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Gossamer Webs: The History and Techniques of Orenburg Lace Shawls Paperback – November 1, 1998

4.6 out of 5 stars 15 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

Khmeleva, who teaches Orenburg lace-knitting workshops in the United States, here chronicles the history of the fine gossamer shawls produced by knitters in the steppes of the southern Ural mountain range. The books primary focus is on shawl design, planning, and knitting, as the authors lead the reader through a sample miniature shawl. A charted stitch and border dictionary and instructions for a full-sized Eastern Star gossamer shawl are provided for those who wish to create one. Interviews with shawl knitters and the details of a shawl-buying party the authors attended at the home of a Muslim Tatar family in Orenburg make particularly fascinating reading. Recommended for large public libraries and textile collections.
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.

About the Author

Galina Khmeleva is the author of The Gossamer Webs Design Collection. Carol R. Noble is the author of Style at Large: Knitting Designs for Real Women.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Interweave Press (November 1, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1883010411
  • ISBN-13: 978-1883010416
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 0.4 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #280,317 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
While all lace knitters are familiar with Shetland lace, this book will take you to less familiar territory and introduce you to women who have been carrying on the tradition of glorious lace for a few hundred years.
While as much an introduction to the microculture of Orenburg knitters than a "how-to", the authors nevertheless succeed in stirring the creative juices with page after page of pictures of absolutely gorgeous shawls. Some directions are written out, some are in chart form. Recommended for the experienced lace knitter.
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By A Customer on April 15, 2000
Format: Paperback
My problem with the book is pretty small. For the most part I think it is a very beautiful and special book. The shawls are beautiful and the text is interesting. My only problem is that the instructions for the full-size shawl are a little iffy in points, like telling you to knit in the "corner stitch" without once ever explaining this maneuver. Mostly a beautiful book, though
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Format: Paperback
There are directions here to knit Orenburg-style shawls, but unless you are an experienced knitter, you may find that the instructions are a bit frustrating. Orenburg shawls look a lot like Shetland cobweb lace shawls (but which came first? Orenburg shawls are mentioned in writing at least back to the beginning of the 18th Century.) The technique starts with an edging, then corners are turned and the body of the lace shawl is knitted together with the side edging.
The best part of this book is the history and story of the life of the Orenburg knitters, who even today support their families by knitting gorgeous works of art out of handspun silky mohair yarn. This book is a must if you are a lace knitter.
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Format: Paperback
This book is extremely detailed in the art of knitting Orenburg Shawls. There are charts for basic patterns used in the traditional shawls and at the back a full shawl is charted for practice knitting Orenburg Lace. There is even a small sampler shawl you can knit to learn the techniques of the full sized ones. A great book, necessary for any lace knitter.
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Format: Paperback
First, as an inspiration, this book rocks. Just opening the pages makes me want to knit amazing lace. The problem comes when one tries to actually use the book as a set of instructions. There are few if any coherent patterns and the instructions are very tough to follow. I am a very experienced knitter and feel tremendously disappointed that such a beautiful books hold so little substance and useful advice for actually producing the garments it showcases. If you want some really great patterns check out the ravelry website for cobweb lace. There is lots there.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book explains a lot about the history which is why I purchased the book. I have the newer smaller book - with the patterns and sample - I am so happy to have this book in my collection.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I loved being able to read the history of Orenburg shawls and I am looking forward to kniitng something from this lovely book. A must buy for a serious experienced knitter.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a great work on the history and techniques used in the Orenburg region. It is not a pattern book though it has the traditional lace components shown in it. If you wish to learn history and techniques here they are. If you want to learn to knit Orenburg Lace get Galina's DVD on Orenburg Knitting, if you want to process and spin your own fine Gossamer Thread, get her DVD on Spinning A Gossamer Thread. There is also a pattern guide available to help you create a triangle, square or rectangular scarf/shawl, prior knowledge of Orenburg Knitting(see DVD) a plus!
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