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Knitting in the Sun Review

Sunday, May 24, 2009

I am a sucker for knitting books and magazines. My magazine collection got so large I had to break down and go through all of them tearing out the patterns I really loved and thought there was some chance of me actually doing and putting them all in a binder sorted by type, like sweater, top, scarf, shawl, etc. Honestly it's the most organized thing about my knitting which is sad considering how much yarn and projects I have stashed around the house.

This weekend I picked up a new book that came out this month (May 11) called Knitting in the Sun by Kristi Porter. Living in Florida I thought this might be a good book geared for our usually warm weather. It retails for $22.99 but I got mine at Borders using a 40% off coupon. There are 32 projects, so even at the retail price I feel it's a good value.

First off, let me tell you that my rule of thumb for buying a knitting or crochet pattern book is that if there isn't at least 4 patterns in the book that I like, I don't buy it. My thoughts on this is that your average, individual pattern sells for between $5-7 and your average knitting book costs about $21. So, if you can find 4 patterns in it you'd want to make you're doing good. Now, on to the review...

Obviously, the patterns in this book, for the most part, appeal to my style and what I enjoy to knit because I bought the book. If you like the layout of Interweave Knit books like Wrap Style or Scarf Style then you will like how this book is laid out as well as they are very similar. The range of levels for the projects in the book is a nice balance as well. There are things that would be good for the beginner as well as the everyday knitter.

These are the patterns I love and hope to be casting one of the on in the near future.
  • Windansea - This is a cute looking sun hat which I find intriguing because you need to use millinery wire to actually form and shape the hat and I've really been wanting to make something like this. I bought a book about a year ago with a similar pattern but this one is just a much simpler pattern to do something like this for the first time.
  • Queensway Bay - The pattern is listed as a "tunic" but this really would be perfect as a swimsuit cover-up or a cute dress for a stroll on the beach. I can totally see myself using one on a trip down to Sanibel Island.
  • Bridgetown - A really cute long sleeved cardigan sweater with a leafy lace panel along the sides and as a border along the bottom.
  • Coronado - A lovely shawl collared cardigan that uses a ribbed eyelet type pattern. This will most likely be the project that I do first. It was between this one and the Bridgetown and when I showed my husband he liked this one the best and I have to agree.
  • Santorini - A short kimono style jacket that uses a great Wavy Lace pattern around all the edges. I don't think I would ever wear this but I'm contemplating making one for my mother in law because it looks her style.
  • Haleakala - Have an old beach chair frame or an old beach chair that could use a revamp? This is the perfect update. The back piece is a great star/flower pattern that is just lovely
While these are my favorites there are some pieces in this book that are absolutely stunning but just aren't my style. I don't "do" knitted skirts but there are two long skirts in this book that are absolutely beautiful. There is also a very feminine wrap around top that has these great ruffle like sleeves and very romantic styled neckline. And yes, like all "summer" knitting books there is the knitted two piece bathing suit, but this one is a cute boy short and bandaeu like top that is a nice change from your typical triangle two piece suit you typically see.

The biggest dissapointment of this book for me was the short sleeve and long sleeve sections of the (the above mentioned wrap around top being the exception). They just didn't stand out and in my opinion were too similar to tops I've seen in knitting magazines over and over. There was also a lightweight hooded sweater that I really wanted to make based on just photos I saw and then when I looked at the pattern it covered 9 pages and in general I felt I could achieve a similar look with a much simpler pattern.

All in all I really do like this book and if you live in warmer climate area and looking for a book that caters to that type of knitting then I definitely recomend it.


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May 26, 2009 at 10:47 AM
Almost Precious said...

Amy - Have been so preoccupied the past couple of days that I've only just now been able to return and carefully read this last post...wish I could say I've been so busy with sales at my etsy shop but haven't touched my shop in ages...neither has anybody else for that matter. :(
The book sounds very interesting...I haven't knitted in some time now as it is just too warm and humid most of the year here in Florida for knit wear. (I live in the Sarasota/Bradenton area) But after reading your review I think I'll look for "Knitting in the Sun" the next time I'm at Books A Million. Thanks !

May 28, 2009 at 11:18 AM