Zimmermann learned to knit first from her mother and aunts English Style and then later from her Swiss governess German or Continental Style. Business[ edit ] Zimmermann immigrated to the United States from England in with her new husband, German brewery master Arnold Zimmermann. While it may have been the first item knitted, another pattern had been published 2 years previously. This alteration led Zimmermann to begin to publish her own instructions as Wool Gatherings.

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Start your review of Knitting Without Tears: Basic Techniques and Easy-to-Follow Directions for Garments to Fit All Sizes Write a review Shelves: favourites , read-in , i-also-read-nonfiction-occasionally , worldview-shapers , read-in , protodidact Niche review time! I have read Knitting Without Tears cover-to-cover twice in the four-ish years since I got my own copy of it.

This is because it is fantastic, in every respect. Clever, readable, Niche review time! 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. What is even more unusual 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.

There are scores of different ways of doing things in knitting, and none of them are wrong, but they are sometimes unsuitable. 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. This book is a masterclass in that. Otherwise you may sup the porridge of regret with the spoon of sorrow. 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 , at the height of second wave feminism. 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? It once saved us seven miles of paddling. The last is a bit dodgy at the underarm, but the raglan is one of my go-to favourites.

I wish more people would pick it up, as a piece of history as much as anything else. Perhaps I can convince you.


Elizabeth Zimmermann


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