Wednesday, July 18, 2012

REVIEW & GIVEAWAY: Cast On, Bind Off

Cast On, Bind Off

by Leslie Ann Bestor
Spiral-bound: 216 Pages
Publisher: Storey Publishing, LLC (June 19, 2012)

CastOnBindOff

While store bookshelves overflow with one knitting technique book after another - many of which simply contain the same information, just repackaged - one thing was always missing.  Enter the technique book that I've been longing to add to my collection... Cast On, Bind Off!  Won't you join me in discovering the perfect beginning - and ending - for all of our knitted projects?

Cast On, Bind Off features 54 step-by-step methods for, well, casting on and binding off!  Knitters are a crafty bunch and while we love to learn new techniques, I would bet you are stuck in a rut with your go-to cast on and bind off methods.  Am I right (raise your hand... don't be shy)?  When it comes to getting projects started, my personal go-to is the long-tail cast on, as taught to me by my Mom. If I have to cast on a large number of stitches and am not in the mood for ripping it out three hundred times before I have enough yarn in my long tail to get me through, I'll opt for the knitted cast on. As for the finishing touch, I trust the good 'ole traditional bind off, except when it comes to socks (hello Mr. Kitchener) or if the pattern specifies something fancy. In the latter case, I tend to visit YouTube to figure out just what the crazy pattern is asking me to do. Unfortunately, that's not always easy to do when you're knitting on the go, and often I get frustrated trying to follow along with an overly perky instructor while I constantly hit rewind and pause. This is what makes Cast On, Bind Off the best thing since sliced bread. Okay, that might be a bit of a stretch, but seriously... 54 methods to choose from, packaged in a conveniently sized spiral bound book!  I can toss it in my knitting bag (in fact, I already have) and the spiral binding means there is no juggling act necessary.  The book lies perfectly flat so that you can follow the well written - and photographed - instructions. 

Cast On, Bind Off is perfectly organized into types, making it very easy to find what you are looking for quickly.  Cast Ons are grouped into nine categories: Basic, Stretchy, Decorative, Circular, Double-Sided, Multicolor, Provisional, Tubular and Mobuis.  Bind Offs are grouped into four categories: Basic, Stretchy, Decorative and Sewn. 

I wanted to pick a technique to try and show you as part of this review, so I opted to cast on a basic cowl. After trying out a few of the stretchy cast ons, I decided to go with the simple, yet great looking, Alternating Long-Tail Cast On (I know, big stretch from my go-to, right?).

CowlCastOn_71712

UntitledThis variation of the long-tail cast on is perfect for projects that start with ribbing, produces a neat edge that looks good on both sides, and results in a moderately elastic edge. As with all of the methods in Cast On, Bind Off, there are detailed pictures showing how the edge looks from various angles, as well as both the front and back of your fabric. The step-by-step instructions are clear, concise and accompanied by photos of each step. I find the format of the book very easy to follow and understand. Tips, characteristics and "good for" information is provided for each method. 

Verdict?  Pick up a copy of Cast On, Bind Off for your craft bookshelf now!  And yes, you can enter to win a copy below (if you happen to win and have already picked up a copy, that's okay... this is the perfect knitting book to pay forward to a good friend!)

About the Author: Master knitter Leslie Ann Bestor has more than three decades of experiences as a trusted knitting instructor, yarn retailer and fiber artist.  She is currently a knitting teacher and manager at WEBS, America's Yarn Store. Many of her designs have been featured in books and magazines. Leslie lives and creates in western Massachusetts.

GIVEAWAY! Thanks to the great folks at Storey, we get to give away a copy of Cast On, Bind Off to one lucky reader! To enter:
  • Leave a comment here telling us why you want to win! Perhaps you're stuck in a cast on rut or there's a particular bind off you've been dying to try?  Maybe your socks are longing for a stretchy cast on or that shawl would be more special with a decorative bind off?  
  • You can get extra entries by sending your friends here to enter (be sure to have them mention your name), so be sure to blog, Tweet, Facebook and text about this giveaway!
  • Winner will be selected by random number generator.
  • Deadline for entries is Wednesday, July 25th at 11:59pm EST

Check out the other stops on the Cast On, Bind Off Blog Tour.  

7/9         Picnic Knits
7/10       Knit and Tonic
7/11       Zeneedle
7/12       Rambling Designs
7/13       Rambling Designs Part 2
7/14       Neo Knits
7/15       Knit & Nosh
7/16       Knitting at Large
7/17       Rebecca Danger
7/18       Lapdog Creations
7/19       Nutmeg Knitter
7/20       Yarnagogo
7/21       Weekend Knitter
7/22       knitgrrl
7/23       It's a Purl, Man
7/24       Whip Up
7/25       Knitspot
7/26       Under the Humble Moon
7/27       Knitting Daily
7/28       Knitting School Dropout
7/29       Hugs for Your Head
7/30       The Knit Girllls

57 comments:

Connie K. said...

I would love to win this book because different cast ons and cast offs are knitting skills that I have neglected. Cables, lace, socks, sweaters - all have been on my needles, but using casting on and off techniques designed for each project? Not so much. Help me be a better knitter by picking me to win this book!

greyowl 60 at yahoo dot com

Grace said...

i am eager to learn all kinds of new to me techniques about knitting and would love to win a copy of this book otherwise I will have to hope santa brings it to me!!! Great post Nichole

Kathy R said...

I would like to win the book because it's not always convenient to look things up on YouTube. If I'm on the go, I find my phone screen too small to really see clearly what they are trying to show me. And like you, I default to long-tail cast-on unless the pattern suggests something else. Which means I must look up the suggested method.

Anonymous said...

would love to learn new ways to cast on and off

Teal said...

Would love to win this book because I am definitely stuck in a cast on and bind off rut.

Gigi said...

Why? Because I'm pretty clueless on what cast on/bind off is best for what! Never mind that I'm amazed there are so many.

LynnIL said...

Ha! I love that I am leaving a woof!
I have used the long tail cast on for the last few years and your basic knit bind off. Been looking for a stretchy cast-on, for socks. I think this book would be a keeper. Thanks for a chance! Lynn

Doris said...

I would love to win this book in order to broaden my horizons. I have been knitting for years (lots of years) and only learned a few years ago that there is more than just the long-tail cast-on. Some of the others look fascinating!

slmiller8 said...

Who knew there were so many ways to cast on and bind off! I would love a copy of this book to find out what they are all used for. Maybe, I would start to use the best tool for the job at hand!

Robin said...

I want to win because I never realized there were so many cast on methods...I know 5 of them but really only use the long tail method!

musings said...

I used to do the long tail cast on, but then discovered the German twisted which is much more elastic. I use it all the time. Then there's some sort of rib cast on that my LYS owner just taught me but I can't for the life of me remember how to do it. It might even be the ne you showed in this review. This book would be very handy!

flossieKNITS said...

I'd love to win because I am in a longtail cast-on rut. It's my go-to and I think I need to expand my cast on horizons!

flossieknits at hotmail dot com

andrea said...

hopefully i will finally be able to to get my head around the long tail cast on. i have tried and tried and just can't seem to wrap my head and hands around it. thank you so much for the chance to win.

Jo said...

tt took me a while to figure out that woofs are comments--I'm a little slow. And that's the reason I've been stalking this book tour. I am totally in a long tail and standard bind off rut. this book looks extremely useful. thanks!

Susan said...

Thank you for reviewing this book and offering the "giveaway." I learned the basic knitting cast on as child when I first learned to knit and only added the long-tail cast on method a few years ago. Now it is the ONLY method I use to cast on. To bind off, I STILL use the knit 2, pass one stitch over method! So, you can see that I REALLY need to add to my repertoire. I'd love to win this book!

Jenn said...

I would love to have a copy as I know one way to cast on and bind off and both were taught to me by my grandmother whom has passed. She was a very talented knitter and try as she may to teach me it always seemed that I lacked that gene to create the beauty that she effortlessly whipped up. I still continue to try and think of her with every knit!
Jenn Alexander

amchart said...

I'd love to learn new techniques. Thanks for the opportunity.

JD, Just Juris Doctoris said...

I would love to win this book. I prefer longtail for the nice, neat edge it creates, but like you, I get frustrated with having to cast on, what feels like a bazillion times, to have the right length of tail for my stitches. It just sounds like a great book. I'd love to win!

Melody said...

I only know one cast on. That is the cable cast on. So, I need to learn more.

melodyj(at)gmail(dot)com

Jeanine said...

I would love to win this book because right now I only know one way to cast on and bind off, so this would improve my knowledge in a huge way! Thanks for the chance to win!

Dorothy said...

I am trying to improve my knitting skills and having this book would be a tremendous help. It sounds like an excellent resource. Fingers crossed :)

cookalotje said...

I sure could use this book! It seems like a really nice look p book, whenever you need some help!

Laurie said...

Love learning new cast on/cast off techniques so that the edges complement the knitted garment!

eleanor@knittinginflipflops said...

I hate unanswered questions - I always want specifics. I'm a detail person (is that a crime, for heaven's sake?)! So when I see patterrnsl that say "Cast on..." and "Bind off." I ask (silently or not), "How?!". But it remains an unanswered question.....till now.......I hope.......

SissySees said...

I'd love to win just because I keep hearing how awesome this book is and I always use a long-tail CO unless the pattern states otherwise. I know several others, but ...

Cyndi said...

Saw a copy at knit night & if I don't win one, I will be buying one! I am stuck in a rut and this would work wonders!

Kara said...

I would really love to win this book because I only know a couple ways to cast-on, and only really use the long-tail. I don't know the different ways to and advantages of casting on and binding off, and this book looks like a great way to learn!

Savannagal said...

I have trouble with provisional COs. I've tried a couple times and both times ended up with a mess that took forever to pick out. My COs tend to be very tight, even though I use a stretchy CO. Maybe this book will have some new tips for me. Thanks for the giveaway.

rebz said...

I only have a couple of cast ons, and was stretched to a 'stretchy' one for a sweater for my son!
And bind offs - I thought there was only one!
This book would be so handy to have, and looks so user friendly.
I would love to win this, but like other readers, it will be on my Xmas list :)

Carole Knits said...

I think about using different cast on techniques but I always fall back on the same 2 or 3. I'd like to win the book so I can expand my repertoire!

Debbie said...

I would love to win because I need to branch out and learn some new cast ons and bind offs.

Jessica said...

I really need to learn some new cast off methods so this book would be great.

Sue said...

Yes, I'm is a casting on rut. I need to take the time to practice some new methods. This sounds like a unique idea for a book.
Sue

Marjie said...

I actually did learn to knit when I was maybe 12 or 13, but don't really remember much. This does sound like a great book to help you make sense of directions without going to the internet for more help. (And I always prefer a book, where you can go back to it over and over). Another great book review, Nic.

Amy said...

I would love to have a ready referene for different cast ons.

avennett AT verizon DOT net

cabledsheep said...

I would love to win the book because it's so compact and handy, and has that great spiral binding. I enjoy trying new methods, and that would make it much easier for me to find one that's suited to whatever my current project is.

cabledsheep -at- gmail

Daisy said...

I usually use long tail so new cast ons and cast offs would be a boon. Thanks!

Daisy said...

A shawl with a decorative bind off would be really cool!

Rainlover said...

I would love to win, this book clearly has alot to offer, and would love to help expand my designing skills!

Geraldine said...

Yes, you are right! I need to expand my horizons with cast ons and cast offs! Thanks for doing the giveaway!

Julie C. said...

I would like to have this book in order to add to my cast on techniques which currently total one!

Donna T said...

Would love to win to learn new techniques.

Estella said...

I'm totally a long-tail cast-on knitter and I'd love to learn new techniques.

Dana Bincer said...

Yes, I've got my hand raised. Stuck with long tail cast on. But to my defense, I'm a new knitter.

I'd love to win this so I can learn new techniques. I LOVE learning. And I promise to show/share this book with my knitting group. We love to talk about cool techniques.

Jennifer R said...

Since I only know one cast-on and one bind-off (well, I have only been knitting for a few months), I would love to win this book and learn more techniques! Thank you!

Erica said...

Me, I'm a long tail cast on gal. I need to broaden my horizons and this is the book to do it. I'd love to win it!

Renelle Legos said...

I just learned how to knit a few months ago so this book would be fantastic!

Tammy said...

I would love to win the book because I am stuck with the long tail cast. I would love to start knitting shawls and need a more decorative cast on. Thank you!

Karen Frisa said...

I'm always looking for a good, stretchy bind-off.

Anonymous said...

I would love to win this book. The ONLY cast on I know is the long tail and I just recently learned how to do it all by myself. (yay me)
:)

Kiley Focht
kiley.focht@yahoo.com

fusedglass said...

Oh my - I'm having a mostly monogamous relationship with long-tail, but am looking for dalliance...

Brenda said...

I would love to win, because, like many, I have fallen into a rut with my one cast- on method and my one and a half cast off methods.

(Goodstuff on Rav)

Dianne said...

I'd live to win it because I am always in search of a better bind off!

Jeanine said...

I am definitely stuck in a rut. I use the same two old reliable bind on and cast off methods. It's time to learn something new!

Maryanne & Duke said...

I'd love to win this book because it looks incredibly useful. I mostly stick with long-tail CO and the usual lift one stitch over the next to BO, so it would be great to add some variety.

sue said...

would love this book

0d31dd4c-d6a1-11e1-a8ae-000bcdcb5194 said...

I would LOVE to win this book because it has been so long since I have been actively knitting that I really need the tutorial! I know I will not be up to your skills anytime soon, but I would sure love to try and catch up!