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Big Girl Knits: 25 Big, Bold Projects Shaped for Real Women with Real Curves Hardcover – April 18, 2006

4.3 out of 5 stars 95 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews


"Thanks to Jillian Moreno and Amy R. Singer’s collection of clever, figure-flattering patterns, you’ll no longer need to struggle to resize patterns that weren’t designed with you in mind. With their guidance on how to choose the best designs for your shape, and how to modify patterns that are intended for someone else’s, they guarantee that you’ll never again knit a sweater that makes your big top look like The Big Top." —Debbie Stoller, author of the Stitch ’n Bitch series and editor-in-chief of BUST magazine

"I can’t sing enough praise for Big Girl Knits. More than a collection of beguiling knitwear for the curvy lady, more than a good read (and a good read it is), this book is full of information that might change your attitude about knitting, dressing, and (dare I say it) simply being!" —Pam Allen, editor-in-chief of Interweave Knits magazine and coauthor of Wrap Style

"Big Girl Knits is one small stitch for woman, and one big, beautiful sweater for womankind." —Wendy Shanker, author of The Fat Girl’s Guide to Life

"Big Girls don’t cry, and why would they when they can knit kick-ass, curvalicious projects like those in Big Girl Knits?! No matter what size you are, you’ll appreciate the beauty and attention to detail that is paid to each and every design in this book. Jillian Moreno and Amy R. Singer have proven that big girls not only knit, but also look hot doing it!" —Vickie Howell, host of DIY’s Knitty Gritty and author of New Knits on the Block

"I love this book! It brought tears to my eyes—both with its delicious humor and its loving attention to the subject. The technical stuff is handled wonderfully—with intelligence and clarity and a big heart. The variety in the patterns that follow is a delight. Jillian, Amy, the contributing designers, and the bodies this work will adorn are to be celebrated." —Sally Melville, author of The Knitting Experience books (Knit, Purl, and Color) and of Sally Melville Styles

"If you want to learn how to make garments that fit and flatter your body and you like to laugh while you’re learning and knitting, this smart, witty book’s for you." —Melanie Falick, author of Handknit Holidays and Weekend Knitting

About the Author

Big Girl Jillian Moreno (right) was formerly marketing director with Interweave Press, and helped launch magazines like Interweave Knits, Beadwork, and Natural Home Magazine. She’s the catalyst for Knitty.com and a frequent contributor. She lives in Ann Arbor, Michigan, with her husband, two adorable children, a basement full of yarn, and more books than the local library. This is her first book.

Big Girl Amy R. Singer (left) is the founder and editor of the web-only magazine Knitty.com. She is also a columnist for Interweave Knits and a professional editor and proofreader in the advertising industry. She lives in Toronto, Ontario, with her husband and two rabbits, who are eating the house one piece at a time. This is her second book.

Visit them at www.biggirlknits.com.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Potter Craft; Hardcover Edition edition (April 18, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0307336603
  • ISBN-13: 978-0307336606
  • Product Dimensions: 8.6 x 0.8 x 11.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (95 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #234,734 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Joanna Daneman #1 HALL OF FAMETOP 10 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on April 18, 2006
Format: Hardcover
Over the last number of years, quality knitting magazines and books have occasionally dealt with the issue of fitting hand knits to the larger figure. Bigger people are proportioned differently; knits made to fit need to be designed to accommodate necklines, bust, shoulders, arms. The design has to be customized to flatter a round or curvy figure; these knits are not hanging from rake-thin shoulders draped over a flat board of a chest. As a biggish sort of person who is tall as well as large, I welcome "Big Girl Knits" as a great help to anyone who wants to knit something that fits a big girl.

So how well does "Big Girl Knits" fit the bill? There is an introduction by Wendy Shanker (author of "The Fat Girl's Guide to Life") about her own difficulties finding ponchos to fit her 18-20 size body. Then the first section deals with considerations when knitting for someone who is generously sized. For example, you are going to be using more yarn, in some cases, a lot of yarn. So, consider how heavy that yarn is because the weight of the garment may not be pleasing. Likewise, yarn is not inexpensive, so using extra amounts of a pricey yarn may be a bad idea for something you don't plan to wear for years. The section goes on to explain the "B3" system (boobs, belly and butt) and how to choose a design based on what is emphasized in your figure. The authors discuss hemlines, flattering lengths, good necklines and hiplines. There is a section of top ten list of things you might want to knit:

1. Sweaters that skim the body, flattering your curves
2. Wrap sweaters (again, they show off pretty curves)
3. Fine gauge yarns, reduce bulk, skim the body
4. V-necks--great vertical line to distract the eye and flaunt the cleavage if you choose,
Read more ›
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Format: Hardcover
I'm almost ashamed to think of how many sweaters I've knitted for myself over the years with boring, boxy shapes! Knitting something that actually fit my (extremely wide) shoulders would inevitably hang over my (relatively flat) chest. Never a good look! No more... Big Girl Knits is brilliant...it's got all the shaping information you'll ever need to make yourself flattering, fashionable handknits. Whether you have a big chest, a beer gut or a booty like mine, there's something for you in this book. Jillian Moreno and Amy Singer's clever writing and excellent technical data encourages knitters of all skill levels to take off the tents and knit things that really fit!

(Added bonus: it takes more yarn to knit a tent than it does to knit a shapely sweater. Less money spent on one project equals more for the next one!)

I can't wait for the sequel!
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Format: Hardcover
I was in tears over this book. Really, I sat down and cried. Finally, knitwear designs that get it! Big boxy Volvo sweaters make fat girls look ginormous, and they use TONS of yarn. Big girls can have hips too, and if they don't there is nothing wrong with a little shaping to suggest hips.

This book tells you that the designs won't make you look skinny; they will make you look GOOD! The patterns in this book are not about making Kate Moss fashions big; they are about fashion for big girls. Rather than covering up your curves with boxy, shapeless sweaters (that flatter no one), Big Girl knits works with the shape of your body. The designs will camouflage what you are not happy with on your body and flatter what you love.

The styles are classic, with a twist. No miles of ugly, furry yarn. Instead, the designs focus on worsted and DK yarns knit in becoming shapes. In addition, because the sweaters have shape, they will actually use less yarn than the big box sweater, saving us big girls a little money (or making it easier to buy quality yarns). The designs are not about fads. Rather, they are about what really works are larger bodies.

Big Girl Knits has more than just sweaters; mittens for bigger hands, and shawls that actually cover a big girl. There is even a sock pattern that addresses big calves and small feet.

A word of warning, the patterns use a lot of shaping. There are revealing necklines, flattering shaped bodices, and interesting textures. None of these patterns are made from simple rectangular pieces. While none of the patterns are challenging, one does need to be comfortable reading a pattern to create these lovely shapes.

In all the years I have been knitting, this is the first time my husband wanted to look at the pattern book too. That is a clue to how flattering and sexy these sweaters are. The publisher has already asked for a second book. May I request a book for big men too?
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Format: Hardcover
This is the best knitting book I have ever owned. Being a "big girl" myself, I usually knit sweaters for other people. Alot of the sweaters in my size are very basic. To upsize a pattern, you need alot of experience and math skills. But wait until you see these patterns....va va va voom! Tons of theory about contruction. A whole explanation on body type AND short rows. Built in places to "tweak" the pattern for you and your body type. ( boobies, butts, and bellies) The models are very pretty real sized plus models, (think size 22, not 12 ). The sweaters and coats and skirts are wearable. Most of the yarns are lush and pricy, but if you spend the time to knit one of these beautiful sweaters in a big size, you might as well have something absolutely fabulous. I think this book might well make smaller women want to try to "tweak" these patterns DOWN for a change. Well worth the money, and will probably stay within arms reach for a long, long, time.
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