Colgate Couture – Knit-Knacks

Katie Zarrella

The leaves are turning, the temperature is dipping and it’s inevitable that the frosty Colgate weather we all know and love is only weeks away. Instinctively, many of you will phone home and ask your parents to send those J.Crew cardigans and Polo pullovers that carried you through last fall.

Before you grab your cell or write that e-mail to Mom, consider a new kind of sweater: a sweater that does more than just compliment the collar of your oxford or cover the waistband of your Vince leggings. This season, designers have transformed the sweater. Fall’s knits explore new shapes, textures and styles, so hold off on tired cable knits and twin sets and consider some of the fall runway’s wild warm looks.

There’s nothing wrong with the basic cardigan, but it’s all too easy to get stuck with some Mr. Rogers Neighborhood meets The Stepford Wives ensemble. Stella McCartney’s grey cashmere cardigan, however, refuses to exist in a boring neighborhood. Oversized and propped up with shoulder pads, this boxy, ribbed sweater dress drapes off the body for a simple sexiness with a hint of 80’s va-va-voom.

Taking cabling to the next level, Aquascutum broke the mold with its Caetlin knitwear. In a crisp cream, the brand’s fitted sweater blows-up the cable pattern with two magnified rows of braiding down the chest. Short sleeves are trimmed in bushy fringe for a prepster-gone-wild look.

Aquascutum wasn’t the only house that used fringe to spice up a look. Pucci’s Matthew Williamson capitalized on the trend with his chocolate poncho. Dripping from top to bottom in dreads of yarn, this cape is Rasta-chic. A chunky, ribbed cowl neck emerges from the mass of twisted fringe, giving the edgy piece a smart sense of refinement.

Easily mistaken for The Blob, Giles Deacon’s olive coat is one monster of a knit. Woven from gauge yarn of unprecedented thickness, the Giles coat completely swallows the body, taking on a life of its own. With a unique, knobby texture, this Jolly Green Giant makes for one serious sweater.

Junko Shimada’s mint sweater dress may have been taken right off Grandma’s knitting needles and thrown onto the runway. Trimmed in a vintage snowflake design, this roomy sweater dress hangs off the body. Extra long sleeves and an off-the-shoulder turtleneck give Junko Shimada’s creation a cozy look that will make you want to curl up by the fire.

Keep the old-fashioned cardigans in the closet, leave the tennis sweaters at home and try something different with fall ’07’s new-age knits.