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Most knitters know: Getting through a difficult time often means knitting through it. Its this home truth--and all the homespun wisdom behind it--that comes through clearly in the writings gathered in this book.

These pieces--some by contemporary writers like Donna Druchunas and Sherri Wood, others excerpted from the WPAs Federal Writers Project--tell stories of knitting through adversity as widespread as war or the Great Depression, as personal as political anxiety, as unyielding as a prison term, and as tenacious as the hardships endured by the Native American community over centuries.

Men and women, young and old, rural and urban, white and black--their knitting narratives are poignant, often lyrical, rich with personal and cultural history and vivid imagery. They conjure hardscrabble lives and immigrant experience, the work of anxious hands kept busy creating warmth and beauty or earning desperately needed money. Along with the stories from the WPA project, the book features black and white photographs from the Library of Congress archives, as well as a sampling of patterns to help knitters through their own difficult times.

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