Knitty, deep fall 2012

I have been looking at the latest issue of Knitty in the last few days. A few things I want to highlight. I have been intrigued by Habu Textiles stainless steel yarn for several years (JQ—remember we made a yarn store trip in Atlanta just so I could see it and other Habu Textiles yarns), so it was interesting see the Tin roof scarf.

Geshenk, a shawl, uses very small amounts of yarn, designed for a special handspun skein. It is shown in three weights of yarn.

There are two pairs of gloves (Phalangees and Calertne) which look great, but I don’t think I would ever make them.

The Uhlan cap comes with a history of this type of headwear meant to be worn under a helmet.The history is interesting and the item looks warm. So it looks tempting to make. I like the picture from c1900 better—it has ribbing on the head not garter.

Ethnic Knitting Adventures has interesting information on Andean hats. This might be ab better option for a winter hat.

And of course the yarn roundtable and fiber fiesta were interesting and make me want to try the yarn and fibers out myself.

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Fall 2012 Spin-Off

The new Spin-Off came a couple days ago.  A few things of note — I liked the idea of using handspun as in overshot weaving demonstrations. Only small amounts are needed for bands in overshot, and each band can use a different treadling. The group designed it so the results could be cut apart and sewn into small bags. This seemed like a good, collaborative demo for our group. There was also a scarf made of novelty yarn (specifically coiled yarn), made by sewing the the yarns together using a water soluable stabilizer. This seems like a clever way to show of yarn of this sort.

The issue also had a list of helpful websites, which was largely youtube videos. I think Interweave really ought to put this on their site because typing in a bunch of youtube URLs is really irritating. But since I did type them in, here they are (with abbreviated descriptions). I haven’t watched them yet, but now may remember them when I want to review one of these techniques.

Back to knitting. (At this point, it would be nice if DJ likes the end result, but it doesn’t really matter because this pattern and yarn are exactly right for what I need right now.)

Twist Collective & Knitting magazine publication models

If you haven’t seen the first issue of the Twist Collective, you should definitely look at it. There are some absolutely lovely items. The articles are all free and almost all the patterns cost $6 or $7, so unless I am about to make one of them, I won’t be acquiring the patterns. The publication is trying a new publishing model, with a major goal to fairly compensate designers.

Alternative web serial publications models are an interest of mine. Yes, I do realize I will probably go against the name of the blog, but I will stay focused on knitting publications. The different knitting magazines I look at have distinctly different approaches to the web.

1) Knitter’s Magazine is a traditional print publication. They do a good job of showing current and past patterns in their gallery. Other than that, their online presence is pretty dull.

2) Vogue Knitting is a traditional print publication with a website that has some added content, including web exclusives. They have charts for many patterns on their site. It makes little use of previews or of images from past issues. Last winter, they redid their site and tried to add more interactive features, KALs etc. but what I really want is pictures of all the patterns in the current (and past!) issues with the yarn requirements. No one does this, but it is what I want.

3) Knitty is completely free, but is structured much like a traditional publication. It has had some of the most popular patterns in the knitting blog world, probably in part because they are free and therefore so easily accessible to everyone. And of course because they had had some really good patterns. (The 4 patterns listed first in Ravelry as the most popular all come from Knitty – Fetching, Monkey, Calorimetry and Clapotis). I have made several things from Knitty, but if they weren’t free, I’m not sure how many I would have made.

4) Interweave Knits has images of current and past issues (at least of the ones in stock). They include additional pictures of garments, but these aren’t easy to get to for past issues. They have also added Knitting Daily, a blog/email newsletter with chatty and instructive information. One interesting feature is the gallery where a few garments from an issue of IK are modeled on Interweave staff members, with comments about how the garments should be altered for their body type. They have also begun selling individual patterns from out of print issues. This is great for the consumer, but I think it might not have been great for the designers. I don’t know what kind of rights agreement people sign, but I have the impression that once Interweave has paid a designer, it is Interweave’s forever, to publish (or not) in a compilation or as an individual download. With the web, some patterns become runaway success stories and the designers don’t seem to receive any additional compensation for a blockbuster pattern.

5) Twist Collective has free articles but the patterns cost money. They seem to cost more than the IK patterns, which I find interesting (especially since you can buy all the IK patterns in one issue or in a book for far less money than it would take to buy everything in a TC issue). The designers/authors also retain rights to their patterns/articles to republish in the future or work into longer articles. I really like this bit (SPARC and all that). The cost per article idea is OK, like buying one song. However, one song generally costs about a dollar, which means buying a whole CDs worth of songs costs about the same as a CD. In this case, one pattern from the TC costs almost as much as one whole issue of a magazine. I realize that individual patterns are often priced at a similar price to the TC (or even more), but I am having a hard time getting my head fully around this model since it is a magazine. If it was a website with really cool patterns you could buy, I don’t think it would bother me as much, so I think it is semantics and mostly my problem. The group of designers for the first issue is fabulous–I wonder if they’ll be able to keep up the momentum?

It will be interesting to see how all this looks in a year.

Interweave Knits, Fall 2008

My fall 2008 IK finally arrived. L mentioned at dinner on Friday that she had gotten hers the day before. I haven’t finished reading it (despite being on vacation at home) but I have made a good start!

So, what do you like in the issue? I want to look at the book Inspired to Knit, as well as Poems of color and Everday knitting. (I have wanted to look at Selbuvotter for some time now.). I thought Yarnmarket impressionistic palette was interesting, seeing how different designers interpret the same painting in yarn.

I like the Dumpling bags, the Fresco Fair Isle mitts, and the Winter twilight mitts, but I’m not sure I’d make either. The Knotty or Knice socks are OK, but I have quite list of socks to make but 20 or 30 pairs from now, maybe I’d be interested… I like the Estes vest and might even make it if I decide it is something I need. There are aspects of the Backstage tweed jacket that I like, but I really dislike the way it closes in front. That’s about it. Not much really grabbed me this time.

Knitty–spring 2008

So what do you like in the new issue of Knitty? I like Marjorie. I also like Honeycomb, but I don’t know if I like it better than a vest in Fitted Knits. Laminaria is quite attractive but I haven’t caught the shawl bug yet. The Posey socks look interesting, but I doubt I would ever knit them and am not convinced they would stretch in a proper sock like way.

The Spyrogyra gloves are also fun, but very similar to the gloves made from the Pomatomus sock pattern. I mostly found these interesting for the spinning/drafting information elsewhere in the issue. In fact, all the knittyspin articles are interesting (if you are interested in spinning).

I liked the yarn roundtable, but the other knitting articles didn’t particularly excite me.

I’m sure there are other patterns that will grab me later as I see other people making them. That’s the way it seems to work with Knitty — it sometimes takes seeing the same project in different ways to really get sold on it. I guess this would in part be the proof of open access working. Sorry… I forgot myself there for a bit.

Interweave Knits Spring 2008

I thought it would be fun if we talked about new issues of magazines that come out. I know JQ has this issue of IK. If you don’t have this issue, you can see the projects here. You can also see several of the garments on women who work at IK here.

So, what do I like? I think the Flutter Sleeve Cardigan looks like a good thing fo me to consider. I also like the Printed Silk Cardigan. The Dovetail Pullover might be a possibility to make as well. Finally, the Chameleon Scarf is great fun.

The fountain hat is somewhat fun and the pattern is even free.

An of course, some of the ads have nice looking garments. I like Blue Sky Alpaca’s skinny cardigan (p.19). Manos del Uruguay Silk Blend Shannon Shell might be OK (p.30). Fibranatura Ocean Lace cardigan on p.81 is nice, but similar to my orange sweater. The Aurora yarns “Meets in the middle top“on p.91 looks like it might be a good pattern. And finally, I like the Sirdar Ecowool DK ribbed jacket on p.105.

I also thought the article on finishing by Véronik Avery was quite good.

So what do you like in this issue?

Fall Magazines

A week or so ago, I looked for the latest Interweave Knits in my local book store but didn’t see it. A few days later, I finally got around to looking at it online and realized there were several things I really liked so I definitely wanted to purchase it. On Tuesday, I decided on a bit of a whim to subscribe – in a year I’ll have to see if the subscription made sense (if I all the issues aren’t ones I would want to buy, a subscription won’t make sense). My subscription will start with winter because they are sold out of the fall issue.

Yesterday I went o my local yarn store to get it. Nope. Then I went o LYS2 in the next town and they were sold out. The woman suggested the big grocery store chain, so I went to the near one (but the one she suggested first was the location nearest my home and just about diagonal from my LUS. Sigh). Nothing there. I then realized I was almost to Darth Mall (JQ – did this come from your household?) and that Barnes and Noble should have it, which they did. Remember that I hate driving, so I really must have wanted this issue. I also try to avoid Darth mall and chain stores whenever possible. Oh well, I tried all the local businesses first and I guess it is better for the community than mail order.

So what sent me all over town looking for this? There is a lot of good stuff in this issue, but the three things I REALLY like are the Tilted duster (cover), the Cobblestone pullover, and the Mirepoix bodice.

While at B&N I of course had to look at all the magazines. I came close to buying (and may still get) the current issue of Knitters. I really thought of AL when I saw Jaspe Red. What this means is I thought of something that either DJ, my Mom or I could benefit from, since all of AL’s clothes were lovely. The last thing I need is another project for DJ. Of the 4 projects going right now, 1 is an experimental hat for me and the other 3 are for DJ. One of the next projects is for Mr. DJ. And then there are the socks I want to make for her when I find the right yarn (I think at least 3 pairs of those) and the-don’t-get-your-hopes-up big project for her. The other item was a vest (Canyon Ridge) for TH. Since I have one of those backed up (well, it is stalled at the spinning stage), it might not be the most sensible issue to buy. But I might anyway because some of the other things are OK. What do you think?

I also looked at the last Vogue Knitting. It had some interesting things in it, but nothing I really wanted. It is a special silver anniversary issue, complete with 10 covers. The Skacel dress is great, but I don’t have the build for it and I’m not excited about knitting a dress. The best thing was in their best of gallery—Annie Modesitt’s Twisted float cocoon shrug (previously published in Fall 2005). If I don’t already have the pattern and if it is reproduced in full, then it may be worth purchasing just for the jacket. They also have a few of the interesting things available for free download (I like the cabled gloves especially, another AL item, and the jacket and pants are fabulous but not something I would make. You need to see the magazine to actually see these very well.

None of the other magazines really caught my fancy, but they usually don’t. I have to look at them, but I’ve never wanted to buy one of them.

I just checked and the fall issue of Knitty is now out. I’ll need to look at that tomorrow.