A significant increase in the value of the Australian dollar against the US dollar coincided with the publication of the commemorative edition of Elizabeth Zimmermann's Knitter's Almanac. What else could I do? Of course I purchased a copy.
I've had a paperback copy of this book for several years, but I'm a bit of a sucker for well-produced hardback editions of books. This one commemorates 100 years since Elizabeth Zimmermann's birth. It's a fine book with a very pleasingly textured red binding with gold embossed Elizabeth Zimmermann signature and signs of the zodiac beneath the wrapper; good quality pages and end-papers; a new preface by EZ's daughter and collaborator Meg Swansen and an introduction by Stephanie Pearl-McPhee; coloured photos of the garments in modern colours and yarns (my favourite is the 'nether garments' in riotous colour-work), and the welcome addition of Pamela Wynne's pattern for the February Lady Sweater.
I'm also a bit of a sucker for plans and programs and promises of schemes that will miraculously bring order to my life. An almanac with knitting projects for the year enables fantasies of order, productivity, and quiet industry. I can remember when I bought the paperback version I was very tempted by the idea of knitting my way through the months according to Elizabeth Zimmermann's plan. Purchasing the hardback version revived these fantasies...for a moment.
Because the truth is that, much as I admire Elizabeth Zimmermann's approach to knitting, her creativity, and her love of garter stitch, many of her garments are unsuited to the Sydney climate and they are just not things I can imagine wearing. And a whole year of knitting according to her almanac would mean I'd have time for nothing else in my life. Nevertheless, her friendly, engaging writing style, and her ability to make knitting sound like a matter of common sense rather than skill and experience is tempting.
Hmm - maybe just one or two projects...