Knitty designer and columnist Donna Druchunas has always been interested in knitting history and stories, and she and her friend Ava Coleman have recently launched a project that’s about just that.

Stories In Stitches is a book series featuring stories about knitters and their lives, traditions, history, and travel, all tied together with knitting patterns and projects. Each volume includes projects from a far-away time or place. In the words of Donna and Ava: “It is our desire to inspire and empower knitters of all skill levels to move beyond the line-by-line pattern into the realm of creating their own modern folk-art designs.”

The third volume is launching this week, and the focus in on knitting around the world during World Wars I and II. You can order it online.

The first was all about the knitted counterpane – bringing to life stitch delicate and decorative stitch patterns, including some originally used in a bedspread knitted by US First Lady Grace Coolidge. The second was all about knitted samplers, and featured an interview with Meg Swansen. The projects included some truly stunning lace designs.

Full disclosure: I’ve been working on the project as a technical editor, and it’s wonderful and fascinating stuff. I love that Donna and Ava aren’t just focused on North America and Western Europe – they have a truly global perspective. The articles provide a lovely intimate view into the lives of knitters in other times and other countries. The projects are sometimes charmingly retro, and sometimes perfectly modern – but always beautiful and interesting.


Because we love this project so much, we want to share it with you! Leave a comment on the post to be entered to win a set of all three volumes.

The usual contest rules apply: leave a comment on this post between now and midnight eastern time, Monday May 5th. One comment will be chosen at random to answer a skill testing question. If the commenter answers correctly they will win the books. If you have already won a prize from us in the past year, please do give other knitters a chance. Thanks!

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171 Responses to Stories in Stitches

  1. Wendy says:

    So much of the history of knitting has been an oral history, it’s fantastic to find some history is recorded for the future.

  2. Beth says:

    This looks like an excellent series. Win or not I will be reading it!

  3. Ginny says:

    I love the concept of this series. The what, the why, the who, and the how we knit over the centuries has always interested me.

  4. BetsieP says:

    This sounds fascinating. Would love to read it!

  5. Sarah says:

    sounds really interesting — thanks for letting us know about it!

  6. Beaweezil says:

    This sounds fascinating. I’d love to win the copies.

  7. Jane Fields says:

    The history of knitting makes it all seem so worthwhile! I’d love to read and knit these books.

  8. S says:

    Books and stories, fiction and non, have become one of my favorite reading subjects. I will be getting these whether I win or not!

  9. Josee says:

    What an interesting project! I’ll definitely have to look that up and add it to my library if I don’t win it here.

  10. Macbheathain says:

    These seem like very interesting books…hope I win:)

  11. Anita Dodds says:

    What a great idea for books. they sound so interesting.

  12. KathyD says:

    Sounds like a wonderful read.

  13. This sounds like such a worthwhile project. I’d love to win these!

  14. Anne S says:

    Sounds fascinating. I’d love to read all three! (And knit from them, too.)

  15. Ellen says:

    Love books on the history of needle arts!

  16. susan says:

    Donna’s writings are always fascinating and I hope to read these soon. What a great giveaway and I really hope I win! Thanks for the opportunity!

  17. Leigh W says:

    Oh, I hope I signed up in time! Great giveway!

  18. SarahCM says:

    What a wonderful project! I am definitely putting these volumes on my wish list!

  19. Leslie F says:

    What a great idea!

  20. gayle says:

    What a fascinating series! I’m crossing my fingers, though that makes it hard to knit…

  21. Barbara S. says:

    This series looks very interesting.

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