Friday, 20 April 2018
Today we're going to have a look at Rowan Knitting & Crochet Magazine 63.
Nabeela. I love the stitchwork in this one, and fixing those dropped shoulders would interfere with the pattern significantly, but I can't help wanting to do it anyway, because those sleeves do look so absurdly short. If I were modifying this pattern I might go with a seamless sleeve, picking up stitches from the body and extending the pattern down the sleeve. But then you could just decide you like the loose shape and make it as it is.
Delft Cardigan & Skirt. This is lovely. The shaping of both the cardigan and skirt is good and the Delft china-inspired motif of blue florals on a white background is so beautifully interpreted.
Deeba. A very simple yet effective colour block effect, and the shaping is good.
Isad. This ripple pattern could have looked afghan-y, but this designer took the look an extra mile by employing slipped stitch and stranded techniques, and the result is a polished, contemporary wrap.
Paragon. A smart new twist on the classic striped sweater.
Taibah. I like this coat, with its offbeat colourway and variety of interesting stitchwork. The belt isn't doing much for it. It might be better to add some waist shaping, change the collar to something that sits a bit better, run the buttons up a little higher on the bands, and forego the belt.
Dudson. A simple, well-shaped tank.
Moorcroft. A nice piece -- the side detail is attractive -- but I'd neaten up the fit a little and add waist shaping.
Vanaja. A very decent looking boho-style crocheted bag.
Stafford. I'm finding this one unappealing. It has a rough, wrong-side-out look
Waterford. The pattern in this is quite charming, but the surplice shaping is unflattering even on this professional model.
Kayla. Pretty lacework, but again I don't think the surplice wrap effect works well. Surplices are hard to get right, as I know from having made two that I was so unsatisfied with that I wound up taking them apart again.
Spode. I like the bold, contemporary look of pattern on this one, and it's fun to look at the pattern and figure out what everything is.
Calico. The tucked, multi-layered effect of this pattern is inventive and attractive, but I can't help thinking it would work better on an afghan, as it's a rather bulky effect.
Ziana. As hard as they've tried to style this piece, it still looks like a random swath of knitting slung around the model.
Porcelain. The "teapots and vases" pattern is fun and eye-catching, but the shape is not flattering.
Beswick. A nice, wearable piece, but I'd add more buttons, as that one lone, single, isolated button looks so terribly lonely. NO I AM NOT PROJECTING THANK YOU VERY MUCH.
Hasina. This is a basic top, but it's totally wearable and useful as a well-made basic tends to be.
Minton. I like both the colour block effect and the sideways cable/dropped stitch stitchwork of this piece. The design is good too.
Garima. I like the concept of a solid colour body combined with shoulder and sleeve detail, but I would go with a seamless construction here to get rid of that unfortunate shoulder seam in the middle of the detail, and make the body neater fitting.
Wedgewood. Wedgwood, Spode, Delft, Minton, Porcelain, Waterford... Rowan's on a real china kick with this issue, with more we haven't gotten to yet. Not that I'm complaining. I have a bit of thing for beautiful tableware, and china patterns are a great source of inspiration for knitwear design. I quite like this design too, though again, I'd have gone with a seamless sleeve construction here rather than this dropped shoulder seam. Though in the case of this particular sweater, modifying to get rid of a dropped shoulder seam would be a fairly complex job, so unless you are quite skilled you'll probably prefer to just make it the way it is.
Daya. An attractive yet neutral wrap. I like the combination of the contrasting textures.
Haviland. Not a bad tunic, though I'd stop short of the fringe.
Eshana. I like the madras plaid-like effect of this crocheted wrap.
Coalport. Classic cardigan with some interesting and unusual textured stitchwork.
Saguna. This one's as plain as it gets, but then sometimes a simple pullover design like this one is just the right choice for a beautiful yarn.
Tang, Song, Ming. I like all three of these pillows, but I'm not sure I'd use the three of them together. I'd probably pick one design, reverse the colours of it for pillows one and two, and make pillow number three in a solid matching or accent colour.
Lanika. I like the pattern through the body, but this has an unfinished look. Curling edges always do make feel a bit twitchy.
Aynsley. A sharp, graphic effect. I'm dying to see it done in another colourway.
Olena. Pretty, though I wish I could get a look at those front edges to see whether and how they are finished.
Umnia. An interesting combination of mosaic stitchwork and colour blocking, though I don't feel this colourway does the design justice.
Barlin. An attractive and useful summer cardi.
Janan. The shoulder/side shaping is unfortunate, and the sleeves look like a mutation.
Maida. This crocheted cardi has a smart, contemporary appeal.
Gayana. I can't imagine any occasion for which I'd care to wrap a swath of crocheted fabric over my jeans and call it a skirt, and for obvious reasons this "skirt" can't very well be worn on its own.
Foolan. This one is pretty. The round eyelets in its crocheted pattern make me think of octopus suckers, but in a reasonably positive way.
Parul. This tank has the interesting colourway and stitchwork of the coat above without its problematic shaping. A nice piece for summer.
Thursday, 14 September 2017
Today we're going to look at the second half of the designs in Rowan Knitting & Crochet Magazine 62, having looked at the first half three days ago.
Bradshaw. Classic cabled turtleneck.
Wilshaw. I like the detail on the body of this coat, and the back looks quite sharp, but the front looks unfinished and the sleeves look silly.
Midnight. Good shape and texture, but I think I'd make this one in a variegated yarn, as it needs just a little more visual interest.
Weeton Scarf. It's seldom I see a crocheted scarf I really like, but I do quite like this one with its pleasing woven effect.
Fumbar. This one's a refreshing take on the classic fair isle yoke pullover, the shaping is good, and I like the subtle neutral colourway.
Midnight Cowl and Dimmet. I rather like this one, which could be worn on its own or as a layering piece, and I love the versatility of the cowl and sweater set idea that I just might have to make one for myself. Though I would wear a proper belt with it, not a piece of leather cord or twine or whatever that is around the model's waist.
Almondbury. The texture's great and the colours are beautiful, but this one isn't so much a cardigan as it is an afghan with sleeves.
Farnley. This one's rather cute. I even like the pom poms, though I'd make them a little smaller.
Dusky Scarf. This is quite attractive and a good way to add some distinction to a plain outfit.
Oxton. A nice classic piece.
Gransmoor. Very pretty leaf and diamond fair isle design, though I would do it in another colourway. This combination of dark blue and pale blue is popular with designers, but for some reason it never quite pulls together for me -- it's visually just a little jarring and off-key.
Veiled. This is very simple but it's wearable enough.
Buttrick. This one is good overall, but has an unflattering boxy shape that isn't doing this professional model any favours. I'd normally advise adding waist shaping but that could be difficult to do in this case given the closely set cable pattern, so instead I'd probably just give this design a pass.
Subdued. The designer of this one seems to have tried to jazz up a too-plain item by randomly adding ties to the sleeves, and like most randomly added design elements, it's not serving its intended purpose.
Marr. Very striking mosaic patterned coat.
Sundown. A cute little cropped cardigan. This can be a difficult length to wear but they do look cute over a dress.
Bielby. This one has such a dragged out, downtrodden look that even the model it's on is looking as though she's getting a sudden urge to sit in a darkened room, wrap herself in a blanket and eat marshmallow fluff straight from the jar.
Eventide. Not bad, though these long narrow cardigans tend to be hard to wear. That's easily remedied though -- just make it in a flattering length for the intended wearer.
Thackrey Scarf. The matching hat for this scarf appeared in part one of this review, and I like the scarf just as much. It was a sound idea to knit it in a tube so that there's no "wrong" side.