitting For Dummies and Alt Fiber.

She is currently working on a number of new publishing projects with her company Cooperative Press, whose books are also available on Amazon!

Okey is the former editor of UK-based monthly knitting magazine Yarn Forward, the current editor of Knit Edge magazine, and also a former columnist for knit.1 magazine. She has appeared on several crafty TV shows, including Knitty Gritty, Uncommon Threads, Crafters Coast To Coast and Knitting Daily TV. She teaches all over the world.

For the latest news on Shannon and her books, check out her Knitgrrl website which includes her teaching and events schedule, as well as information on upcoming projects.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I give this book a "thumbs up" for "green knitting". This book offers a variety of projects (easy to complicated) and all for non-wool yarns. There are very few books which offer non-wool patterns and it is a entire project within itself to try to convert a wool project (calling for wool yarn) into a non-wool project (using cotton, bamboo etc.) I enjoyed the abbreviation list for crochet and knitting on the front and back cover- very helpful at times. The introduction taught me a few things (good information!) and it was enjoyable to read. I like to try new patterns to stretch what I have learned so far in knitting and this book will help me to achieve a new skill or two. The patterns seem to be well written and offer suggestions for linings and extras like pattern and yarn notes to assist the reader as they work- good idea. I will enjoy the creativity I hope to see from this book to my hand work. thanks to Shannon Okey!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
There is some good information on fibers in this book, if not in great depth. The patterns are so-so, not that different from lots of other patterns in various knitting books. In some ways, it seems that this was rushed to publication to take advantage of the interest in "green" yarns. With the somewhat higher prices for these yarns, it would make sense to have patterns that show off the intrinsic qualities of the yarns - drape, soft natural colors, etc. I guess I just expected a different, more zen style than a tank top with a silly bow or a tee that is only shown from the back. Several of the projects are in bright unnatural reds and other dyed colors, and the photos do not show what the items really look like. Most importantly, I am not interested in closeups of a model's face - I want to see the project.
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Format: Paperback
This is a good book with some really nice patterns that use alternate, more eco friendly fibers. There's a pretty good variety of yarns used in this book, and a variety of patterns. However ... many of the projects don't have very good photos. The photos are lovely, but often don't show very well what the finished product will look like. There are a couple of patterns for sets (shell, cardigan, and skirt) that barely show the skirt at all. Also, some schematics would be nice, but are lacking.
Overall I'd recommend this book if you are looking for patterns that use fibers like bamboo, hemp, seacell, corn, etc. Some of the smaller patterns (like the really cute socks) are a great way to begin experimenting with these lovely yarns.
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