Wednesday, 9 July 2014

Knit Simple Fall 2014: A Review

Knit Simple has posted the preview of their Fall 2014 issue. Let's have a look, shall we?

We begin with a striped capelet. It's a cute and useful little piece.

A baseball shirt-styled sweater. It's not bad. More sophisticated colour choices would elevate it.

Ribbed fingerless gloves, trimmed with a second colour. I like these, and that mustard and lavender colour combination is one I would never have thought of but that actually works surprisingly well.

A simple garter stitch cowl. This isn't bad, though I don't think I'd go with that colour blocked effect. A single colour for the body and a second colour for the edging would be fine.

This pullover has a definite "shrunk in the wash" look. The whole thing looks weirdly askew and misshapen.

A hood with an attached cowl. Not even this beautiful model can lend this piece any chic. Fun fur yarn is always a challenge as a design element, because it tends to cheapen whatever item it's on, but it definitely doesn't belong with the other yarn used here. Mohair would have been a better choice for the trim, if this piece must be trimmed. I'd be inclined to go with a single beautiful yarn. Query: What's the term for a hood with an attached cowl? Is it a howl?

The fun fur has broken out again, but here it works fairly well. These ribbed fingerless gloves look fun and girly.

Nice afghan with a great colour and nice texture. That is, if this is as I think and hope and pray, an afghan rather than a monster-sized cowl.

Simple crocheted cushions. These aren't exactly marvels of design or even interesting, but are adequate: they'll be comfy and durable, they'll make nice bright accent pieces for your couch or chairs, and they'll go with most decor styles.

This cowl is... okay. I would want a cowl that is less bulky and lies more gracefully and looks more sophisticated than this, but this one will knit up very quickly and has some texture and will keep you warm, so basically it's doing its job as a cowl pattern.

Knitted dishcloths. I hate knitted dishcloths as they get all disgustingly gunked up with soggy bits of food, as opposed to a regular old J-cloth which doesn't hold food and rinses quite clean under the tap, but I know some people love knitted dishcloths. So I'll just say if you are or are knitting for one of those people who are Team Knitted Dishcloths, these are a good way to practice some different stitches.

I like these knitted throw pillows. They look ever so comfortable and they have more style than the crocheted ones above.

I'm pretty sure this is a colour block scarf rather than two scarves worn together. If it's the colour block scarf, I like it. The two scarf idea wouldn't work so well as few people are going to want to bother wearing two scarves at once.

Classic pair of fingerless gloves.

Very respectable looking cowl.

Basic shaker knit cap.

Ribbed men's sweater with leather shoulder patches. I actually like the leather-patched look in men's clothing, but I don't think I care for this particular example. It's a little too homemade looking for a design element that usually upgrades a look.

Nice classic vest, and this model looks as though he's been properly coached on how to hold the knitting needles. (If he actually knows how to knit, that's even better.)

A collection of fairly basic knitted hats. Nothing really stand out as especially attractive, but if they were done in a beautiful yarn in your favourite colour, they'd look fine.

A collection of crocheted hats. These all look kind of amateurish and as though they were made by someone who wasn't even using a pattern, except the rust tam with the green trim at the bottom, which has some style and looks as though it were designed by a professional.

Hmm, a cowl with little rosettes on it. I actually like this. It's cute and fun, though I do think it belongs on someone under 25.

This striped skirt looks like it's been fashioned out of a thrift shop sweater by someone who is on a 'shroom trip and who will bitterly regret it when she comes down. It's hideous and the shape is remarkably unflattering.

Classic cabled pullover. Can't find a fault with this one.

Basic cabled cap anyone could wear.

This drape front sweater isn't bad on its own, but this style does tend to be hard to wear and this piece is likely to prove unflattering on most women.

Basic bandeau. If you want to knit yourself a bandeau, I'd look further for a more interesting and attractive one.

Very simple gray and white sweater. It's not bad, but I'd neaten up the fit a little as this one is going to look a little dumpy on.

Work sock boot toppers. These aren't bad, for boot toppers. They at least look convincingly like the top of a knee sock, which is how boot toppers work best. I'm afraid I am boot topper-ist.

A layette with sock, cap, blanket, and a sweater and a jacket pattern. There are more interesting baby layette patterns out there but this one has a certain sturdy, practical appeal and is an easy knit.

These are cute in their way, but if I were to make a bunny I'd want to make a bunny that was shaped like a bunny rather than one that was shaped like a sock with ears attached. However, if you make one of these for a baby, said baby will be perfectly happy with it.

I wouldn't call this issue terrible, but I will say it's lacklustre. The patterns were generally very plain and basic. I realize I'm not Knit Simple's demographic as I'm advanced knitter and these are easy knitting patterns intended for beginning knitters, but beginning knitters deserve projects that are not only easy but also attractive and interesting, and it's possible for knitwear designs to be all three. I'm hoping the Knit Simple editors will set the bar a little higher in future.

1 comment:

  1. We were in complete agreement on everything except the toy bunny. Very few items on this magazine are memerable. Think I likes the green purple gloves and the bunny and that's it.