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Knitting 87: French style

After a gap (blame a mixture of a skiing injury and a frail relative) I'm returning to reviewing the knitting mags that land on my doormat regularly. The reviews are useful for me to keep track of the patterns I like and I hope may be helpful for others as well.

KMCover_small And so to Knitting's Springtime in Paris issue (March 2011) - a look at summer fashion trends paired with a range of chic fitted jacket patterns which will work well over spring and summer outfits. The fashion write ups are interesting enough but I read Vogue at the hairdresser's and buy this mag for its patterns.

What's to love

Fitted Bolero by Tina Barrett -  a very simple cropped, cutaway bolero with couple of buttons and a neat collar. It is a simple DK, stocking stitch garment that should probably go in the classics file. It will work this year and in the future as a smart summer cover up.

Martin Storey's Home Cardigan (main cover pic) continues the cropped jacket styling. The front of this more box-shaped, collared   Yarn-Denim
cardie features ruffles and checked colour work. I'd probably leave the ruffles out but there is one thing that might put me off. It's knitted in Rowan Demin which shrinks on washing - it makes adapting patterns difficult.

Having a classic striped Breton Top pattern, like the one from Sian Brown, can't be a bad idea. Especially with a little shaping as in this version. A lot of DK stocking stitch but the stripes would stop it becoming too dull.

Simple and classic are words often used to describe French style. This is certainly the case here with so many plain stocking stitch designs in DK. The Classic White Shirt, also from Sian Brown, meets these criteria and is exactly what the name suggests - a shirt shaped top. It will look fab if you are tall and willowy.

Sian Brown's third pattern Moss Stitch Blazer in cotton is a smart jacket with contrast trim is smart and classic but I wonder how well it will keep its shape over time.

 Not so sure

Even as a laceaholic planning 11 shawls in 2011 I'm ambivilant about the Daisy and Drop Leaf Scarf by Amanda Jones, despite the fabulous scarlet Malabrigo Lace it's knitted in here. I like the central leaf pattern but I don't think it sits well with the daisy eyelet outer panels which have too much solid stocking stitch for me. I'll keep the pattern though and think about changing the daisy panels.

 The Fitted Jacket and Beret by Judy Furlong puzzles me. Despite being yet more plain stocking stitch, it has a complex construction with lots of shaping and facing to give the full jacket effect. Yet the picture doesn't sell it to me,  looking lumpy and shapeless. The collarless, double-breasted efect should work but somehow isn't grabbing me.

The Origin Bergere Parisienne Sweater is a real catwalk creation - unwearable in the real world. A fitted jumper with a massive cowl neck that folds back over the shoulders, it looks like the model is half mummified.

Lacy Shrug by Sirdar - this I can't find anything good to say about this. It is an odd shape with Vs at the back and front and blousing over the bust.