March 2011

"Charts Made Simple" Book

Charts might be a frightening word for many, but personally I love them and always prefer following charts to written text. I know each one of us comprehend subjects differently. However, charts create a clear image of how your project should look like before you even begin.

Understanding charts is a step-by-step process. Up to now, we were all left alone to figure out our way around charts. That is why many people find following charts a mystery and frankly, frightening. Once you learn how to read charts, there is no going back. In addition, every day we notice more print magazines and independent designers use charts instead of written text to include more patterns or use less paper. So if you resist learning to read charts you will be missing on a large number of wonderful patterns.

I am glad to report that longtime Needlecraft University teacher, JC Briar, has written a book about using charts. Students, who have taken her classes, are aware of her meticulous way of describing procedures and detailed information included in each of her classes. Knowing her way of approaching each subject, I was delighted to see her first book published.

In this wonderful book, JC gives you an overview of why charts are drawn to look like the knitted fabric. Then she guides you in following charts and keeping your place on charts. Gradually, in the following chapters she talks about symbols and how to figure out what they mean without checking the key all the time. She then talks about charts that show the shape of each piece of a garment. In the last section she shows how to count stitches on a chart and repeated stitches, explaining the way repetitions work in charts.

The photographs included in the book show the knitted fabric right next to the chart so you can see how similar they look. With this book, you have a leader to hold your hand along the way in understanding charts and reading them.

Whether you are an experienced knitter or a beginner, this book is an essential part of any knitting library and there is no better person to write it than JC.

For more information check out:

Nazanin S. Fard

Needlecraft University

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