Friday, 30 October 2015

Free Pattern Friday - One to knit and one to crochet

It's half term this week, so I've been out and about with the children. Play dates, shopping, playing board games. It's been fun, but there has been very little time for knitting.

The free patterns this time are from Woman's Journal 6th book of Knitting and Crochet, from 1935. Found at the British Library, but not scans, just pics again I'm afraid.

'Crochet this Three colour jumper! The main part is just two straight pieces with the new straight-across neckline.'

This looked interesting, as I am yet to crochet a whole garment. And why not start with a vintage one? Stitches used are dc (double crochet), and dtr (double treble).

 Excuse my thumb!

I assume it is designed for summer, with it's cap sleeves and airy pattern. So if I start now, I might finish it by June! What I like is the combination of knit and crochet, with the waistband and cuffs knitted in rib, as there is really no equivalent to the stretchiness in crochet. It gives it a very professional finish.

I would do it in cotton, but the original suggests wool. The colour combination sounds a little dull too. Dark brown, medium brown and fawn. Very 30s though.

For the knitting pattern I chose this for the unusual shape, and the colour, I'm a sucker for bluey greens. And belt buckles!

'With a Slit Basque. A Charming Jumper With a Waistcoat Effect. 
Here is the new line in jumpers for those who cannot wear the short waist-length. This one, knitted in basket pattern, has a basque with an open front which gives play round the hips o' various measurements at that point.'

It is larger than the usual jumpers, at 37 inches around the bust. And longer, at 22 inches from shoulder to lower edge.

'A pretty stitch, a neat Eton collar, buttons at the back, and a slit basque are all points that encourage you to make this jumper which looks enchanting in green. If you are going on a cruise it is ideal to slip on when the air is crisp, or you could have it in white for tennis.'

Ah, I can only imagine how glamourous cruises were in the mid 1930s, and all the chic knitwear that accompanied them. And beach pyjamas. And evening gowns.

I'm off to plan my summer cruise wear.

Or maybe just clear up the mess in the house caused by children. Oh, the glamour.


Friday, 23 October 2015

The Jumper on the Cover - Stitchcraft October 1937

The moment I saw the cover of this Stitchcraft, I knew I wanted to knit it. I could see it was done in 'thick' wool, but it was also very flattering. Win win. Quick knitting, warm, and not too bulky. And finished in time for winter.

It is only the second long sleeved jumper I have ever knitted, so I imagine it will get lots of wear. I was so impatient to wear it, I finished sewing it up on the tube to the British Library, and changed into it while I was there. I did get a few funny looks in the loo, as there were still a couple of ends sticking out. Thankfully, I met Caroline there (The Sunny Stitcher), and she kindly sewed them in for me.

Between the rain showers this week, I got my husband to take some quick pics of the jumper in our garden.

The original yarn suggested was 'Totem' by P&B. The tension required was 16 stitches to 10cm, which meant a nice aran weight yarn. I actually had some Patons Classic Wool Worsted that I'd found in the States last year, but only 4 balls. I was sure it wouldn't be enough, but as they were 100g balls, at 192m each, I thought I'd take my chances.

And, as you can see, it was enough. I have possibly five or six metres left. I am often amazed at how economical vintage jumpers are with wool. That's why I'll keep on knitting them.

The front yoke has a very interesting diamond pattern, and is cast off straight across. The epaulettes and back yoke are knitted separately and sewn on. I have only one niggle - the sleeves are a tad too short. I should have measured them on myself before the armhole shaping. It pulls the shoulder down slightly.

I paired it with a new design called A Lacy Beret, which is an almost exact match to the shade of the jumper. I still can't tell whether it is blue or green, but I love it.


Friday, 9 October 2015

E17 Designers Autumn Market

I missed a blog post last week due to my frenzied making of things to sell at the E17 Designers Autumn Market this Sunday. I have been putting the finishing touches to the brooches and hats I'll be trying to sell there.

I did some 1940s style brooches, which I hope will go down well, as they would make nice gifts. At least, that's what I did with all the others I have ever made.

I designed 'Posy of Violets' a good while ago now, and have added to it since, with 'A Brace of Acorns', 'Bows & Bells' and 'Autumn Berries'. Only one of the patterns is available to buy on Etsy at the moment, so whatever I don't sell at the fair I will add to Etsy, in good time for Christmas shopping. Along with the option to just buy the patterns for the others.

A few hats, crocheted in muted tones, with a bit of chocolate thrown in.

This shot captures the colour well of what I'm calling 'A Lacy Beret'. I can't work out whether it is pale sage green, or an aquamarine blue. I don't think it really matters. It looks good with the brown alpaca.

I'm doing the fair with a friend and fellow wool-head Helen Reed of The Wool Kitchen, who will be selling her urban hand dyed yarn.

These are the berets I will have on display there. 'A Draped Beret', and 'A Lacy Beret'.

I will also be selling the patterns for the hats above - 'A Beret for Everyday, 'A Draped Beret'. 'Moss Stitch Beret' and 'Pom Pom Hat'. They are £3.

The hardest bit will be no surprise to the other makers out there who try to sell - working our how much to charge. I'm still not sure, I keep changing my mind, and trying to calculate time plus materials, and balancing it with what I think people might expect to pay.

Despite all the stressing over getting things ready, I'm really looking forward to it now. If you are in the area, or are planning on coming, please do come and say 'hello' to me and Helen. I will be easy to spot, I'll be wearing a hat, and I'll be knitting.

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