Knitting Classic Style
by Véronik Avery
“Fashion, as we knew it, is over; people wear now exactly what they feel like wearing.” Mary Quant, quoted in the introduction to Knitting Classic Style: 35 modern designs inspired by fashion’s archives
Véronik Avery had one main goal when creating the patterns in Knitting Classic Style: 35 modern designs inspired by fashion’s archives – to inspire knitters “to knit whatever it is you feel passionate about wearing.” Unlike past fashion periods, today divergent clothing styles are desirable, yet many retail clothing stores offer consumers more of the same. To help fashion individualists find a more personal look, Avery has explored classic designs to create the designs in this volume.
For Knitting Classic Style, Avery has focused on four main themes: Fashion Mavens (women’s wear); Tomboys (menswear); Global Travelers (ethnic costume); and Thrill Seekers (sportswear). For each pattern Avery discusses the fashion history and inspiration behind the design. The Bias Shell pays homage to Madeleine Vionnet, a cutting edge couturière from Paris known for her bias garments. Avery’s Tabi Socks draw inspiration from Japanese hosiery and speculation that samurai may have knit tabi socks (socks with separate big toes) to supplement their income at the end of the Edo period.
Avery has included a wide range of sizes for her designs. Women’s patterns range from a finished chest of 29.5” to 52.75” (75cm to 134cm), averaging 34” to 48” (86.5cm to 122cm). Two girl’s sweaters (size 2 to 8) and three men’s sweaters with a finished chest of 34” to 57.75” (86.5 cm to 147 cm) are included. Accessories round out the pattern offerings with designs for socks, hats, gloves, wraps.
Avery gives her Québec heritage and the Montreal Canadiens a nod with her traditional Montreal Tuque. She reminds knitters to select their colours wisely if knitting for a sports-loving recipient for "in a famous Québécois children's story, The Hockey Sweater, author Roch Carrier recounts his outrage when, as a child, he was forced to wear a Toronto Maple Leafs sweater, received by mistake as a replacement for his beloved but worn-out Canadiens sweaters." Avery recommends knitters research favoured team colours prior to purchasing yarn.
Reviewed by Janelle Martin
Janelle is an addicted reader and a book reviewer for Armchair Interviews. A passionate knitter in what remains of her free time, she wonders, "Why can't we knit at work?". Her blog can be viewed at http://antheras.blogspot.com