Thursday, October 09, 2008

REVIEW: Bags The Rock - Knitting on the Road with Kelley Deal

Bags That Rock: Knitting on the Road with Kelley Deal
by Kelley Deal
Paperback: 128 pages
Publisher: Lark Books (October 7, 2008)


I will hold no shame in starting right off with proclaiming my love for this book... and its not just because it was released on my birthday! Bags That Rock: Knitting on the Road with Kelley Deal is fun, modern, innovative and classy all rolled in to one!

With 20 projects in all, there's sure to be a bag - or two... or three - here for everyone! Those 20 projects quickly turn into so many more, as each one features a "remix" variation.

I've had several other "bags" books land in my collection over the years, but this one truly packs the punch with several patterns that I can't wait to knit! Combine rock star inspired names like Free Bird, Moe, Edie, Hey Jute and Trixie Delicious, with non-traditional materials like guitar strings, jute, telephone cords, drum lug casings and old necklaces, and you get some very creative, amazing bags... truly, Bags That Rock!

Bags That Rock is one of those rare knitting books that you can just sit and look at, flipping through the pages again and again. The photography is eye catching, the patterns are well written and the "Feedback" blurbs (tips) throughout are interesting - and useful! Kelley shares many of her photos and stories from the road throughout the pages, which for a music lover like myself, makes the book even more fascinating.

The "Tuning Up" section starts the book off with Kelley's take on the tools of the trade. She goes over the usual - yarn & fiber, needles, tools, hardware, straps, techniques and stitches - but with so much more flair than you'll find elsewhere. Kelley talks about non-traditional fibers, recylcing things for straps (who knew the inseam of your old jeans could double as your new purse handle?) and even has "The I-Cord Interview" with her twin sister and fellow rocker, Kim Deal of Pixies fame.

The biggest decision you will have to make after scooping up your copy of Bags That Rock is what bag to cast on first! My choice was easy... I will soon be casting on Easy Evening. Using a guitar string for a handle, secured with crimps and drum lug casings, this will surely be my new go-to bag for all of my honey's upcoming shows! I've already asked him to acquire the musical gear for me...

Other notable patterns include Laura Petrie, a color-block bag with leather handles & metal feet; Moe, "the bag for the John Bonham in all of us," as Kelley puts it, a felted little ditty with an embroidered drum kit on the front and drum sticks for handles; and Knotted Up, a fun, felted bucket bag. Nordic, a reinvention of Kelley's Rock Star Bag previously featured on Knitty Gritty is also included.

Okay, enough chit-chat... its time to get our knit - and rock - on!

About the Author: Kelley Deal is the lead guitarist for the band The Breeders. She spends late nights in the recording studio and long hours on a tour bus -- giving her plenty of time for her other passion, knitting. In Bags That Rock, Kelley is truly able to combine the rock 'n roll world with her knitted bag obsession.


SissySees said...

Sounds very interesting. I'll have to flip through this one first...

Anonymous said...

Now that looks like a fun book! I love knitting bags of all kinds. Those don't sound as stodgy as so many patterns. And I can relate to knitting around 4 dogs... every project in this house is created from a blend of natural fibers including dog hair! :-D

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