I have a confession to make. I cancelled all my knitting magazine subscriptions years ago. Every once in a while I try a new one, but it's always the same story: many cute patterns that I will never have time to knit, a few designs that aren't to my taste, some technique stories that stop just short of being useful, an interview or travel story with landscape photos, and letters from the editor and readers. Actually, I benefitted the most from the ads---the full-page glossy ones and the black-and-white sentence-long ones near the back of the issue.
Now there's Knit Edge. Only eight patterns. But let's face it, who knits all 20 patterns from a magazine? I usually didn't knit any. Maybe one or two from every fourth or fifth issue. Let's examine this issue's designs individually to see what they offer.
Janine LeCras's Maid in Guernsey is a modern version of a sweater using her grandmother's old handwritten notes. It features a special cast-on as well as traditional (and some not-so-traditional) guernsey characteristics. It's a beautiful pattern, but what sells it for me is her four-page essay, "Anatomy of a Guernsey," complete with archived photos. Even if I don't knit this sweater, I'll have learned a boatload.
Next is a scarf from Nicky Epstein's new book. Circular reversible cables! Need I say more?
Crocheters will love Jennifer J. Cirka's Martha Pullover, which is cute worn as a cropped cowl-neck or upside-down as a slim-bodied ballet-neck. Christine Guest's Herringbone Skirt has a slew of interesting techniques including short rows, I-cord, grafting, and zipper insertion. I'll be referencing this one soon. Lara Neel's Square Route Mitts come with both a video tutorial and a photo tutorial on smocking, and my own Moon Mirrors scarf is accompanied by three video tutorials on tapestry knitting.
Sojourner by Talitha Kuomi is the piece I'm most likely to knit from this issue (besides Nicky's scarf---did I mention the circular reversible cables?). The length, the cabling, the collar, even the clasp, all are singing to me to drop everything and come to them.
But my favorite of this issue's offerings is the Watershed "combination shawl" by Jennette Cross, which has a lengthy article about the evolution of this shape and the math behind it.
What else is in Knit Edge? "What's New" and "Top Ten" pages, an article about Aimee Skeers's Abundance Vest, and Daniel Yuhas has a couple pages about his recent voyage into revolution-ary knitting (watch this blog for a review of his new book). Kate Atherly talks about sock needles (circular and double-pointed) and Rosemarie Buchanan details an interesting method for circular beginnings which is new to me and a little startling (it involves scissors). MK Carroll interviews Cassandra Harada who runs a yarn shop in Japan and Elizabeth Green Musselman interviews two Cooperative Press designers about designing for boys. Pithy and informative blurbs for eight books make up the "What We're Reading" section and there's even a page on podcasts (by CraftLit's Heather Ordover). Shannon Okey contributes an article about a Smithsonian fiber art exhibit.
And the ads? A full page Indieshop supporting small fiber businesses. I couldn't be happier.
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