Birds! Arne & Carlos

Sunday, May 21, 2017

In honor of Jean's ( recent question about Arne & Carlos' newest book, I though I would revive my ancient blog and post a few pictures. 

I am a new Arne & Carlos fan, although I have known about them for quite some time. I have been watching their YouTube videos with much amusement. I was watching for the English publication of their book Field Guide to Knitted Birds. The American publisher did not have a user friendly online shopping solution and I ended up ordering through the UK based Book Depository. Highly recommended. 

I am quite smitten with the book. Lovely quality, a beautiful addition to any coffee table. Inside the front and back covers, there are impressive fold-outs. Lots of inspirational photos as well as good information to make a flock of your own.

A chapter is devoted to the general construction of the birds and all their parts. I find the videos for the making of the beak and the 'supports', the adorable wire feet, quite helpful as I'm not sure I could have muddled through with just the written instructions.

Since birds are not necessarily required or justifiable knitted items the same way a sweater or mittens might be, I appreciate the many suggestions Arne and Carlos provide as to how your birds might be displayed around your home. The tea cozy that Jean mentioned in her blog is very cute. The wreath can be reinvented a hundred different ways for every season and holiday. 

The back cover fold-out, shown above, has a handy section on the right-hand side. On one page is the written pattern. On the other is the chart. So no matter which you prefer, you can fold out the final page of the book, close the book and knit away to your heart's content with all the required details available at a glance. (There are a couple of errors on the fold-out that are not present in Chapter 3 where the Basic Pattern is first presented, so user beware. And if you are an experienced knitter, the errors really aren't cumbersome at all.)

I am very pleased with my bird knitting so far. The most recent creation is a Koigu masterpiece of rainbow persuasion. I am using Briggs & Little Roving to stuff the wee birds as I have a whack of it on hand. It has a very pleasing finished feel to it: slightly dense yet still light and enough memory to hold the finished bird shape. Not near so floofy and light and bouncy as polyester fill.

I'm sure I'll expand from the plain basic pattern eventually and try decorating with feathers and sequins and trying a display or two for my fireplace mantles. But for now, I am quite amused by the differences in character created by different yarns and wrestling the wire into bird feet. 

So a solid 10/10 to Arne & Carlos for a beautiful and inspirational book.



Carol May 21, 2017 at 5:19 PM  

Thank for the review, Bonnie!

Mary Lou May 22, 2017 at 8:41 AM  

It does look like fun. Thanks.

Pom Pom May 22, 2017 at 8:08 PM  

Thank you! I'm waiting for my book to arrive!

jugglingpaynes June 1, 2017 at 12:40 PM  

Sounds like a cool book, I might have to get it for Marina!

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