Guest Author - Lisa Linnell-Olsen
Every once in a while something the really does smack of something new comes along in the knitting pattern world. This is one of those times. McIver has written the definitive guide to creating one-of-a-kind circle sweaters, which she calls "Swirls.: Swirls are not terribly complicated to knit, but their construction differs so much from a standard cardigan that a guide with several examples and options using the technique is a great contribution to knitting literature.
To be clear, the circle body sweaters with arms attached are not ill-fitting inexpensive trendy sweaters. The book contains a variety of silhouettes so the correct swirl can be found to flatter a wearers figure type. There are shorter bolero type jackets and longer knee length wraps that have hourglass shaping when worn, despite being knitted flat. McIvers detailed understanding of the swirl is what has moved these sweaters into a unique knitted form that really does need its own guide.
McIver provides extensive information about swirl constructions that the knitter can walk away from this book feeling as though they can make modifications to create their own unique swirl. Certainly, the knitter can use the yarn in the example sweater pieces and create a swirl identical to the one in the photo. Still, what makes this book truly unique is how the knitter has the information to move on confidently pick out a yarn, maybe a pattern stitch, and then knit their own unique swirl using one of the four silhouette patterns given.
There are three sizes used in this pattern book. I don't believe it is all that limiting, as a swirl will carry differently on different bodies. Rather, understanding the construction and how the design works will allow a knitter to select the size appropriate for the desires effect in the finished piece. A knitter could make dozens of these sweaters without getting bored, as there is plenty of inspiration within this book.
Advanced beginners who are comfortable using circular needles and making increase and decreases should have the skills for the designs presented in this book. The beautiful photos do show how rape and body type influence the design. Many high-end yarns are used in the examples, but that really isn't a barrier as the book almost begs the reader to experiment with other yarns.
If you are interested in knitting one of a kind, beautiful boutique style sweaters, this is a book you willow ant to add to your knitting library. I hope to knit at least two of each of these beautiful sweaters for myself and each of the important girls and women in my life.
FCC requirements: the publisher provided me a free review copy of this book. All of my reviews are my honest opinion. I received no compensation from the publisher or book author for this review.