Sunday, 19 October 2008

Sew Hip it's not even happening

One of the things I bought at Ally Pally was a copy of the brand new 'Sew Hip' magazine. It's a british magazine brought to us by the same people who bought the dubious 'Yarn Forward' from HipKnits. I had seen some trailers for it online and my eye was caught by the cover project - a heart quilted quilt. You can see pics here. Now bearing in mind that this is a british magazine I would kind of expect it to be full of british goings on. The cover project is not applique or fabric painting as I had assumed it must be - it centres around a printed fabric produced by an australian company without a UK distributor. The fabric is AUD $75 per metre and you need 1.7m to make the quilt. They only sell whole metres so that's 2 x $75 + $33 postage to the UK = $183 which is £73 pounds according to xe.com. £73. Seventy three pounds, for 2 metres of cotton fabric. And that's just one bit of the list of things you need to make the cover project. And that's without the hit you take when customs charge you VAT + handling charge.

In the rest of the magazine there are a few cute projects, a profile of Amy Butler, noticeable not british, and some pattern reviews for patterns from two indie sellers - one australian and one american. There is also a designer profile on the inside back page - of an american.

Now I am not against international magazines - I read Interweave, VK, Knitters, Knit Today etc with reckless abandon. But this is a british magazine created entirely in england. Wouldn't this have been a good opportunity to showcase british talent? To have the cover project using fabric only available via mail order from australia seems demented as even if this is meant to grab the american market as a cutesy-british-thing-but-with-an-international-outlook they are going to be as unimpressed as I am at the postage. And I know I don't sew that much but £30 a metre seems a bit steep for fabric. Especially for an unknown brand. Cath Kidston and Liberty are less than that.

Anyway, as you might by now be able to tell - I didn't think that much of it. The only thing that tempts me is the pillowcase totes but once someone has said to you - hey, you could make a tote out of a pillowcase - you don't really need a pattern to make it happen.

Now here in Maison Doom'n'Gloom there have also been some rays of sunshine as well as me moaning about magazines. There has in fact been a fair wodge of knitting going on. I have started and finished a felted cat basket since I last blogged. It is for my Mum's cat. I have been wondering whether it would be possible to make a me sized one. It's very tempting to try and get in.
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I wanted to get that done before I started anything else but the moment it was in the washing machine I cast on a stocking. Not just any stocking either - this is for pete-with-the-dancing-feet. It's going ratehr nicely although I have been a bit worried about my tension. Fairisle on magic loop in cotton mix yarn was never going to be easy but it is working out well and I think blocking will even it out.
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The other project I have cast on is the ripple-me-this bag from the Fall 08 Knitters mag.
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I'm actually a full ripple further on now. It's delightfully simple and is also using the wool I got at ally pally. The colours are jewel-like and yummy. It's going to be a great bag.

I had hoped to get out another podcast this weekend but I've been catching up on sleep for most of it. I have some time off the week after next so hopefully I'll do one then. Meanwhile susetheslowknitter has won the woolmeise - the lucky thing. It is such gorgeous stuff. I've emailed you for your address. I also need to send out the leftover Noro sockyarn. I need to check who asked first so will be in touch with them shortly.

6 comments:

Suse-the-slow-knitta said...

doing a happy dance!!

Its a shame about the mag, I was going to get a copy as my DD is keen to practise sewing, and I don't know where to start...

Rosie said...

Pity about the mag: but are there any decent fabrics in the UK? Maybe they should spend some time on Etsy looking for UK designers?

Adore the cat bed and think a human-sized one would be ideal for those inevitable low/I-want-to-murder-soneone days I get from time-to-time.

AnnaT said...

I'm with you on the Sew Hip. I was disappointed with the layout, and (as a non-child bearing adult) the excessive amount of childish stuff.
And to make matters worse, so far nothing from Yarn Forward has really grabbed me either. Oh well...

Iris said...

Shame about the sewing mag - I had high hopes for it and was going to try and get it next time I'm in town. Haven't had a look at Yarn Forward yet either, but it all doesn't sound too promising...

Penny said...

Yeah, Sew Hip should have been good, but I flicked through it at Ally Pally and didn't see anything I wanted to make. My children are the wrong age for toddler stuff, I can manage a quilt made out of charm squares without a pattern and "pillowcase tote" gives me all the information I need to make it.

In quilt mags there has been a trend towards using specific fabric ranges when designing projects: there doesn't seem to be any point if it is "generic rose range". It's not impressive if the cover project requires a range that you can't get in the country the magazine is published in. Certainly there are some interesting UK ranges.

And there was nothing in Yarn Forward I wanted to knit.

binkstheminx said...

I am a South African living in the Uk and let me tell you there is NOTHING much happening on the craft scene. Sadly the English have no idea about time, effort and the expense involved in crafting. Here craft is a luxury!!! So i'm guessing you guys are from the US where there is alot of craft and it's a bit more affordable to even make but here in the barren land of creativity, let me tell you "Sew Hip" is a miracle which i am amazed to find and it has simple ideas which the English can handle.... and i hope that this magazine does very very well! God knows we need more crafters here and this should be encouraged!

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