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Andrea RangelToday's post is by Andrea Rangel, designer of the squishtastic pullover Joist from our newest issue,which includes variations for different genders! Andrea is also the designer of the gorgeous Scribe mittens that we showed last winter. You can keep up with her and her knitting on her blog!






The latest issue of Twist Collective is live and in it you can find more evidence of my obsession with surface design on knitted fabrics: Joist - pullovers designed for men and women.



Joist, his and hers



I spend a lot of time swatching different textures and color patterns, and I get pretty excited working on fabric that's particularly sculptural.  My first swatches for Joist were classic twisted-stitch lattice patterns straight out of Barbara Walker.  They weren't substantial enough for my liking, though, so I tried out a few beefier cable patterns, but I still wasn't satisfied.  I liked how the twisted-stitch lattice patterns were worked without purling - they relied on the twisting and direction of the stitches rather than on negative space created by purling.  So I decided to give cabling a try with more stitches and without any purling.  It took me quite a few tries to get the cables to be just the right volume, with deep enough valleys in between the cables, but once I had that swatch, I was in love.  Not only do the cables have a strong, geometric directionality, but the stockinette stitch that forms the background also points one way, then the other, which is one of those lovely little things you have to get close up to notice.


back view



My original plan for Joist was to make a men's pullover.  I always want to add to the current library of men's patterns that men hopefully want to knit for themselves.  The fabric I ended up with is quite thick due to the heavy cabling, and worked up in a woolen spun yarn like Brooklyn Tweed Shelter, it's especially insulating.  Not only do the cables create lots of places for warm air to get trapped next to the body, but the yarn itself also has lots of little air pockets.  The woolen spun nature of the yarn is also helpful for keeping the sweater to a manageable weight.  All that thick fabric can make a pretty heavy sweater and I like the relative lightness of the Shelter.  It makes for a great outdoorsy sweater that looks classic, but is extra cozy and warm.

What usually happens as I work on men's sweaters, though, is that I end up wanting one for myself.  I love to wear my sample of Traverse and it has a fantastic slouchy boyfriend sweater fit that goes really well with my usual leggings, short skirt, and clompy boots look.  But with Joist, I wanted a version designed to be specifically flattering to women too.


both versions



Both versions include waist shaping, but the men's is simple reverse A-line shaping, while the women's has hourglass-style shaping.  Since the fabric is fairly thick, it's helpful to have this shaping for a well-fitting sweater.  

Aside from the fantastic cabled lattice stitch pattern, the sweaters have lots of other special design features.  The ribbing at the cuffs and hem looks like regular two-by-two rib, but it includes slipped stitches that help the ribs to stand out, making them conform more closely to the look of the cables.  The yoke is worked in an Elizabeth Zimmermann-inspired seamless construction.   The armholes and sleeve caps have the shape of set-in sleeves, but end in saddle shoulders that continue the established cable pattern and create a comfortable shoulder and sleeve cap section.  Shaping details prevent the sharp corner look that saddle shoulder construction can sometimes have.



collar and shoulder detail


The collar is worked in a pretty unique way as well.  The construction was inspired by the classic Cowichan-style collars that are usually done at a huge gauge in garter stitch.  I adapted that style to work with ribbing to mirror the cuffs and hem.  It's quite magical and I hope you'll enjoy it as much as I did.

Thanks to the Twist Collective team for their beautiful styling and photography!


Anne HansonAnne Hanson is today's featured designer in our Five for Five interview series; you can follow the whole series here. She has contributed six beautiful and classic patterns to our pages. Keep up with Anne here!






some of anne's work

(Leaving Cardigan and Pullover, Budding Apple)


1. What's your favorite thing to knit?

I love to design and knit wool garments; it's fascinating to create the fabric surface and build the structure at the same time.
2.  What's your favorite design you did for Twist Collective? Why?
The Leaving sweater is my favorite twist collective design. I love its feminine shape and bold feature panel, as well as the fact that it is flattering on any figure type. 
3. What is your worst knitting habit?
Not making notes or writing down details when i should. and I often forget to measure or weigh a finished piece before I soak and block it; there's really only one chance to do that. 
4. Tell us about a job you've had in the past that would amuse or surprise people who don't know you.
Many people are surprised to find out that I was educated as a speech pathologist and worked in that field for five years after graduating college. I also worked in restaurants and sewed custom clothing at night and on weekends because I had interests in those areas too—which is how I eventually ended up working in the fashion business.
5. Finish this sentence:  If everyone knew how to knit…
we'd all appreciate the importance of the real thing.

Every Friday we feature one of the garments from the magazine in a post about styling. We suggest different ways to wear the garment in question using mock-ups from Polyvore. We encourage readers to tell us what they think about these outfits via our Facebook page or Twitter, and if folks want to make their own outfits, please tweet them at us with the hashtag #twiststyle. You can find all of the Style Friday posts here.


Happy Friday everyone!! What a happy one it is. I've looked at all the gorgeous new patterns we have in our newest issue, but I actually haven't had time yet for the long, slow flip-through I like to do the day a new issue launches. Today is my day off (slash work at home day) and when I finish this post, I'm going to make myself a big mug of genmaicha and let all the pretty really sink in.


It's been fun but also hectic styling a zillion garments a week! Today we're looking at just one. Sablier, a cozy cabled cardigan with perfect pockets.


Sablierclose up


The cable pattern isn't too complex, which makes for a relaxing knit. But the gentle wave of the ropy cables, the easy shape, and slanted pockets make this a dreamy sweater. The generous length and collar make it extra cozy.




I think the styling of this in the shots above is spot on. A soft collared shirt and jeans are a perfect match for this kind of snuggly sweater. But Sablier can do more than that. You can nudge her towards librarian-chic, or toss her on over a vintage dress. With a sweater that's meant to have a little ease, you can also employ one of my favorite methods of keeping real warm when the snow flies; sweaters over other sweaters. It's kind of brilliant, if you think about it.


three outfits



How will you wear Sablier?


PS. When on the internet, I am usually doing too many things at once, and so I very nearly made those links to the patterns for Sablier go to a (legitimately great, but completely unrelated) youtube video. So, if you want to feel charmed this afternoon, click on that and watch a bunch of men talk about how uncool it is to harass women.

PPS. As always, with the internet, stay away from the comments if you'd like to keep your cheery disposition.


Rosemary HillRosemary Hill has contributed four impeccable patterns to Twist Collective. Each of them is elegant, airy, and feminine. You can find out more about Rosemary here! Follow all of the Five for five interview series here!







(Manderley, Violet Beribboned Choker, Snow Flurries Wrap, Lalou)


1. Why are you a designer?

Because I have never been able to knit a pattern without altering it in some way. I gave up fighting and embrace it now.


2. Where do you get your inspiration for designs from?

From everything around me! Right now that's the high desert, but I get tons of inspiration from the city too. There's so much to see!


3. What is your worst knitting habit?

When I'm knitting on a project, I always want to be doing the next one I'm designing in my head. When I get to that one, I'm already bored with it. I need to be able to knit at warp speed.


4. If you weren't a designer, what do you think you'd be doing with all the extra time you'd have?

Designing obsessively in a different medium!


5. Finish this sentence: If everyone knew how to knit...
there would never be enough wool to go around.


Every Friday we feature one of the garments from the magazine in a post about styling. We suggest different ways to wear the garment in question using mock-ups from Polyvore. We encourage readers to tell us what they think about these outfits via our Facebook page or Twitter, and if folks want to make their own outfits, please tweet them at us with the hashtag #twiststyle. You can find all of the Style Friday posts here.



This is an unusual Style Friday. The designers of both the garments we're looking at today participated in making this post more exciting and awesome. There are eleven outfits today. Get excited.


First off, we have two versions of Ossel, the lovely sweaterdress by Alison Green. Alison wanted a sweater version of this, so she made one! Look out for a blog post soon with more info on how to convert the pattern if you want the same thing! Since Alison was kind enough to snap a few photos of her sweater, I styled that too, so we have Ossel, two ways. Doesn't that sound like a menu item at a fancy restaurant?


Osselback view


I love the cables, love the moss stitch, love the shape, love the boatneck. I think this would look really fab on all sorts of body types, but especially those with a big bodacious bum. I'm not sure i would be able to resist wearing this every single day in the frosty days of wintertime. I'll admit, my styling of this isn't the most inventive, but it's already basically an outfit, so... tights and boots!


three ways


There are some more possibilities with a sweater version, though (not that i'm knocking tights and boots, tights and boots is sort of my life right now).

sweater styles


The other neat thing about this week is that I am not the only one who did some of the styling! Karolina, who designed the refined and adorable Parure cardigan, put together a couple of outfits. You remember Parure, right?




Check out the texture and detail on that yoke!!! It's so subtle and pretty. Imagine what would happen if you used a handpainted yarn for the contrast color! This cardigan is basic enough to be really versatile, but you'd also be SO PROUD that you made it your own self.

Here are some of Karolina's ideas about how to wear Parure:

basic and tuxedo

And because I am a sucker for anything girly, and this top has been calling to me since the Fall issue dropped, I did up a couple of outfits that I would like to wear right now.







How will you wear Parure? What about Ossel?