The lure of scribbles

adult coloring for knitters

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We’re loosing people. They are escaping the siren pull of soft, bouncy yarn and falling victim to the lure of colored lines and cross-hatching and shading. I’m talking about adult coloring. More and more adults are discovering relaxation in the pages of (temporarily) black and white illustrations. I read somewhere that the fastest way to become a best selling author today is to put out a coloring book.

My weekly sit-and-stitch group has already lost two people to this phenomena. They show up to our hang-outs with markers and colored pencils instead of needles and hooks. I don’t think it will be just two for very long. I think its spreading. I think that soon we will be the sit-and-stitch-and-color group. Well, I have something I want to say about knitters and crocheters who give up the yarn for the book:

Did you know that there are coloring books specifically for knitters and crocheters? Oh yes. Let me take you on a tour.

(Did you think I was going to rant and rave about grown-ups who want to color? Not me! First, its your free time and you should spend it exactly how you like. Second, there is a reason knitters and crocheters are attracted to coloring. Its colorful! Playing with yarn is very much about playing with color. So I’m not here to give you a hard time for finding a new way to play with color. But I am going to try and make it all related to yarn! Ya’ll would expect no less from me I’m sure.)

A Coloring Book for Knitters by the ladies at Mason Dixon Knitting

A Coloring Book for Knitters by Kay Gardiner and Ann Shayne

Here is a coloring book by knitters for knitters. If you have heard of any coloring books aimed at knitters, its probably this one. There are 30 illustrations…

from A Coloring Book for Knitters

… and they make me think that must be what the Mason Dixon studio looks like. Looks like a fun place to hang out.

Drawing of Knitting Sampler by Paula Pertile

Drawings of Knitting Sampler by Paula Pertile

This book isn’t as well known as the Mason Dixon book but I like it better. Its more abstract and a bit surreal. It strikes me as illustrations by someone who sees knitting, knitting fabrics, and knitting stitches superimposed on the world around them. Which might be exactly they way I see the world around me when I’ve stayed up past midnight.

from Drawing of Knitting Sampler

There are 20 illustrations and I may have started one myself. What can I say? I do like this collection of illustrations. I like the detail of going stitch by stitch, just like in knitting.


I Dream of Yarn by Franklin Habit

I Dream of Yarn by Franklin Habit

I can’t tell you much about this one becasue its not out yet. It will be available in June 2016. But its a knitting coloring book by the guy who gave us It Itches, a best selling knitting cartoon book. Of course Franklin needs to have a knitting color book. I’m kind of surprised I didn’t think of this myself and write him a letter demanding one months ago. (I love Franklin Habit and I read all his stuff. I feel like he and I are friends. He seems to not realize I exist but that doesn’t stop me from talking about him like we are buds.)

Free Stuff

There are some free coloring pages out there too. These illustrations may not be as high in quality as those in the books but… free is always appreciated.

The LoveCraft’s Coloring Book by Delyth Angharad

Here are 7 illustrations for ya in knit and crochet stitches. There is lots of whimsy mixed in. The designer says she thinks of coloring as an experience rather than a means to an end. She hopes that you don’t agonize over color choices and just go!

Stuff at Craftsy

Craftsy is getting into the coloring hobby. You can grab a copy of their free coloring page.

a free coloring page from Craftsy

Then you can check out their free tutorial on six creative coloring techniques.

Any colorists out there? If there are more knitting, crochet, or otherwise yarn related coloring resources available I’d love to hear about them. I’ll add them to this list.

I figure there is plenty of cross-over in the play-with-yarn crowd and the play-with-colored-pencils crowd. There must be. Knit Picks has a dozen coloring books for sale along with listings for news books that are coming soon.

Inspiring Mandalas. 18 designs. Reg $3.99

And if those customer savvy types at Knits Picks think knitters are coloring I bet you they are. Any one with coloring adventures to share?

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10 Comments on "The lure of scribbles"

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I can understand the lure of adult coloring, it is very portable and pencils won’t slip out and leave you with a tangled mess. Also the lure of playing with color, with a comparatively small investment, has a big appeal for budding colorists and designers. I, on the other hand, can’t resist the feel of yarn running through my fingers. I use all my expensive colored pencils that I bought in design school to mark stitches on my knitting and crochet patterns and drawing graphs for my personal designs. Once I get better with the computer, those graphs will be… Read more »
Rae Bardon

The only thing that rivals my stitchonary collection is my coloring book collection >.> <.< though I have to admit, i use markers not colored pencils *ducks from pencil weilding commenters*


this is interesting 🙂 I just picked up my first adult coloring book yesterday 🙂 I felt the same way.. when I’m too tired to make it through another row and lets face it.. I have to do my purl back row so its actually 2 rows :).. Then I can at least pick up the book and still play with colors… I felt that the creativity of the coloring books could also help with my color choices in my knitting..


You are right again Jenn. The stores all are carrying coloring books for adults. And they have every hobby covered too. Some are for us ladies, some are for gentlemen. Enjoy and relax.


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