Wednesday, 13 July 2016

Knitter's Magazine 123: A Review

Knitter's Magazine has released issue 123. Let's have a look at it, shall we?

Lady in Red. I like the top, but the skirt looks like a costume from a modern dance exploration of the issue of urban poverty. In the description, the skirt is described as a "car wash skirt", which is more apt than any joke I could make.

Golden Patinas. Interesting and attractive stitchwork.

Mint Cooler. The lace is pretty, but the piece is so Dorothy Zbornak.

Knit, Knot, Net. Love the stitchwork in this throw. It feels both contemporary and timeless.

Crescent & Arch, version 1. Attractive shawl.

Crescent & Arch, version 2. The yarn used in this version is fabulous.

Buds & Wings. I wish we could see the top as a whole. I do like the stitchwork, but am not thrilled with the look of the edges of the cap sleeves, and the description says this piece has a "hi-low split hemline in seed stitch", which probably means it has a mullet hem.

Caribbean Blocks. This shawl has an interesting construction, but though I like the yarn used here, I don't know if it was the right choice for this project. The pooling seems a little much when it's employed in combination with the checkerboard effect of the stitchwork and the stairstep edges. I'd like to see this done in a solid colour with perhaps some sharp stripes in an accent colour or two along the lace border.

Morning Mist. Pretty, and I like the denim-like look of the yarn.

Twist & Torque, pullover & skirt. The shaping is good, and that ripple effect is fantastic, but I would like to see this in a happier colour.

Twist & Torque, cardigan vest. I'm a hard sell on asymmetrical pieces, but this one sits so perfectly and is so interesting it's like a piece of wearable art.

Twist of Lime. I wish I could see this better. From what I can see, though this is an interesting direction for knitwear design, I don't think the result is quite working, either in its colourway, its shaping, or its details.

Bells & Pulls. Some attractive detailing on this one.

A Maze 'N Miters. Interesting construction. I think this one needed a more united colourway to make it work.

Salted Caramel. This one needed some more colour -- in fact, any colour -- as it is so blah.

Diamond-T. Classic diamond pattern short-sleeved pullover.

Wednesday, 6 July 2016

Knitscene Fall 2016: A Review

Knitscene has released its Fall 2016 issue. Let's take a look at the patterns therein, shall we?

Sumi Sweater. Baggy and unflattering. It's never a good sign when the model has to clutch herself to give the design shape.

Hanshi Wrap. Elegant and contemporary and perfect.

Suzuri Hat. This is smart and fun.

Fude Tee. I like this on the whole but I would neaten up the fit somewhat.

Warren Cowl. This one has that "deflated inner tube" look when worn singly as all long cowls tend to, but looks great when worn doubled.

Carson Sweater. Nice piece. The yarn used in this sample is really pretty.

Barton Cowl. A handsome piece.

Ruby's Scarf. Not seeing the appeal of this one. The ends are unfinished, it's too short for a scarf, and the scrunchy effect isn't pleasing.

Parks Wrap. Another lovely and elegant wrap.

Curie Hat. It's hard to go wrong with a classic fair isle hat. I like that the designer went with an offbeat colourway.

Alice Hoodie. Nicely polished piece. Both the front and the back look good.

Maya Hat and Mittens Set. Very much like this one. It's always nice to see a fun theme like polka dots rendered in a sophisticated, adult way.

Amelia Hat. Classic bulky weight cabled hat.

Georgia Cardigan. I want to like this because I like the concept of a solid-coloured body combined with a striped ruffle, and the back does look quite good, but the front hangs so very poorly.

Troposphere Sweater. Classic herringbone sweater that does not actually require the use of colourful plastic balls and a trampoline to make it interesting. It does have dropped shoulders, but the sweater is so well-shaped otherwise that it works.

Empyrean Cowl. A nice simple cowl.

Noctilucent Shawl. Some really impressive, intricate stitchwork on this, and I love the pleated edges. The shawl also drapes very well.

Perigee Socks. Really liking the lattice slip stitch effect.

Aerial Skirt. It's been awhile since I've seen a skirt pattern, so it's nice to see this one, and even nicer to see that it's a good one. The shape is excellent and the details are interesting.

Caelum Cowl. I'm quite liking the chain device on this one, and the background stitchwork on the body of the scarf has a quietly polished effect.

Firmament Sweater. I very much like the little cuffs on this sweater. Feel free to play with the sleeve length if elbow sleeves aren't a flattering look on the intended wearer.

Cirrus Cowl. I'm liking the "allover box-stitch" used in this, which keeps this otherwise very simple cowl interesting.

Tuesday, 5 July 2016

Knitty First Fall 2016: A Review

Knitty has released their First Fall issue for 2016! Let's have a look at it.

Mad for Plaid. A very cute and striking little accessory. I'm not usually a fan of the pom pom, but they really work here.

Candy Dots. This has a fresh, fun, cute look to it, but I think I'd go with another colourway.

Ennui. Some interesting stitchwork and a punchy colourway.

Pyropa. This has an interesting shape that appears to sit well on the wearer, and that is one fabulous gradient colour scheme.

Sandri. Very pretty little lace stole.

Bias Button Cowl. This is okay, though I am uncertain about the buttons. At first sight I thought they should have been omitted, but after more consideration I think they should instead be replaced with buttons that do more for the design. The bias construction combined with the combination of knit and crochet stitches is interesting.

Prettified Thrush. These are handsome, comfortable, and wearable, and who could ask for more in a sock?

Manoa. Another pair of interestingly detailed and handsome socks.

Concello. An attractively simple little cardi.

Sofia. The authors of Go Fug Yourself invented the term "scroll-down fug" to describe an outfit that looks fine above the waist and horrifying below it. I'd say this sweater is a case of "turn around fug" or "180 degree fug", because the back looks fantastic but the front does not. The pockets look shrunken and badly applied -- and also uneven, though that is probably just how the sweater is sitting on the wearer. I'd make the pockets bigger and put one of those cable and lace motifs from the back on them, and I also wouldn't put an extra two decorative buttons on the button band.

Great Gansey. I do like a gansey, and it's nice to see a short-sleeved, ballet-necked version instead of the usual long-sleeved crew-necked pullover.

Juno. Oooh, I love this one, which combines the classic Breton-striped sweater with the traditional round yoke sweater, and has an original and modern-feeling design to boot. It's both visually interesting and original, and very smart. I also love a long cuff, which emphasizes the hands.

Sophistical. Oh dear. This looks drab and stretched out, and those welts on the left side look like a mistake rather than a design feature. This is the kind of sweater one sees in the the kind of romantic comedies in which the heroine spends an inordinate amount of time on her couch, watching TV and eating tuna straight from the can while dressed in a sweater like this, pajama bottoms, and thick work socks.

Town Beach. This is rather cute and sporty. I'm enjoying imagining the different looks it would have in different palettes.

Every Surface Coaster. This is woven, not knitted, and I'm not a weaver, so all I'll say is that this is quite pleasing and I'd love to see it in a throw-size.

Dealán Dé. Very much like this hat. It's a good piece of design with an interesting construction that looks good from all angles, and it is also a fun way to showcase an interesting button. I'd be inclined to pick out my button first and choose my yarn to go with it.

Toketee. A handsome and wearable pair of gloves.

Wristicuffs. A simple, sturdy pair of mitts.