Thursday, 3 November 2011

A Stitch in Time Volume 2: the trunk show

Last night I was lucky enough to go to Susan Crawford’s trunk show at Marmalade Yarns in Frome. It’s the second trunk show I’ve been to there (the other was non-vintege, so I didn’t blog about it), and I have to say they’re really good fun. Marmalade Yarns is a tiny shop, but packed with the sort of yarns I really love, and it’s on Catherine Hill, alongside all sorts of interesting independent shops, some specialising in vintage.

The trunk show was to give people the chance to see the garments from A Stitch in Time Volume 2 by Jane Waller and Susan Crawford. I’ve been waiting for this book for months, and last night I finally got my copy. It contains 80 vintage patterns, all reworked using modern yarns and in many more sizes than the originals. If you’ve ever looked at a vintage pattern and bemoaned the fact that it came in a single size, or tried resizing one for yourself, you’ll know how useful it is to have a book that’s done all the hard resizing work for you, no matter how many vintage patterns you already own!


The book covers the 1930s, 40s and 50s, and includes some lovely hats, gloves and scarves as well as many cardigans and jumpers and even a pinafore dress. I bought a couple of packs of Sublime Extra Fine Merino Wool 4ply half price from Black Sheep in preparation, and now I just need to decide which garments to knit. While I’m usually early 20th century in my tastes, there’s a darling twin set from the 1950s in the book, and the bolero for that would be perfect in navy to go with some of my work clothes.

I’m probably guilty of gushing a lot over Susan, but it was at the launch of one of her other books (Vintage Gifts to Knit) that I got talking to a young lady wearing something she’d knitted from A Stitch in Time Volume 1 and it hit me like a thunderbolt that these things look good on real people, and I too can have the pretty every day. This blog probably wouldn’t be here without that party, and my wardrobe would certainly be emptier. Find out all about Susan's books at her website.

Anyway, SHUT UP MIM AND TALK ABOUT THE PICTURES!

Garments shown are:
Me with Susan - she's wearing 'Ribbon Threaded Jumper' from the book, I'm wearing my Madeira jumper from Knit With Norbury. Please excuse my face of pure goofiness; I have my book! Want to know something sad? I took it to work today. I couldn't bear to leave it at home.

Jen Storey of The Knitter and freelance tech ed Jen Arnall-Culliford looking at 'Lady's Evening Jumper'; Jen S is wearing a non-vintage hat, 'Peerie Flooers' by Kate Davies, (massively popular with knitters right now; I know at least three people who've made it) and Jen A-C is in 'A Warm Jacket'. That's mostly in 1x1 rib, so a git to knit (well, I hate 1x1 rib and so does Jen A-C, so I'm sure we can't be the only two!) but fits like a glove.

Me in the cardigan part of the 'Trimmed With Roses' twinset. The jumper part has short sleeves and, below the same rosy band at the top, stripes all the way down to the ribbed welt.

A rack of pure deliciousness.

6 comments :

  1. Well the rib might have seemed like it would be a git to knit, but I've cast on my first sleeve and am motoring through it. There's a pattern in the book called 'One Never Tires of Ribbing' and while that might not be true of the knitting, it is most certainly true of the wearing. It's a beautifully bouncy fabric, and fits in a really appealing way (or it will do if my swatching works out!!). Thanks for the lovely write-up Mim!
    Jen xx

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  2. Lucky you, Mim! What great fun and thanks for sharing it with us. I love the cardie you're wearing; its the flowers and stripes detail that really does it for me. Black Sheep sell really competitively priced yarn, don't they? Their website is my first interest port of call!

    P.S. I keep meaning to visit Frome, as I've heard that the independent shops there are great.

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  3. Jen: Oh, it's good to know that's not too much of a problem to knit - after seeing you in it, I want one of my own! (And a Kasha, and a rosy cardigan, and a crisscross cardigan, and the green twinset with the bobbles, and a... you know. KNIT ALL THE THINGS!) I think as it's not got too much shaping, that one might make a good project to take when I'm working a show.

    Vintage Knitter: I buy all my yarn, apart from when we clear out discontinued stuff at work - that's usually single balls and goes on my charity projects. I tend to tart around and find the website that's selling what I want most cheaply. Frome has some good indies and vintage specialists, but I do find their prices (and prices in Bath) pretty high, so personally I'd be inclined to buy from them only when it's a really special piece. I go to charity shops and my local house clearance place in Trowbridge for my every day stuff.

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  4. Thanks for the tip, Mim. I was in Bath last weekend and was surprised at how expensive some things were.

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  5. Vintage Knitter, Bath can be scarily expensive because it caters to the yummy mummy / Peter pan collar brigades. Trow is v working class, but then so am I, and things are much cheaper here if you know where to look. Being a guttersnipe, I' happier in places that are a bit rough.

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