After ponking around making Halloween cards last weekend, I thought I should talk about how my latest knit is progressing, because that's rather more important. I don't want to show you photos as I'm making it for a fellow blogger and it's only fair that she should get to show it to you first, but it is coming along beautifully. It's not a vintage pattern, but it's a fair isle tank top so could easily pass for one.
I don't often knit for other people as I'm very slow, though this is in DK wool (twice as thick as I usually use) and doesn't have sleeves, so it should come together much more quickly than my usual projects. The yarn is a Debbie Bliss one, and it's a pure wool with that slight 'stickiness' (really a matter of friction) that makes it ideal for colourwork. It's thicker than would have been commonly used before the late 1950s, but has the perfect drape and handle, and all in all it feels right. Most mass-produced repro knitwear nowadays is done in synthetic fibres in too fine a gauge – it never looks accurate, to my eyes. Synthetics drape differently and take colours differently to wool, they're somehow cooler and brighter, probably because the base fibre is pure white whereas natural fibres are usually cream at their palest. If you look at vintage knitting magazines, you really do notice a shift in the colours used when the 1960s really kick in, there's a vibrancy (or possibly garishness!) that synthetic fibres bring that wasn't there before.
I'm still yo-yoing about my following project. I'm planning to make myself something but really can't make up my mind. One minute I plan to knit something 60s because so much of my wardrobe is 60s, and another I remember that a lot of 60s patterns are deathly dull and none of my separates are very 60s anyhow. It's going to be pale grey and in 4ply because I have ten balls of grey 4ply, but beyond that I have no idea what it'll be. My current favourite potential pattern is 'It Cannot Fail To Please' from A Stitch in Time volume 1, but by the time I cast on that idea might very well be failing to please and I may have changed my mind again.
While I may not know what I want to knit, I do know what I want to wear it with: a straight, calf-length pink and grey tartan skirt. It came from a charity shop (looking back at my blog, that was back in 2010) and has been one of the backbone pieces of my wardrobe each winter since. It can look 1910s-30s or 1950s depending on the styling. The things I usually wear with it are getting very worn out, and while I'm going to have a go at repairing them, the skirt really does need new friends.
|Blurry, because they NEVER STOP MOVING.|
*On which note, Jekyll and Hyde starts on ITV on the 25th of October, while for its Unmade Movies series BBC Radio 4 is broadcasting a dramatisation of Orson Welles' screenplay for Heart of Darkness at 2:30pm on the 24th, and a dramatisation of Alfred Hitchcock and Ernest Lehman's screenplay The Blind Man (completed by Mark Gatiss) at 2:30 on the 31st.