Wednesday, 26 August 2015

The Four Crocheteers and Other Knitting Fables

Edie had expected finishing her new Tutti Frutti top would cheer her up and help her forget that she'd flunked out of beauty school, but it hadn't done the trick.

Carmel felt that the drama of the glorious cascade of yarn attached to her shoulder by way of a brooch more than made up for the fact that she had forgotten to wear her "nice undies" as she had intended.

After her manager strenuously objected to her visible undies as workplace attire, Carmel came up with a new look. People in the marketing department were always told they should be positive, and what could be more positive than an outfit inspired by cheerleading pom poms?

Triplets Bill, Phil, and Dill loved to knit, but they had not spend so much time at the gym honing their physiques only to cover them up with knitwear.

The craft club best known as the Four Crocheteers weren't such gym rats as Bill, Phil, and Dill, and were therefore more inclined to go free form when practicing the needle arts.

By contrast, the knitting club known as the Kneurotic Knitters used their knitting to veil their insecurities. You don't think their ankles look fat in these outfits, do you?

Giselle always reserved one outfit for those days when she felt more than usually Kafakesque. Her Penal Colony outfit was an even more dramatic, fun look than her Metamorphosis outfit, but also more cumbersome.

Verna loved wearing her new sweater design while wearing housework. Being able to use one's sweater as both a duster and a pot scrubber was such a timesaver.

Jackson was positive his new sperm outfit would do wonders for his social life. Chicks dig a man who's able and willing to give them babies, right?

Zed oozed so much cool, he could even wear his new hoodie dress like a boss.

Monday, 24 August 2015

This is Why We Knit: A Video

Very Pink Knits asks knitters of all nationalities and ages why they knit. The answers range from the funny to the pragmatic to the moving.

Friday, 21 August 2015

Debbie Bliss Knitting Magazine #15: A Review

Debbie Bliss Magazine has released its fifteenth issue. Let's have a look at the knitted Bliss within, shall we? (Sorry Debbie, I know you've heard that one approximately 3748 times.)

Blanket Scarf. The yarn used here really makes this very simple scarf.

Cabled Armwarmers. Pretty basic, but they'll do. You might want to make them a little more fitted than they are here.

Cabled Turban. Very Sunset Boulevard. This is not a good thing, unless one is actually cast as Norma Desmond in an actual stage production.

Check Sweater. Quite pretty and cosy, but I would neaten up the fit.

Check Sweater with Contrast Sleeve. I'm not liking the fit, the colourway, or the contrast sleeve (which has that "ran out of yarn" look), but I can picture the basic design working if it were better shaped and made in better colours with two matching sleeves.

Checked Zip Jacket. Not a bad concept or shape, but I would definitely change the colourway.

Chunky Garter Stitch Sweater. Pretty colours, but that is one baggy, unflattering shape.

Contrast Sleeve Sweater. It's not a terrible concept, but again the fit is terrible. Even the model looks stunned to find herself wearing this.

Dog's Tooth Check Baseball Jacket. Not bad, but it definitely deserves a better integrated and more sophisticated colourway.

Fringed Sweater. This wouldn't be a bad piece if the shape were neatened up a little, but WHY THE FRINGE. WHY WHY WHY.

Hooded Sweater. Basic but serviceable. I'd run a stripe in the main colour through the contrast colour hem, cuffs, and hood ribbing to make it look a little smarter and more pulled together.

Jacket with Tartan Pockets. I love tartan detailing and want this to work, but it isn't quite. I think I'd make the tartan pockets considerably smaller, and maybe also make the sleeves in tartan.

Lace Cowl. Nice cowl which deserves to be put over an attractive top, as opposed to whatever horror the model is wearing.

Long Line Waistcoat. This is Dr. Zhivago's Lara, looking out the window at post-revolutionary Russia and pining for the day when there'll be decent consumer goods available in Russia again. I am sorry to say it'll be a very long wait and, er, well, you have more pressing concerns, Larochka.

Poncho Wrap. I wish I could see the bottom of this, but it looks well so far as it goes. That is such a beautiful shade of red.

Reindeer Jacket. Cute. Done in the right colours, this could be a nice little Christmas season sweater for the little guy in your life.

Shoulder Cape. This is very "beginner project", with no interesting or attractive details. Even if you are a beginner, you deserve to make something less bland than this.

Striped Sweater. Very presentable and wearable basic design.

Tank Top. This is the outfit Dr. Zhivago's Lara is fond of wearing as she plays her balalaika, sings sad songs about her lost lover and daughter, and awaits Stalin's next purge.

Tartan Detail Sweater. Another tartan design where the proportions aren't working. I like the collar, but all the tartan at the bottom is too heavy an effect. I think what I might do is knit the body in the main colour, and make folding cuffs in tartan.

Triangle Scarf. This is a little over the top. I think I'd knit it in a smaller size, and maybe add a fringe.

Triangular Scarf. This is a nice useful piece that would work over a lot of outfits.

V Neck Tunic. Do not adjust your computer screen... this sweater really is as bad as it looks.

Zipped Sweater. Very nice. I like the touch of contrast colour at the cuffs and inside the collar, and the matching zipper is an excellent finishing touch.

Monday, 17 August 2015

Knit.Purl Fall/Winter 2015: A Review

Knit.Purl has released its Fall/Winter 2015 issue. Let's have a look at it, shall we?

Kringla Hat. Pretty basic. You could find many similar hat patterns on Ravelry.

Beaded Ski Cardigan. Another pattern that would have many a counterpart on Ravelry. The designer has tried to spice up a lovely but very traditional pattern by adding some random beads to the yoke, but I can't say they're really adding anything or that they even look as though they belong. Not every piece of clothing should get blinged up.

One Month Sweater. This pattern is a little more original. It is knitted with two strands of yarn: one of white cotton and one of charcoal wool. The result does look cushy and stretchy.

Tweed Scarf Jacket. This looks like some sort of post-modern take on the swallowtail coat, designed to be worn in an alt theatre production of Thackeray's Vanity Fair that involves a lot of cross dressing. And it might play well on Becky Sharp in that context (she is, after all, a character who loves getting away with things), but in real life it's going to look silly.

Soundcheck Scarf. Run of the mill large gauge cowl.

Big Twill Vest. This is a bit on the bulky side and could do with a bit of waist shaping, but I kind of like both it on the whole, and the concept of wearing a bulky knit vest over a finer knit sweater.

Garter Rectangular Jacket. I'm a hard sell on this sort of unstructured, drapey style of knitwear, which tends to look shapeless and dowdy, but the colourway on the front and sleeves is so fantastic it's almost selling me on this one.

Houndstooth Cardigan. Quite like this one, which has a nice "retro men's wear translated into women's wear" look to it.

Skinny Pop Pullover. Simple but effective.

Okemo Pullover. I like this mosaic knitted design too, though I would add a waistband of the charcoal to it as the bottom of the bodice looks a little unfinished as is.

Shredded Cowl. Pretty little accessory. The lovely handpainted yarn used here is what makes it.

Santa Fe Tunic. The lacework front and back panels are really pretty, but the sleeves don't seem to jive with it and that cowl neck looks a bit like a deflated tire.

Painted Pullover. Gorgeous yarn, but the oversized and shapeless shape is seriously unflattering to even this carefully styled and posed professional model.

Terra Garter Raglan. Unflattering and unfinished looking.

Earthen Pullover. I'd like to take the cowl neck, which is the only part of this design that's really working, and put it on the Santa Fe Tunic above.

Desert Night Cowl. This piece looks like it began life as an intended slipper and was repurposed into a cowl after the gauge proved to be off by a country mile.

Sedona Sweater. This a very decent piece of design on the whole, but that back seam is rather unsightly.

Quick Wind Pullover. Rather a nice piece. I was going to claim it was unflattering, but I think if any part of this outfit is letting this model down, it's those trousers, which need to be killed with fire.

Palm Springs Pullover. Nicely detailed and shaped.

DotDotDot Cowl. Oh, I love this one. It's very cute and fun in an adult way. One needn't be under 25 to carry this one off.

Dark Rainbow Sweater. Love this one too. It's really eye catching and visually distinctive, plus it's something nearly any woman would find totally wearable.

Progressive Pullover. This is both original and very pretty. I do love a well-done gradient effect.