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Friday, July 16, 2004

a ChicKnits Dirty Little Secret Presentation
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I have never read or owned a book by Elizabeth Zimmermann. That’s right – hard to believe – but like many of last decade 20th century knitters, I’ve been a slave to fashion magazines, knitting mags and yarn company publications, like Rowan and Jaeger, Vogue and IK.

I will confess to having picked up a couple of EZs books over the years but actually put them back down because, (swallow hard), they weren’t written in a way I enjoyed reading. Essays, like this one, can contain a wealth of information, but you have to dig for the jewels and nuggets.

The Y2K Knitting Boom I’ve been living in is one driven by the Internet with its wealth of graphic design and white space publishing. It puts those nuggets right up in there for you to grab like a gold ring at the carnival, GUARENTEED.

Because I’ve worked as a television photojournalist for years, I’ve honed and wittled away my attention span and stroked my appetite for the delivery of compressed data within 30 sec. or less or YOU/I CHANGE THE CHANEL. I am a deadline driven diva.

I’ve been missing alot. I know. Many people have written to me, some nicely, gently, some holding huge EZ sluggo mallets in their tiny fists and have asked me, What the —-, Bonne…

So it’s back to the roots for me.

And what better place to start than in 1940, with Ida Riley Duncan! I’ve copped a copy (a 1968 reprint of that 1940s gem – groove-o-matic cover art, oui?) of her famous Complete Book of Progressive Knitting, on eBay. Now I have one of Ida’s other books (Knit to Fit) which actually was published shortly after this new aquistion. It is a TEXTBOOK and is a clearly written formulaic GEEK approach, suitable for a Phantom Class that will never be offered anywhere I’ve seen. I fantasize about taking this class at, hmmm, maybe Columbia College downtown?!

Hey, I’m a dweeb with a keyboard – don’t hit the girl wearing the glasses, will ya?~!
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the Little Bad Muse twirls…

This edition has chapters on the Fundamentals of Wool; Blouses; Socks; Knitted Pants for Small Boys (!). I can’t wait to dig in this weekend and see just what I’ve been missing from one of the most fashion forward decades of the 20th Century.


5 Responses to “Friday, July 16, 2004”

  1. Donna says:

    Based on your earlier recomendation for Knit to Fit, I requested it through the miricale of Interlibrary loan and am enjoying it now – guess what’s waiting at the library today? Progressive Knitting! Knowledge is power, that’s all I have to say – thanks for the book tips!

  2. cristina says:

    there is another book out there of the same era, not on knitting but sewing, that i have found also to be very helpful in thinking about garment construction. It is called the complete book of sewing by constance talbot … really interesting and useful!

  3. Tracey says:

    I have several EZ books in my collection which, sadly, have never been read all the way through. I find them tedious, but I know if I could just get through it I would learn something. Maybe I should lock myself in a room with them.

  4. Adrian says:

    You and EZ are two peas in a pod. I am shocked to hear you’ve never read one of her books! You should give her a try, if for nothing other than her wonderful sweater shoulder constructions. They rock!

  5. Tenise says:

    As a lurker who has posted twice in the same week, I have to thank you Bonne for your recommendation of Ida Riley Duncan’s Knit to Fit. I found it in a used bookstore for $3.50 yesterday, and I devoured it in about three hours. It is a “Learn to Knit Anything 101,” and based on its strengths, The Complete Book of Progressive Knitting is winging its way to me now. Thank you!

 
 
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