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Knitting Everyday Finery: Practical Designs for Dressing Up in Little Ways Paperback – May 1, 2012

4.8 out of 5 stars 23 customer reviews

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Knit designs from the editors of Marie Claire Idées to ensure that women of all body shapes and types will look—and feel—fantastic. Learn more
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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Mel has created a quietly passionate collection of knits which will pique the curiosity of any knitter, and crosses many skill levels. My fingers itched to knit up many of these lovely, utilitarian designs. I cannot wait to cast on the Lulu scarf!"—Annie Modesitt, knitting designer and author of 1,000 Fabulous Knit Hats

From the Inside Flap

The word "finery" is often associated with jewels, silk, and lace. Hip knitwear designer Mel Clark says it means something else to her, something infinitely more practical and more accessible: clothes or accessories that you can wear or use every day, even though they are packed with enough "wow factor" to grab the eyes of others—and inspire their envy! You'll feel and look fabulous when you don one of Mel's designs, just like you do when you "dress your best." Projects in this easy-to-follow, step-by-step instructional book include much of "what's hot" and even "what could be" in the seasons to come. There’s a little something for everyone—from the ever useful giant cowl to a "heroine hood" and "strawberry beret"; from cuffs and mitts to short-shorts and tangerine-colored tights; from purses and totes to shawls and slippers. With sections dedicated to going out, dressing up, and staying home, knitters are certain to find each of these projects a joy to make and immensely satisfying to keep or give.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Trafalgar Square Books (May 1, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1570765278
  • ISBN-13: 978-1570765278
  • Product Dimensions: 7.3 x 0.4 x 9.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #796,634 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I want to knit almost everything in this perfectly titled book! The projects are little treasures, full of charmingly thought out details.
Photography is uncluttered and seductive and the patterns all look to be straightforward, most easy enough for beginners. I love that Ms. Clark choose to use readily available yarns for her designs and also included information about substitute yarns.
Some of my very favorite projects -
The Heroine Hood: The shape of this hood is super flattering, the pattern has sufficient detail to be interesting but easy enough to be a relaxing knit - especially in the suggested cashmere yarn. I want to make this for next winter to wear outdoors as a hood, then smoosh it down and wear indoors as a cowl.
The Tweed Hat and Scarf: The men I know really do want very simple knits - this is the perfect set. Also, who doesn't love a photo of a lovely young man holding a barnyard bird!
July Gloves: Adorable gloves - I want to knit these in the same bright yellow shown in the book.
Mrs. Lovechild Shawl: Love the backstory for the name of this design + love the shawl. Easy knitting, perfect size and shape - and a collar!
Shiraz Slippers: At long last, felted slippers with a sexy shape.
Everyday Cardigan: Totally flattering shape and length, I want to make a few in different colors.
Tangerine Tights: How fun! Perfect summer knitting to be ready for next fall.

I'm an experienced knitter with a bookcase full of knitting books - this is a welcome addition!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book has some sweet little patterns. I bought it for the cowl pattern which I have now knitted twice and love. There are some cute socks, scarf and fair isle beret patterns. Easy for less advanced knitters. The shawl on the front cover will probably be my next project. There is even a pattern for knitting woollen tights. Nicely laid out and pretty pictures. This book puts paid to the impression that knitting books can be naff! The author is a New Zealander like me as I found out when I read the dust jacket. Go kiwi!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I Just received my book today, and what I see are some really good basics for many levels - and some patterning (like on the tams) that is fresh and unique.

The colors that Mel uses are neutral/warm - things you'd want to pick up and put on anytime - and they are flattering and soft in the right ways. I love the Everyday Cardigan - it has a wonderful trim that wraps around the piece - and I think I may try that one first. Her lace gloves are wonderful, and most of what I see in the book so far appears to have some very strong shapes/styles that could be dressed up or down, and should be able to be finished pretty fast for knitters with some experience.

Besides some of the basic hats, gloves and scarves, she has these Great shorts - what a great style for California - they are basic, but fresh and innocent - like the garments I see young women wearing in Paris in the parks in the Spring/Summer. The hoods are something I'd make too -- I'd wear them here - and will likely make them for gifts for friends and family living in colder climates - they look like they'll fit comfortably inside warm coats - and would not be too bulky. I may need one for myself in LA for those chilly foggy days!

The basket purse is lovely - a simple answer to that bag you want to grab and run out the door - and it has some texture and style. The gloves that are shown with the basket weave photo - have a similar pattern to that wonderful diamond sweater of Mels - I think that one was from a Vogue book - so I may need a pair of these gloves to match... Lace gloves -- Lulu Scarf -- A lot of wonderful choices - and with some advice and help on substitutions of yarns to make them your own. I'm looking forward to having a few more lovely and reliable pieces to work on. Thanks Mel for a wonderful new set of ideas!
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Format: Paperback
Overall, I like the modern, stylish feel of this book. I'm not an expert knitter, but the instructions look clear and I love the photography.

Mel starts with a bit of context about what 'finery' means to her, and some guidance about choosing yarns. (She notes that she favours natural fibres with an eye to affordability.) The book contains instructions for 26 items, divided into three broad categories: 'Out and About', 'Dressing Up', and 'At Home'. For each pattern, she provides a brief introduction, explains the yarns, needles, and so on, and provides clear details of construction.

The first things I'm looking forward to trying are the 'croissant bag', the 'Barcelona hood and scarf', the 'everyday cardigan', and the 'shiraz slippers'. Meanwhile, I keep going back and browsing through this charming book.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is a comforting treat! Like a cup of tea in the afternoon - an instant pick-me-up! It's not surprising as its author is one of my favorite designers, Mel Clark (her blog slipslipknit.com is worth a bookmark). Every page is simply drenched in gorgeous visuals. The images, the backgrounds, the color palette and of course the patterns which, although I'm a knitter, I really want to buy them ready made please!
The collection of patterns are modern and cheerful with a broad appeal. They're made with really accessible yarns that are splendid and won't break the bank.
I give it 5 stars for anyone who knits or as a gift for anyone interested in craft. It's simply a delight for the eyes.
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