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No Sheep for You

3.63 of 5 stars 3.63  ·  rating details  ·  359 ratings  ·  34 reviews
Yarns made from plant fibers, modern synthetics, and silk take the spotlight in this collection of 21 classic knitting patterns for socks, scarves, hats, bags, vests, sweaters, and even a luxurious bathrobe. Some knitters are discouraged by the thought of baggy hemp sweaters and droopy cotton socks when they consider vegetable fibers, but this authoritative, fun, and light
Paperback, 160 pages
Published April 1st 2007 by Interweave
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Matthew Gatheringwater
Nov 16, 2007 Matthew Gatheringwater rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: knitters interested in exploring new fibers
Shelves: knitting
Even someone who believes, as I do, that wool is the ideal knitting fiber, can benefit from this book.

Non-wool knits have a venerable history. After all, the oldest known examples of knitting (400-500 B.C.E.) were cotton sandal socks. No Sheep For You offers some interesting historical tidbits, but also reports on the latest developments in the processing of traditional fibers like cotton and hemp, and even introduces new non-wool fibers made from bamboo, hemp, seaweed, and soy. There is some y
Ginny Messina
A nice resource for anyone interesting in knitting with non-wool fibers. The first 20 pages or so have interesting background information on how different fibers grow and are made into yarn. The author talks a little bit about use and care of different fibers. It's not an exhaustive list and I'm not sure the information is worth the purchase of an entire book. For more comprehensive lists of available non-wool yarns, I'd recommend these websites:, which lists diffe ...more
BOTTOM LINE: Wonderful resource for those knitters who are allergic to wool, or simply enjoy other yarns, filled with great comparison charts, lots of info about textures and fabrics that result from using various yarns, all in a chatty but not cutesy manner. Many good patterns, in a wide range of patterns as well, making this an excellent book to keep in your knitting library.

Large paperback format has only one physical drawback: it's not spiral-bound, my prefered style for crafting books as i
I liked the information in this book about wool-free yarn. I thought that the information was useful and helpful and I'm sure I'll refer to the book often in the future.

The major flaw I found with this book is that the author seems to assume that if one knits, the main focus of their knitting would be sweaters. There are so many more things to knit than sweaters (or shawls), so despite the helpful information about non-wool fibers there was also quite a bit of information that was not helpful to
I'm glad to have this one on my shelf of crafting books, particularly for the introductory section, which provides a wealth of information on non-animal fiber yarns. I'm not particularly crazy about wool, given that I live in a temperate place and find it mildly itchy, so it's a pleasure to find patterns designed with the drape/stretch properties of non-animal fibers in mind.

There are quite a few patterns in here that I'd (a) actually make and (b) actually wear, which isn't the case with a lot o
Debbi Houtz
non fiction reference book about knitting with yarns not made of sheeps wool.
Some nice stuff but nothing I want to knit.
The cover is a little random, but the patterns are not. I enjoyed looking through this book and thought they did a good job of selecting interesting things to knit as well as good models and bright colors. The layout was nice and featured several different pictures of each item so you could get a good view of what you were going to knit. I'd probably recommend this book, but I didn't find anything in it for me.

*Taken from my book reviews blog:
A wonderful resource of information on non-wool fibers. Want to know why your sweaters pill? This book will tell you. Ever wonder what "microfiber" is? It's in the book. How about how they turn bamboo into yarn? It's in there. Looking for a fabulous, warm sweater to knit for someone who breaks out in hives if you show them a picture of a sheep? It's in there, too.

Even if you have no problem working with wool, this book is a great resource to have on hand if you want to understand how different f
I love that these patterns were designed with plant fibers in mind (along with some silk, but I prefer to use cotton instead). There are cables that don't weigh you down, colorwork that doesn't need to be wool and shawls that bloom without using animal fiber. The patterns are, for the most part, pretty nice (although there are one or two really crazy ones). I have already picked out yarn to make the Cables and Os cardigan, and there are a half-dozen more that I'm planning on making eventually.
Stacy Allbritton
I am not an expert knitter, and I need patterns with explicit instructions. If you find yourself in the same position, this is the book for you. Amy Singer's patterns are easy to follow - not to mention beautiful - and she peppers the book with knitting tips throughout. She also goes into great detail about various fibers and what to expect when you use them. I am the happy owner of this book and have an amazing work of art (my new pullover) to prove it!
The first two chapters describing the different kinds of non-animal fibers are short intro's into a lot of different new innovative fibers. The descriptions are good, but short and very lacking in how the yarns behave.

The patterns left a lot to be desired and i would not recommend this book for design innovation. The patterns are both outdated and non-original designs that you can find in most books with better diagrams than in this book.
Unlike most knitting books, the front matter is the highlight of No Sheep For You. Amy Singer does a great job explaining the properties and manufacturing history of all kinds of non-wool fibers. Finally, I learned the difference between tussah and bombyx silk! --Nerd alert--

The patterns are gorgeous, but they are mostly complex sweaters. There are two pairs of socks and a collar for newbs like myself.
Patricia Green
I really enjoyed the information about the various non-wool fibers, but several of those descriptions left me with unanswered questions. I'm also a newer knitter and found the patterns--all of them--to be far too advanced. A few simple patterns would have been welcome projects on which to experiment with the various fibers.
I borrowed this book from the library. Although I can't wait to start some of the patterns, others are generic that I've seen in several other knitting books. The introductory section with the knitting fiber descriptions is somewhat interesting, but I skipped over it for the most part. Overall, a good free book to borrow from your local library but I wouldn't buy it.
penny shima glanz
Wow. This was awesome. I’m still not sure how I justified purchasing the book at this point in time but I did and it is totally worth it. Amy spent a nice chunk of time explaining how the various non-woolly fibres work. The patterns are quite nice too and I want to play with some sea silk one of these days.. I’m excited to add this to my growing library.
Mar 23, 2008 yoli rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: knitters looking to branch out from wool
Recommended to yoli by: Knitty
Shelves: knitting
VERY educational at the front, especially for a wool-lover who really only knows that cotton is saggy and heavy--still true but there's other stuff as well! Plus there are some very cute patterns, especially the first cardigan pattern and the hemp bag. I will have to revisit this book later when I'm done with my wool sweaters!
I just don't think this book is justified. It doesn't make a case for why its yarns need its patterns. Or vice versa. The patterns are largely nothing much. If this book ever gets out of storage I can see it going on a long trip to a new home.
The beginning section of the book has good descriptions and explanations of non-animal based yarns. The rest of the book consists of patterns using these alternate yarns. Not really worth buying but worth reading the beginning section.
Love the intro... fantastic explanation of all the different kinds of nonwool yarns. Very informative. Patterns are great, wide range of large and small, easy and difficult.
Lauren Gerfen
I liked the idea on focusing on Non-Animal fiber but this book has few helpful tips and extremely boring project ideas. It's not even worth checking out at the library.
I wish she'd go into more depth about the fibers and include a few more (Tencel?), but overall a great book with knits that are fun and classic.
A good resource for learning more about non-wool fibers. I wasn't too impressed with the patterns, though, and was hoping for more on bamboo.
This is a book with lots of info about knitting with non-wool yarns, which I found very interesting. The patterns included are beautiful!
Attractive patterns, interesting alternatives to wool, however have not felt the necessity to knit anything from the book as of yet
Christine Stanford
I bought this book for the Tuscany Shawl pattern, I don't see many other patterns in the book that I want to make.
Aileen Benjamin
I had higher hopes for this book pattern-wise but the other information in the book was super informative and helpful.
Informative and easy to read. Great to learn about nonwool yarns. Thanks for the recommendation Melinda!
Despite the silly cover photo, excellent patterns and information about non-wool yarns and knitting.
My positive review up at Powells[return]
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