Do you love to knit and hate to purl Have you ever started a sweater without enough yarn from the same dye lot to finish it When you cast on, do you end up with a tail of yarn that s maddeningly too long or too short Elizabeth Zimmermann comes to the rescue with clever solutions to frustrating problems and step by step instructions for brilliant, timeless designsIn Knitting Without Tears, you ll find elegant designs forColor pattern Norwegian ski sweaters Seamless patterned yoke sweaters Hooded garter stitch jackets for babies Watch caps, socks, slippers, mittens, andThis classic and influential book is poised to inspire a whole new generation of knitters who have yet to discover the joys and comforts of knitting As the lady herself once put it, properly practiced, knitting soothes the troubled spirit, and it doesn t hurt the untroubled spirit either


10 thoughts on “Knitting Without Tears: Basic Techniques and Easy-to-Follow Directions for Garments to Fit All Sizes

  1. Fiona Fiona says:

    Niche review time I wish it weren t so niche, actually I think KWT has an awful lot to recommend it, and not just to knitters.I have read Knitting Without Tears cover to cover twice in the four ish years since I got my own copy of it I dip into it every few months it s dog eared and scribbled in, and I ve lent it out to at least two other new ish knitters usually just after I ve taught them to knit for themselves This is because it is fantastic, in every respect Clever, readable, fearle Niche review time I wish it weren t so niche, actually I think KWT has an awful lot to recommend it, and not just to knitters.I have read Knitting Without Tears cover to cover twice in the four ish years since I got my own copy of it I dip into it every few months it s dog eared and scribbled in, and I ve lent it out to at least two other new ish knitters usually just after I ve taught them to knit for themselves This is because it is fantastic, in every respect Clever, readable, fearless.Knitters social knitters, at least know Elizabeth Zimmermann Born in the UK, swiftly relocated to the US, EZ as she is affectionately known revitalised knitting, and especially the genre of books associated with getting better at it Largely self taught, she invented or discovered or otherwise put together an astonishing number of techniques, patterns, and recipes for garments which wouldn t be particularly unusual, except that what makes Zimmermann different is that she wrote a load of them down What is evenunusual is her writing style where most vintage patterns resemble nothing so much as the Rosetta Stone, EZ wrote clearly, wittily, engagingly When you read her books, you feel like you can do anything.The patterns aren t even the half of it The Books don t know everything, she insists at one point They know a great deal, but not everything If it doesn t make sense in your particular circumstances, pay no attention to it seek further There are scores of different ways of doing things in knitting, and none of them are wrong, but they are sometimes unsuitable She s right, of course, and theI think about it, theI think growing up as a knitter has shaped me as a person Knitting makes you resourceful It helps you conceptualize problems, and think around them It makes you unafraid in the face of failure, because all you have to do is take the needles out, rip it back, and start again Knitting is the skill of the autodidact if you re not one when you start, you will be after a few months This book is a masterclass in that This is almost the only measuring and deciding you will have to do for yourself, says Zimmermann, half a page into her instructions for a yoked sweater, and it is important to do it accurately and conscientiously Otherwise you may sup the porridge of regret with the spoon of sorrow She s talking about shaping the waistline for a sweater I tell you, I would go for tea with this woman I would be her friend, by which I mean, I would join her knitting group Knitting Without Tears was published in in 1971, at the height of second wave feminism And while knitting, in Zimmermann s world, might not explicitly be a feminist act, her book certainly has not so subtle undertones of taking the expertise of generations of women, and making something powerful with it She knits because she loves it, she shares information because it s intellectually satisfying, and above all, fun She admits to borrowing ideas from other knitters when she meets them All right they were going to copy my sweater I would pick up their weaving idea Was this resourcefulness or just plain thievery and my favourite thing about the whole book is the sense of history, of women doing women s work, throughout the decades and the centuries, sharing it with each other and making it better We may, these days, have not very much idea about what a woman in 17th century Britain was doing with her day to day, but I don t wonder that knitters might know a little bitthan most people Good rigid needles, she notes, about aluminium knitting needles A 6 aluminium needle has been known to furnish an excellent emergency shearpin for an outboard motor It once saved us seven miles of paddling I love this book It s a must for the knitting conversant, and I think also for people with the vaguest interest in women s history It s farthan a pattern book, although the patterns are good too I ve made two yoked, two and a half raglan, and one saddle shouldered sweater from her instructions to date The last is a bit dodgy at the underarm, but the raglan is one of my go to favourites If you re a knitter and you care about such things I wishpeople would pick it up, as a piece of history as much as anything else Perhaps I can convince you


  2. Als9 Als9 says:

    This is a great little book A classic for a reason.EZ s writing is chockful of anecdote and done up in a very conversational style I love how she stresses freedom and personal choice for knitters I mean you knit for fun, right Why be bogged down in a lot of technical rules someone else wrote My favorite moment in the book is when she discusses steeking the actual cutting open of a piece of handknitting in order to add a button placket or zipper, ie to make it a cardigan rather than a pullo This is a great little book A classic for a reason.EZ s writing is chockful of anecdote and done up in a very conversational style I love how she stresses freedom and personal choice for knitters I mean you knit for fun, right Why be bogged down in a lot of technical rules someone else wrote My favorite moment in the book is when she discusses steeking the actual cutting open of a piece of handknitting in order to add a button placket or zipper, ie to make it a cardigan rather than a pullover After detailing the heretofore mystical procedure, she recommends the bold crafter lie down in a dark room for fifteen minutes to recover from the shock of partly destrpying her or his own work Highly recommended


  3. Elizabeth Elizabeth says:

    Most people have an obsession mine is knittingOh, Elizabeth I adore thee I like to think that we would have been friends At the very least we would have shared the horror that is pearling Note This is not a how to knit book It isof a conversation about knitting with guidance and assurances that there is no right or wrong way to knit Be creative, go with your own concepts mostly be your own boss of knitting.


  4. Moondance Moondance says:

    I picked this gem up at the library because I am determined to be a better knitter The author offers gentle encouragement and makes me want to exploreknitting styles in fact, I am taking a Portuguese knitting class in the next week to see if i can get over my fear of purling A lovely little book that I may need to add to my personal stash.


  5. DeNae DeNae says:

    For me, Elizabeth Zimmerman s writing inspires confidence She gives you the basics you need to understand Then she gently shoos you out of the nest to go make your own things Her insistence that you do NOT have to follow a pattern exactly to get good results was a bit stunning to me But it s worked, because I have branched out into putting my own designs together She has a very chatty, narrative style It doesn t work for everyone, but I love it She often provides what she calls pithy d For me, Elizabeth Zimmerman s writing inspires confidence She gives you the basics you need to understand Then she gently shoos you out of the nest to go make your own things Her insistence that you do NOT have to follow a pattern exactly to get good results was a bit stunning to me But it s worked, because I have branched out into putting my own designs together She has a very chatty, narrative style It doesn t work for everyone, but I love it She often provides what she calls pithy directions at the end of a chapter that arelike traditional pattern instructions I actually prefer the narrative, because she walks you through the structure of the garment When you ve made the sweater, you understand how it goes together, how your specific measurements affect the fit, and many other things that have given me greater confidence to put my own things together


  6. Megankellie Megankellie says:

    This is the book that will help you not give a shit.


  7. Lise Lise says:

    This is a very simple book which talks about Elizabeth Zimmermann s experiences with knitting and her knitting patterns It s an amazingly simple book the patterns are written descriptively, and often take only a few paragraphs , but it has inspiredknitters than any other I know.Not only does it give some very good, very basic, instruction, it seems to be able to give knitters the confidence to try new things, to experiment, and to make mistakes.


  8. Bunny Bunny says:

    I flipped through this after finishing The Gun Seller And I realized the writing was familiar.This is how I write when I am condescending to someone I use my most pretentious voice, and when reading it back, I can see my nose stuck firmly in the air.Yeah No thanks.


  9. Jennifer Jennifer says:

    Elizabeth Zimmerman is THE knitting guru No nonsense here Absolute classic and a total must have if you ever intend to pick up needles.


  10. Elizabeth Elizabeth says:

    I just picked knitting up again after many years and immediately got this book out and reread it for the dozenth time At some time or another I made just about every one of her projects She s delightful to read and filled with deep wisdom about craft and creativity, and she has for me answered the age old question of why people wear the things they do because it makes them feel cute.