When I buy a knitting book, I zero in on the patterns. Unless I need some help, most of the rest of the book is pretty much ignored.
Why, then, did I decide to actually read Mason-Dixon Knitting?
But I did, and I am enjoying it. Besides being fun and funny, the authors think outside the yarn box. Need some thick yarn? How about stringing together pot holder loops? Or anything that can be cut up into loops, like the legs of jeans, the bodies of t-shirts, or plastic grocery bags? I'm not on the verge of knitting bedspreads or blankets, but maybe a fat bathmat or some place mats are in my future. I can't wait for the next installment.
And, speaking of potholders and place mats, they are just two of the oddball items on the material lists for the bags in Simply Sublime Bags. You don't even need a sewing machine for many of the projects in this book; clear packing tape and a stapler will do in some cases. Or a hot iron, if you are working with fusible plastic.
On a related note, I am a huge fan of the local library. When I find a knitting book that I particularly like or that has a lot of patterns that interest me, I will buy it. My library also carries the Interweave Knits magazine. Between that and the free Interweave patterns available online, I have not been inclined to subscribe. But they recently snared me with previews of the fall issue, plus a five-issues-for-less than-the-price-of-four deal. I subscribed, but in the confirmation email, they said my subscription would start with the SUMMER issue. The SUMMER issue I have already read. So that's their scam - dump extra copies of the current almost-out-of-date issue onto unsuspecting new subscribers who have been seduced by the new issue. I sent them a crabby email, which elicited an automated response, but a Real Live Person is supposed to respond within two business days. I'll keep you posted.