I recently caved and got Cat Bordhi's Sweet Tomato Heel Socks, an e-book; it will have 11 designs in it, and currently has 9. I love the front cover shot of a bluebird flying away with a sock! Very clever indeed. (No birds were harmed in getting the shot, hehe.)
First of all, I must say that Cat Bordhi has once again proved that she is the Steve Jobs of knitting. She has published an incomplete e-book, and will be adding to it regularly. The book was intended to have only 9 socks, but she says "I’m having so much fun designing these socks that I can’t stop." Who knows what we will end up with? There may be whole sections about designing your own sock; the possibilities of this kind of publishing are endless, and I look foward to what she will do. It's a perfect medium for Cat Bordhi, as everything she does is a little bit different. I think this changes everything.
I love the way Cat Bordhi writes. There is a playfulness that comes through, probably because she used to be a teacher. She describes the inside-out pockets in her "Hidden Treasure Pocket Socks" as puppy ears; I love that. On her "Hither and Yon" socks, she uses clear beads on the front of her socks, to let the color of the yarn show through, and multicolor beads on the back, to surprise passersby. A little surprise is always good!
The book has 9 patterns currently; two more are forthcoming. The patterns for the individual sock are available as single copies for $6.00, or you can buy all 10, plus a thank you gift of the last design which won't be available separately, for $20. If you are planning to knit more than three socks, you should buy the book. Each design uses the Sweet Tomato heel, which I blogged about here. Each design is also written for toe-up and top-down construction - a wonderful thing -- and written for one long circular, two circulars, or double-pointed needles.
Each design is highly adaptable in different sorts of ways, and I can use it as a springboard for other ideas. There is something for everyone in this book. All of the socks are sized for women, but children and men are also included in most of the designs, and babies are included in two designs. Cat's instructions are very clear, and while a bit wordy, it's necessary to follow them exactly in a few places. I think adventurous beginning knitters will do fine with this; it's the more advanced knitters which may tend to just go, thinking they know how the design works, and have to frog back. One of the good things (and bad things) about having had a stroke is I don't think I'm right about anything anymore, so I have to pay really close attention! It helps me, but it's aggravating as hell.
This is a great book, and I am looking forward to trying all the designs. Kudos to Cat Bordhi for this format! Another thing that's great about e-books is that I can take it anywhere -- my iPhone, my iPad, my MacBook, in print. Like Cat's designs, it's highly adaptable. :)