Friday, February 15, 2013

Twist Collective Winter 2012: What Would Must Stash Knit?

The latest Twist Collective is out! As usual, this one is packed with more great knits and delightful articles by Franklin Habit, Clara Parks, and Amy Christophers just to mention a few.  We can't tell you everything we love about this offering but we do want to highlight some of our favorite pieces. 

Lavandula by Triona Murphy
Lavandula by Triona Murphy: A very feminine take on the classic cardigan, this particular pattern looks very knit-able and wearable. We both really like the feminine lace at the top of the bodice and down the sleeves and the 1x1 ribbing adds nice shaping without needing decreases or increases, but can be easily altered for someone who isn't as slender as the model. On the sample, the empire waist looks like it bisects the bust, which may be unflattering on certain body types, but we bet it's easy to adjust that. Steph thinks the yarn choice is beautiful and the tonal qualities of the yarn gives the lace some depth, though Stacie wonders if a solid would be an even better choice by allowing the lace to really pop.

Zenith by Linden Down
Zenith by Linden DownThis looks like your Everyday Cardigan but with *Zing*! We really like the all-over chevron pattern and this would become a favorite sweater as far as wearability. It is shown with a tie around the waist but one could easily add buttons or toggles. 

We both have a tendency to favor patterns that are knit in once piece versus seamed, but this sweater is lovely enough that we're willing to set aside that personal preference. That tie could potentially be a looong and boring knit, though, depending on your knitterly personality.

Granville by Fiona Ellis
Granville by Fiona Ellis: We love a good cabled sweater! Sometimes cables can add bulk, but somehow that's not the case with this sweater. It's fitted and flattering and while the cables look intricate, they don't weigh the sweater down. The hood seems slightly too shallow for our taste, but adding cable repeats to the bottom of the hood should be an easy fix. Also, zippers are intimidating. The yarn color paired with this sweater looks amazing -- it's bright and the cables really pop.

On Ravelry, the designer goes the extra step to recommend a particular finishing technique and gives a link to a free Craftsy class for visual aid. We appreciate these little helpful details.

Aleph by Hannah Cuviello

Aleph by Hannah Cuviello: Aleph would be a perfect choice if you wanted cables, but didn't want to knit something as intricate as Glanville. Just a few cables on the shoulder and one side would keep the knitting interesting but you still have quite a bit of plain stockinette to help you relax and zone out. It has functional pockets that are deep enough to actually keep your hands warm. The cables feed into the ribbing, which is a nice touch. Steph has reservations about the fact that it's knit bottom-up *and* has raglan shaping. Maybe someone can explain to her why designers choose this type of construction?

Luggala by Aine Ryan
Luggala by Aine Ryan: Oh, the lace details! The lace kangaroo pocket gives the illusion of a lighter sweater, even if that's not actually the case. Same with the lace cowl. Cowl sweaters can look heavy and almost too warm, but this particular lace cowl gives it an airier feeling. The color is gorgeous too, though an alpaca and silk blend yarn would not be appropriate for our climate. Also, neither of us do many pullover sweaters because we get so few times during our "winter" when we could wear one. But with the right yarn and the lighter lace cowl, this could be a smart choice.

Coesite by Rachel Coopey
Coesite by Rachel Coopey: This hat and cowl set looks so soft, and it probably is, since the yarn used is a merino, cashmere, and silk blend. It has lots of texture to it that is so subtle, it looks like stockinette until you examine the pictures closely. A matched set like this would make a perfect gift without too much time or yarn invested. Plus, we love a slouchy hat!! 

Yarn choice would be critical, since it's basically knit in a gauge similar to one you would use for socks. Anything hard wearing will make the cowl look too stiff, anything too soft or fuzzy could obscure the delicate baby cable and lace detail, not to mention the subtle textured fabric in the middle of the hat and cowl. The yarn used in the pattern is a perfect match, but, unfortunately, might be too pricey for some.

Whirlpool by Christina Harris
Whirlpool by Christina Harris: What a great fair isle vest! The shape and the small geometric patterning are particularly appealing. It looks like the colors are patterned in such a way that catching your floats would be unnecessary, which is always a plus.  

It could be hard to keep up steam on a project larger than socks in fingering weight yarn, but it's only a vest, not a full sweater. On the other hand, the gauge is something you would typically knit socks in. Wow!

And last but not least, how cool is Celestarium by Audry Nicklin? It's a pi shawl that utilizes yarn overs and beads to map out the night sky with the center being Polaris. It calls for a fingering weight yarn and since the bulk of it is stockinette, it would keep you warmer than a typical lace shawl would, and of course you get the "wow factor" of knitted constellations. 
Celestarium by Audry Nicklin

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