Thursday, March 30, 2006

Strike a pose.

I have here before me the Spring/Summer 2006 issue of Vogue Knitting!! I've also got a sinus headache, PMS, and am on a diet. So let's go through it, shall we?

(A note: This criticism isn't aimed at the designers. There isn't much you can do when the magazine dictates their wants to you, exceept design and earn a paycheck, or don't, and don't. I get that. I just want to know what Vogue is thinking.)

All photos from the Vogue Knitting web site. If there's no photo, the brief description given (and all other writing) is mine unless it's in quotes, then it's Vogue's. I'll go by the pattern numbers they use, not page numbers.

1. Fitted dress. Knit with a cotton/elastic blend. Not bad if you're a fashion model, and how many of us are? Plus it's a good bit of knitting and slip stitch patterns take a while to work, so that just increases how long it'll take, but at least it's a classic and you could wear it a couple summers in a row. Especially if you lost that ruffle on the bottom.

2. Chanelish suit. Lace. Knit in a silk/rayon/nylon blend, which makes me wonder about cost. The jacket has got about a 100% wearability rating, which is impressive. Anyone could put this on and look, if not really good, at least not bad in it. (Assuming you like lace). The skirt... Fashion model territory again.

3. Little short-sleeved sweater. Lion Brand yarn. Fifty bucks says Lion Brand paid to have their yarn used, because, come on, how many people knit that stuff if cost is no problem? And I think I'm the only person in the world that wears pink and orange together. Still, with a decent yarn in one or two colors it'd be a nice summer sweater.

4. Very Easy cardigan, reverse stockinette stitch, looks like it's inside out, but if you want an easy project, there you go. At least it's flattering to everyone. Or not unflattering. I'd never pay for a pattern for this, I'd just do a swatch and knit it.

5. V-neck cardigan with a whole lot of crochet detail. I'm not sure who chose the pea green and turquoise combo, but they need shot. Or the photographer should be, for photographing the colors wrong. Yet another skinny chick sweater. (I'm on a diet, I'm sensitive to the size issue.)

6. Another little short sleeved sweater. Nice. I'd go batshit putting in the sideways panel, but if you want a challenge, go for it. And I doubt this would be flattering to plus sizes. Or even medium sizes.

7. Knitted camisole. Skinny time.

8. Knitted skirt. Looks like my grandmother's afghan wrapped around her waist. And you gotta be skinny skinny skinny to wear 99% of knitted skirts, including this one.

9. A sort of camisole/short-sleeved sweater deal with lace trim. Wearable for almost anyone. (Nicky Epstein. Why am I not surprised? Go, Nicky.)

10. A corset. CORSET. Are they MAD?

11. They're calling this a 'head turning tank'. I'm calling it a lace train wreck. And there's crochet.

12. Shortie cardigan with CROCHET trim. I think I'd like it better if the model weren't in her panties, which they conveniently cropped out for the web site. (SEE? A lot of this isn't designer fault. I seriously doubt it was HER idea to photograph a flattering cardigan on some bim wearing PANTIES.) This one is likely flattering to plus-sizes and ladies with big, uh, bosoms.

13. Tunic. Nice. Flattering to everyone, pretty, the yarn's available in nice colors... something must be wrong at VK headquarters to let this get past.

14. V-neck cardigan with reverse V showing the ol' belly button. Crochet trim. (Excuse me, is this Vogue Crochet? I think not.) I'd knit the flowers, though.

15. Tunic by Michael Kors. (Everyone go "oooh. Michael Kors.") Silk and cashmere blend. Silk. Cashmere. Summer. I guess if you can afford to knit it, you can afford to have an EMT standing by to treat you for heat stroke. Oh, and this is almost identical to #13, without the frills. And the blanket stitch on the edge makes a great project look like Seventh Grade Home Ec.

16. Hoodie jacket with pockets and waist tie. I had something almost identical to this in, I think, 1978. It was white, yellow, and blue stripes. Kinda nice for a beach coverup.

17. Cabled tank. Cool idea, bad execution. What I assume are ties on the side look like unfinished yarn ends hanging down. Skinny time again.

18. Long-sleeved cardi-thingie. One of those ballet-style wrap around and tie in the back deals. Kinda nice, but not for big bosoms.

19. Two-layered tank and skirt set. See above for opinion on wearing knit skirts, and it goes double for this because there are two layers. Why would you swathe yourself in two layers of fabric in summer, especially when it makes your butt look twice as big? More fashion model material.

20. Another Very Easy project, this one is a sideways-knit crop top with some interesting bead type detailing at the waist. Flattering for anyone brave enough to bare their stomachs.

21. Yet another Very Easy. I like it. Not sure it's flattering to anyone larger than a size six, but I like it.

22. A knitted bikini. The internet doesn't have the space for the rant.

23. Very Easy. Knitted 'bandeau' (fifty bucks says it's held up with glue on this model) and a tunic dress thingie over top. If you're abnormally underweight and have no boobs, go for it. But what this thing really reminds me of is overalls.

24. Your classic cotton cable-knit. The one summer thing everyone can and probably would wear.

25. Sideways knit tank. Kinda nice but it uses two strands of yarn knit together. Because, you know, you need it to be twice as warm in summer. The model looks like she's fanning herself. Coincidence? I think not.

26. An entirely crocheted COAT in umpteen colors. I repeat. Is this Vogue Crochet? And it's by Brandon Mably for Rowan, so you'd have to take out a loan to pay for the yarn. I quote, "Haute coture and crochet go hand in hand." Somebody tell Grandma. My head hurts too bad to laugh this hard.

27. Sleeveless pullover. Nice, but not for plus sizes again. And reverse stockinette always makes it look inside out to me, but you could just knit it in stockinette.

28. V-neck pullover with side vents. Nice, but the glitter yarn is ridiculous. It's Rowan pushing "Lurex Shimmer". Knit it out of a nice affordable cotton, and you've got something.

29. This one's kind of cool. A short-sleeved pullover, the 'waist' is knit sideways, then the bottom and top are picked up and knit out from there. And it's wearable for anyone with a waist.

30. An entirely CROCHET dress. You gotta be a fashion model for this one AND THIS IS NOT VOGUE CROCHET!!! And get that dumbass chicken the hell out of the photo, for crying out loud.

31. Knitted skirt. This one's got flounces and is probably wearable by everyone. Though if you knit it with 100% cotton (the suggested yarn is a rayon/cotton blend)it'll be so heavy you will have trouble keeping it on.

32. Little one-button cardigan. Crop waist, 3/4 length sleeves, wearable by all and flattering to nearly all. Very nice. I'm shocked.

33. Mobius scarf. a. who wears scarves in summer? and b. Is Cat Bordhi getting royalties?

34. Jacket with shawl collar and tie. Except for the stitch pattern and lack of a hood, this is identical to #16.

So there's maybe five, six patterns in there that are flattering to plus sizes. (And note, nearly all of them made it to the web site for people deciding if they want to buy the magazine.) I am five nine and wear a size twelve, and I think that's a fairly average size for women, and I'd look like shit in at least half of this stuff. They're worried about subscriptions fallinging off. I can't IMAGINE why.

Nothing for men. Not one project. Nothing for kids. No socks (and how many sock knitters do we have out there?) Nothing for the home. No toys. Their defense would be, they're VOGUE KNITTING and are all about high fashion for women. Dandy. Just keep watching magazine sales drop. Besides. Men knit AND like fashion, and even HAVE THEIR OWN DESIGNERS. So...?

Otherwise, there is a nice Dulann article. And some advertisements for stuff disguised as articles on new products, and a nice lace article by Meg Swansen... And it cost six bucks. I guess that's almost worth the money, if I knit just one thing out of this.

But how out of touch can they get? Do they think we're all size six??

1 comment:

Julie said...

Anyone else wanting to comment on this review is welcome to e-mail me at

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