I don't do many reviews but since I received this book because I won a contest. Thanks Robin. I thought I would say a few things. Lots of people have reviewed this book recently. I would like to look at this in a different manner.
I was really excited to see this book before it was released when I read the interview with Joan McGowan-Michael in the Spring 2007 Interweave Knits magazine. The reason behind this was Joan's background in sewn garment design. I want to design garments. I took a fashion design segment while I was in art school and really enjoyed it. My friends all laughed when I said that I was interested to pursue this further. I guess you just had to look at my closet and all the clothing I had at the time. (I was so obsessed that I would not wear the same outfit twice in 6 months.)
Before attending art school, I was really interested in knitting. I would sit and doodle stitch patterns and garment shapes and come up with patterns on my own in all my anthropology classes. I was never without my knitting needles. The clicking of the metal was heard from my corner instead of the scratch of pen on paper. The knit shop lady in our area (believe it or not there was only one - not so now from what I hear) said that she would be looking forward to seeing me be published. I laughed her off thinking that I wanted to take my art in another direction.
Now I am back to sketching and doodling patterns and thinking about body proportions and what looks good on each body type. I am looking at all the new amazing knitting books that are beyond the basics. BUT this book is completely from a different design angle. It is from a fabric garment design angle. It has shown me that I can take what I learned in art school and put it into practice and incorporate cool knitting techniques and use sewn seams to create what pure knitting can not do alone or to even think about beginning a pattern on a mannequin with fabric and ending up with a knitted piece designed from draping.
In addition to the new directions in design, the book has beautiful photographs. My husband picked it up and felt guilty for looking at it. Each and every garment is amazing whether or not you will ever wear it, you can enjoy the beauty.
Robin at Yarn Crawl has started a KAL which will be starting in July. She put together a great link on the measurements of each piece so if you are still deciding about the book and sizing take a look. Also Joan McGoan-Michael has a yahoo group where she will answer fit questions and there are additional photos not in the book.