First, the facts:
Author: Debbie Stoller
Published by: Workman Publishing, 2003
Type: Knitting how-to
1. Take Back the Knit: Why Young Women are Taking up Knitting Once More
2. What a Girl Wants, What a Girl Needs: Tools of the Trade
3. The Knitty-Gritty: Learning to Cast on, Bind Off and Knit
4. Purl, too: Learning to Purl and Make Simple Stitch Patterns
5. Shaping Up: Learning to Increase and Decrease
6. Finishing School: Learning to Sew Seams, Pick Up Stitches, and Block your Work
7. Getting Knitty With It: Fancy Things to do with Needles and Yarn
8. Oops, I Knit it Again: The Stitch Doctor’s Guide to Fixing Mistakes
9. A Loosely Knit Group: A guide to the Wonderful World of Knitters
Then, Part Two–Stitch ‘n Bitch Patterns
The In-Depth Look:
Ah, the book that spawned years’ worth of legal kerfuffle over copyright laws, all because of the title that fits it oh, so perfectly.
Because this book is all about knitting and being oh-so-cool about it. About being hip and trendy, and just a little bit snarky when you have to be. And it’s even better if you can do it with friends in one of these not-to-be-named get-togethers that mimic the title.
What’s all the fuss about? Who cares about the legal ramifications? This is one of the best-learn-to-knit books around. Great illustrations of what the stitches look like and what to do with them. Clear explanations that TELL you what to do with them. It covers all the basics and does it in a way that makes it easy to learn. If you’re a beginner, this book will answer almost all of your questions.
It does it in an entertaining way, too, although the “too-cool” tone of voice starts to grate on me after a while. I sometimes feel like the author is trying just a little too hard to be amusing. The fact that the information is top-notch and spot on in the clarity/helpfulness category, though, wins it a lot of wiggle room on the snarky/annoying scale. Because it truly is helpful stuff.
There are also patterns–because what’s the point of learning how to knit if you don’t have anything to make? I admit that I’ve never made any of these patterns, and while a handknitted bikini doesn’t appeal to me, you might feel differently. And, of course, there are plenty of more traditional patterns to choose from. There are even a couple of bonus bags and organizers for your knitting gear made out of fabric–a rarity in a knitting book.