24 May 2007

Knit Fix!

It's finally here! Knit Fix by Lisa Kartus, published by Interweave Press. I got my copy from The Wool Shack in Perth.

The chapters are:
  • Your Knitting Philosophy - a general introduction to Lisa's philosophy which is basically "I'll tell you when to panic. Otherwise, don't."
  • Knitting Foundations - very clear illustrations of knitting and purling, including the Continental method, plus information on tension.
  • Fixes You'll Use Again and Again - how to unknit (tink), vertical fixes for stitch mistakes, unravelling and picking up stitches.
  • Troubleshooting - twisted stitches, reversed directions, skipped stitches, too many or too few stitches, incorrectly crossed cables, troubles in counting, troubles reading charts, colour corrections. These all have really good photos of the problems, as well as clear diagrams for fixing things.
  • Solving Problems Before They Grow - good basics - cast on methods, joining new yarns, working in the round (and some tricks on how to avoid twisting a circular cast on), simple buttonholes, how to pick up stitches, pattern errata, binding off, sewing together, grafting, and blocking.
  • Extreme Fixes : Altering When You're Done Knitting - Lengthening or shortening jumpers, fixing too big/too small necks, alterations at the cast on edge, adding pockets, altering seams with sewing or adding knitted gussets.
  • Test-Driving - gauge, yarn weights, fit, ease, revising patterns, choosing fibres (including a cool chart on "Yarn Behaviour" listing qualities such as flexibility and yarn memory for different fibres), notes on felting, and how to read yarn labels.

What I like :

The spiral binding! Although the pages 'squeak' when you turn them, the book lies flat which is a big plus.

The colours, photography, illustrations and book design. Really nicely done, clear, modern, approachable layout.

The writing. Friendly and knowledgeable. Lisa intersperses the text with some knitting stories of her own, but mainly the text is clear instructions on how to fix mistakes, or avoid them in the first place. She isn't condescending, even when showing how to count one row of knitting, or what a purl stitch looks like. The instructions range from the really basic simple stuff all the way through to much more complex problems, like cables twisted the wrong way (and how to fix them, without unravelling rows of knitting!).

Basically, I love this book - I won't need it every day, but I know it's there if I get stuck. The clear illustrations, text and photos can guide me through any midnight knitting disasters, when my knit sibs are asleep. The only thing it needs is a cover with "Don't Panic" written in large friendly letters... oh wait, that's been done before ;)


  1. Excellent buy, Jejune. Maybe the squeaking will stop once it's been used a bit. Not that you'll need it much, though. :)

  2. oh, is it 'here' when your friends need it to? :-)

    I've read good things about that book. This review is just one more.

  3. Hope you gain plenty of knowledge from the book Jujune.

    Have you heard of The Book Depository in the UK? They distribute a huge amount of knitting books and all their prices include shipping worldwide - no extra charge. I've always had my orders within 5 days and been super happy with everything.

  4. Cindy taking a break from a ton of work12:55 am, May 25, 2007

    My guess is that's one book that WON'T make it into BookCrossing.

  5. Way cool! So now, when I have a knitting problem, I'll just ask you!

  6. ^What a brilliant resouce, thanks for the great review Jejune. I think I'll add it to my wish list.

  7. Hi, I work for www.shopyarn.com. Part of my job is to search blogs to find the latest books and shops throughout the U.S.

    On shopyarn.com we are going to add patterns and other knitting related books and would like reviews about them. I saw your blog and would like to ask permission to feature the following quote on our site.

    "Basically, I love this book - I won't need it every day, but I know it's there if I get stuck. The clear illustrations, text and photos can guide me through any midnight knitting disasters, when my knit sibs are asleep."

    Thank You,


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