Honestly, there’s so much good in the Fall 2015 collections we could probably talk about it all the way up until Fall. But another strong trend I can totally get behind is the major turtleneck. I’m starting above with the abbreviated version. From Elizabeth and James, these are two renditions of the same sweater: chunky, slightly cropped, split hem, and with a voluminous turtleneck. I might need to work a version of this into my knitting queue.
Then there are the two megas from Theory, below, which is a drool-worthy collection all the way around, including the most beautiful cape. But the turtlenecks! First we’ve got the austere, black wool cloth top with a massive rib-knit turtleneck. I’m still stuck on that idea of a sewing boiled-wool Linden and am now imagining knitting a huge neck like this to attach to it. Second is my idea of the Perfect Sweater, truly: simple grey-and-ivory marl with a neck you could get lost in.
And then there’s J.Crew. Another voluminous but thin grey marl number with lighter grey neck and long cuffs. (Seriously, the long cuff idea was everywhere.) And then again with the wool cloth and rib knit combo, only this time in a kangaroo-pocketed pullover jacket-sweater that’s like nothing I’ve ever seen. Heaven.
Among the surprising items to make repeat appearances on the Fall 2015 runways is the knit skirt. I’ve already sung the praises of the amazing cable skirt and white top combo at A Détacher. Then there’s this lovely duo, above, from Michael Kors — a swingy cable skirt shown in camel and charcoal, one paired with a matching cable sweater and the other with a chunky rib-knit sweater. (As with nearly all of the sweaters in the Kors show, both have ultra-long sleeves folded into forearm-length cuffs.)
Then there’s the pair below, which remind of those nail-biting (<— that’s sarcasam) episodes of Project Runway where two designers emerge from Mood with the same or similar fabric. Who’ll use it best? The upper image is from Mulberry, and the lower one is Opening Ceremony, both looks built around a grey knit skirt cut sideways. (Both textiles look like cut-and-sew sweater knits to me, but someone will correct me if I’m wrong.) I love them equally — would happily live in either outfit — but all of the oversized work jackets and exaggerated chamois shirts in the Opening Ceremony collection make me swoon. That they’ve paired them with sweater tunics and dresses only makes me love them that much more.
PREVIOUSLY in Fall 2015: A Détacher forever
If I hadn’t already professed my undying love for Mona Kowalska of A Détacher, I would certainly be doing it now. Her Fall 2015 collection got all my juices flowing; clicking through the images, my brain was thinking up things to sew and knit faster than my fingers could sketch them. Mostly simple little tops and dresses my closet and I are longing for (albeit not in those particular prints — other than the amazing volcanic explosion print!), but the way she’s mixed those breezy little pieces with knits here is classic quirky Mona. Along with simple little change-ups like a woven vest over a sweater dress and knit vest over a woven dress. There’s just no one like her. And nothing, especially, like that look below: quilted jacket over dress-length aran sweater over quilted pants. Ms. K, can I borrow your brain for just five minutes? And also this quilted dress?
PREVIOUSLY in Fall 2015: Wool and the Gang walks again
Following last year’s Eek hat for the Giles Fall ’14 collection, my friends over at Wool and the Gang had more knits walking the runway at London Fashion Week yesterday. This time they collaborated with Christopher Raeburn on his shark-themed Fall ’15 collection. As seen in the photos here (from @woolandthegang and @jade_harwood) the pieces include a pair of shark-shaped mittens plus a killer multi-color slouch beanie and big fringed scarf. The mittens, dubbed the Bruce Knitmitts, are available on their site straight away, both as finished goods and a knit kit, and they’ve promised to let me know when the hat and scarf patterns are available later this year. My compliments to the Gang on what must have been another thrilling ride. And to Raeburn, who looks pretty pleased with those mittens.
p.s. They were kind enough to send me an Eek hat kit when I was crying for a fast break from my four months with Amanda, but I haven’t knitted it up just yet. Love. That. Hat.
p.p.s. If I had the sewing chops, I would totally be making my own version of that olive-drab duffel coat with Grainline’s pattern. That is my dream coat right there.
So The Row wins again. The only thing better than pitch-perfect sweaters is sweaters on top of sweaters, right? That top image leaves me wanting a better look at the vest, but whatever it is, yes please. And the tissue-thin version of the classic rollneck (recently discussed)? And the perfectly proportioned ribbed pullover? These are the sorts of impeccable sweaters I want to knit to wear for years upon years.
But a very, very close runner-up this season is the look below from Derek Lam. Don’t know if the black layer is a tee or a featherweight sweater, but either way, this combination of black and camel (my god those trousers) with the unexpected spark of a lilac vest trimmed in black, white and green … Well as DG would say, it’s just too much to think about.
PREVIOUSLY in Pre-Fall 2015: Moody blues
These two knits make me dizzy. Literally and in a drunk-with-joyful-inspiration sort of way. At the top is MM6 Maison Martin Margiela’s crazy sweatshirt. I do think it’s some kind of tapestried jersey and not sweater knit, but it gives me Linden ideas, and also makes me want to attach marled sleeves to a stranded sweater body. (As long as someone else knits the body for me. Tag Team, anyone?) And then we have Mulberry’s insane colorwork-meets-stockinette coat. The stranded portion includes some kind of extreme mohair that makes the patterning look like a painting that’s been splashed with water and is beginning to bleed. Oh so beautifully.
PREVIOUSLY in Pre-Fall 2015: Camel sweaters
One of the things I believed about knitting before I learned to knit was that I would never again have trouble finding camel sweaters because I could just make them myself! And then, as I was lamenting the other day, I discovered that camel-colored yarn is harder to come by than it should be. There is truly nothing more classic, versatile or timeless than camel (not even grey!), as demonstrated by these very different looks from very different fashion houses for Pre-Fall 2015: Michael Kors sending out the epitome of the camel sweater over a long-cuffed white shirt and cropped dark jeans with the most amazing coat of all time, all of it very Mad Men; Chloé doing badass chic with a sleek camel turtleneck under a biker jacket with navy flares; See by Chloé showing us camel’s demure side in a simple pullover with an ironic toile skirt and matching handbag; and TSE putting together a more contemporary allover camel look built around a lattice-stitch funnel-neck sweater.
Anyone who doesn’t have a good camel sweater in their closet should knit one post haste, and there really are good camel-colored yarns out there — they’re just not in every yarn company’s palette like I might have imagined. The core, American-wool Quince and Co. yarns (Finch, Chickadee, Lark, Osprey and Puffin) all come in a seemingly perfect shade called Camel. (How did I not see that till now?) Most of the Fibre Company yarns come in some shade of camel — notably, Canopy Fingering and Canopy Worsted in Wild Ginger (a very light camel), worsted-weight Knightsbridge in Goldfirth and bulky Tundra in Larch. Woolfolk has a slightly light-brownish camel in Color 7 of both worsted-weight Far and fingering-weight Tynd. Blue Sky Alpacas fingering-weight Metalico in Gold Dust is one of the prettiest yarns I’ve ever seen. (I have a beloved super-bulky cable hat knit in Blue Sky Bulky in a nice camel that looks like it’s no longer available. So sad!) So they do exist — this is just a small sampling. And perhaps if we all knit with them there will be more added — and fewer removed — from the yarn palettes of the world.