My next sweater project is a challenge. You'd have a better view of the sweater here since I am making it in navy blue. It is a drop-shoulder pattern. I'd like to knit it with set-in sleeves. Therefore, these are what I always have around me these days:
The Ann Budd book proves to be a very useful one, especially for new knitters who are attempting to make changes to patterns or to design their own. Right now, I have finished the armhole shaping of the back. A few more inches and I can shape the shoulder.
And here is a close-up of the neck band. It is quite intriguing to me as I know for sure that following the instructions wouldn't give you such a beautiful and neat neck band. It looks really like the tubular cast-on edge. So, I checked my reference books and found that there is actually a "tubular bind-off" method! So, when the time comes, I would enlist the help of Nancie Wiseman's book, which is another useful technique book.
BTW, have any of you noticed that Nancie Wiseman and Yarn Harlot look very much alike?
Talking about books, I got a complimentary copy of Maran Illustrated Knitting & Crocheting from the publisher. I spent some time going through it and this thought kept coming up in my mind, "This is the one book I need to have way back when I first started!" All the basics a new knitter needs to know are there in the book, even intarsia! There are also stitch patterns and projects. What is a really BIG plus to me is the illustrations - when I say BIG, believe me, they are really BIG, see? By now, I think you must have read quite a number of knitter-bloggers reviewing on this book. I think our opinions are very consistent - it's a good reference book for new/beginning knitters. If you want to get, say your kids, who just start knitting a reference book, this is the one to go for.