Monday, 18 June 2018

Knitty First Fall 2018: A Review

Knitty has released their First Fall 2018 issue. Let's have a look at it.

Study Hall Shawl. This one has a sharp, contemporary appeal.

Autumn Sunset. The clocks and the fair isle scrolls make for an unusual mix of motifs, but the combination works because the designer has used the same self-striping yarn throughout.

Fenton's Arrow. The combination of this piece's striking pattern and the fantastic yarn is killer. One couldn't not notice this cowl.

Watch It! This designer has figured out a way to both keep her hands warm and keep her Smart Watch visible. These gloves have a flap that can be snapped closed over the watch or opened, as desired. I admire the ingenuity and practicality of the flap feature, and these gloves are also quite attractive with good shaping and Celtic knot detailing. I also like the long cuffs on them, as short gloves tend leave an inch or two of bare wrist exposed.

Wicked Thicket. An attractive and very warm-looking brioche hat.

Mightiest Oak. The heart on this hat is meant to symbolize the designer's nephew's heart condition, but as meaningful as it is it looks a bit silly and I'd leave it off. Otherwise the hat's a good-looking item.

A Fool for All Seasons. This is rather cute and well-worked out. Dressing as a court jester wouldn't be my thing, but if it's yours, you do you!

Shoe or Sock? That Is The Question. The first of these are similar to the very basic style of house slipper that was ubiquitous when I was growing up. The second is a little more interesting, but still look slightly unfinished.

Habiliments. A very nice-looking pair of beaded socks. I do like a sock that keeps its detail for above the ankle. I am most emphatically not a goofy socks person.

Carnivore. A very attractive and wearable vest.

Gibson. I'm not a fan of the rolled edge look as a rule, but this cardigan works. The shape is good, it sits so well, and the lace sleeves look great. I'd go so far as to say it has a certain relaxed elegance.

Prairie Park. I like the overall concept here, but this one could do with some tweaking. The bands of linen stitch around the waist and sleeves work really well, but that rectangle in the centre looks random and awkward. I'd be inclined to work with it some more -- to turn it into more of a pattern and flow it around the neckline as well. And I think the model could have done with a little more ease in the fit.

Millville. This is one of those wretchedly askew, unflattering pieces that give me the vapours. Dropped shoulders, mullet hem, boxy oversized shape... this piece truly has it all. But not in a good way.

Friday, 15 June 2018

Cast On Summer 2018: A Review

Cast On has released their Summer 2018 issue. Let's have a look at it, shall we?

Angelic. Love the texture, but that oversized and cropped shape is a difficult one to carry off.

Baby Butterfly Duster. The designer of this piece writes that she created the design because she needed a long cardigan to wear over her sleeveless dresses in summer. It does look like a useful piece, and its good texture and back pleat give it some style.

Bow Knot Pillow. This isn't bad. I think those decorative bows would get on my nerves if I tried to rest my head on this, but realistically this throw pillow is going to be almost entirely decorative. I'd make it in a more interesting yarn.

Camilla. This has beautiful stitchwork. I'd be inclined to scoop the neckline out a little more to rid this top of its slightly prim air.

Chase Cardigan. Pretty basic but quite serviceable and presentable. I'd make this so that the front edges overlap in order to get rid of that gap between them, because gaps between the front edges always make for an awkward, "too small" look.

Comet. Here we have the cover look, and it's a very eye-catching and Art Deco-esque piece.

Drunken Snakes. A classic cable and garter scarf.

Fall Cowlette. This isn't bad. I feel like this project needs a different colour palette, as those twisting leaves look more like shooting flames to me.

Faux Sheepskin Pillow. This is actually a fair rendering of a sheepskin-style cushion. And I can imagine it feeling comfy too, depending on what yarn one chose.

First Saturday (for Daughters). This is not a bad little dress. I would argue that the colour scheme isn't doing it any favours, though, and that the rosebuds on the bodice should be on the front of the dress, not the back.


First Saturday (for Moms). The lines of this sheath are beautiful, but I'd nix the rosebuds entirely, as they seem too cutesy for a grown woman's dress. If you'd like to ornament this dress, I'd try some sort of duplicate stitch design around the hem and neckline, or doing the dress in a more interesting yarn.

Fishing in France. Here we have another take on the classic Breton sweater. It's not bad.

Honeycomb Pullover. Classic honeycomb design pullover.

Leaves of Cordia. Very attractive pair of socks. And this photo is a welcome burst of colour -- so far this issue has been in subdued tones.

Lorelei Clutch. I like this from the outside, but I wish there were more pictures, as I have questions as to how this clutch is lined and whether it would keep its shape when held as one holds a clutch. If it folds over limply when held vertically or sags out of shape whenever anything is put inside it, it wouldn't work too well as a clutch purse.

Miss Nancy's Necklace. This doesn't look so much like actual jewelry as it looks like an embellishment for a knitted sweater that decided to make a stealth attempt at strangling its wearer.

Summer Lace Boxy Top. Not a bad little top. The wearer will probably want to wear it over another piece, so it's worth thinking about whether she'll want to wear layers in summer weather.

Tea Roses. These are very well-rendered leaves and rosebuds -- I've never seen any I liked better.

Ultra Wide Mock Cable Pullover. Very much like this one, which is truly striking and unique take on a cable front pullover.

West Village Cardigan. Not bad. The stitchwork is interesting. I'd widen the neckline edging and make the front button and buttonholes bands a little narrower.

Zig Zag Redux Socks. A very nice pair of chevron socks.

Wednesday, 13 June 2018

Pom Pom Quarterly Summer 2018: A Review

Pom Pom Quarterly has released its Summer 2018 issue. Let's have a look at it, shall we?

Anni. I like the stitchwork, neckline and sleeve edging, and colour palette, but this cropped boxy shape is going to be unflattering on most women.

Bayadere. The combination of three similarly coloured yarns, thin stripes, and garter stitch ridges on stockinette lend this pullover a surprisingly sophisticated and interesting effect.

Deauville. A simple, wearable, and not uninteresting piece for summer. That may sound like damning with faint praise, but it really isn't. It is so useful to have pieces of clothing that are simple enough to go with lots of other pieces, and yet have little details or design twists that keep them from being bland.

Herrera. I love the fantastic curving central stripe on this top, but I don't love the sad sack shape.

Judoka. This little tote bag is so very clever and visually striking. I suppose it wouldn't hold much, being only knitted and unlined, but it's such a treat to look at I almost don't care. And the styling in this photo is incredible, because the bag is the perfect finishing accessory for that supercute striped dress. If a woman passed me on the street in this smashing outfit I couldn't not notice her. I'd sneak at least several looks at her ensemble, and take mental notes.

Leiden. This isn't bad. I like the overall concept, with its Art Deco feel. I liked it better before I took a close look at it, because the stitchwork looks rough in spots.

Macklin. An understated contemporary wrap.

Nasreen. This one's rather fun in terms of its rhythmic visual curves, but this would likely be a difficult shape to carry off.

Riley. Ooh, nice. I like the subtle effect of the two similar shades and the overall design, with the framing effect created by the change of direction in the front panel. My one nitpick is that I'd neaten up the fit a bit, though this slightly oversized fit is fine too.

Tarmac. The combination of a cream and a charcoal yarn combined with a subtly two-toned I-cord trim is visually appealing, but I can't sign off on the shape of this tank top. It's going to look sloppy and unflattering on most women.

Vasarely. Another attractive contemporary-style wrap.