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Mostly Mittens: Traditional Knitting Patterns from Russia's Komi People Hardcover – September, 1998


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 112 pages
  • Publisher: Lark Books; 1st edition (September 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1579900593
  • ISBN-13: 978-1579900595
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 9 x 10.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,926,122 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

The Komi Republic is situated some 600 miles northeast of Moscow, though the Komi language is more related to Finnish and Estonian than to Russian. This book is not a scholarly exploration of Komi knitting traditions but rather a guide to 36 mitten patterns employing the simple geometric designs used by the Komi in their knitting. Most are two-color patterns with ribbed cuff, thumb gusset, and a tapered top. Easy-to-read black-and-white charts and clearly written instructions featuring full-color hand-sized photos of each mitten make this a good beginning mitten book. Patterns call for fingering and sport-weight yarn, though Schurch provides enough information (yarn yardage and weight) to make substitution easy. Highly recommended for public libraries and textile collections where demand warrants.
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.

More About the Author

Charlene Schurch is a successful author and knitter. Her work has been featured in Knitter's, Interweave Knits, and Piecework magazine.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

24 of 24 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on April 18, 2000
Format: Hardcover
Finally, a patterned method mitten technique for the pattern-challenged! I attempted complex patterned mittens before, but couldn't figure out how to follow patterns when other knitting stuff such as gussets and other increases and decreases were happening. And this author gives a technique for using bands of plain color in between the mitten and the thumb that allow you to start the pattern fresh at the gusset. This way, you're not reading two pattern charts at once (which I find very confusing).
Also, this book gives detailed instructions on how to follow purely charted patterns for mittens, when other charted pattern books just left me to fend on my own.
This is the best mitten book I have. Now I can attempt those pattern mittens I saw in Tasha Tudor's Heirloom Crafts book. :-)
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Threadingwater on February 13, 2001
Format: Hardcover
Don't let an initial scan of this book scare you off. The pattern charts and techniques are much easier to follow than one would think possible for such intricate looking mittens. The patterning flows with an inherent logic that my fingers understood long before my brain did, making the complicated looking charts in this book a breeze to follow. If you prefer "sore thumb" mittens for wearing comfort as I do, you will also find the author's thumb gore technique to be one of the most pleasing and satisfying gores you will ever knit. I am a big fan of Anna Zilboorg's "Magnificent Mittens," but I found the patterns in this book to be even more fun and soul-satisfying -- and that's saying a LOT.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By "zigeunerin" on April 8, 2001
Format: Hardcover
I received this book in the mail about a month ago, and the first thing I noticed was that these are absolutely beautiful mittens! I spent awhile just flipping slowly through the pages making mental notes of the ones I wanted to try. And there are so many! The second thing I noticed was great photography. All mittens are shown fairly close-up so that you can use the photos in conjunction with the charts. So many knitting books don't show enough detail of the actual knitted product, but this one is great in that respect. I would classify myself as an intermediate knitter; I've made mittens before, but simpler than the ones in this book. Charlene Schurch does a great job of explaining the construction techniques (how to work the thumb gore, etc.) so that I haven't had to worry that the mittens are too difficult for me. I am working on my first pair now, and they are turning out beautifully. All of my friends and family will be getting mittens from this book at some point -- if I can part with them.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By sallyforth on March 27, 2007
Format: Hardcover
I was very fortunate to find a new copy of this in a knitting store, at regular price. The patterns and writeups are wonderful. I'm hoping that Lark Books puts this book back into print. Socks seem to be the popular small object to knit these days (witness Charlene Schurch's 2 socks books). However, mittens are equally quick, and fabulous ones like these always seem to create a stir when worn.

The patterns in this book are typical of the Komi people, and are quite a bit different than Latvian patterns. Charlene has included the use of handpainted fiber for backgrounds with solid for the reticulations and other pattern features. This lends a very contemporary look blended with the great folk patterns. All thumbs use a gore for better fit.

This book is well worth an interlibrary loan or, if one is lucky, a purchase.
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By SamIAm on January 7, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book is really nice for the regional history value, and has nicely written patterns and charts. I would recommend this for advanced beginners and up.
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