Tuesday, 26 February 2013

The Knitter 55 Review

As promised, here is my review of the latest issue of The Knitter magazine. On first glance, I wasn't sure if this issue was really for me despite having loved the preview photos in the previous issue. None of the patterns had that standout wow factor and I wondered whether I would actually knit anything form this issue (given the time!).
And admittedly, there are a couple of garments that are just really not me. The cover project, Winterbloom by Martin Storey, while a pretty jumper, is not my style at all, big roll necks like this tend to make me too hot and uncomfortable and they don't fit under my coat properly. Delft by Judy Furlong is far too fussy and floral for my tastes, and Emma Vining's Sugar Kelp, while classic in its design, is also not for me.
This sounds quite negative for a review, but actually this issue is a grower - the rest of the garments aren't especially statement pieces but you begin to see aspects of each that you like, and sometimes these kinds of designs make the best wardrobe staples.
One such design is Yui by Kyoko Nakayoshi - I'm quite a fan of her designs, and while this is probably one of her least complicated it is quite elegant - in a neutral tone I could imagine this cardigan being a good general throw over. Similarly the Kimono style jacket by Sirdar - I'm a fan of cardigans like this as I always feel the cold, and I like a collection of slightly quirky versions like this.
Curlew, by Twilleys of Stamford, is in the same vein although a little more vintage in style and fitted at the top, so you would not be able to wear any heavy layers beneath.
The Herring Girl Wrap by The Wool Shed is a lovely rustic wrap in organic tones, which could be knit up in pieces as you have the time, though there is part of the pattern missing so be sure to check The Knitter website.
Ravish is a simple tee shape, but with an slash opening down the front. Knit in Kidsilk Haze Glamour it does have an impact, and would look very striking over a plain camisole or something similar, but it is not my favourite Marie Wallin design and I probably wouldn't grab the needles to start it.
My favourite design in the magazine is definitely the Eriskay Gansey by Beth Brown-Reinsel. It is based on traditional ganseys but has such a modern look and shape, I have already been thinking about a substitute for the suggested yarn which is not available in this country. This is one failing of The Knitter - I wish they suggested alternative yarns for garments, particularly where a yarn is especially hard to source or very expensive. Other knitting magazines do this and it is such a useful addition.
An extra booklet of Nordic inspired knits provides some pretty sock and mitt patterns, and there is an interesting article on Estonian knitting traditions, though I'm not a huge fan of this sort of heavily coloured knitwear in general. The Masterclass is on how to avoid RSI, which I don't have as I don't get enough opportunity to knit - most of the advice is pretty obvious, but there may be some tips which help you out if you suffer with this problem.
Overall, not an outstanding issue but a solid one which contains a few 'inoffensive' patterns that would probably suit most wardrobes.

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