Rowan mags - I love the feel of them, the look of them - yes, even that overdone 'all Yorkshire folk dress like Viv Westwood urchins and roam the moors looking wild and wretched' look.Most of the front covers are beautiful and I want to paint several of them. I have always seen these magazines as a treat. But not this one.
Where to start?
Let's go for flattering knits - surely the main point of spending hours and hours making something is that it looks beautiful and flattering? If I just want warm I will hide under my duvet.
So - Rowan's version of flattering.
Bear in mind that these are on very slim, very tall models. I am less than 5ft, and size 14 / 16.
Not as bad as you were expecting? How about this:
Now this is a style very favoured by Kim Hargreaves, and a shape I personally absolutely love - very Victorian, riding crops, saucy smile, long flowing skirts sort of look (or that might just be my mind). But in chunky, with cables, it makes those teenytiny hips look bulky - I suspect there's a reason they don't show the back view.
But, I hear you say, that's still not too bad. It could look good on someone 6ft plus, size 8.
So I present to you:
Yes, I would really love to add what - a couple of inches thickness all round? In Big Wool. With tight looking, too short looking sleeves that must feel very bulky under the arms (there's a giddy big gap between her arm and her side, which I suspect is because the thing is so thick she can't actually bring her arms any closer!)- oh, and the nifty way it flicks out at the hem. And the gaping neckline. And the Michelin man-esque gathery pleat things at the front - nice. What? Not bulky enough for you? Throw in some mega chunky cables to add a bit more girth, missus.
OK, there are more - not very flattering, not very pretty. The ones I half like (but probably not enough to knit, unless my daughter wants one) are the mens jumpers, they are less scary.
So then it moves on to the Russian Doll section (I just checked what the previous section was - apparently it is called Nomad, although Bulky Bastards section would be a better name).
Now some of this section I like - but would never ever wear, mainly due to not being a size 6, liking Yorkshire Pudding (hence not being a size 6), not doing colour and - er - well. Let the pictures speak.
I was going to apologise for the glare on some of these photos, but actually I think it's a blessing in disguise. Obviously Viv Westwood styling - or Hayzee Fantayzee meets Big Country's cast off shirts - and yes, that snippet of 'waistcoat'(?) is the featured pattern. Utterly lost in the styling - maybe for a reason.
I really like this - but do not feel the urge to look like a bag of liquorice allsorts.
I think it says a lot that the ONLY thing in the entire magazine I am really likely to knit are these -
, which I think are lovely. Yes, plain mitts and a long scarf. The combined talents of all the Rowan designers - and fingerless mitts and a scarf are the best thing - in my opinion - and the most wearable. And even they are not exactly mind blowing.
So there it is.