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! ;-)



  1. Gorgeous jumpers. Love the 'Miss Lemon' one.
    The pattern is probably wrong, it happens even on vintage patterns! I remember I knitted a fair isle jumper and sleeve pattern was completely wrong. In the end I worked it out on graph paper myself row by row.
    Julie xxx

  2. Ooh both jumpers are gorgeous!!!

  3. What wonderful knits! The first one reminded me of the bluebell jumper :) Just stunning.

  4. They both look so nice! I love vintage patterns but they are a pain to knit, I have about six on the go at the moment but am determined to finish!

  5. all so gorgeous! i love the button detail on the bow.

  6. Beautiful as always Lucy :) xx

  7. All those complicated patterns, you are so talented. The jumpers are beautiful, I love the colour of the red wool & those buttons are very special. I have finished my stripped jumper from your pattern, just need to press it. The wool I used I was unhappy with so will not use it again, a learning curve I guess.
    Enjoy your day.
    Fondly Michelle

  8. There's nothing you make that I don't love, Lucy!
    Just waiting for my turn now. ;)
    Best regards,
    Julie Xxx

  9. There's nothing you make that I don't like, Lucy!
    Fabulous. I'm just waiting for my turn now ;)

  10. Lovely jumpers, such pretty stitch patterns. I like the one on the front cover of the Stitchcraft too. I had issues with my laptop and Blogger, still ongoing and so very annoying!

  11. Glad to see your blog back up and running. I have a few patterns with this lady modelling. She did a lot of pattern modelling in the late 30s and 40s. Sometimes it is difficult to 'see' a pattern no matter how many times you do it. I've got a problem with a pattern for daffodils. The first time I knitted one I got the trumpet exactly right but now I can't see how I did it, and I'm sure I'm following the instructions correctly but they just won't come out right! Of course there were mistakes in patterns, and often there was a correction issued, only of course now we might not know. Pattern looks fantastic though!

  12. Stunning!! I want the brick red (bordeaux) one!! :)