Reported by Jen Geigley
Whether you’re Team Edward, Team Jacob, a True Blood fanatic, or not exactly a huge fan of the blood-sucking variety, Vampire Knits: Projects to Keep You Knitting from Twilight to Dawn may be worth sinking your teeth into this fall and winter. Author Genevieve Miller became so inspired by her favorite vampire flick that she began designing her own vampire-themed knitting projects. Through the magic of the internet and Ravelry.com (an online knitting community), Genevieve collaborated with other designers and vampire/werewolf fans across the country to create a collection of patterns paying homage to some of their most beloved vampires and shape-shifters.
The book is full of gorgeous, wearable knitting patterns that anyone would love, like these Bella Swan-inspired mittens.
The photography and styling of the book is beautifully done and is refreshingly light, while maintaining that necessary hint of looming darkness. The Twilight feel is really well-represented, and it’s easy to envision your favorite vampire characters wearing the hand-knits in the photos.
The Lore Hoodie is my personal favorite project from Vampire Knits, although there are several patterns I hope to try out in the future. All of the patterns are very creative while still being quite practical (for the most part). I admit I was a bit wary before I looked through this book, anticipating a potentially campy/costumey vampire theme. But I was quite impressed with the patterns themselves and many of the projects will appeal to knitters who have never picked up a Twilight book in their life (below are several more photos from the book).
The pattern was easy (and quick!) and I’m loving my new Alice-ish Palm Readers (page 58). Such a perfect fall accessory, and they’d look great knitted in any color!
Curious to know more about this book and how it all came about? I had the opportunity to interview author Genevieve Miller. Here’s what she had to say about Vampire Knits.
Tell me a little bit about yourself.
A little about myself? Hmm… I’m a California native. I’ve been married for 13 years – I met my husband in a comedy writing class in Los Angeles. We have 3 great kids – one boy and two girls. Before having kids I was a teacher. I love vampires, Harry Potter, and thanks to my kids I’m now a Star Wars geek, too!
How were you first introduced to knitting, and how long have you been a knitter?
I learned to knit when I was 11. My mom was pregnant with my youngest brother and we learned together. My first project was a big pink blanket knit with 2 colors at the same time on huge size 17 needles. I took a break from knitting during high school and college and picked up the needles again when I was pregnant with my son, 10 years ago. I rarely go more than a month or two without knitting something.
Out of all the most recent vampire movies, books and television series, which is your favorite and why? Do you have any favorite characters in particular?
Oh, gosh. Well, of the recent vampire stories, I’d have to say the Twilight saga was what got me back into vampires, and sparked my interested in designing. I love the movies, but the books are where I fell in love. I like Alice, the hyper, stylish little pixie, but I love Edward! My favorite “bad boy” would have to be Damon Salvatore from the Vampire Diaries. I confess I haven’t read the books, but Ian Somerhalder plays Damon so deliciously it’s hard to resist loving the scoundrel.
What inspired you to write a book and compile a collection of knitting patterns dedicated to vampires?
Twilight inspired me, actually. I just thought the characters were so varied and interesting that they could inspire a lot of creative ideas for knitting projects. It grew from there, since there are so many vampire stories to draw from. Vampire stories have been around for centuries, as has knitting – they seemed a perfect combination!
How did Ravelry.com play a part in the making of Vampire Knits?
I mentioned my idea in a group on Ravelry and it was met with tons of enthusiasm from fellow knitters. In a matter of days I had several designers on board and we got to work. I started my own group where we could brainstorm, call for test knitters, bounce ideas off each other, and call for designs. I don’t think the book would have become a reality without Ravelry.
The designers who have contributed patterns to Vampire Knits include all ages and walks of life. How did you find, choose and bring together this diverse group of contributors?
I met most of them on Ravelry. When I called for submissions, they delivered!
What’s your favorite project in Vampire Knits (and why do you love it?)
Oh, gosh! It’s so hard to pick a favorite – they’re all gorgeous! I love the Lore Hoodie by Cirilia Rose. I want to knit it for myself! I also think the Palm Readers are going to be on my Christmas list for friends. I love the Blood Bottle Cozies, too… they’re so fun! I can’t choose a favorite and I hope to knit everything at some point!
The photography/styling in the book is gorgeous. Where were the photos shot, and by whom?
The photography was done on the publisher’s end. My acquisitions editor, Betty Wong and I discussed what we wanted for the “look” of the models, and they were hired by an agency in New York. I love that the redhead looks like Victoria in the Twilight movies. The outdoor shots were in New York, although they look like they could be in Forks, WA. (There is a photo of Forks at the end of the book that was taken by my sister-in-law, Tere Mendez on our trip to the Olympic Peninsula last July.) The photographer who shot the models and projects is Heather Weston, and my author photo was taken by my other sister-in-law, Candice Eley.
And because I have to ask (you knew this was coming) … Team Edward or Team Jacob?
Are you a knitter who is inspired by Twilight, True Blood and other vampire books, television series or movies? If you’ve knitted a project from Vampire Knits, share it here!