Creative Ropecraft - 4th Edition by Stuart Grainger
Adlard Coles Nautical 2005 ISBN 9780713674019
Sheridan House 2007 ISBN 9781574092486
It was 25 years ago that Creative Ropecraft by Stuart Grainger first appeared in print in the UK. There had been nothing like it before. The beautiful drawings, so clear and easy to follow, were a joy. In 1977 the American edition was published, and remained available long after the first British edition had sold out; before it too finally finished. Barnacle Marine published a 3rd edition in 1991 which has just sold out. Now, just when it appeared that the world would be deprived of this important knotting book there is a 4th edition. The book, after a brief touch on everyday knots and splices, goes on to cover those things that most other books fail to cover clearly; Turks heads, sennits, and multi-strand knob and lanyard knots, as well as covering techniques such as needle hitching, grafting and cross pointing, together with a few mats. Stuart's drawings are so crisp and clear that the likelihood of going wrong is greatly reduced and subtle variations can be understood. They are drawings for those that wish to use knots to make and cover things in a creative way. The book finishes with a selection of projects, starting with a very simple lanyard and going onto a hammock, a lamp base, a tray, and a doorknocker (or a single chest becket). For this 4th edition Stuart has added just a few more very useful things, especially the Star Knot Grommet that can be used on its own "as a bangle, napkin ring or candle holder and invaluable for basket rims and bases, as well as providing frames for photos, mirrors and trays". His special development the multiple crown for covering of the end of a rod or cylinder is also a useful addition. There is an extra mat and the addition of Hunters Bend and the Boa knot. Sadly the two pages of black and white photos of finished items made by Stuart have been dropped, instead the publisher has replaced by them with coloured photos on the cover, but for me somehow they are just not the same. Readers of Knotting Matters are lucky that they can enjoy Stuart Grainger’s artwork on the front cover of every Knotting Matters [Only from issue 18 until issue 76, Sep 2002! -Ed]. Anyone who has not got a copy of this book should get one immediately. If you already have one, is there a friend you can buy a copy for? I am sure that they will be pleased to receive a copy of this special book.