Sunday, 3 March 2013

Spotlight On... Designer Lucy Neatby

For some time now, I've been meaning to start to write the occasional post featuring some of the individual designers I come across whose work makes me sit up and take notice. My first such post (i.e., this one) features Nova Scotian Lucy Neatby, a pink- and purple-haired hand-knitting designer and teacher and former Merchant Navy Officer, and highlights a few of her designs that caught my eye. Neatby writes of herself that she's a very technically oriented designer. It's clear from her work that this is true, but she also obviously has such an exuberant love of colour and playfully creative side that her work is not only technically masterful but visually out of the ordinary. Judging from Neatby's Ravelry patterns, she generally sticks to smaller items: hats, mittens, scarves, socks, etc.

The design above, the Emperor's New Scarf, is probably my favourite of her designs. I see a metric tonne of scarves in my research for this blog, and most are pretty but forgettable. This one isn't forgettable. It looks like some sort of sea creature and yet... it's actually still something one could wear and not feel silly in. I'm always noting in my pattern reviews how items with holes will catch on everything. Well, this one would catch on things, but I like it so much I wouldn't care.

This is the Moonstone scarf design. It wouldn't catch on anything, and it's striking and pretty.

This is the Bubbles Scarf design. It employs a theme one would usually only use for children's apparel in such a sophisticated and technically accomplished way that it's something an adult could happily wear.

I would totally not make, let alone carry, this Udderly Divine Bag design, but the sight of it makes me giggle uncontrollably. Perhaps because it makes me think of a (former) sister-in-law's cow-themed kitchen, in which absolutely everything from the wallpaper, curtains and border to the placemats and seat cushions to the canisters to the mugs and plates to the fridge magnets to the plastic bag dispenser had four legs, horns and black spots. It was almost surreal, as though you were trapped inside one of those puzzle pictures and had to find 378 cows before you were allowed to leave. My brother had to make a deal with his wife that she could have all the cows she wanted in the kitchen but they were not to go straying out to pasture in the rest of the house, on pain of him getting the big screen TV he wanted. Anyway, I'm a little cow-stuff traumatized, but I have to acknowledge that this is a fun and cleverly executed design, and I love the picture, in which the cow is all, "Those tits are SO fake."

If you're the sort of person who just can't get enough bling on your person, these Godiva socks might be for you. I'm actually not pro-bling and tend to not like anything but quite basic, utilitarian socks (I live in my eight pairs of red-striped gray wool work socks in the winter), but these are subtle and pretty enough that I like them and would actually consider making and wearing them.

If you'd like to see more of Lucy Neatby's work, you can visit her website and check out her blog.

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