Monday, 17 April 2017
Love of Knitting has released its Summer 2017 issue. How about we all, with our own love of knitting, take a look at Interweave's version of it?
Beachy Tote. This bag isn't without a certain sporty appeal, but those stripes are badly connected and the shape is dumpy.
Cuddly Panther. Very cute toy. I do like to see animal toys done with other species than the classic bears and bunnies.
Dakini Sweater. A very wearable simple sweater with some good shaping and a bit of nice detailing.
Damson Plum Cardigan. This is... okay. I don't happen to like cardigans with fronts that don't meet, as they always look too small to me, but if you do like the style, it's a workmanlike example of it.
Dropstitch Stripes Pullover. This isn't so bad a design, but I think this was the wrong yarn choice for this piece. The way those stripes take a downturn at the sleeves is neither attractive nor flattering on either the front or the back of this piece. A non-stripe yarn would go a long way towards erasing the frown lines effect.
Dropstitch Swatch Cloth. Dropstitch can be quite an effective technique, but here it looks like a lot of surprisingly symmetrical runs.
Gallery Pullover. An attractive, simple piece... but I would fix those dropped shoulders.
Hiking Henley. Basic but wearable and useful piece.
Mediterranean Scrub Set. This set includes a facecloth, scrub mitt, and soap sack. The idea seems to be that it could be used as a fancy guest set for the bathroom or at the beach. I suppose it's a nice set for people who like handknitted towelry and loofahs, but it comes across as a little cheesy to my mind. The facecloth supposedly has a "seashell shape", but to me it looks for all the world like a Barbie dress.
Moonlight Poncho. This is a lovely piece of lacework, and though I don't usually like ponchos, this is so light and delicate it comes across less as a poncho than as a shawl that will stay in place.
Mottled Mitts. A very serviceable and well-shaped pair of mitts.
Museum Piece Pullover. Quite like this one, with its beautifully cabled yoke and excellent shaping.
Nurturing Cardigan. I like the combination of the lace pattern in the body and the ribbing on the sleeves and edges, but the dropped shoulders and the open fronts give this an awkward, "doesn't fit right" look.
Pack-me-up Shawl. Not a bad little shawl.
Prairielands Cowl. Quite like this. The unusual and adept colour palette makes it.
Traveler's Arms Wrap. Very nice wrap! Love the stitchwork.
Water Carrier. The yarn is wrong for this, I think. Using a standard knitting yarn makes this water botter carrier look like a toilet paper cozy that recognized times had changed and transitioned into a second career. I'd make this carrier with nylon cord or something of the sort to give it a more athletic/utilitarian look.
Friday, 24 March 2017
Love of Knitting has released their Spring 2017 issue. Let's have a look at it.
Bargello Socks. These are fun. I like that the designer took those stripes several extra steps by doing them a variety of ways.
Breezy Lace Tee. Very useful and wearable summer top.
Colorlines Throw. I'm loving this one, with its contemporary vibe and unusual but masterful colour combination.
Elephant Safari Children's Vest. Very cute.
Holmes Shawl. A lovely little piece with some quietly impressive stitchwork.
Interrupted Stripes Sweater. This looks sloppy, unfinished, and in general as though the "interrupted" in the design's name refers to the designer's efforts to finish this pattern.
Ironwood Shawl. A simple and attractive little wrap.
Painted Wrap. I quite like this unassuming but visually pleasing lace pattern.
Pearls Hat. Nice piece, and it would be a good way to use up some odds and ends of yarn.
Planting Cardigan. I like this piece over all, but I'm never much of a fan of cardigans designed to lie open in the front, as they generally look too small and/or unflattering.
Raving Stripes Pullover. I love this one. The flattering shape and and eye-catching striped yoke and cuffs add up to a striking look.
Shift Change Cowl. Oooh, pretty. Love the colours and the stitchwork.
Shoreline Shawl. Nice piece. It seems to drape well, and I'm loving the Celtic cabled border.
Spring Day Raglan. Way too sloppy and unfinished for my liking.
Spring Henley. Classic, handsome piece.
Springtime Mobile. So cute. That is an especially nicely rendered set of little toy animals.
Tuscany Wrap-Cardi. Not a bad little piece, and it would give the wearer a chance to show off a favourite shawl pin.
Valley V-neck Pullover. This is a smart little piece. I note that the neckband is not very well done -- it's puckering at the vee and is pulling the stripe up in the centre -- but if you are careful to make sure to pick up neither too few nor too many neckband stitches when you make your version, your project won't have that flaw.
Vines Swatch Cloth. Nice stitch.
Warm Stripes Set. The mitts are fine, but the legwarmers look a little too much like a scrap yarn project knitted on the fly.
Wednesday, 2 November 2016
Love of Knitting has released a special issue entitled Knit and Crochet Toys, 2017. Let's have a look at the cuteness within its covers, shall we?
Zeppelin Mobile. This is a mobile that children can play with once they get old enough to know better than to try to eat it. It's not bad. I suppose it would be just the thing for a Hindenburg-themed nursery.
Rat-a-Cuties. These are very well made -- rather too much so for my liking, I'm afraid. I can't get past my visceral reaction to rats in order to review them fairly. Shudder.
Bear Pair. These are cute. I think I'd prefer a little more shaping and detail on the bear's dresses, but you can always add that.
Puppet Pals. These aren't too bad. I can imagine them being useful on car trips. If the children can be diverted from their electronic devices for long enough, of course.
Bunny Girl. This one is quite cute. I like the little sheep sweater. It says "I'm pro-merino as opposed to pro-angora".
Sponge Buddies Bath Toys. These sponge covers are not only cute but also quite inventive and practical.
Tedmund Troll. I quite like this teddy troll. There is something irresistibly fun and witty about a cuddly version of dark side fantasy archetypes.
Hipponormous. I think this one could have used a little more detail.
Cat's Pajamas Jammy Keeper. This one would be a good way to get children to put their pajamas somewhere other than the floor, and it is a really cute and cuddly item in itself.
Patrick the Platypus. This is another one that could have used a little more detail, such as a facial expression, and a more subtly coloured body.
Mr. Robotics. Not bad, though I would make the arms and legs a little bigger in circumference, and stuff them lightly.
Serene Sea Star. This isn't badly designed, but I can't quite see a child actually playing with this, unless it's to use it to attack a sibling's Malibu Barbie.
Giant Tiger. Cute and cuddly and nicely designed.
Lost in Space Activity Board. I can't imagine children playing with this set much because it wouldn't be that much fun to simply rearrange the plants on the solar system. I think the designer should have gone steps further and turned it into some sort of game, because as it is it looks like a doily and coasters from the break room of the Star Trek Enterprise.
Checkerboard. This one I can see children playing with and enjoying, as it gives them a chance to play a very active game of checkers. I'd go with another colourway, though.
Toy Tote. This one is quite practical: it's a backpack that holds children's toys and converts into a toy mat. This one is perfect for those visits to a childless friend's house.
Do the Twist Game. This one, obviously, is a crocheted version of a game that shall not be mentioned in the advertising copy for fear of trade infringement. I'd be afraid to let children to play with this one for fear that the crocheted circles would skid out from underneath their feet, causing injury. A Twister-inspired throw might be a better idea.
Silky, Simone & Sydney. This set is really cute. I quite like that the designer has imagined the mermaids as fun, stylish tweens with a pet seal, rather than as the voluptuous merwomen one sees in most renderings of fantasy sea people -- even in Disney.
Mrs. Chicken. This one feels a little overdone, as though it were intended for a decoration for adults rather than a child's plaything.
Silly Monster Rattles. These are ever so cute, and quite practical as they would be washable.
Jackson the Jackalope. This is very well designed and original as well. I don't suppose too many children have toy jackalopes.
Aitches. These poseable letter Hs would be perfect for the little Harry or Hannah in your life.