18 February 2013

Designer spotlight: Alexis Winslow

Over in a Ravelry thread, someone brought up Alexis Winslow's new sweater pattern, Turnstone Pullover, and after queuing it immediately, I felt I just had to come back and do a spotlight on her work.

You'll probably recognize her name from her most popular pattern, Delancey Cardigan, which also has a plus size option that was released after the popularity of the original.
Can we just hold up for a second and talk about plus-sized knits? If you've seen any pictures of me on here, it's readily apparent that I'm not plus-sized, but I find my respect for a designer increases immensely when they offer plus size options. The excellent thing about knitting is that almost anyone can do it. Heck, there are videos on youtube of people knitting with only one hand! There are many plus-sized knitters, and we should have patterns that fit those people. Especially since finding larger-sized clothing in general is so difficult. The ability to make something for oneself is a great way to get something that fits your body, exactly. I'm happy to have sweaters that fit my long torso and arms! Especially arms! I hate sleeve knitting, but not having exposed wrists all winter is a glorious thing.

Knitting for plus-sized men and women isn't just as simple as casting on more stitches, either: Sometimes it requires scaling up a pattern, adding a repeat of a graphic design, or altering a neckline so it won't pull or gape in certain areas. For many designers, it can be an exercise in extensively rewriting a smaller pattern. Although I'm not sure how Alexis Winslow up-sized Delancey, I'm happy to see the option for her most popular cardigan, and I'm thrilled to see her releasing new designs up to a 56" bust.

Moving on... Alexis does some beautiful, lacy patterns, but where she really shines (for me) is in her graphic motifs. Bright, fun stripes and color work, bold patterns. Here are a few of my favorites...

Arrowhead Mittens for Broolyn Tweed. Great pattern, especially the interaction between the chevrons and arrowheads. Total unisex appeal:

Vera Cardigan for Knitscene. Available as an online purchase, I'm shocked that there are only 19 active projects on Ravelry. It's a gorgeous knit, although I'd opt to remove the front pockets. The chevron pattern is especially nice at the back, where inward-pointing chevrons visually pull the waist in. Super flattering:

Arbuckle Hat. Again, excellent unisex knitting. I love the potential for color experimentation. This would be a great ski hat and is adorably Nordic-looking. Would be so cute in a dusty rose/cream combination:

Finally, Bergen Street Cardigan, which is Winslow's second most popular piece. Although it seems kind of "normal" by striped cardigan standards, the neckline is lovely and flattering, and what sells the pattern for me is the dark raglan increases. I love how they stand out as a design feature instead of plainly following the established stripe pattern. Check out the pattern images for a shot of the back increases, too. They're gorgeous:

Isn't she awesome? I'd love to hear what your favorites are in the comments!
- YX


  1. I made a Bergen Street Caridgan, and I love it!! And the back raglans are a thing of beauty!!

  2. I think I'm in love with the Georgina Cardigan, so lovely. Delancey also looks great, though.

    1. Georgina is gorgeous both buttoned and open-- a rare feat, in my opinion!