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25 of 25 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A well presented book for the beginner.
I already had another Erika Knight's book and was happy to get my hands on this one. It didn't disappoint. The book sets out to be a primer, containing the information you need to start knitting and it is just that.
The sections are laid out clearly; a materials and techniques chapter has 34 pages of clear photos and diagrams showing all the basic stitches and skills...
Published on 19 Aug 2010 by Amazon Customer

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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not quite for complete beginners ...
I found this book a 'good looking' book, well designed and laid out, one you wouldn't mind lieing around the house on show. The items which can be made, (mittens, socks and hats etc), all look as though they wouldn't be out of place in a boutique fashion catalogue. However as someone who has never knitted I found the instructions confusing and not very easy to follow. I...
Published on 25 Aug 2010 by P. Millar


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25 of 25 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A well presented book for the beginner., 19 Aug 2010
By 
Amazon Customer "Angel Jem" (Liverpool, Merseyside United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: Simple Knitting (Paperback)
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I already had another Erika Knight's book and was happy to get my hands on this one. It didn't disappoint. The book sets out to be a primer, containing the information you need to start knitting and it is just that.
The sections are laid out clearly; a materials and techniques chapter has 34 pages of clear photos and diagrams showing all the basic stitches and skills needed in the book, from casting on to ladder seams, while another 20 pages have the most useful stitches laid out with photos of tension squares clearly showing what they should look like. The projects range from the very basic garter stitch scarf to what is described as a timeless cardigan and all the instructions look clear and concise. Like Dumbledore, I enjoy reading knitting patterns but due to (ahem) time constraints in the summer holidays haven't yet managed to make any of the projects. Come the long winter evenings, though, I can see that my needles will be busy casting and cabling through.
Although Erika is a fan of quality yarn, she does understand that budgets don't always allow for cashmere. I love the very basic idea of a rag bag, literally a bag that she knitted from shirts cut into strips. I'm already eyeing my husband's ghastly maroon number as a possible, along with the jade one he has had since our marriage (17 years and counting) and wondering what he would say about the result (Nice bag? This old thing? I've had the material in the house for years)
The projects are mostly accessories and household items, a round cushion, throws with blocks and stripes, a cable hot water bottle cover that is just soooo Dahhling! Most are in wool or cotton, one is in silk, but the weight of the yarn is always clearly stated and substitutions would be easily made. Like a lot of fashion and homewares the book has a limited colour palette, mostly beige, cream, charcoal and brown, but personal preference would alter the appearance of the items.I'd love a deep red hottie cover, just in time for Christmas.
The writing is clear and concise, the photographs are a dream to look at, with projects presented in situ and studio. It won't look too out of place left nonchalently open at a page, much better than the creased middle pages of Woman's Weekly.
If I have a criticism of the book, it is only this; that the colourwork section projects leap from a colour block throw through a 2 colour Fair Isle pattern from a chart and finally into a really complex intarsia knit tea cosy with 11 colours of wool and a chart with a key. It's just too far a jump from the Fair Isle, and I wonder if a simpler introduction to intarsia wouldn't have been better. But that's nit-picking, and I'm sure that any reasonable knitter would substitute a different pattern for the complex one, I could imagine a really effective heart pattern would have been possible. Think I'll go look for my red and blue wool.... if you want me, I'll be by my fireplace frantically knitting....
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Easy to follow for absolute beginners, 3 Aug 2010
By 
J. Dawson (Edinburgh, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Simple Knitting (Paperback)
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I have long wanted to learn to knit but have absolutely no experience (was not taught in my school and my mother cannot knit) and have found it can be difficult to follow printed diagrams for this sort of skill. But after a quick flick through this book (which is stunningly produced, with beautiful photography and drawings throughout), I armed myself with a ball of wool and some chopsticks (didn't have any knitting needles, a problem I have now corrected!) and got down to business. There are clear instructions for two methods of casting on and a library of basic stitches and I was soon knitting away, experimenting with increasing and decreasing stitches, etc. When I decided to try casting off, that was easily done as well with the help of the author's instructions. A week later and I have two scarves on the go and am feeling confident enough to experiment with creating different effects.

There are a couple of minor issues however. I have found that for some points - eg starting a new ball of wool (knot it into first ball or knit it in in some clever way?) or changing colours for stripes - there are no real instructions given. I am unsure whether this is an oversight or whether the author has assumed these are such basic skills that we should know them automatically (this beginner doesn't!). I also found that special instructions for each project can be less explicit than I would have liked. Perhaps I just need an unusual amount of hand-holding? For these points I have marked this book down a star, but mostly I am just thrilled to be knitting!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent!, 10 Oct 2011
By 
Mr. M. P. Duffy (Littlehampton, West Sussex United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Simple Knitting (Paperback)
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To put this in context, I am not a beginner knitter, I've been knitting on and off for about 20 years. I was taught by my mum as she was a keen knitter, and to be honest I am not suprised complete beginners had trouble learning to knit from this book. The simple reason being that for the vast majority of people a manual skill is really only learnable by actually seeing someone doing it in the flesh. That said, it might be possible by using some of the excellent YouTube videos alongside this book.

However, for those who know the very basics, or who have taken a long break from knitting, this book would be a fantastic resource. It contains all the basic stitches, the qualities those stitches give to the resultant knitted fabric, yarn weights, abbreviations etc etc. The best bits are the patterns as they are stylish yet timeless, and all those I have tried from this book were easy to follow and turned out as specified (even allowing for my outright refusal to ever knit a tension square!).
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not quite for complete beginners ..., 25 Aug 2010
By 
P. Millar "dazzle" (UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Simple Knitting (Paperback)
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I found this book a 'good looking' book, well designed and laid out, one you wouldn't mind lieing around the house on show. The items which can be made, (mittens, socks and hats etc), all look as though they wouldn't be out of place in a boutique fashion catalogue. However as someone who has never knitted I found the instructions confusing and not very easy to follow. I am sure someone who has had some prior knowledge / experience of knitting would find it useful but, perhaps, it is not quite there for a complete beginner.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An absolutely beautiful book, 11 Nov 2010
This review is from: Simple Knitting (Paperback)
I am quite an experienced knitter and serial buyer of craft books. Sometimes I buy a book and find I like just one project (usually the one on the cover) but I want to knit everything that I see in this book. Simple should not be mistaken for easy, the deliciously elegant projects are graded according to skill level, from first timers to old hands. All the instructions are clear and easy to follow, the introductory chapter contains much more than basic skills and each project, with its masterclass text box, teaches a new technique.

Everything about the book is cool and sophisticated; from the photographs reproduced on heavy quality matt paper to the hand drawn instructions for the basics. I love the stitch library so much I am planning to make a sampler afghan using all twenty four of the patterns. Erica Knight as chosen to use beautiful, unusual yarns in soft neutral colours displaying them on pieces of natural linen and in baskets, it is all such a delight. Although I hadn't heard of some of the yarns before, particularly those from Japan, I had no trouble obtaining them from UK based internet suppliers

The first project I tackled was the little notebooks. I have made several, intending them for Christmas presents for special friends, but two have been snaffled already, by my son and my daughter's boyfriend (his book is for his mum). I think I will make the fold over cushion next, or perhaps try some knitting with strips of shirting fabric
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Japanese aesthetic - gorgeous, 14 May 2010
This review is from: Simple Knitting (Paperback)
An entry level knitting book, raised above the ordinary by its beautiful pared down styling.

My favourite element is the stitch library, which illustrates the texture of 24 stitch patterns in a clearly photographed swatch.

The 20 project patterns included manage to be basic to knit whilst hugely desirable and include hats, scarves, gloves and socks as well as cushions, throws and bags. They build upon techniques already covered to arm you with a full knitting arsenal.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely gorgeous, 26 Nov 2010
By 
Alison "runninggirlcycling" (Derbyshire, UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Simple Knitting (Paperback)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I can't knit, but I'd love to be able to and this book is wonderfully inspiring. What's so wonderful about it? The photography is beautiful, the illustrations are gorgeous, the instructions are comprehensive and it's packed full of information. The book is softback with a matt laminated card cover with some glossy laminated portions. The cover has fold-over flaps in the front and back with a handy ruler illustration under each flap. The paper used for the pages is a thick matt paper which looks great and feels very high quality.

The first section is about materials and techniques: types of yarns, how to hold the needles, basic stitches, seaming, understanding patterns and reading charts are some examples. Then there is a section about stitches with colour photographs of swatches of the stitches with information about how to knit them and where they are used.

The rest of the book (just over half of the book) is projects which are rated as either beginner difficulty, easy, intermediate or experienced. The instructions for each project seem to be comprehensive and include information about the stitches that will be used, size of the project, materials to use and each one has at least one "Masterclass" panel which gives specific tips and advice about elements of the project.

The presentation of the book is gorgeous and I would highly recommend this for anyone who is interested in learning to knit - it would certainly make a lovely gift.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Wonderful Resource for Anyone Interested in Knitting, 1 Nov 2010
By 
Mr. Di Zendle "Piping hot potato!" (Potato, Potato) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Simple Knitting (Paperback)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Erika Knight's 'Simple Knitting' is a fantastic book which is great for those just starting out and those with some experience. I first started knitting about six months ago and, since buying this book about two months ago, I have gone from making simple scarves and blankets to making socks, gloves, tea cosies and even a whole set of round cushions for my dining room chairs. I've even grown in confidence enough to start making my own patterns.

One of the best things about Erika Knight's is that it is a great resource whether or not you have knitted before. The 'stitch library' showing you how to knit all kinds of stitch patterns such as herringbone, tweed, twisted purl and moss stitch, is great and the way each of the twenty projects are laid out, telling you what stitches will be used and what new techniques will be learnt makes the book incredibly easily to navigate. Also, the sketched diagrams are very clear whilst remaining stylish and they fit in wonderfully with the style of the beautiful photography. Also, whilst a certain brand of yarn is recommended for each project, you are encouraged to use other yarns as well; each type of yarn thickness is given a number at the beginning of the book and these are also stated next to the individual projects. This is perfect for me as a student with a limited disposable income, I don't feel the need to buy incredibly expensive yarn but can substitute a cheaper version.

There are however, a few bad points to the book. Whilst the 'master classes' teaching new techniques are really well explained and illustrated, the page references for them often seem to be wrong. You will sometimes get directed to a page number which doesn't contain what you were looking for. But don't let this put you off, a flick through will show you what you are actually supposed to be looking for. Also the early explanations of how to cast on, knit and purl seem a little thin on the ground. Whilst I already knew how to do these things when I bought this book, I find it difficult to see how someone who had never picked up a pair of needled before would be able to figure it out from the one or two pages on these pretty imperative things. I think you would probably have to supplement these pages with some youtube videos to get you started.

Overall ,I think this book is absolutely amazing, I've learnt an awful lot from it and I would highly recommend it to anyone who is starting to knit. In these days of the internet, I was a little dubious of buying a knitting book, feeling that I could get all the information I needed online. However, the only problem with this is that it is difficult to know what to search for. I had never even heard of a lot of the things I have learnt to do and so, without having it all written down in one place I probably still wouldn't have heard of them.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Resource Book, 30 Oct 2010
By 
S. A. Broadhurst "SBroadhurst" (Worcester, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Simple Knitting (Paperback)
I love the layout of this book. There is a great introduction where Erika herself states 'i want to share the simplicity of knitting with you' and I believe this book does try to do this. There are 20 projects in the book, each teaching a new skill. The projects are all graded to skill levels (beginner, easy, intermediate and experienced). The first section is all about materials and techniques, explaining yarns, fine, medium and thick, the types of equipment which are useful when stitching and a great techniques section. This techniques section is very detailed along with great diagrams. The section includes basic knitting, both knit and purl stitches, casting on and off, increasing and decreasing, knitting in a round and, something which has always puzzled me, making a tension swatch. There is a detailed page listing abbreviations and another on terminology. There are also pages on understanding patterns which I found very useful when looking further into the book at the design patterns. Following this is a page on reading charts and also after care of knitted items. I think this first section is a very useful one and this book would be a great addition to any knitting bag as a resource for understanding any pattern looked at in the future.

The next section of the book is a stitch library showing photographs of knitted squares of different stitches, each photograph accompanied by a pattern of how to knit each stitch. There are basic stitches such as garter stitch and stocking stitch, as well as rib, moss stitch, herringbone stitch and cable stitches, followed by stripe sequences.

There then follows the project workshops, starting with beginner projects and moving on throughout the book to advanced projects. Each project aims to teach you a technique and lists the stitches used in the project, along with the finished size, a materials list and the tension.
The beginner projects are for scarfs, dish clothes and cushions and as projects get more advanced others include hats, bags, jumpers, mittens and throws. There is one project in the book, a rag bag, that uses lengths of light-weight cotton to knit with.
I really like this book and think it is a great accompaniment to the Debbie Bliss book reviewed below for someone who wants to begin knitting or is coming back to knitting like I am. The book is ideal for a beginner but also for a more advanced knitter who wants to maybe learn a new technique.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not for complete beginners, 18 Aug 2010
By 
Amazon Customer "Dinah93" (Cleveland,UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Simple Knitting (Paperback)
I don't knit, I sew. And I'm a very good seamstress, but give me knitting needles and I have no idea what to do. So I was excited by this book and the great reviews as a way to learn.

On first inspection the book has lovely pictures, and is varied with lots of instructions. However actually trying to follow them is impossible. The book does seem to assume a certain level of competance, and I'm just not there yet. This book looks like it could offer some lovely projects for the more experienced knitter, but it's just not basic enough for someone with no prior knowledge.
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Simple Knitting
Simple Knitting by Erika Knight (Paperback - 21 May 2010)
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