Knitting on Top of the World: The Global Guide to Traditions,Techniques and Design by Nicky Epstein is a very large hardcover book with amazing designs.
What I like:
· The book is divided into different parts of the world - Windswept Isles, Old World, Mediterranean, Far East, and the New World. Each section begins with an overview of that area, giving a short history of knitting, what influenced popular patterns, colors, and designs in that part of the world.
· The design projects in each section tell you which country it's from and what kind of experienced knitter you need to be to complete the pattern (novice, skilled, or master).
· Each design has great photos that look like they came out of a Vogue magazine. The patterns are pretty easy to read and the graphs are in color which is very helpful.
· There's a good variety of projects - cardigans, shawls, mittens (one's called "Princess Bride Mittens" how can I NOT make these!?!), caps, camisoles, capes, socks, bags, and even a stuffed animal.
· Many of the patterns have flair like pearls or metallic yarn weaved in which look pretty cool.
· Because I'm an anglophile, of course my favorite section is the "Windswept Isles." It's full of fair Isle, aran, and argyle patterns. LOVE.
· The last section is dedicated to abbreviations, a glossary, and techniques. Always helpful to have this in a book!
What I don't like:
· Some of the designs are just plain weird. I don't know if it’s because the designs are foreign and I'm just not used to them, or if some of them are just too artsy-fartsy.
I would knit probably 85% of this book. Most of the designs are breathtaking. So far I've only made one thing from it, but it is by far the coolest thing I've ever knitted. Check back tomorrow to read all about it ;)