Stories In Stitches 2: Knitted Samplers

BannerA different kind of knitting book


Time moves in cycles, I think, not a straight line. 7 Mornings and evenings, summers and winters, war and peace. Years, lifetimes, and millennia all swirl in an unending cycle of decay and renewal. Somehow these circles of time are related to the phases of my life, the lace circle motifs designed by Dorothy Reade, and the shape and growth of a pi shawl.

Authors: Donna Druchunas & Ava Coleman

Listen to Donna read “Full Circle” from Stories In Stitches 2.

Go Inside Stories In Stitches 2: Knitted Samplers

IndexLook InsideProject PhotosEditors Letter

Editor’s Letter
Our Creative Team
Special Techniques
Bibliography and Credits


Full Circle

Anna Marie Jenson
The Lady and her Laces

Yes, there is Math in Knitting
Knitting Charts
An Interview with Meg Swansen
Knitted Sampler through Time
The Kreinik Story  Tools of the Trade

Dorothy Reade’s Circles Sampler
Broadway Diamonds Cardigan
Event Horizon Pi Shawl
Anne Marie Jensen’s Doily Patterns
Patricia Shawl
Blue Pence Jug

8 projects in all


DonnaCartoonSmallFrom the nineteenth century, when the first English-language knitting books were published, throughthe twentieth century, and now into the second decade of the twenty-first, knitting patterns and instructions have been continuously changing. As soon as we get used to patterns being written
a certain way, designers and publishers seemingly find a way to reinvent the mousetrap of pattern writing. Does the new trap work better? Some knitters will enthusiastically shout “YES!” while others will groan in agony and despair.

Knitting terms, abbreviations, and charts have changed over time and with each new decade, it seems, new language symbols become popular. What was once a “pearl” or “seam stitch” is now a “purl” or “p”. What was once “wool round needle” or “silk to front” or, more simply, “over,”is now “yarn over” or “yo”. A left-slanting decrease has changed from “slip 1, knit 1, pass the slipped stitch over” to “ssk”. What was once a wordy explanation is now presented as a single symbol in a chart.

In these pages, you will read about Anna Marie Jensen, born in the 19th century, and Dorothy Reade, born in the first decade of the twentieth. Some of
their patterns are presented here in original form as facsimiles, while others have been rewritten with modern abbreviations or recharted with contemporary symbols. We encourage you to read through all of the patterns, as well as the stories, and examine the charts, as well as the photographs. Even if you don’t intend to knit from the instructions, you will be traveling through time as you explore several of the various ways English-language knitting patterns have been written.

We all have different ways to learn and different ways to knit. Find what is comfortable for you in these pages, and stretch your skill to try a project with a pattern that is written in a style that is new to you. Reach for the sky!

Yours in words and stitches,
Donna Druchunas author or Stories In Stitches


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  1. […] More shawls can be found in my new book series Stories In Stitches: Knitted Samplers. Click Here […]

  2. […] patterns brings me back to the Event Horizon pi shawl from Stories In Stitches 2 and my life going in circles, in cycles. The year is a repeating pattern with 4 seasons. Are there […]