Monday, 12 February 2018

Interweave Quick + Easy Knits: A Review


Interweave has released a magazine of Quick + Easy Knits. Let's have a look at it.





Bistro and Cucina Kitchen Dish Towels. I rather like the striped one in the foreground, which is a nice take on the classic striped dish towel, but the mustard-bordered one in the background is not nearly so pleasing.





Cable Knit Wall Hanging. I know I'm a big advocate of busting down the stash to a reasonable size, but I don't think we need to be so desperate to use up our odds and ends of yarn as this.





Chunky Bandana Cowl. Cowls should look like cowls, as opposed to a repurposed test swatch randomly slung around the neck.





Chunky Knit Baskets. I've got my doubts about how well knitted baskets will hold their shape when filled with heavy items, but I suppose knitted covers would be a nice and inexpensive way to camouflage unattractive or damaged but still functional baskets or pots. These do look rather smart.





Chunky Knit Pouf. These would be so handy for a child's room.





Crispy Cowl. This isn't bad. The stitchwork is good and the play of colour is eye-catching.





Easy Two-Color, One-Row Anyone Scarf. This is presentable enough. I'd add a fringe though, as the edges look a little unfinished as is.





Effortless Legwarmers. These are basic but they'll do for a way to showcase an beautiful or interesting yarn.





Farmhouse Flats. These are... okay... though I do prefer slippers with a little more shape and style to them. But then that's hard to find.





Gully Gloves. I'd definitely go with the "garter stitch top band" version of these half gloves. The ones that are ringed from top to bottom look a little too Slinky-like.





Keaton. Cute and wearable.





Playful Stripes. This is a fun, colourful piece, and it would be a great way to do some stash busting.





Reflecting Pool. This one's a little too rough and ready for my tastes, though it's serviceable enough.





Star Garland. This garland of stars is totally cute, and would make a fun and pretty country-style Christmas decoration, or a fanciful decoration for a nursery.





Stripey Pillow Top. Not bad overall, though I have my suspicions as to how good the seam looks.





Textured Throw Pillow. Quite nice! The design on the front is simple yet very effective and handsome.





There's a Chill in De Aire Blanket. Not bad, though I don't like that unfinished-looking edge on the ends of it. Though that's easily remedied with a band of garter stitch -- to match the one at the sides.





Tube: A Super-Simple Slipper Sock. There's no denying that these are rather cute. However, those rolls of sock at the ankle compel me to say that it's better to choose a heeled sock design.





Tyson Hat. This hat is as basic as it gets, but it's wearable enough.





These mittens are basic, but the yarn used for them adds a lot to their appeal and attraction.

Wednesday, 24 January 2018

Twist Collective January 2018: A Review


Twist Collective has released its January 2018 issue. Let's have a look at it.





Framework. This is a very decent contemporary take on the turtleneck.





Beringer. Classic cabled pullover.





Undercut. Some very pretty lacework in this one. I love the back.





Decalage. Another classic cabled pullover. It's hard to go wrong with this kind of design.





Sardonyx. Some beautiful stitchwork in this kimono-style cardigan, and it hangs well.





Rhona. More classic cables, this time on a cardigan rather than a pullover.





Interlaken. Now here's something different. Shaping is good, stitchwork is attractive and interesting, and the overall effect is definitely eye-catching. I think I might do this in a different colourway that didn't have such a stark difference between the body and the yoke and sleeves, because at first glance this comes across as a shrug worn over a pullover rather than an integrated sweater.





Nouveau. This is a beautiful cardigan, but I don't think I care for the ten or so inches of unbuttoned front edges below the waist, which has an awkward, "gaping open" look. I'd make this piece shorter and button it all way to the bottom.





Thunderbolt. Nice piece. Fresh, contemporary design themes for yokes seems to be turning into one of my design sweet spots.





Bilberry. A nice classic hat, mittens, and cowl set.





Aubin. Fabulous stitchwork in this one!





Cabrillo. This is also a nice set. It would be fun to pick out a colourway for this one.





Alizeh. A very attractive Celtic-themed wrap.





Vervain. These are very smart, and the pattern is so attractively intricate that it's a pleasure to look at.





Anabiel. Love the stitchwork in this one.





Mill Creek. This one looks attractive from a distance, but alas, when I take a close look at the design, I find I see some sort of... little turd creatures. Is it just me? And if so, should I find a Freudian psychoanalyst?





Rebe. Oooh, I love the elegant iris-like pattern in this one, and the way the ribbing around the edge has been angled to form part of the design. I don't like the dirty mustard colour used to make it at all, but if you share my dislike of mustard yellow, that is so easily remedied.





Mishmash. These are cute and fun.





Ribbon Candy. It would be fun to pick out colours for this one.





Yojimbo. Love the patterns on this shawl, and they work so well in combination and make for such a sharp-looking wrap.

Monday, 15 January 2018

Knit Simple Winter 2017: A Review


In today's post, we're going to have a look at Knit Simple's Winter 2017 issue.





Pattern #1, Oversized Turtleneck. There's nothing objectively wrong with this one, but I'm pretty sure I'd feel like a lemon creamsicle in it.





Pattern #2, Textured Socks. I'm not quite liking the texture of these -- they don't look that good all stretched out on the leg.





Pattern #3, Shawl-Collar Cardigan. This one's a little too unstructured to work. The edges look as though they're turning under by accident rather than design.





Pattern #4, Cup Cozies. I've never seen the point of cup cozies, which are bound to get coffee, hot chocolate, and the like dripped or spilled on them and have to be washed.





Pattern #5, Hot Water Bottle Cover. Hot water bottles do make more sense, because they tend to be unattractive, and what's more attractive and more comforting than a hot water bottle in a cute little sweater?





Pattern #6, Cabled Poncho. This isn't bad, but as with most ponchos I can't help thinking it would look better as an afghan.





Pattern #7, Textured Pillows. Nice, useful piece, and would look good on many a couch.





Pattern #8, Lace Shawl. The lacework is beautiful, but when I've had rectangular knitted shawls like this I've always found them awkward to style.





Pattern #9, Fringed Blanket. Classic cabled afghan.





Pattern #10, Garter Stitch Cowl. This is as basic as it gets, but you can always upgrade it by making it in a beautiful, interesting yarn.





Pattern #11, Colorblock Hats. Classic striped caps are useful and a good way to use up odds and ends of yarn.





Pattern #12, Chevron Hat. That's an effective and interesting chevron pattern.





Pattern #13, Cabled Hat. Perfectly good standard cap.





Pattern #14, Fair Isle Hat. This is rather nice looking, though I would not describe it as fair isle.





Pattern #15, Bicolor Ribbed Hat. An interesting combination of texture and stripes.





Pattern #16, Pom Pom Hat. I don't much like the rolled edge on this one, which gives it an unfinished look.





Pattern #17, Tassel Hat. Not bad. I definitely like tassels more than pom poms, as I think them better suited to adults.





Pattern #18, Polar Bear Jacket, Hat, and Mitts. The mittens are cute, but I don't much care for the hat or jacket, which both have an awkward, cheesy look to them.





Pattern #19, Polar Bear Pillow. That is one square-looking polar bear.





Pattern #20, Bear Cub Hat and Pullover. This is rather cute without having the "trying too hard" look of the previous polar bear-themed sweater, hat, and mittens set.





Pattern #21, Scoop-Neck Pullover.
Nice texture, shaping, and gradient effect.





Pattern #22, Three Quarter Sleeve Cardigan. I rather like the inventive colourway of this one and the way the front edges sit, but the shaping through the body and sleeves is so loose and baggy that the overall look doesn't work.





Pattern #23, Narrow Shawl. Rather pretty. The edging pattern is interesting.





Pattern #24, Long Cowl. Pretty basic, but it'll do.





Pattern #25, Linen Stitch Scarf. I love the effect of linen stitch, but I'm not crazy about the colour palette used here. I'd also fringe this.





Pattern #26, Lattice Hat. A simple yet pretty effect.





Pattern #27, Swaddling Blanket. Not a bad way to keep your baby warm while still giving it room to kick and squirm.