Wednesday, 20 November 2013

Knitter's Magazine Issue 113: A Review

Knitter's Magazine has released the preview for Issue 113. Let's have a look at it.

I'm not normally a friend of asymmetrical design or of zippers in knitwear, but I love the Diagonal Zip design. This jacket's asymmetry is balanced, with the two collars flowing along one line, and the front zipper looks right because it's echoed by the two cuff zippers. The texture and the overall lines are very good. I don't know how good this design will look worn open, but it looks so damn good zipped up, who cares. Excellent work!

We move from a great opener to.... the Chartered Lines design. Which is a cropped-length and top-buttoned style that even the model isn't carrying off, has a textured pattern added to an already very busy tutti frutti-coloured yarn, and is that fringe on the collar? It makes me wonder how the previous sweater got along with this one during the photo shoot, because they don't have much in common. I'm imagining a coolly aloof attitude on the one side and belligerence on the other.

The Shaded Diamonds design one isn't at all anything I would ever wear myself, but it's such a fine piece of design that I can only admire it. The mitred neck detail and the edgings have employed an variegated yarn to wonderful effect, and the lines are so good.

The Incline Wrap. Entrelac is another design element that can be problematic, because it adds such bulk, but again it's been made to work here, in this sleeveless wrap. Using entrelac in a design that's meant to be worn as an outer layer makes the bulkiness much less of a issue (eliminating the sleeves also helped), and this piece is well-shaped. It will work well over both short skirts and relatively fitted trousers.

The pleated waist section and the striped raglan detail in the Iron, Slate & Moss design are competing somewhat, making the pudding more than slightly over egged. I'd go with one of those elements, not both, with the pleating being section being my pick to eliminate as it won't flatter many waistlines. Finishing off the sweater with the dark blue ribbing that's been used at the neckline and cuffs would work well.

This Smoke & Ice design's... okay. It looks like one of those 1990s-era single pattern leaflet patterns that somehow came into your possession and that is too nice to weed out with the hopeless 1980s era leaflets, and yet is not nice enough to make.

This Rainbow Grove vest is a lovely piece of design. Well-endowed wearers and/or those without a waistline they want to emphasize will want to decrease the waistline ribbing to just an inch or two, and feature more of that gorgeous stitchwork.

The Confetti Design. I don't care for the smock-like shape here, which would make most women look dumpy. I'm afraid even to ask how long that back hem is — it continues beyond the limits of the picture. The yarn choice isn't helping. I can't even look at the picture of this sweater for very long before I start wondering if I'm hungover or something — and it's been months since I had a single alcoholic beverage.

The Tangerine Leaves design is quite a pretty little open front cardigan. A woman who owns this piece will get a lot of wear out of it, because it can be worn with many outfits and will always look polished and be warm and comfortable.

The Tilt vest is another attractive, useful, go-anywhere piece.

Not liking the Weather Ready design. It does have some good points, namely its cabled texture and collar, but the overall shape is just so sloppy and unflattering that the model can't even carry it off despite the bravest of smiles.

The Slip-up Mobius hat and scarf. This isn't appealing to me, but I think it's the fault of the yarn choice here, which I personally find more than a little eyeball-searing. If I imagine it sans pom pom and in a yarn colourway I actually like, it's a decent set.

The Garter Epaulettes design is a nice, simple piece, though I find it just a touch too simple. I'd maybe add cuff detailing that echoes the epaulettes to kick up the level of visual interest just a bit.

The Ladies Only cardigan is a good, polished-looking piece of work. The top-buttoned style really works here because it's so organic to the design.

The Unfinished Business design looks like it began life as a simple tank and decided it was born for high fashion, and so added random side draping, regretted it, couldn't figure out how to get back to the simple life that had really suited it much better, gave up on itself, partied too much and ran out of yarn, and is now bound for an ignominious death in some forlorn and filthy rooming house. Seriously, this is one nearly unwearable item that almost no women will be able to get away with wearing, and even then the question is why would they?

The Blues & Berries scarf isn't bad. I actually think it would have looked better with a basic denim jacket than with this "pull out all the stops" styling, but you have to give Knitter's Magazine credit for going the extra mile, even if that extra mile was beyond the finish line.

The Blues & Berries hat and scarf set (the scarf is the same design as the one above done in a second colourway) is really basic but wearable and presentable enough.

The Shifting Bands cardigan is a very competent piece of work. It's got enough interest to make an outfit, and yet not so much that it won't go with anything in a woman's closet or can't be worn often.

I don't even know what the Zigzag in Cables design is. I think it's supposed to be some kind of architecturally structured cowl or scarf, but it looks like a pile of swatches from the design studio have inexplicably gone rogue and are trying to throttle the model.

The Step-up Shawl isn't a bad piece. The choice of mitred squares is an interesting and visually distinctive one for a shawl. My response is rather tepid because of the colour scheme — this one is a little on the muddy side.

This is a second version of the Step-Up Shawl, and it confirms my theory about the colours dampening my enthusiasm for the first one. I love this version.

The Chevron vest isn't a bad piece of design at all, but all I can do is stare at that closing detail and think about how I really don't like it. I'd go with a simple silver clasp there, or at least a better-looking knitted loop.

The Uncharted Lace pullover is another good wearable design. The touch of lace detailing at the raglan seams gives this simple, classic piece distinction.

1 comment:

  1. Some of the designs in this issue really make me question why I keep renewing my subscriptions to some of these knitting magazines. At least there were no patterns for knitted skirts in this issue...something most of us "older" women will not be wearing unless we've slipped into some form of dementia.