Saturday, 15 June 2013

Knitty First Fall 2013, Issue 13: A Review

Knitty has released their First Fall 2013, Issue 13. Let's have a look at it, shall we?

This is the Sinnesfrid Vest, and it's a good, wearable, useful piece that can be worn on its own or over a number of pieces in the average woman's wardrobe, although it's not showing to advantage here. It is perhaps a half-size too small for this model (who is also the designer), and I can't say I think those buttons are doing it any favours.

The Arguyle gansey pullover is a classic men's sweater with a bit of a twist in that the designer has incoporated an argyle pattern in it. I like it — way to marry two knitting traditions from neighbouring geographic regions.

The Vertical Ridge vest design grew out of the designer's frustration with the inevitable horizontal lines in hand-dyed yarns. I like the concept very much, and the yarn is beautiful, the texture interesting, and the piece carefully shaped, but it does seem to need a little something, such as front fastenings, to give it a little more style.

I love the Lewis pullover. It's simple yet has great detail, it should be comfortable and flattering for most women, and a woman can wear it with jeans and a t-shirt or over a camisole and trousers to the office.

The Jackaroo cardigan is a nice little piece. The designer intended that it should be the perfect fall cardigan that to just slip on over everything, and it is indeed that kind of jacket. The cropped sleeve length won't suit every woman as well as it does the designer, but they're easily lengthened.

This is the Canoe pullover. It's not bad, but it's just so bland and basic, and it does have that just-above-the-elbow sleeve length that doesn't flatter anyone. There's just nothing at all that's distinctive about this pattern except the yarn that was used, and a beautiful yarn like this deserves a better setting.

The Squirrels hat is really cute and well-rendered. It made me laugh that there are also acorns on the adult version.

The Rabbitty pattern is really cute and they're intended as a "stash-busting" project, so they'll be an inexpensive toy to whip up for baby showers. I find the bulging eyes a little disturbing, but one could easily make them smaller or just embroider the eyes instead.

I quite like the Sugar Stick cowl pattern. The twisty bands colour motifs lend themselves well to an item that's meant to be worn twisted.

The QRkey scarf is a good-looking item, with a geeky payoff: those codes on either side can be scanned to read "My Scarf" and "Love Mom", and there are instructions included in the pattern for creating your own code if neither of those appeal to you. I'm so impressed by this innovation that even if there were anything else to criticize in this pattern (there isn't), I don't think I could.

The Glitz at the Ritz shawl is nice enough. I like the beads. Don't take my lack of enthusiasm to mean that there's anything wrong with this pattern, because there isn't. I've just seen so many shawl patterns that I'm hard to impress.

The Peri's Paradox shawl is very nice. The basketweave stitch would be a challenging one for a delicate shawl, because it's not an elegant texture, but this designer seems to have done very well with it. I like the teardrop shapes at the border.

The Solidago socks are cute, although if I were making them I wouldn't include both the coloured heel and toe with the fair isle ankle pattern, as I don't think they quite work together.

Very much like the Matsudana socks. I especially like that the lace pattern at the ankle doesn't continue over the foot, because I find lace patterned socks can get a little chafe-y on the feet.

The Flying Geese socks are based on a traditional quilt pattern of the same name, but the first thing I thought when I saw them was that they resembled a pair in a very old sock pattern book I have that has a set of smaller triangles on the ankle. Everything old can be made new again.

Legwarmers are baaaaaack. Or so I'm told, and the Nozky legwarmers are at least one piece of evidence that they are. I actually don't mind this pattern. I appreciate that they're so well crafted and not baggy, and they're very well styled in these photos. But I tend to follow that "if you were old enough to wear a trend the last time it was in, don't wear it this time" rule, and while I think legwarmers can be quite fetching on little girls, teenagers and very young women, at my age I'll be giving this reborn fad a pass, and sticking to the kind of legwarmers that are always in style; they're called pants.

Franklin Habit's Moufles Marque d'amour (or "Love Token Mittens") design is based an old design from Sajou, a nineteenth-century French needlework company. The mittens are pretty and the accompanying article is as funny and worthwhile a read as Franklin Habit's articles always are.

The Vino fingerless mitts are a nice design. You won't get the uncomfortable gap between coat sleeve and mitten in these, though you might get cold fingers. Sorry, I can never resist snarking on fingerless mittens, though I know they have their uses.

The Ginger + Wasabi pattern is a very basic glove pattern knitted up in two colours (yes, only two). If you don't care for this particular colour pairing you can easily come up with your own.

I very much like the Adventure Rucksack, and as someone whose current backpack is on its last legs, got all excited about possibly making myself one until I remembered why my backpack is disintegrating: because I stuff groceries and knitting and books and my laptop and all kinds of other stuff into it (oh and at 14, it's nearly as old as the teenaged designer of these rucksacks). Knitted backpacks won't stand up to that kind of abuse, but for more casual purposes such as holding the kind of things that ordinarily go into a shoulder bag (i.e., a wallet, lunch, a notebook or novel), these would be fine, and they look really good.

1 comment:

  1. great review - totally with the ban on repeating a fashion trend!