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French Girl Knits Paperback – February 1, 2009

66 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews


"5 out of 5 stars. I really love the designs in this book. All the designs have great body shaping, many with curve-friendly waist shaping and/or empire style waists." - Knitting News

"A lovely book full of great patterns for women who love romantic knits as well as those who like more of an edge. The book is a great way to learn seamless techniques." - Guide to Knitting

"So captivating, so conducive to wistful longing that my eyes well up at the thought of's a feast even if you never knit a thing from it, so why deny yourself the pleasure?" - Twist Collective

"Oh la la! This singular collection drips with je ne sais quoi, its 18 body-conscious pieces revealing both rustic and dans-les-rues influences of French fashion." - Yarn Market News

"Everything that you'd expect from a knitting book inspired by 'an appreciation of the small, lovely moments in life' that is apparent in the lives of the French. There is beautiful, lush, knitterly photography--closeups of unusual knitting stitches and details, along with vintage inspired interiors and stunning scenery." - YARN: The Australian Magazine for Knitting and More

"Gorgeous patterns." -

"This is an amazing book to add to your knitting library especially if you love cute little sexy sweaters. There are also a few in here that I would consider great first-time sweaters." -

"First Reaction: Ooh la la...Classic shapes, but with extra design elements, like lace gussets, or ribbing to provide shape; an unexpected cable, creative closures, or knit-in color work to accent an edge." -

About the Author

Kristeen Griffin-Grimes is the designer of the French Girl pattern line, which is sold in yarn stores across the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom. She lives in Seattle, Washington.


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Interweave (February 1, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1596680695
  • ISBN-13: 978-1596680692
  • Product Dimensions: 8.9 x 8.7 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (66 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #522,090 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Raised in a family of Seattle jazz musicians, and encouraged to develop her own creative style, knitwear designer Kristeen Griffin-Grimes learned one word early on - improvisation. Coming of age in the 1970's, after university graduation and teaching in Mexico, she became a bona-fide "back-to-the-lander", complete with a herd of goats and five acres. Knitting and crochet were not only an artistic diversion, they were a necessity - every piece of clothing the author and her family wore (even her husband's jeans) was handcrafted.

Putting aside her needlework, Kristeen spent fourteen years as a professional musician and teacher in rural Wisconsin. It was her return to Washington State and subsequent retracing of ancestral roots in France that inspired her to begin her own design company, French Girl, which features knit and crochet patterns known for their inventive construction techniques, unique details and feminine styling.

Enthralled by the beauty of France, where the everyday is elevated to art, in 2006 Kristeen and her husband Philip founded French Girl Tours, leading small group excursions focused on knitting, cuisine and history in the Languedoc region. The tours have expanded to include a week-long immersion in the French countryside with visits to organic farmers and vintners, cooking classes, and a special Winemaker's Dinner on-site at a working wine domaine.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

47 of 47 people found the following review helpful By Joanna D. #1 HALL OF FAMETOP 10 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on January 20, 2009
Format: Paperback
French Girls Knits offers what it claims are innovative techniques and romantic details. As for romantic, yes indeed. If you are looking for light, airy and fluffy, look no further. Several patterns are done up in very thin mohair mix yarns (one a linen mix) to make diaphanous garments that could be at home equally in the boudoir as on a shoulder for a summer evening. My favorite model in the entire book was "Anjou", a leaf green linen-mohair blend with a drawn-up hem and tie, short sleeves fluttering with lace. But there are also patterns featuring chunky yarns "for those that like that sort of thing, this is the sort of thing they like" to quote Miss Jean Brodie. For me, I am a fine-gauge yarn knitter, lifelong, so I like the ethereal knits, but if you want saucy cropped jackets in bulky yarn, they are here.

The book is divided into Boutique Parisienne (romantic and vintage, my fave), Enfant Sauvage (Gypsy-rustic), La Creatrice (unconventional construction--the designs are not so radical) and Dans La Rue, streetwear such as cardigans, jackets and shrugs.

There is a bit in here for everyone--the funky, chunky look for the very young, ditto the skirt (this is definitely for the stick-leg, no behind, wearing-tights daring crowd) and the idea of boudoir knits--you could wear the kid mohair long peignoir over a satin nightgown; elegance and warmth? No need to sacrifice sexiness for comfort anymore.

This book has perhaps, due to its scope, only fifty-percent patterns you'd use, but of them, they are par excellent! Not your usual knitting book, certainment!
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32 of 32 people found the following review helpful By J. Victor on July 13, 2009
Format: Paperback
I got this book a few months ago and just recently have begun to dive into the patterns with my summer knitting. What originally drew me to this book was its aforementioned subtitle for "Innovative Techniques, Romantic Details, and Feminine Designs" on the front cover and Kristeen definitely delivers in this respect. She's managed to carefully introduce several types of unique constructions for seamless knitting that is definitely invaluable for any knitter wanting to experiment outside the box. Likewise, her designs and attention to detail not only create a smooth, seamless finish but also plays with cables and lacework to create pieces that draw your mind to a dreamier place with clothing that not only appears flatteringly light and airy but also layerable--something to consider when knitting given that layering clothes seems to be incredibly popular with clothing today and which Kristeen plays up to with her dainty peak-a-boo lacework in several of her tops and tunics.

For the price of the book, the patterns and the prescribed methods of seamless construction, the book is certainly WORTH IT! There are a variety of wearable patterns for cardigans, tunics, tops, tanks, sweaters, and even a skirt that will certainly appeal to your fashion wardrobe. Do not pick up this book if you're looking for socks, hats, scarves, purses, or shawls though. Also as a warning, this book is NOT a take-you-by-the-hand beginner's knitting book. You won't find detailed lessons in knitting and purling here. The designer expects that you have at least a moderate understanding of knitting construction and technique.

Regardless, Kristeen's designs are not only gorgeous, they are awe-inspiring for your wardrobe.
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29 of 30 people found the following review helpful By sfknitter on January 24, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Most buyers of this book have commented how many patterns this book has that they would knit - I definitely am the same. I am really loving the variety of designs. The photos are wonderful - I've been enjoying the close-ups of the stitches and the views of each garment. One of the best features of this book that makes it really worthwhile are the explanatory (shaded) sections that explain construction details, the background of the designer's garments, etc. Most definitely a fantastic, worthwhile book!!
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By S. Orr on February 8, 2009
Format: Paperback
I have always liked the French Girl patterns, and so when I heard she was going to have a book out I was very excited. I am extremely happy that I pre-ordered this book. It is worth every penny. There are a variety of styles but all of them have a nice female flair to them. I started with a short list of patterns to make from the book but after looking through it a few times I can see the potential in so many more of the patterns. The directions are very well written, the techniques are simple enough for even a new knitter to do. The author of the book is a wonderful person. She is helpfull and kind, if you have any questions she is happy to answer them. I am very very happy with my purchase.
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29 of 34 people found the following review helpful By C. A Scovel VINE VOICE on January 17, 2009
Format: Paperback
This is a wonderful little book with a few charms. I have a rule that I only buy a book if there is something that I have to make out of it. At least one item. This book has a few. There are some fun summer knits, chunkier fast knits, cables in very offset fashion, and everything fun flare French that you can imagine.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By P. Graves on February 8, 2009
Format: Paperback
French Girl has really done it with this book. It is brim full of amazingly feminine designs. A friend has almost completed the Viola pattern and it is just lovely. I plan to purchase yarn for 4 different patterns in this book at Stitches West.

Thank you French Girl for bringing femininity back into my world.

I'd also like to mention that all the wonderful garments in this book are available in larger sizing for us larger American women. For those that would need larger sizes, they are relatively easy to modify.

Sometimes simple garments are the most feminine and easy to modify. All the designs remind me of France and how elegant french women seem to be even when dressed down. You cannot deny that there is something for everyone in this book, from the very young, to the mature.
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