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87 of 88 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Lots of big-scale projects.
I have been looking forward to this book since it was first listed as a 'pre-order option'. Ms Epstein has a formidable reputation in the hand-knitting community and is known for her innovative ideas.

The book itself is beautifully produced and generously illustrated with lavish, full-page photographs. The charts are clear and are a good size from which to...
Published on 2 Nov 2008 by Z. Herbert

versus
62 of 65 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars designer disasters
Beautifully illustrated with clear instructions, American knitting designer Nicky Epstein takes us on a tour of the world to find traditions, techniques and design in knitting. Nicky interprets each tradition in her own way to provide knitting patterns.

Knitting is truly a world phenomena. This book is divided into chapters, taking the world by area - Far...
Published on 10 Dec 2008 by K. Platt


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87 of 88 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Lots of big-scale projects., 2 Nov 2008
By 
Z. Herbert "solaan" (Bedfordshire, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Nicky Epstein's Knitting on Top of the World: The Global Guide to Traditions, Techniques and Design (Hardcover)
I have been looking forward to this book since it was first listed as a 'pre-order option'. Ms Epstein has a formidable reputation in the hand-knitting community and is known for her innovative ideas.

The book itself is beautifully produced and generously illustrated with lavish, full-page photographs. The charts are clear and are a good size from which to work. The paper is of good quality and the colour rendition clean and true. Almost fifty different knitting patterns are included.

The book opens with a page of design tips by Ms Epstein and is followed by the various sections. She deals with knitting tradition around the world: the Far North, UK and the islands, Europe, the Middle East, the Far East and the Americas. Each area is prefaced by two or three pages showing traditional designs and techniques, and a discussion of its knitting history. These introductions are followed by Ms Epstein's interpretations and the patterns.

If you love thick wool and over-sized garments, this is an excellent book. There are patterns for sweaters, jackets, cardigans, accessories and even a toy dragon. Some of the colour combinations seem a little obvious and harsh to me, but of course a knitter can adapt that as personal taste dictates.

I found the some of the garments, especially in the UK and European sections, appealing and wearable but the incongruity of a close-fitting, aran-weight evening pullover embellished with pearls and ostrich gave me pause. I doubt it would be comfortable in a warm room, and not too flattering to anyone over a size 6. There is a pattern for a capelet featuring two enormous tam'o'shanters as the front bodice. A quirky idea and amusing, yes, but it has to be a good joke to stand telling every day.

My main observation is that there is insufficient variation in yarn thickness, with little (apart from the cover garment) that is graceful or delicate. It is disappointing that the garment designs seem mostly for the slim, tall woman and would not be as becoming on an average figure.
The model on the back cover, an attractive, reed-like blonde, looks like the proverbial sack of potatoes in her super-chunky, super-sized Navaho jacket; I don't think the rest of us would stand much chance of looking even as good as she does.

The book concludes with a helpful and comprehensive section on techniques. The various interesting ways to add a personal finish to one's knitting are very useful and would adapt to many projects.

There are ideas and starting points in this book that I know I will use and enjoy; I might even knit one or two of the patterns. It is an interesting and thought-provoking collection but it has not made me race to my knitting bag to get started.
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62 of 65 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars designer disasters, 10 Dec 2008
By 
K. Platt "blackplantlady" (Sheffield, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Nicky Epstein's Knitting on Top of the World: The Global Guide to Traditions, Techniques and Design (Hardcover)
Beautifully illustrated with clear instructions, American knitting designer Nicky Epstein takes us on a tour of the world to find traditions, techniques and design in knitting. Nicky interprets each tradition in her own way to provide knitting patterns.

Knitting is truly a world phenomena. This book is divided into chapters, taking the world by area - Far North, Windswept Isles, Old World, Mediterranean, Far East and New World. Each chapter has an overview of knitting history and techniques, given the space for this, the intro to each chapter is fair and interesting. In each of these chapters, there are between five and thirteen designs. The book features forty-eight designs in all. The largest section is the one dearest to my heart, Great Britain and Ireland, so I am going to look at this section only.

From the inspiration of the Isle of Aran, Nicky has produced an attractive beaded Aran sweater, given an evening touch with a boa feather trim. Then she looks at Aran meets English Rose - her design for the chunky Aran has an innovative, but to my trained eye not pleasing style and it is finished with a rose collar in autumn colours. The Sanquhar Bonny Socks inspired by Scotland, look lumpy. The Simply Smashing Cardigan might look better in another colourway, as it is it looks like mustard meets dull and boring. The Cowl Collar Jumper, which is dress length does nothing for me, neither do the Hunter's Argyle Socks, ditto for the fair-isle socks. The Highland Fling Plaid jacket is promising, but again I think not enough attention paid to the colourway. The Celtic Hooded Coat is just too oversized, which completely spoils the effect of a timeless design. The Edwardian coat is superb, although I have reservations about the back. The book then deteriorates into fair-isle tea cosies and sweaters for your toy fox and the penultimate design is baffling - a tam o' shanter design translated into an over-sized capelet - the mind boggles. Finally, back to Aran and what looks like a reasonable cardigan design until you see the back - this does not work.

The same can be said of the other designs, it's like the highlights and lowlights of designer knitting. It reminds me of pop groups signed up to produce x number of albums in x number of months -the content suffers. I can't think that many people would want to wear such designs let alone spend hours knitting them.
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Very disappointing, 20 Mar 2009
By 
Maggy C (Suffolk, UK) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Nicky Epstein's Knitting on Top of the World: The Global Guide to Traditions, Techniques and Design (Hardcover)
I so looked forward to this book and pre-ordered, but what a disappointment! Other patterns by this designer have new, interesting ideas but are still wearable. These designs are the continuation of 'Art School Fashion' for me. Beautiful coat in thick yarn - the front is gorgeous but the back finishes at the waist! Buy this book if are prepared to adapt patterns or if you want inspiration to create your own designs as many of the designs have appealing features. On the other hand, some are downright ugly and unflattering (the tam o shanta garment - what was she thinking!)
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointed, 21 July 2010
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This review is from: Nicky Epstein's Knitting on Top of the World: The Global Guide to Traditions, Techniques and Design (Hardcover)
I was really looking forward to this book and thought the cardigan on the cover looked lovely. However I was really disappointed with it as some of the garments are in very thick yarn and the beautiful looking cardigan on the front will have to be altered for me as it opens up the centre of the back to the shoulder blades.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gorgeous Fashionista Knitting!, 13 Jun 2009
This review is from: Nicky Epstein's Knitting on Top of the World: The Global Guide to Traditions, Techniques and Design (Hardcover)
I really love this book... because it is beautiful to look at and a bit like Elle-for-Knitters. it definitely made my heart beat faster, and I am the Queen of Knitting Books.
Now I do realise I would not wear many of these designs, but I would knit at least 4, and that is quite a few for me in any book.
Much as I like our Brit designers like Kim Hargreaves and Martin Storey, sometimes our homegrown designers are too conservative and retro to inspire or delight. I don't always want a sensible stocking stitch or waffle stitch cardi that looks like a more luxe version of some 'in' thing from Top Shop....
In fact, I find Kim very overrated in local yarn stores, although I do love her really for her elegant hats and cute Bardot sweaters.

Nicky Epstein is a breath of fresh air with her witty and global and irreverent take on knitting design. I probably WOULD wear a mini-aran sweater on my head as a hat, It is great to be different if you can carry it off. This is definitely a book for the young at heart knitter.
Colours are dazzling and vibrant and the models look superb... is that the lovely Agyness??
However, I wish more designs in this book were in average weight yarns, I am a size 14- 16 and really don't like CHUNKY HUNKY except for Starsky impersonations.
I bought the book mostly because I love the St Petersburg Camisole which is scrummy! I will have to pleat my own ribbon for the trimming such is my love for the design.
If you loved the knitting books of the 70's and 80's, which were themed, colourful and edgy- you will desire and dribble over this book.
If however you generally follow Women's Weekly K1P1's, maybe this one's not for you.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 7 July 2014
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This review is from: Nicky Epstein's Knitting on Top of the World: The Global Guide to Traditions, Techniques and Design (Hardcover)
Great Book
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5.0 out of 5 stars nice, 13 Jan 2014
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This review is from: Nicky Epstein's Knitting on Top of the World: The Global Guide to Traditions, Techniques and Design (Hardcover)
Nice for my dob I always nite somthing now for my student and my shelf so I bay meny books her in amazon strong servis is good for my.
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5.0 out of 5 stars on top of the world, 26 Jun 2013
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This review is from: Nicky Epstein's Knitting on Top of the World: The Global Guide to Traditions, Techniques and Design (Hardcover)
can't wait to get started on a new project in the book. I always look forward to a new Nicky Epstein publication
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4.0 out of 5 stars Inspiration, 22 Mar 2013
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This review is from: Nicky Epstein's Knitting on Top of the World: The Global Guide to Traditions, Techniques and Design (Hardcover)
I am not sure that I would wear more than three or four of these designs as scarves but the book is packed with information and an insight into the creative world of Nicky Epstein. As such, it is an inspirational read.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A coffee table book for Knitters, 5 Feb 2009
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This review is from: Nicky Epstein's Knitting on Top of the World: The Global Guide to Traditions, Techniques and Design (Hardcover)
This wonderful book is described as a 'global guide to traditions, techniques and design.' This is Nicky Epstein at her best. She has travelled the world from the Far North to the Mediterranean to the Far East and all points in between researching knitting traditional to so many cultures. She describes the techniques peculiar to each country/region and then reveals her designs incorporating these techniques with full instructions, materials used,and level of skill required to knit each design. The book is a fairly large, heavy hardback and not very practical to follow a pattern but of course it could always be photocopied.

This book is a must for the adventurous knitter and for those wanting to learn about the knitting traditions of the world.
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