1940s · 1950s · Knitting · Vintage

Do Me, Baby*

I’ve always admired those women who can hold down jobs, raise children, maintain relationships, have their creative practice and blog regularly about said practice. I have a job and a cat, and I struggle to blog on a regular basis.  It’s not that I am not organised; I just can’t get it together to blog every week – nor is it that I’m not sewing, or knitting – I’m the sort of woman who can quite happily close the door on the world all weekend, to knit and watch Sex and the City re-runs.  God help me if I ever figure out how to work Netflix, I’ll never leave the apartment!

At the risk of sounding like I’m making an excuse, one of the reasons my blog posts have been so thin on the ground, is that I haven’t really been sewing of late. What I have been doing is knitting, but like many knitters, I’ll see something fabulous that I just have to cast on for, even though there are a pile of half-knitted garments scratching their heads wondering why I don’t love them anymore. It’s a habit I’m trying hard to stop. But sometimes the making up of knitted things just flummoxes me, and the only cure is to cast on something easier, something I imagine down the track will be a cinch to make up.

So in an effort to get some of the unfinished projects off the needles, and into my wardrobe, I’ve decided to start shaming myself.  I am a woman who needs to be held accountable, so please feel free to prod me regularly with a sharp object about when the following garments are going to be finished, sewn up, taken outside and paraded.

Black 3 ply cardigan

First up we have what I’m currently knitting, a 3 ply cardigan that was frogged and re-knitted over the Easter weekend.  On 3mm needles. Yes, I said 3 ply.  Yes, I am nuts. It’s a McCalls pattern that according to Instagram I contemplated 106 weeks ago.  To my credit, I’ve knitted one in a weird pink that just needs a button band and buttons sewn on the front.  I know, I’m rubbish at this finishing business. To distract you from my crapness, here’s a photo of the McCalls sewing pattern.

McCalls Knitting cardiganIsn’t it fabulous?  You’re reaching for the 3mm needles and 3 ply, aren’t you? I wish they still did patterns like this – it has the pattern and sewing instructions for the blouse, it has knitting instructions for the cardigan AND it has instructions for all the beading. I think this is genius – wouldn’t it be great if sewing pattern designers teamed up with knitting designers and showcased their work together?

cotton boleroBack to the wall of shame.  Here is an 8 ply bolero that I cast on last summer from Kim Hargreaves’ gorgeous ‘Vintage Designs to Knit’. I’ve been wanting boleros for some time now to wear over summer dresses as the nights cool.  But there’s a dire shortage of bolero knitting patterns for 8 ply yarn – if anyone has one, please sing out.  It’s getting to the stage where I might have to draft my own pattern, and we could wait years for that to happen. Tash at By Gum By Golly has an almost pattern, which I think I might try. (And I’m trying not to make eye contact with her cropped hearts cardigan) But before I cast on again, I have to finish…

Bow front jumper

From Susan Crawford’s magnificent Stitch in Time volume two, knitted in Bendigo’s 4 ply cotton. I’m a little disappointed in how this one has turned out, but perhaps I should finish it before I pass judgement.

And then there’s the Victory Jumper, the jumper that every Vintage Girl seemed to have on her needles or in her wardrobe.

Victory Jumper

I made a slight colour change, but I love the way this has knitted up – but obviously not enough to get the thing finished.

And just quickly, I want to acknowledge that we lost an incredible talent this week.  There’s a part of my brain that can’t make sense of the fact that this life force is no longer with us. But how lucky are we that we grew up dancing to this man’s music? Vale Prince, the world’s a lesser place without you.



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