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on October 1, 2005
With the (over)abundance of knitting books available at present, one must be very discriminating unless the book budget is unending. So many of the new offerings are just rehashes of the same-old same-old sweaters/coats/cardigans/etc, made in the same-old same-old way. This book introduces a truly new technique for making modular-style knits, which is one of the best ways of using variegated, hand-painted or other multi-colored yarns. And this form of modular knitting is portable, as it utilizes a unique short-row technique that eliminates the need for carrying innumerable balls of different colored yarns. I love all forms of modular knitting, but this one has the extra added benefit of me being able to carry it with me and, once the pattern is mastered, becoming "mindless" knitting. Added kudoes to Iris Schreier for making herself available via a Yahoo!group devoted to this knitting technique. She gives her advice selflessly. Highly recommended on all counts.
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VINE VOICEon September 21, 2005
If you like trying different sorts of knitting but don't feel like picking up stitches/sewing, then you will enjoy this book. It uses short row techniques to make some really pretty garments. I have made three of the scarves and a belt and they are addictive patterns. Waiting for yarn to arrive to make a shawl and then might try the vest. There are also a couple of bags (one felted and one not) that I will eventually do.
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on August 4, 2005
Perfect book if you love hand-painted yarn and want it to look as good in

your knitted piece as it does on the hank. It shows you through tutorials

and 25 projects how to maximize the beauty of the yarn by turning and knitting to create interesting designs.

Most of the chapters teach a way to knit in continuous modules without having to cut yarn or pick up stitches and

the last one teaches traditional modular knitting. This is totally new stuff, so if you're adventuresome

and want to expand your knitting abilities, you'll love it.
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on June 29, 2006
This book has an excellent support forum for helping its readers through some of the technical quibbles one will find frequently scattered through this book. On almost every pattern, there will be errata so the naive reader should look at the Artyarns website for corrections or join the helpful multidirectional forum accessible through the Yahoo groups section for help.

Quite honestly, it mystifies me why this book receives the amount of 5-star praise that it does. It has lots of pattern errata (I don't know if this was from poor editing or simply a rush to get it into print - one star off for me). The garment patterns are somewhat so-so from a fashion standpoint (The bullseye cap - while excellently showcasing a certain technique - isn't really all that attractive - perhaps the choice of black and white contrast yarn in the photo is too strong. A more subtle gradation of color may have worked? I think my inital problem with the patterns of this book may be due to the heavy reliance on variegated and novelty yarn in this book. In my wardrobe, I prefer more solid colors, or subtle color shifts or muted patterns that are not so 'busy.' (Another star off from me.)

I think where this book really shines is in the 'knitting for the home' and accessories department as well as the 'design' department. There are some nice scarf and shawl patterns in this book that are likely to appeal to someone and the pillow patterns are fun, decorative and amenable to the Multidrectional technique. Speaking of Modular knitting, I like how this book encourages you to practice the techniques on little swatches. Your collection of little swatches can open a whole host of inspiration to designing your own patterns.

Do I consider this a requirement in a Knitter's library? Well, I think it depends on what you prefer. I like knitting clothes more than I like knitting accessories so for me, this book is somewhat in the category of: 'it would be nice as a gift, but I don't really need it.' I think if one was looking for a way to knit multidirectional without needing to join yarns and loved working with variegated and novelty yarn, this would be a good book. If one was looking for some nice home patterns or accessories patterns, this would be a nice book.

Now a rant - beware!: It really irks me that knitting books, in general, feel no obligation to edit their books properly on first printing (people are right that it's not fair to single out Modular Knits alone - LOTS of knitting books participate in this manner - unfortunately. If readers are going to the trouble of buying a technical book, we rely on those books to be technically correct. English teachers don't like to see bad grammar in books or essays. Scientists who publish books want to be as accurate and precise as possible before they publish their hypotheses and theories. Why should crafting books be any different? Too much errata in books just speaks volumes about lazy editing and writing, in my opinion. I plead with knitting writers to spend a little more time on good technical editing!

My feelings on this book are sort of like/dislike. There is enough errata scattered in this book to be downright annoying. However, this book is great for the knitter who also wants to design his/her own patterns. There are lots of techniques to try here to get the creative wheels turning. The patterns are fun to work with while practicing these new techniques, although the garment patterns are not that appealing to me. The patterns highlight variegated yarns in interesting ways: from geometric shapes to angles to mitered squares. I strongly recommend the reader to first check it out at your local library or go to your local bookstore and BROWSE it first. If you like the patterns in it, great! Unfortunately, I can't share the enthusiasm some people have about this book.

How I feel about this book: "Meh." 2.5 stars/5 stars
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on September 9, 2006
I've been fascinated with modular knitting for years and teach the technique at yarn shops. This book has some unusual techniques to share and the designs are first-rate. HOWEVER, there are errors galore. I've worked my way through about 4 of the 'tutorials' and hit the wall every time due to errors in the pattern. I had some experienced knitting friends attempt the tutorials and patterns as well and they all had the same experience--errors galore that make it impossible to execute the designs.

The author apparently wants the readers to join one of her discussion groups to get "help" with the patterns (she won't admit that the book is lousy with errata). My feelings are that if she doesn't have the time to properly edit her book, I certainly don't have the time to join her silly discussion group.

If you like puzzles, this is a great book. If you expect a well-written knitting book with accurate instructions, save your money and buy one of the other wonderful books on this technique on the market (Hoxbro, Luters, etc.). My copy will probably go to the recycling bin.

PS: Sorry Iris, I've been knitting for over 30 years and the 'problems' in this book are not due to my lack of understanding. Get yourself a good editor!
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on November 12, 2005
In the three months I have owned Iris's "Modular Knits," I have been more inspired and more productive than in the five decades that I have been knitting. The designs are indeed works of art, appearing almost multi-dimensional as a result of the multi-directional techniques. The support that the author provides in an on-line listserve makes a great offering even better. I wouldn't part with this delightful volume! I know that the skills covered in this volume with eventually result not only in some wonderful knitted garments and accessories, but in some daring design work of my own. This is a must have for any knitting buff!!!
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on August 1, 2006
i got this book based on the yahoo group forum that is supposed to help people with errata and technique.

the ideas presented are a wonderful technique.

however..

the designs aren't all that spectacular. aside from a couple of different things it is mainly a few ideas presented in several ways.

the techniques themselves...it seems to be a disjointed run of thoughts. p[ictures are clearly marked as to where they go with the words.. you have to go from one section to another to find what you want in order to learn to do the various shapes. this would not be great for the novice knitter. i think if the techniques were explaioned in a more flowing presentation it might have helped.

maybe a different editor might have helped?!?

too much errata for a book of this size.

and my last bit of unhappiness with the book...the writer asked people on the group to post some positive reviews. it would seem if the book were that outstanding it woukld have received them on its own without the goading from the designer.

just my opinion...and i will be able to figure out the one or 2 projects i may do in the future. but i think my money would have been better spent on something different and this one gotten through an interloan library setup.
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on August 8, 2006
Ms. Schreier requested that her internet group write a positive review of her book with the promise of a free pattern.

The book has really good ideas, and with the help of my local yarn shop I was able to knit the zigzag scarf. The instructions in the book have errors.

Most of group member seems to be requesting help for the same errors. One would think she would write corrections to her book.

When I contacted Ms Schreier I was told her instructions were correct and I should join her group.

I would buy the book only if you can get help from your local yarn store or you have been knitting a very long time.
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on February 7, 2008
Gorgeous looking designs, but try to execute them. I am an experienced knitter and cannot follow the directions. Most frustrating was the 5-sided shoulder bag. I should have known to be careful when the five-sided bag was referred to as "octagonal." Then, the directions have you picking up stitches to built each triangle, but directions have you going in the the wrong direction to pick them up. Finally, the pattern results in a four-sided bag not a five-sided one. Yikes! Now I'm afraid to try any more. Materials are expensive and time is valuable. I am very disappointed!
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on January 9, 2006
I tried knitting a modular piece before I purchased this book. For an intermediate knitting looking to try something different, modular is interesting and challenging.

This book is excellent for learning modular technique. It is divided into sections of technique and the author provides an explanation of the technique, an exercise to try it out and then patterns using the technique.

Pattern directions are written clearly and as long as you are comfortable with the short rows that modular knitting requires, these patterns are interesting, varied and accurate.

Great book to round out a knitter's collection!
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