About Woolly Wits

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

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Woolly-Wits Reviews Knitters #112

_23-k112_nico_78_small2I am going to start my review of the fall issue of Knitter's, aka #112, with my favorite design in this issue (and probably many past issues, too!), Brook Nico's Lush and Lacy Trapeze.  Wow!  I guess you just can't beat mink yarn for drape.  (Yeah, that's right, I said mink yarn.) Shaping in the side panels is what creates all that lovely flowing fabric.  So what do I say about excess fabric?  It will make you look wider.  But, here it is so airy, that I think even those of us who are a little fuller through the hips and thighs might be able to get away with it, if we were a fitted bottom, like the model's jeans.  The very wide ballet neckline creates a very strong shoulder line, which is great for narrow shoulders, or those looking to balance a wider lower body.  But, the arms are quite fitted, so not good for those us us with fat/flabby arms.  So, I've pretty much described a garment ideal for anyone but me.  But, that doesn't mean I am not tempted.  

So, what should I be knitting from this issue?  How about Karen Bradley's Ripple Ridge?  Here's the description? "The ripple stitch glows when worked in a lace pattern with hand-dyed yarn. The triple-ridge welts at the lower body offer waist interest without adding visual bulk. The simple tank shape assures seasons of wear — for true investment dressing."

OK, I totally disagree that the welts don't add visual bulk.  Even in the lousy photo at right, I think you can see far more texture through the hip than the torso.  But, that works for me to balance my wide shoulders and bust.  And, speaking of bust, that's whats not working for me in this design.  I would need to alter the unflattering crew neck to a more open neckline.  I would probably go with a scoop to carry through the scalloped motif.

Unfortunately, I have misplaced my magazine, so I can't tell whether there is actual side shaping through the waist.  If not (and generally with Knitter's there is not), I would add some by either decreasing in the side seams, or, so as not to disrupt the patterning, change needle sizes.

But, I do love the Missoni look that the variegated yarn lends to this design.  Sigh . . . 

_19-k112_cupurdija_74_small2Terri Cuperjia's Cirque Jacket has so many flattering design elements - strong vertical color work, shawl collar, button band - that I should love it.  So, why don't I?  Perhaps I am thrown off my the fact that it is way too big on the model.  See how far the sleeves fall down her hands?  Maybe it's the purple color.  Maybe it's the no make-up, washed out look of the model, But, I think the sweater just looks very dated.  I wouldn't be surprised to see a similar design in my collection of Knitter's from the 80's.

Here's Red & Wine by Theresa Chynoweth.  Ditto to what I just said above.  So many flattering design elements that I should love it.  But, again, it really looks dated.  The proportions seem all wrong - too short, sleeves to wide.  And, the model looks even worse here than in any of the previous photos.  She looks like she has a very bad case of the flu and was dragged out of bed to get a few shots.  Now, I am not make-up crazy person (it's Sunday, so definitely none today), but even models need some.  And, while the editorial staff is doing that, could they please also bring in a hair stylist?  Or did they forget their hot rollers?  For most of my life, I had baby fine, limp hair, so I have all the sympathy in the world for this model.  But, when my image was to be preserved forever in a friend or relative's wedding/anniversary/christening/etc. photos, I got myself to a professional stylist.

Anyhow, I am proving the point I make in the bloopers section of my 'What Not to Knit' presentation:  it is so easy to let the poor styling or fit issues of a photo distract you from what good be very good design elements.  Always go back to the schematic.
_15-k112_kdt_52_small2The last design I want to talk about is the Eggplant Tunic by the Knitter's Design Team.  This brings to mind a trick for the very long waisted among you.  Unfortunately, a slimming long torso is usually accompanied by shorter legs.  So, the trick is to wear a top long enough to go past your crotch.  If you can't see where the torso stops and the legs begin, you will think the legs are longer and the torso shorter.  (Longer legs are always a good thing to visually slim you, even if a shorter torso isn't.)  So consider dropping any long designs a few extra inches to get that effect.

Next up?  The Twist Collective fall issue.

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