Monday, 12 November 2012

Vogue Knitting Holiday 2012

Vogue Knitting has to come up with thirty or so new patterns every issue, and that's no easy task, because many knitters own shelves full of patterns and most have access to thousands more free patterns on the net. The reality is that the Vogue Knitting editors just aren't going to be able to come up with that many truly distinctive patterns, that they are often in effect trying to reinvent the wheel, and that sometimes they try so hard to come up with a new wheel that they wind up producing some real clunkers.

I reluctantly let my Vogue Knitting subscription lapse circa 2005 because I felt I already had so many patterns that I couldn't justify the expense any longer. But though I can never resist slipping into a drugstore to check out the latest issue, I only cave in and buy it off the stand very occasionally because I wind up flipping through it thinking, severally, "Nice, but I've already got a nearly identical pattern in my collection," "Nice, but that will make any woman who doesn't have a model's figure look like a house," "Nice, but where would I wear that," and "LORD WHAT IS THAT." The VK Holiday 2012 issue proved to be another such.





The items from the Holiday 2012 issue of Vogue Knitting previewed on the Vogue Knitting web site has a section of sweaters presented as "evening sweaters". Probably only a small percentage of women have the kind of social life that would provide them with enough occasions to justify making such an elaborate, time-intensive item. But then that's just one of VK's editorial flourishes. All of these sweaters could be made in a non-glitzy yarn and worn almost anywhere.

This is the cover sweater from this issue, and rightly so, because it is lovely. You'd have to be small- or flat-breasted to be able to carry off that ruching across your chest, though.





This is another one of the "evening sweaters", perhaps because the gathering at the bottom is intended as an homage to a theatre curtain. In this case, I kid because I love. I actually like the effect. It gives the sweater a contemporary edge.





This is another one of those "very nice but I've probably got a pattern just like it" sweaters.





I like this one. I'd make it all in one colour, and it would look cute with either jeans or a wool skirt or trousers.





The taupe trim on this sweater looks like something a clueless intern added to a classic and beautifully intricate cabled sweater while the designer was out having a liquid lunch, and then once the martini-laden designer signed off on it, somehow the pattern made it to press without anyone ever realizing it looks terrible. I just want to get into the photo with scissors and cut all that taupe crap off.





I rather like the shape of this dress, but I suspect it wouldn't be very flattering on a woman with an average figure who wasn't striking some elaborate pose. It looks very heavy, like it might be made in a worsted weight. Maybe it would work better in a finer yarn.





I like this dress too, but I think I already have a pattern like it. And I wonder how flattering it would be if the model wasn't pinching in the waist by standing with her hands on her hips.





Someone got a little carried away with the self-ruffling yarn. I will say though, that I don't hate this dress. I'm just at a loss to understand how any woman could have enough chances to wear it that it would be worthwhile to spend an enormous amount of time making it. I suppose if you had the right sort of looks, personality, workplace and/or social life, you could get away with wearing this dress. For my part I could only wear it to dress up as Klondike Kate for Halloween.

Update: Vogue Knitting has released a free pattern for "Opera Wristers" to wear with this dress. If that's really the kind of things people wear to the opera, I may have to start going. With my camera.





This is a nice way to employ self-ruffling yarn. I'm not crazy about this actual evening bag as it looks a little crude to me (I really don't like the way that bottom looks), but it does give me ideas for possible future use.





I do quite like this hat, but it's another one for the "generically nice" category. I made a hat very similar to this one for my mother some years ago, and I used the pattern from the ball bands that came wrapped around the yarn I bought for the project.





This is a nice simple, classic sweater with a leather belt cleverly incorporated into the design. I'm definitely filing that belt idea away for the future.





I'm not sold on this sweater. I'm not sure the buttons add anything to an already smart and polished design. I don't like design elements like buttons and zippers that don't actually fasten anything. They tend to look gimmicky and to cheapen the look of the item.





Speaking of things that serve no practical purpose, what the hell are these? When I first saw this picture I thought, "Are they legwarmers.... for your boots?" The Vogue Knitting site calls them "boot toppers". With a vague idea of having seen something like them before, I did an image Google search on boot toppers, and it does turn out they're a trend and can actually look pretty good if the toppers look convincingly like the folded over excess lining of the boot. They seem to look best when made in a finer knit and worn with knee boots.

These particular boot toppers appear to be designed to make one's boots (and, consequently, feet) look as clunky as possible. Moreover if the wearer of them lives in a place with winters involving lots of snow and slush and salted walkways, they will become perfectly filthy in no time as they'll be just inches from the ground. Try again, VK. Boot toppers are, after all, a kind of knitting pattern that every knitter doesn't already have a hundred of. Though there may be excellent reasons for that.

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