A few weeks ago Rowan announced a new Mini Brochure featuring Kidsilk Haze stripe.

It  contains six designs by Marie Wallin, which were selected from the Rowan archive and re-knitted using  Kidsilk Haze Stripe.
When I first saw the pictures of the brochure I really liked it. The colors of the yarn are beautiful and the yarn is soft and smooth to the skin, as I noticed knitting and wearing the Alder Wrap  or my Hyacinth Scarf, both designs by Kaffe Fassett.
When I looked at the brochure the second time, I was somewhat puzzled. First I didn’t exactly got, what it was, but soon I realized, that all the projects were made for women.
After I came aware of this fact, I got a little bit angry.
Why do they no design for men with this yarn? Do we deserve this? Is only wool or cotton appropriate for men? (OK, sometimes it’s cashmere!)  Or aren’t we allowed to wear rich colors? Should men were only dark blue, green, gray or if you want to be stylish a pink or yellow tie? Why do they do that? I guess this are questions, that I already asked as a child.

In this mood I thought to myself: “Watch out Marie Wallin!” “En garde! At your needles and swatch!”


I thought of altering Simone, which is shown in the picture above. A pattern for men, with long sleeves, a round neck, without the ruffle, but with intarsia knitting and a lace pattern! The working title I gave the design has been “Just for the boys, dear Marie”, because of the obsessing questions, mentioned above.

So I began to knit and I calmed down a little bit, measuring and calculating stitches and rows. Charting the lace pattern and thinking over the placement of the lace. Maybe a little lace on the sleeves or not? During this working and thinking over the pattern it get into my view, that it was not anger, but jealousy which drives me. And the working title changed to “Simply Jealous!”


So, as the work progressed, the questions in my mind changed to:

What is fashion? What input does influence a fashion designer? Has society more influence on the fashion designer or has the designer the chance to influence society? Is it a gender problem?
Here is an article (in german) in which Barbara Vinken a literary scolar answers some questions about this topic.
In this interview (“Fashion as a social seismograph”) she answers to the question:

“Is it harder for men to acquire female garments and codes as vice versa? Why?”
“Yes, women do put on mens clothes, men almost never female clothes. The Scottish kilt is no skirt, but has its roots in military. The trousers on the other hand, the male piece of clothing par excellence, women was forbidden by law under Napoleon, is, like a suit a naturally part of female cloth. A man in sheath dress or in swinging skirt I have only seen on a crossdresser. The female fashion gets “fashionable” as it acquires every male detail bit by bit.
That’s not applicable in reverse. ….” (Translation by knittingkonrad)


And the working title changed ones more to “Simply jealous?”

Thank you Marie Wallin for inspiring me!

Pattern (for men) will be available soon on Ravelry.