Sunday, 24 May 2015

Pretty as a Picture - 1930s Bow Jumper

Sorry it’s been so long since I last checked in.  My laptop threw a fit and refused to recognise blogger; what fun!!  I tried out the blogger app for the iPad, but I couldn’t get to grips with that, technology not being a strong point of mine, so Mr Y came to the rescue and ordered me a shiny new machine, so hopefully I can finally add some listings to my Etsy shop.

I hope you’re enjoying the bank holiday weekend.  I’m having a spot of peace and quiet this morning as Mr Y has taken the girls into town for a couple of hours while I pop a roast in the oven and do some knitting.  I’m working on a commission piece at the moment which is proving a little bit taxing on my brain!  I’ve mastered the actual pattern, all 36 rows of it, but I think there’s an error in the sleeve shaping because I’ve had to rip it back twice and no matter what way a look at it, the maths just isn’t working out right.  The phrase "a bad workman blames his tools" springs to mind, but I'm certain it's not me so am persevering, even if I have to re-write the sleeve shaping myself!  It’s being worked in a pretty dull gold shade, part of the Patons Diploma  Gold 4 ply range in a shade called golden; I love it.

Talking of woolly wonders, I said farewell to a rather splendid piece of knitting that headed overseas to Norway.  Another commission piece for a fabulous repeat customer, it was a slow knit, but a special one.

The pattern came from this Stitchcraft magazine from November 1936. 

When deciding on a pattern, the customer said they wanted long sleeved with a large front bow, something like Miss Lemon might wear in Poirot.  It’s never a chore to flick through the well-thumbed pages of my pattern collection, so, with the help of my mum, we set about choosing just the right design, and this one came out on top.

Knitted in Adriafil Azzurra 4 ply Bordeaux, it took a long time to knit.  Although it isn’t an overly complicated pattern, just an 8 row pattern repeat, it required my complete concentration so could only be knitted in the evenings.  The fact that I could only manage 1-2 hours a day on it, coupled with the fact that I had a 2 week holiday where I didn’t work on it at all, meant that it took three months to complete.  It needed just 3 buttons, but typically I didn't have enough matching ones in my stash so found these ones on eBay instead; a snip at £4.00

I’m really happy with how it turned out and the colour, although it doesn’t show that well in my photographs, is a really deep rich red.

I didn’t have to re-size the pattern, although it wouldn’t have been difficult to do so, and the only 2 changes I had to make to the jumper were to make the sleeves 19” under the arm rather than 18”, and to knit the bow in the same wool as the body of the jumper rather than the angora wool that was suggested.

Wool - Adriafil Azzurra 4 ply
Weight used - 7 balls
Time taken - 3 months
Size - 35" bust

Like some of the other patterns I’ve recently knitted up, I had some requests to make this pattern available as a PDF so, although it took me longer than expected, it is now finally available in my Etsy shop, which you can find here.

I’m on a bit of a mission to complete some of the work in progress jumpers that are languishing in various cupboards, bin bags and knitting bags!  When I last counted, I think there were 8 at various stages of completion, and I intend to remedy that, if I don’t get distracted by another pretty pattern, that is! ;-)


Friday, 17 April 2015

Free Knitting Pattern - 1940's Cardigan in a Large Size - Stitchcraft 1943

Final pattern today, this time for a cardigan.  This one is from 1943, printed in the October edition of Stitchcraft. 
Perfect for 4 ply, this one is for a size 42"-44" bust! 
Click HERE for the pattern.

Wednesday, 15 April 2015

Free Knitting Pattern - Simple 1930's Jumper - Good Needlework

This is a great little 1930's number.  Knitted in a simple stripe design with smart lines, this is great for a beginner, as it is entirely worked in knit and pearl stitches.  The original is for a 35" bust, but because the pattern repeat is only over 6 stitches, its an easy one to size up.
Click HERE to get the pattern.

Monday, 13 April 2015

Free Knitting Pattern - 1940's Coat - Needlework Illustrated

A lovely lady asked whether I'd put this pattern on the blog, so here it is. 

The cover jumper from Needlework Illustrated issue number 164, from 1941.  The pattern gives two size options; one for a 33-34" bust, the other for a 35-36" bust.  This one is worked in cotton, and if you do knit it, I'd love to see how it turns out.

Click HERE for the pattern.

Saturday, 11 April 2015

Free Knitting Pattern - 1930s Fair Isle Pullover for Men

One of the 1940's re-enactors was looking for a Fair Isle pattern for men with long sleeves.  I have never seen a wartime one, but managed to dig out this 1930's one, found in an "Easily Made Woollies for Men" booklet.
Click HERE for the pattern.

Thursday, 9 April 2015

Free Knitting Pattern - Simple 1940's Jumper - Weldons 352

Okay, so it took me a lot longer than planned to get this post up, but here it is, hopefully better late than never :o)

This is a free knitting pattern for a simple 1940's jumper which is perfect for a beginner, and because of its simple construction, it is an easy one to resize. 

To get the free pattern, click HERE.

Tuesday, 7 April 2015

Such a Pretty Pair

Good morning from a very sunny Suffolk!  It’s just beautiful out there this morning; spring has definitely sprung.  I hope those of you who celebrated had a wonderful Easter.  Ours was spent at home with family where everyone (bar the vegetarians!) stuffed themselves silly on roast lamb with all the trimmings, followed by lemon cheesecake and then Easter eggs; perfick!  

Although it is still school holidays, the Mr has gone in for today to do extra work with some of the students, so my girls and I have a busy day of gardening planned, and then a trip to the cinema to see Cinderella this evening, I’ve heard great things about the costumes so can’t wait to see it!  Before I get planting, I’ve managed to grab half an hour to myself, while the girls are digging for worms, to share with you two rather pretty woollies that have found a new home overseas.

The pretty pair was commissioned by a thoroughly charming lady in New Zealand.  She chose gorgeous patterns and opted for two seriously scrumptious shades of wool and I truly enjoyed working with her to create her vintage inspired pieces.

First up is a pattern that you may have seen before on my blog as I knitted it back in 2014.  It’s a Bestway pattern from the very early 1940’s and is for a close fitting jumper with a neat little collar in a mock smock design; try saying that after you've had a tipple or two!

It was knitted in King Cole Merino Blend 4 ply in a shade called fern.  I’ve used King Cole in the past and haven’t been overly impressed with the quality, especially their big value range, but I was pleasantly surprised with the Merino Blend and it was beautiful to work with.  The colour range is great, the wool doesn’t split, and it is so super soft to the touch, and not at all itchy.

When this one is knitted, the pattern doesn’t really show.  The pieces come out really rather small and it isn’t until you block and press it that the design can be seen in all its glory. 

Wool - King Cole Merino Blend 4 Ply
Weight used - 240g
Time taken - 79 days
Size - 32" bust

The second was knitted from a pattern from the Wearing History range, which I bought on Etsy.  Called Wood Violet, the pattern has been reformatted from the original and all the instructions have been retyped into 1 neat A4 page.

This one was knitted in the King Cole Merino Blend 4 ply as well, but this time in a gorgeous shade called damson.  I’m a little bit in love with this shade.  It is so divine, a real rich purple with a beautiful depth of colour.  For some reason, King Cole has apparently done away with this shade, so if you like it and see it anywhere, snap it up quickly, because you may not get another chance.  I have added a few balls to my stash for future use!!

The main body of this jumper was worked in stocking stitch, so knitted up super quickly, but the yoke was an entirely different affair!  I like to be honest when I’ve had problems with patterns, and I have to admit that this one reduced me to tears of sheer frustration! 

A fellow blogger said, when I asked for her help in working out the pattern, that the instructions were like an algebra equation!  I got in a pickle when the pattern said “p1, 0, p1…….p two 0’s together” because nowhere in the pattern did it tell me what “0” actually was!  By a process of trial and error, I got there in the end and my finished yoke looked like the picture on the pattern, so I was happy with the end result.

Unable to find vintage buttons in the exact shade of purple, I opted for original 1940’s buttons in black.

Wool - King Cole Merino Blend 4 Ply
Weight used - 220g
Time taken -
Size - 32" bust

I posted the jumpers off just 11 days ago, and by the powers of tracked and signed for delivery (it’s always worth paying the extra postage), the woollies have been safely received by their new owner who, thankfully, is over the moon with them. 

If you fancy giving either of the patterns a go yourself, they are both for sale on Etsy.  The Bestway pattern can be found in my Etsy shop here, and the Wearing History pattern can be found here.