About Woolly Wits

I am a hand-knitting designer and teacher. See and purchase my published designs on Ravelry.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Woolly Wits Review of Knitty Deep Fall 2010

I love Knitty.  What's not to love about free patterns that in no way resemble something your grandma would knit for you?  But, it's not just the patterns, it's the education and inspiration too.  And, the community. 

Ahhh, the community.  Doesn't it seem like all the knitty-istas are skinny young things?  Who design sweaters for other skinny young things?  But, there are a few goodies in Deep Fall . . .

Pleased to introduce you to Lia.  She's got a lot going for her.  A fitted shape to show off her curves.  A deep v-neck to elongate the neck and add height.  And, beautiful cable patterning which pulls in just below the bust to accent the girls.  But . . . bulky yarn?  In my view of the world bulk = fat.  The designer, Mandie Harrington, says she chose the Malabrigo Chunky to make the sweater a quick knit.  However, to be it doesn't matter how fast you can finish a project if, the first time you put it on, you think , "this makes me look fat".  Because then it gets shoved to the back of the closet and never worn and there's all the knitting time down the drain.  So, I really want to love Lia but I just can't, baby.

Meet Eileen.  What a great gal.  She has that great dress up/dress down combination of lace knitting and a zipper.  This is a sweater you can see over a dress at work or with sweatpants on the weekend.  She's at a great gauge of 20, so even though the stitch pattern is highly textured, it is not adding a lot of visual weight.  The open zipper and collar create a great v-neck, and the double-ended zipper allows the bottom to open for ease of movement and additional visual interest.  (This is how I wear all my cardigans.  I button two or three buttons just below the bust to highlight the girls and make you think I have a waist, but the bottom flares open to balance my broad shoulders and cover my generous booty.)  I do wish Eileen didn't have such fat arms.  The designer cut the armholes deep to make it easier to layer, but any excess of knitted fabric adds visual weight.  This feature would make me crazy enough to open up my Garment Designer software and rewrite the pattern for a European fit - a higher, tighter armhole.  But, I think Eileen's on my To Do list.

This is the Carnaby skirt by Nikol Lohr.  I love knitted skirts (and in fact I just finished the sidewinder skirt from the fall issue).  What I love about this one is the very strong vertical lines.  The skirt is knit vertically with a heavily textured stitch to help prevent sagging.  The patterned panels are interrupted by short rowed stockinette stitch sections which cause it to flare out and create the A-line shape. The gauge of 19 sts over 4" is just on the edge of what I prefer (since, as I said above bulk = weight) since no one wants extra pounds on their hips and bottom, but I think the vertical design elements help counteract the horizontal spread.  The designer was even thoughtful enough to acknowledge that not everyone is comfortable wearing a 17" skirt, and to give directions for lengthening (or shortening). 

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