wild open spaces

Posted on Posted in book reviews/events, designing, lace/shawls


my friend rosemary hill—you have met her several times before on the blog—has written a new and very beautiful book about lace—new lace knitting; designs for wide open spaces. in the process of reading the publisher’s materials, i came across a comment by a reader stating that the book included “designs for  wild, open spaces”.

while this isn’t exactly the message in the subtitle, i had to kind of smile to myself, thinking of the many talks rosemary and i have had about lace. lace knitting technique, and design ideas; shop talk if you will. i’m sure we have covered the wild open spaces of lace at least once or twice.


in fact, much as it would fool you into focusing on the solid shapes, lace is nothing if not all about the open spaces. i love the idea that lace has the potential to be wild, and that someone else besides me appreciates the part of lace that isn’t there. in other words, there’s no there there, but in fact, it’s ALL there. i will leave off now so we can chew on that a bit, because i’m sure her publisher would rather i talked about the book.


(in my mind, i keep seeing this lovely top knit in our chebris lace yarn in deep silver charbon; soft with a slight fuzzy halo, it would be a knockout as a holiday evening blouse, to contrast with that bit of skin showing through).


rosemary—AKA romi—is well known for her shawl designs and the series of “7 shawls” compilations she has published as eBooks. she has also published several collections of accessories, gift knits, and jewelry. but we don’t get to see her garment designs as often and this book brings them to light.


full of beautifully conceived garments with unusual and very flattering shapes, the book gives rosemary an opportunity to translate her aesthetic into the third dimension. we are treated to a host of feminine, wearable designs for work, relaxation, and after hours.


the ravelry photos of this garment were styled differently and it is stunning as a standalone piece—romantic, summery, and cool. we are working on a sample of the tunic length version (to be released at a future date, i think) in hempshaugh lace, mmm.


even this very casual sweater is rich with openwork texture, though it has the feel of  a warmer fall knit—i love that! a sweater like this is terrific for travel (maybe in ginny DK?) because it crosses over into several climates with ease and its neutral color goes with everything.


of course, the book is not without shawls and accessories, some of which echo the motifs from the sweater designs, like this virginia city cloche and cowl. i am always impressed with the variety of shapes that rosemary comes up with for hats.


this crescent shawl, a take on the old shetland feather and fan favorite, appears to have a hem worked in layers, giving it a bit more weight and substance as an alternative to a scarf.

another thing i love about this book are the short written pieces that rosemary included to talk about her design aesthetic, what attracts her to pattern and lacework (eerily similar to my own), and the evolution of this collection.

i said it earlier this year and i’ll say it again; rosemary’s work lately is just spectacular—it literally makes the hair stand up on the back of my neck sometimes. between her experiments with scale in the surface design and her work in alternative overall shapes, she is just blowing my mind with one thing after another.


but don’t let a design like this intimidate you; the book is chock full of tips and notes from romi to guide through each design concept. each chapter focuses on a different type of lace motif and graduates from its application in a smaller, more manageable project to one that is larger and more complex. there is definitely plenty of learning support in its pages. which is why you should consider getting a copy!


to purchase your copy today, please click here.

OR you can enter to win the extra copy generously provided by interweave knits, publisher of this book. to enter, leave a comment telling us which of the designs in the book you would knit and which bare naked wools yarn you would use. it doesn’t have to be a design on this page; you can pick any of the 19 designs from the book. leave your project plan as a comment at the end of this post by 9 pm EDT on wednesday, 10/28—we will draw a winner and announce it soon after.


59 thoughts on “wild open spaces

  1. I would use Confection Worsted to make the Virginia City Cloche and Cowl. I think that set is so stylish.

  2. Lovely designs in the book. I love seeing them all together. I think Neomi’s shawl would work well in BBF with Warm coals as the main color and Daybreak as the lighter lower lace color. And a more summery version in Hempshaugh fingering with Millet as the main color and buckwheat for the accent lace at the bottom. Off to check my stash!

  3. I love the salt grass pull… wouldn’t it be gorgeous in kent worsted? i think the tidepool colorway would be just right.

  4. I think Little City Tee would be nice in Stone Soup fingering…..so many nice designs . Thanks and Happy Knitting.

  5. This book has been on my wishlist since I first read about it! I would definitely make the Fallen Leaf Shell in Hempshaugh, and the Little City Tee in Better Breakfast Blend, and . . .

  6. I would make the Virginia City Cloche in Breakfast Blend Bakery Rye. Although that first sweater may be calling my name too!

  7. City Tee in either Stone Soup or Better Breakfast Blend. So hard to choose. Thank you for the giveaway.

  8. The Talus Cardigan looks just beautiful. I think I would choose Mrs. Lincoln’s Lace (after it’s back in stock of course) or the Chebris Lace Charbon

  9. So many appealing designs! If I had to pick one, I would probably pick the Little City Tee. I like the subtle detail and it would be very wearable for work and play. I think I would try the Hempshaugh fingering. I have some of the laceweight and love both the feel of the yarn and the rich, creamy millet colorway.

  10. Fallen Leaf Shell in Better Breakfast Fingering in Poppy Seed. Currently doing a project with the Better Breakfast Fingering in Daybreak, it is absolutely beautiful to knit and touch.

  11. So many beautiful lace projects! I think my first from the book would be Neoma’s Shawl, with better breakfast blend in Milk and Honey and Waffle. Yummy!

  12. I think the Bright Moment Cardigan is stunning! I would make it in Madelinetosh Winter Wheat. Gorgeous.

  13. I love the neomas shawl, I’ve always been a sucker for that feather and fan pattern… funny, I would pick the same BBB colors as Cathy, Milk and Honey and Waffle!

  14. I can imagine a nice long knitting relationship with Salt Grass Pull in Ginny DK, but I think I could love that body texture in Stonesoup DK. Better Breakfast DK would be pretty cozy! So many options even without considering color!

  15. Loads of gorgeous projects in this book! If I had to pick just one to knit, I’d pick the Salt Grass Pull knit in your Kent Worsted. I think this lacey classic turtleneck would suit the soft, light qualities of the Kent while being nice and warm for our Colorado winters.

  16. I would love to knit the Salt Grass Pull in Breakfast Blend dk cream and sugar or Better Breakfast dk sugarfrost or the Ginny dk as you recommend. I think any of those choices would result in a gorgeous, very wearable sweater!

  17. I think I would make the Williwaw cardigan. In Hempshaugh fingering–I think that would give such a lovely drape to the cardigan. And I love the buckwheat color!!

  18. Even though it’s not currently available, what is calling to me as a combination is the Secret Cove Cowl in Mrs. Lincoln’s Lace.

  19. I can’t even pick just one of these beauties! Let’s see . . . okay, first up would be the Williwaw cardigan in Better Breakfast Blend. Now all I have to do is decide which color to use.

  20. What an amazing collection! I would love to knit the Fallen Leaf Shell in Breakfast Blend Fingering Cream n Sugar Yarn.

  21. That is a very tough decision! I think I want to make that Talus cardigan. And I got to fondle a hank of the new Hempshaugh lace yesterday and fell in love.

  22. I really love knitting lace. I would start with the salt grass pull cardigan and probably make it in kent worsted. There are so many great patterns to choose from.

  23. Everything about Romi’s New Lace Knitting patterns gives me goosebumps!

    My project plan: To have Knitspot hold my hand/help me adjust gauge so that I can finish the Talus Cardigan in Kent DK Coconut Husk and Kelp in time for my 1st wedding anniversary: March 3, 2016. It’s all about romance in the wild open spaces, the trumpet sleeves and ‘train’ in the back. It doesn’t appear to be the quickest or easiest, but it’s my favorite!! In the alternative, I would need Erica and Anne to help me choose those ‘just right’ color combo/lace weight yarn.

  24. I was really struck by the Aspengold scarf.
    I would like to try the Hempshaugh fingering in any colour.
    Thanks for the contest!

  25. I love the Little City Tee, and I think it would look smashing knitted up in any of the shades of Stone Soup. Thank you for the giveaway!

  26. The Town Square Shawl is calling out for Mrs. Lincoln’s Lace! Thank you for highlighting this book. All the best!

  27. Definitely cabecou … Town Square or Secret Cove pattern. That shawl is gorgeous and would be even more so with a bit of silk!

  28. Definitely it would be Talus, which jumped out to me immediately, but I have had bad luck with lace weight sweaters…too easily snagged, and not warm enough for my cold climate, so I would probably choose Better Breakfast fingering yarn…but I have to come to Canton to pick it out! Too many choices!!

  29. Oooh! Williwaw in Hempshaugh kasha, or maybe Better Breakfast Blend poppy seed. Or Town Square in Mrs. Lincoln’s lace…I wonder how this would drape with the Pachuko Lace cotton, dark green?

  30. Salt grass in mussel shell, kent dk. An absolute must, as soon as possible, needles ready, pattern!!!

  31. Salt grass pull in Confection dark chocolate, please! I love this collection, so many good choices.

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