Welcome to iHCPL: The Next Generation. This site was created as the next step in Harris County Public Library's iHCPL Learning 2.0 Program; a discovery learning program designed to encourage staff to explore new technologies. The original iHCPL program was adapted from The Public Library of Charlotte & Mecklenburg County's Learning 2.0 Program.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Crafts & Hobbies #66: Knitting and Crocheting

© 2009 Jupiterimages Corporation
One can knit or crochet almost any type of clothing from necessities to scarves, hats, gloves, mittens, table cloths, etc. In recent years needle crafts have become very popular again with knitting clubs and books about knitting popping up everywhere. Knitting can be fun and relaxing. This post is worth .5 training hours.

The Story of Knitting

Knitting, as defined by Wiktionary, is "Combining a piece of thread with two needles into a piece of fabric." The word is derived from knot, thought to originate from the Dutch verb knutten, which is similar to the Old English cnyttan, to knot.[1] Its origins lie in the basic human need for clothing for protection against the elements. More recently, knitting has become less a necessary skill and more a hobby. [1](Wikipedia - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_knitting)

Wikipedia History of Knitting
History of Knitting
Ezine Articles: An Early History of Knitting
About.com: Knitting

The Story of Crocheting

Crochet (pronounced /kroʊˈʃeɪ/) is a process of creating fabric from yarn or thread using a crochet hook. The word is derived from the Middle French word croc or croche, meaning hook. Crocheting, similar to knitting, consists of pulling loops of yarn through other loops. Crochet differs from knitting in that only one loop is active at one time (the sole exception being Tunisian crochet), and that a crochet hook is used instead of knitting needles.

History of Crochet

Wikipedia History of Crochet
About.com: Crocheting

Many knitting and crocheting groups are making items for vets, chemo patients, hospices patients, and soldiers. Check out some of these sites:

Knitted afghans for vets or hospice patients

Hats for Chemo patients – Head Huggers –Crochet and Knit

Crochet Afghan for Vets or Hospice Patients

Prayer Shawls –Crochet and Knit

Knitted helmet liner for soldiers
© 2009 Jupiterimages Corporation

There are lots of books (fiction and non-fiction) about knitting itself and knitting groups. See the HCPL online catalog:

Non-Fiction Titles

HCPL online catalog has many books on knitting and crocheting at all skill levels, including the "For Dummies" series. Search here.

Fiction Titles

Debbie Macomber
  • The Shop on Blossom Street
  • A Good Yarn
  • Back on Blossom Street
  • Summer on Blossom Street
Kate Jacobs
  • The Friday Night Knitting Club
  • Knit Two
Maggie Sefton
  • Knit One, Kill Two
  • Needled to Death
  • A Deadly Yarn
  • A Killer Stitch
  • Dyer consequences
  • Fleece Navidad
Mary Kruger
  • Died in the Wool
Ann Hood
  • The Knitting Circle
Claire Scovell LaZebnik
  • Knitting Under the Influence
Beth Patillo
  • The Sweetgum Knit Lit Society: A Novel
Knowledge Exchange is a multi-generational knitting and crocheting and conversation group that meets at the Barbara Bush Branch Library every Friday from 2:30-4:30. We make lap blankets for Veterans and chemo hats for patients at M.D. Anderson.


1. Check out the above knitting and crocheting websites and discuss your experience with knitting or crocheting on your blog. Do you knit or crochet now? Do you think you will? Would you rather make a prayer shawl, chemo hat, or lap blanket?

2. Does your branch have a knitting group? Think about how you would start one and discuss it in your blog.

Optional: Choose one of the instruction websites given above and cast on 10-20 stitches and knit 10-12 rows and check your gauge as instructed before continuing on to complete a project. Or choose one of the crochet websites and learn to chain stitch. Find a pattern on one of the websites above and make a scarf, hat, or blanket.

HCPL Staff: Have you completed this exercise? Then Submit your Registration of Completion

This post is brought to you by Valerie Sandham and Shawn Howes.