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Knitting for Anarchists: The What, Why and How of Knitting (Dover Knitting, Crochet, Tatting, Lace) Paperback – February 18, 2015
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From the Back Cover
Every knitter takes a different approach, and this revolutionary guide fosters experimentation and self-expression. Author Anna Zilboorg defies the notion of a one-size-fits-all teaching method, assuring readers that the techniques most comfortable and intuitive for individual knitters are always correct. Her explorations of the construction of knitted fabrics are founded upon the understanding that there are many different ways to produce the same satisfying result.
Offering advice rather than rules, Knitting for Anarchists promises to broaden the horizons of active knitters and to encourage beginners. Patterns for sweaters, pullovers, and cardigans include helpful photos, charts, and directions that serve not only as guidelines but also as springboards for unlimited variations.
Dover (2015) republication of the edition originally published by Unicorn Books, Petaluma, California, 2002.
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Top Customer Reviews
Although you may be drawn to the colorful pages and designs (which are only a small part of the volume), what lies at the heart of this book are its sensible, clear, illuminating explanations of how those loops operate as they slide across your needles, leaning this way and that. Anna admits that it was not particularly appealing to her to so thoroughly describe the characteristics of stitches, but she seems to have dedicated herself to the task and succeeded very well. In fact, her explanations are really quite engaging, because they are so illuminating.
Once you take the time to read through her pages, studying her illustrations, you will never again knit without understanding what your stitches are doing. Basically, Anna has taken the time to open her eyes to the movements of stitches, and articulated and illustrated it well enough for the rest of us to benefit from her examination. If this sounds hopelessly abstract, it isn't - it's liberating and right before you.
Now that I've read the book myself, I have begun to recommend it in all the workshops I teach. It answers one question I hear several times every workshop, which is: "Why does this stitch lean the wrong way/what should I do about it?" This question will never mystify you again, and the concept of a wrong way will vanish.
Cat Bordhi, author of Socks Soar on two Circular Needles, A Treasury of Magical Knitting, and A Second Treasury of Magical Knitting.
This is a must-have book for any serious knitter, novice or advanced. Brava, Anna!
It's not a pattern book, and it won't make you hip, but it will explain how knitting actually works, and how knitters can make that work for them. Zilboorg's book is a real eye opener, and equips those of us who do our stitches a little differently with the knowledge and ability to deflect purists, stitch nazis, and other fiber arts authoritarians when they tell us we're doing it wrong, and show them that our stitches are perfect regardless of whether we knit Continental or English, leading leg in front or back, or if we wrap clockwise or counterclockwise.
Whether or not you are a confirmed anarchist, the techniques in the book are interesting. By knitting structures and strips, you can come up with some stunning ideas.
This book is illustrated with many photos, and has a lot of conceptual help on the arrangement of knitting stitches along the needle (whether the leg of the stitch is front of the needle or back of it. This determines the twist of the stitch and its orientation after knitting or purling.) As the author promises, if you are the type who can't resist changing a pattern or hates to follow a set of instructions, you will find a lot of interesting new ideas. If you are a lover of well-written, step-by-step patterns, you may not like this book.
This is not a picture/pattern book. It seem more like a knitting philosophy - and a liberating one even!!