I am going to come right out and say this: I like knitting much more than crochet. Now, please, dear Readers, hold off on the lynch mobs. I’ve seen tons of beautiful crochet, and I’ve also seen tons of horrid knitting. And, back in the day, I dabbled in crochet myself, even once making a beautiful filigree blouse in fine white cotton. It must be said, however, that both aesthetically and as a creative process, I prefer knitting.
A few months ago, when I had the very good fortune to go to the Headquarters of Rowan Yarns in Holmsfirth (you can read about it here), I was given a goodie bag. In that goodie bag was a new pattern collection by the fabulous Marie Wallin, called Filigree, Collection 3, subtitled “10 crochet designs for women by Marie Wallin”. Five of these designs are made by combining knitting with crochet. And I mean this not in the sense that I normally see, in which a knitted sweater has a crocheted edging, but rather in the sense that for each of these patterns, both knitting and crochet feature as a design element. The combination of the two modalities is an intrinsic part of the pattern. And I have to tell you, these designs are gorgeous!
I’ll show you my three favorites here. To look at the others (including the five crochet patterns which are also lovely) go the the Ravelry page for this booklet, or to the Rowan page. Here is a lovely cardigan pattern called Buttercup:
I tink this is a charming mix of sweet and sexy. I can imagine this styled so many ways. It’s a nearly perfect summer cardigan. Even so, I must admit to liking the next one even more. Here is Anemone:
I love how this is so crisp and sharp but still girly and pretty. Regular readers will know that I have a thing for patterns that are architectural – as soon as I saw this pattern I thought about iron filigree bridges.
In order to demonstrate to you what I meant I did a search for “iron filigree bridge” and found this lovely photo:
This is a photo of the Iron Bridge at Coalbrookdale, which was built in 1779 and is “the oldest surviving cast iron bridge in the world.” The photo and quote come from a post from the blog The Happy Pontist: A blog from the UK about Bridges and Bridge Design. I have only read this one post, but you can bet that I will be giving this blog a serious look. Many years ago, I used to work on Wall Street and live in Brooklyn and I would walk across the Brooklyn Bridge to get to work. I just love a beautifully designed bridge.
Is it just me or can you see this too? Buttercup is, well, buttercup-y – all soft and flowery, but Anemone is sharp and edgy with hard edges, but incorporated into a soft package. I love it.
I think my favorite, however, is this one, Tulip:
The use of crochet in this pattern feels very innovative to me; it is interesting and fresh. The Knit rowan site writes:
Designed by Marie Wallin using our beautiful soft matt cotton yarn Summerlite 4ply (cotton), the main section of this top is knitted in a cable and lace stitch with an unusual welt section made up of double crochet strips.
If you can, zoom in on the crocheted section. It is really a cool design. The design makes me think of a modern, crisp take on a 1920s flapper dress.
I love these patterns. In fact, I love them enough to overcome my crochet bias. I am thinking that only the amazing Marie Wallin could do that!