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The Knitter's Handy Book of Patterns Spiral-bound – June 14, 2002
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From Library Journal
Have you seen those advertisements that say "this is the only book you'll ever need on this subject"? This new volume by Budd isn't the only knitting book you'll ever need, but one could knit hundreds of different mittens, gloves, socks, sweaters, vests, hats, and scarves from just the patterns found here. Budd is managing editor of the popular magazine Interweave Knits, and this is the book she wished she had when she worked in a yarn store and customers requested patterns made for their size with yarns available in the shop. The patterns allow the knitter to create garments in any size from toddler to extra-large adult in any weight of yarn, from fingering to bulky. The knitter has only to knit a generous swatch with yarn and needles of her/his choice and plug the resulting gauge information into the charted instructions and schematics provided. Highly recommended for all knitting collections.
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.
"By giving us instructions... Ann Budd frees a knitter to pick up any yarn and create a custom garment." - Knitter's
"Everyone should carry a copy of this wonderful collection of basic knitting designs with them at all times!" - The Soundview Knitting Guild
"If you are looking for simple patterns in a certain size at a specific gauge, this book is for you." - Knitting at What You Need to Know About
"Pair it with a stitch pattern guide and a good technique book and you'll be set for life." - Knitter's Review
"The effect is one of a functional notebook you'll use, rather than a coffee-table book to be handled carefully." - Knitter's Review
"This book is an excellent resource...an idea that every knitter and spinner of handspun yarns has been waiting for!" - Spin2Knit
Top customer reviews
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The downside to this book is that the sweaters pictured are rather large-gauge sweaters that often do not fit the model very well and so look dated. (I'm thinking particularly of the modified drop shouldered sweater that makes the poor model look like she is being eaten by a snuffleupagus... that she looks so happy to be wearing it is a credit to her. Maybe the studio was really cold.) My guess is that a LOT of sweaters had to be knit for this book, and knitting in a large gauge sped up the process. This is somewhat understandable but unfortunate. Realize that you certainly don't have to knit them that way: directions are given for sweaters with innumerable amounts of ease and plenty of different fits, so the knitter can certainly do better than this. The sweaters pictured are merely examples and not meant to be "this is how your sweater will look." The pictures are the ONLY reason I gave this book four stars as opposed to five because I believe a knitting book's pictures should make people want to knit the patterns.
Other than this, however, the book is an invaluable resource for those who want to get away from simply knitting patterns and wish to be creative in their knitting. And the spiral binding is a HUGE plus... I believe more knitting books should be designed this way, because who wants to have to prop their book open and destroy the bidning? I'm currently knitting a British Fisherman's Gansey and several notes in this book helped me a lot.
What DOES work well is that the patterns DO make sense. They are a bit complex to follow (you'll have to leaf through about 10-12 pages as you're working the different parts of the sweater). Also, the math works (I did end up with the proper amount of stitches that the book told me I should end up with at the end of each part.) I also found the different parts fairly easy to put together after I had blocked them.
But all in all, I think planning, blocking, seaming, finishing, are all equal parts of the final design and need to be addressed. I think the book could do with expansion on these other areas. It's not a bad introduction, but I ended up more curious about pattern making, and am now starting to make my own patterns as a result.