Thursday, 11 September 2014

Knitting book review

(image from

I borrowed this book from the library and it is due back this week, so I thought I had better get on with the review whilst I still had it here!  I was glad to find it in the library because I had been looking at it on The Book People's website for some time, and being a bit tempted to buy it.  Having borrowed it from the library, I'm glad I didn't succumb to temptation!

There are some very useful pages at the beginning with clear instructions on how to fix problems, so "fixing dropped stitches", "undoing stitches" and "unravelling rows" are covered with good photos.

However, I feel that the patterns do throw one in slightly at the deep end, with the first pattern being for a scarf and mitts combo, including thumbs on the mittens - something which fills me with dread! 

Other patterns at the beginning of the book include writstwarmers made in the flat and then sewn up, a bobble hat, and then we move very quickly into a round neck sweater which involves shaping and picking up stitches for the neckband.  There is also an intarsia cardigan with a shawl collar which is beautiful, and a Fair Isle tank top, worked from a colour chart.

The patterns are beautiful, but for a book which seems at first glance to be aimed at beginners, I think that there aren't enough simple projects for practising the generation of even stitches and good tension.  If you are an intermediate knitter, able to tackle "slightly tricky" knits, then this is a good book, I think.  If you are a beginner, I would say that there are better books out there to help build confidence and good practice in knitting.  The EFG had a look at this one too, and loved some of the patterns but said, "That's not for beginners."  Given the simplicity of the front cover pattern, one could expect a book like this to be filled with relatively easy patterns, but that is the trouble with buying books on t'internet - I love good old bookshops for browsing!


Angela said...

You are so right - I would rather borrow from the library first if I can. I so miss our 'Borders' bookshop, which had a huge craft section where I could browse happily before parting with cash!!

Morgan said...

Yes, Ang - we are losing bookshops too quickly! There was a lovely one in a nearby market town until it closed down and got replaced by Domino's pizzas. Hardly a fair swap. One of the highlights when we make the journey to Ely is the wonderful Topping And Co bookshop that nestles in a street not too far from the cathedral. There are three floors of books to browse and they even offer you coffee whilst you are looking! What more could one want?!

veeknits19 said...

Thanks for the review, I had been eyeing up the book on the Internet too. Vee x

Morgan said...

@Vee - It was you I was thinking of when I thought about the review - I remembered I had said I would tell you what I thought of the book because you had said you were interested in it too. I have found a better one for beginners in the library this week: First Knits by Luise Roberts and Kate Haxell, published by C&B Crafts. And yes, her name is Luise and not Louise! This one has more simple knits that give one time to practise the basics and still produce something wearable or usable. It also has LOADS of very clear step-by-step photos. Will be keeping this one for the full three weeks!