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Wednesday, September 30, 2009

What do Cath Kidston, Ysolda, Selvedge & buttons

... have in common?

Answer: They are all in this post.

I have been waiting to tell you about a visitor to my stand at IKnit but was waiting for the photos to be available. Well now they are. Ysolda Teague came and spent some time with me and we had a great time dressing her in garments from A Stitch in Time and discovered that the first garment she knitted was from the original Stitch in Time and was Such Flattering Puff Sleeves.

Such flattering puff sleeves

This is also shown on Ysolda's blog. Funnily enough I finished sewing yet another of these sweaters at the IKnit show to wear for an evening out whilst I was in London. This is the end result.

lemon flattering puff sleeves

I knitted the second size, but again played with the fit to suit my excessively narrow shoulders and much preferred the fit as a result. I kept the length short and have added some pleated interfacing to the 'puff' to provide some structure and shape. It was a technique used a lot in the 40s in both knitted and woven garments to add structure. I'll show how its done in another post. I used RYC Cashsoft which is much softer than the recommended Jamieson & Smith so doesn't have as much natural support from the fabric itself so needs that little bit of help.

I haven't as yet got the full details, but I am hosting a very exciting evening in Liverpool on October 20th. I have been asked by the Cath Kidston store in Liverpool to present an evening of vintage knitwear alongside their Autumn/Winter 2009 clothing range. We are having a fashion show, presentation, enormous quantities of tea and cup cakes, followed by a chance to mingle and knit. It is a ticket only event but I should have full details of that side of things by the end of the week. The knitted garments will all be from A Stitch in Time and I am styling them for the fashion show with the lovely vintage inspired pieces from Cath Kidston. I'm so excited about this event as I am a big fan of everything Cath Kidston does and it is hopefully only the first in a number of collaborative events that we will be doing.

If this wasn't enough for me to cope with, I have a small article in the latest issue of Selvedge (Issue 30).


It is their 'Guiding Hands' piece and explains what to look out for when buying vintage knitting patterns. I am so proud to be included in this magazine and plan to order the free rosette you can get as a contributor. (Is that very sad? I don't think so?) I think its a little late coming out so is only beginning to appear in shops this week.

So what can top all of this? Well, after yarn there's only one thing for me and that's buttons - vintage buttons. On Sunday I went to the Vintage Textile Fair at the Armitage Centre in Manchester. It only takes place twice a year but it is a great fair.
I bought A LOT of buttons. Many of them are destined for pieces in A Stitch in Time Vol 2, but some are also for personal projects.


This first group are plastics from the 1930s to the 1950s.


This more varied group are predominantly plastics from 1930s to 1950s with one set of horn buttons. The red, white and blue buttons are coronation ware and I would really like a way to fit these into Stitch in Time 2.


The black buttons in this group are glass - the larger ones from the 1950s, the tiny ones from between 1890 and 1920. The third button is hand painted mother of pearl from around 1900


This last bunch are a mixture from 1940s to 1970s in plastic.

art deco buckle

This beautiful art deco buckle was a gift off the lovely Maureen who I buy most of my buttons from. This needs something very special but I amundecided whether it will be a sewn or knitted garment.

And finally, I've been playing with a beret/tam to complement my flattering puff sleeves. I'm using leftovers from the sweater itself, a spare ball of Jaeger Matchmaker 4 ply in charcoal, and the lovely lighter grey from Jamieson & Smith.


I'm designing this organically - making it up as I go along! Its knitted in the round from the brim up in traditional manner, however I have tinkered with the increasing but I'm really pleased with it up to now. The increases are usually done on one row shortly after completing the ribbing, but I've increased more gradually to alter the shape slightly. We shall see! I've got to start working the crown next which might need a little forward planning. I haven't completely decided yet what is going to be the centre but I have a few ideas to choose from.


Phew, so for now,

Ruby xx


Anonymous said...

What a super post, Ruby! Loads of interesting things to read about. I hope things are taking off well for you now. Your sweater is lovely, and better in the Cashsoft, I think. I can't imagine wearing J&S wool next to the skin!
Good luck and thanks, Jill

Linda said...

A great post, I am so inspired by all your chat! I wish Selvedge would hurry up and plop through my letterbox so I can read your article!

Unraveling Sophia said...

You've done so great turning the things you love into your profession! It's fascinating to read about. Your writing is interesting and inspiring - perhaps you should write a book based on your blog!