Tuesday, 10 July 2012

Pondering my next knit / copycat shops

Now I've finally got the Gold Jumper of Doom off my needles, I've moved on to choosing my next knitting project. I know I need a navy cardigan; I have a pack of 4ply yarn (500g) ready to go and need to find a pattern. And so I dived (dove? I dunno - some sub I am!) into my vintage knitting patterns.  You know, there's a surprising dearth of dainty vintage cardigan patterns! I have a fairly good stash of old patterns, including an awful lot of 1950s-1960s Stitchcrafts and Vogue Knitting Books, and the lack of pretty little cover-ups took me aback rather. I found plenty of jackety knits, and some very sensible cardis, and I've decided I really need a 1960s-style bouclĂ© dress suit, but on the whole the patterns I liked best were jumpers, and I need a cardi.

I did have a couple of options from A Stitch in Time volume 2, Kasha and the Lavenda Droplet Bolero. However, I already plan to knit Kasha in black, and the more I see the bolero with the matching top as a twin set, the more I want to make both halves, and I don't have enough navy yarn for that. (Wendy have brought out a really fantastic Merino 4ply that I plan to use instead, probably in silvery grey or sea foam green.) I'm thinking of the pattern you see here, but I'm still not sure that it's right. It's very sensible. The hunt for the right pattern will continue. I might be completely inauthentic and make myself a bedjacket to wear as a cardigan.

(EDIT 11/7/12: I found it! The perfect cardigan! The one book I hadn't flicked through was Knit With Norbury, which was the book with the pattern for my blue jumper, and two pages before the pattern for that jumper was the perfect cardigan. I am all ready to go!)

I've also seen this evening that yet another high street shop is selling something that looks suspiciously like an independent designer's work. I can live with shops copying vintage designs that haven't been made in years and are no longer earning a living for the designer, but by copying current indie designers these big chains are essentially helping themselves to one person's income. Here in the UK we have hundreds of people graduating in design each year, there's no need for big shops to rip off the indies when there's such a massive pool of employable talent out there. I'm seriously thinking of taking a pledge to make my own clothes and buy indie and secondhand only from now on (undies aside). I've been moving ever more that way anyhow, but it seems the only way to protest effectively against the high street copycats. Nuts to you, high street! I've got knitting needles, and I'm not afraid to use them!

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