Japanese Knitting Stitch Bible – Book Review

Hello my lovelies!

Whilst I’m very much behind with my book reviews….(I have a stack to share with you…all of them wonderful)…I’ve been holding out with reviewing this one until the publication date (it’s the 10th November, just so you know) got a little nearer for fear of you never speaking to me again for tormenting you with gorgeousness that you can’t get your hot little hands on.

I think I’ve waited long enough!

If you’ve followed this blog for any time you’ll know that I love a good cable knit.  In fact, in about 40 years of knitting, I think I’ve only found one cable pattern that I don’t like.  And it isn’t in Japanese Knitting Stitch Bible: 260 Exquisite Designs by Hitomi Shida.

Happily in English, the book entices you to “discover the beautiful world of Japanese Knitting” with “260 Exquisite Patterns”.  I’ve seen many books on various topics that lure you in which such promises, but fall short once you’re inside the covers.

This book is not one of them.

It is, quite simply, breathtakingly wonderful.

Obviously, the first thing you want to do is look at the glorious photos of the stitch patterns.  These are just beautiful.  They are knitted in yarns that give crisp, clear stitch definition and colours that showcase the pattern rather than obscure it, or, as some older books do, sear your retinas!

As you happily flick through the pages, you’ll notice that the book is actually separated into sections:

  • Lacy patterns
  • Overall patterns and crossing stitches
  • Pattern panels
  • Pattern arrangements 
  • Round yokes
  • Edgings

So whether you want to knit a scarf, a sweater, some mitts or a yoke on a cardigan, the groundwork has been done for you.

The front of the book has a comprehensive “How to Knit It” and “Guide to the Symbols” section, which clearly explains all the technical knowhow you need to knit the patterns.  And the introduction to Japanese knitting patterns makes sure you understand how to read the charts.

The charts themselves are beautifully clear.  I would enlarge them for actual knitting purposes, but that is absolutely personal preference and rubbish eyesight, not a detraction from the book at all.

Because, I’ll be honest, I cannot say anything negative about this collection of  stitch patterns.  There are even four lovely designs for you to make.

Those mitts have my name on them.  I have some red yarn in the stash that’s been waiting for the perfect pattern, and this is it!

Japanese Knitting Stitch Bible: 260 Exquisite Designs by Hitomi Shida is, quite simply, exquisite, and I would recommend it to any knitter who loves cables.



The lovely Ann over at@TuttlePublishing supplied me with a free copy of this book in return for an honest review. However, all opinions expressed here are my own and in no way influenced by @TuttlePublishing.

Please note that some of the links in this post are affiliate links.  If you click through and make a  purchase, and I may receive a small commission, at no cost to you!  I only recommend goods or services that I am happy to use myself.

14 Responses to Japanese Knitting Stitch Bible – Book Review

  1. Not sure I have the patience or talent for this kind of knitting but it certainly is very beautiful. Look forward to seeing what you make!

    • Pendle Stitches says:

      Pshaw! If you can knit and purl you can cable. It’s the ultimate slow knitting project! 😉 I have faith in you.

  2. Tialys says:

    Ooooh! This might be going on my Christmas wish list.
    I’ll be limited to those four patterns though because I’m not gifted enough (can’t be bothered :)) to design my own. Will you be converting some of the cables into something larger?

    • Pendle Stitches says:

      It is stunning! I really do recommend it. It was on my wish list before I was sent this review copy (I’m such a lucky girl).

      I’m planning to start with the mitts pattern, but I’m thinking that the yokes would work nicely with Tin Can Knits new sweater recipe Strange Brew.


      But…I am thinking it’s time I designed my own sweater after that, and this is the perfect excuse for a slow heirloom sweater project knitted from lovely yarn.

  3. That scarf!! Wonderful designs, Thanks for reviewing this beautiful book!

  4. Abbey says:

    This book looks lovely (exquisite, even!) and I hope you enjoy your copy. I am nowhere near ready for these stitch patterns as a knitter, but WOW are they beautiful! Japanese knitting patterns and books are definitely on my radar right now–as with sewing books, the aesthetic is so interesting and inspirational!

    • Pendle Stitches says:

      They are exquisite! I’ve never knitted anything so complex but I’m itching to have a go. It’s really motivating me to get the yarn stash knitted so I can make a start on this. Which gives me time for ideas to percolate.

      I will, of course, have something stockinette on the go at the same time 😉

      If you like the Japanese aesthetic, keep your eyes peeled. I’ve got another book review coming up in a couple of weeks. This time, sewing patterns.

  5. This book looks exquisite. Never in a month of Sundays could I produce something so lovely but I know a woman that can. This is now No.1 on my Mum’s Christmas present list. What lovely, lovely designs. I am looking forward to seeing your mittens. The ones in the book are just stunning. Xx

    • Pendle Stitches says:

      I feel like a Public Service Announcement in the best possible way. Helping with the Christmas shopping is always a good thing.

      I’ve two pairs of socks and a girls sweater to finish before I get to the mitts. Let’s just say, I’m knitting at any given opportunity at the moment! 😉

  6. Kim says:

    Absolutely gorgeous. Definitely for selfish knitting though – I wouldn’t want to give anything with that amount of detail away!

  7. K-Line says:

    OMG – I’ve seen a couple of reviews of the Japanese cables book and I WANT it. (And I don’t love doing cables like you do – but I sure do love looking at them.) Also, what’s the only cable pattern you didn’t like? I wanna know!

    • Pendle Stitches says:

      Hahaha! The one I didn’t like was a kind of circular but lumpy. Just blah!

      You would be amazing with this book in your hands and your crazy good maths skills for sweater drafting.