Now more than ever I think most of us who knit or do other fiber arts are aware of their mental health benefits. We see a reduction in stressful feelings, an ability to control something, which can be powerful, and physiological benefits like decreased blood pressure can come from regular crafting time.
Knit Yourself Calm by Lynne Rowe and Betsan Corkhill came out several years before the pandemic, but its prescription of simple projects to help you calm down and skill-building patterns when you need more of a challenge is a great one for our times.
Despite the title the book doesn’t actually go into a lot of detail about why or how crafting is beneficial as a stress-reduction technique. It is mostly a collection of different kinds of projects for different times — when you need something quick and easy, portable, to work on with a group (or, these days, individually and one person can put the pieces together), big projects and projects for learning new skills.
You’ll find patterns like washcloths, a ribbed scarf and Garter Stitch pillows, simple hats and socks, a patchwork blanket, stripe shawl and cabled fingerless mitts, to name a few. You can see a few of the patterns on the cover on Amazon, or there’s a flip-through preview on the publisher’s website.
Most of the project are suitable for newer knitters who are ready to move on from the basics, and there are instructions for all the techniques needed. If you’re not a new knitter but you like solid patterns with cute design elements but that don’t need a lot of thought put into them, these are good options for you as well. None of the projects totally wow me, but they’d be fine as comfort projects when you just need to run something nice through your needles.
About the book: 112 pages, paperback, 16 patterns. Published 2017 by Search Press, suggested retail $15.95.