Wouldn’t Mrs. MacKay, my French teacher at Kingwood High School, be so proud of me?
Mon Dieu, I wanna be a French girl! If this book is anything to go by, a French girl has tons of sexy style and can knit like there is no manana (wait, that’s Spanish). Designer/author Kristeen Griffin-Grimes (a.k.a. “The French Girl”) applies her Francophile tendencies (she lives in Seattle, but leads tours in France) to her life-long passion for knitting. The result is a book of patterns that are remarkable for their attention to detail (lace inserts, appliqués, inset sleeve ruffles, ribbon and leather ties) and innovation of design (almost all are seamless in their construction). My favorites are the lacy tees and blouses, especially those with delicate ribbon-joined necklines (Delphine, page 79 and Louisa, page 129). But this is not a book for the knitter who is faint of heart – I do not think any of these patterns could be completed by a beginner, and most would challenge the intermediate knitter. But that’s part of the fun, I think – to take on something that will improve one’s skills and expand one’s knowledge of the craft. And, happily, Griffin-Grimes makes a huge and worthwhile effort to explain many of the techniques needed to complete the garments, with special tutorial-like notes included with many patterns. I plan to buy this book and make several of the pieces. I wonder if it will improve my French?
Okay, that’s the review. I liked this book so much when I reviewed it, I bought a copy. I decided to start easy, with “Veronique,” an “airy shrug” pictured on page 137. This sweet little pattern is all stockinette stitch – TV knitting – and I am using an Anny Blatt “Fine Kid” mohair I inherited from my friend Sandy. You like the way I am using a French yarn for this French knit? Huh? Huh???? Kinda cool, huh? Total accident. But the yarn is HOT PINK! OOOH LA LA! I have no picture to show you ’cause all I have is the cast on. Stay tuned.