Declared: Sew-/Knitt-ing month

by Shannon on February 13, 2007

What with Kerrie Allman starting her new site this month, and all the other things I’ve had on my mind, there’s a lot of sewing/knitting crossover in the Knitgrrl brain this fine February. So why not roll with it? From the knitted projects in my upcoming sewing books to the overall trend of using multiple techniques in one item (whether it’s knitting + sewing, or two types of felting, or… you name it), I see these crossovers as not only fascinating but inspirational.

So, it was with great interest that I read Marnie MacLean’s interview with Jennifer Stafford of domiKNITrix in two blog posts (one, two). The first post is all interview, the second is a review of Jennifer’s new book, domiKNITrix: Whip Your Knitting Into Shape. Full disclosure: she whipped me into shape at TNNA!

Coming from a sewing background to a knitting one, Stafford had much to say of interest to both knitters and sewers, such as:

The nice thing about sewing is that when you make something a little too large, you can just go around and re-stitch each seam to make the garment a little tighter. Too small, rip out the seam and insert a strip of fabric to broaden it.

I use similar techniques to salvage a knitting project with fit problems. Steeking is one good way to rescue a project, like the Herringbones sweater you see on my site.

Ah, the miracle steek. My favorite. And on the matter of fit…

I noticed that when people complimented my knitwear, it was the darts, the lean close fit that they were into. So I figured I owed it to them to be sure I put that trim fit into the book. There are SO many books out there with sweaters that have absolutely no shaping, just two squares put together with a drop sleeve or whatever. I knew I didn’t even need to go there.

I wanted to include more guidelines on where to alter the pattern for custom fit, like you find on sewing patterns, that alteration line, but time really didn’t permit that.

Which is a shame, if you ask me. I think more patterns should regularly include customization guidelines, however rudimentary. If you can’t figure it out all on your own, maybe a little push in the right direction would help keep shapeless sweaters out of circulation. Also, fans of Amy and Jillian, Stafford’s got your back, too:

When I wore looser clothes in fashion at certain times, I discovered that they just made me look fat. So I started going for the trim fit. Even if you are a little self conscious about a bulge somewhere, I promise you are going to look more attractive overall if you wear well-fitted clothing. Women are so overly critical of themselves, we often go hide in loose clothing, but it just makes us look worse.

Amen to that, I say. Lately, I’ve made a conscious effort to not wear such oversized clothing myself. And I think that anyone calling for better shaping / fit is someone to watch! Plus, the designs in domiKNITrix are really beautiful, and fun, too. (My boyfriend had his eye on the “Bob” sweater).

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Marnie February 13, 2007 at 1:27 pm

Isn’t Jennifer just a wealth of information? She’s so forthcoming with ideas and thoughts. I was really happy to have been able to do the interview/review for her book.

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