Wednesday 27 February 2019

Review of Pompom Quarterly Number 28 - The Botanical Issue

Image courtesy of Pompom
Pompom Quarterly magazine does what it says on the tin - it issues four editions per year, one to coincide with each season. Published in London with contributors from across the globe, each issue has a theme, the latest being botanics. Think plants, flowers and a recipe for a classic Jazz Age cocktail with home-infused gin.

Number 28 certainly is an issue with Spring in mind, with patterns mainly featuring sportweight/light fingering/4ply yarns. The A5 sized book oozes quality with its stunning photography (great to see models of different ages and races represented), freshly-printed smell and thick paper.

And so to the patterns!

There are nine in this issue, six knitting and three crochet. That's great if you are proficient in both crafts but personally, as a keen knitter whose crochet skills languish the bottom of the beginners' level, it's disappointing to see a pattern in a knitting magazine that you'd love to knit, only to find out it's crochet. I'm assuming that Pompom has done market research and that's why it's trying to please fans of both crafts, but Pompom is primarily known as a knitting magazine and in my opinion, long may it stay that way!

For me the stand-out pattern this issue is Kelly Ordemann's Adiantum.

Image courtesy of Pompom and Carolyn Carter
Described as 'the consummate spring layering piece for unpredictable days', this 4-ply jumper is inspired by sprigs of thyme and I adore the foliate motifs on the neckline and yoke. Adiantum has jumped straight onto my 'to knit' list. The yarn is Woollenflower Masgot Fine, naturally dyed by Julia Billings in Glasgow. She's currently selling a yarn kit from £49 plus P&P, depending on the size you want to knit. I confess I've bought one and intend to make a cropped version of the jumper.

Next is the cover pattern Woodwardia by Lydia Gluck.

Image courtesy of Pompom and Carolyn Carter
My first impression is that it's quite similar to Kate Davies' Carbeth sweater that took the knitting world by storm last year. If you look closely, however, Woodwardia isn't as cropped and also has a lovely geometric fern-like stitch pattern that follows the raglan shaping. It's knitted in worsted weight yarn.

The botanical theme continues with Liza Laird and Kate Maddens' Sweetfern.

Image courtesy of Pompom and Carolyn Carter

This adorable hat, knitted from the bottom up, uses two colours of 4-ply yarn and has a slouchy fit at the top. The body of Sweetfern has a garter stitch and brioche pattern, complemented by the light, leafy front design.

Aurea by Stella Egidi is a rectangular stole.

Image courtesy of Pompom and Carolyn Carter
The magazine says the design is inspired by Soleirolia soleirolii aurea, which 'commonly grows alongside ferns in damp, dark places'. It's knitted in fingering/4-ply weight yarn.

Amber Platzer Corcoran's Vivarium is bright, DK weight sweater for Spring days.

Image courtesy of Pompom and Carolyn Carter
The magazine says that 'Our Vivarium pays homage to the ingenuity of the ethical gardener and the everyday magic of the humble garden.' It's a boxy, oversized jumper with folky, plant colourwork.

The final knitting pattern is Ginkgophyte, a lightweight top that will keep you going throughout Spring and Summer.

Image courtesy of Pompom and Carolyn Carter
It's knitted in lightweight yarn and uses lacy columns of eyelid ribbing to form the large gingko leaf shape across the bodice.

Which is your favourite?

Click through to Ravelry to see the three crochet patterns:

1. Isa Catepillan's Water Clover, a boxy floral lace top
2. Judith Brand's Filix wristwarmers
3. Isa Catepillan's Davallia cardigan come shawl with tassels.

Pompom Quarterly Number 28 costs £12.50 plus P&P direct from the publishers, which includes access to the digital version.

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