Vintage Knitting, Retro Dressmaking, Make do and Mend, Original and Vintage Inspired Knitting Patterns, Vintage Inspired books

Friday, October 15, 2010

Fibre & Clay, Ally Pally, designs old and new

I've taken part in some marvellous events through the summer, but have also had a thoroughly lovely time at two events in the last few weeks. The first, well the first two, where at Fibre & Clay in Knutsford, where we held trunk shows on two separate days. We took masses of samples from A Stitch in Time 1 (& 2), Vintage Gifts to Knit and also some single designs.

The display table

surrounded by knitwear and wool!

We had lots of fun with everyone trying on the garments, hats and gloves etc and eating fabulous cakes and desserts all made by the owner, Riana.

Bobble sweater from Stitch in Time Vol 2

Can you crochet a toque? from Stitch in Time Vol 1

Our gorgeous intern Daisy, wearing Variation on the Crossover Line.

The range of yarns at Fibre & Clay is quite overwhelming, with yarns of all weights, colours and composition spread out over two floors and three rooms along with beautiful artisan produced ceramics and jewellry. If you ever have cause to be near by I would highly recommend a visit.

From this warm, cozy event we made the big decision to take a stand at the Knitting & Stitching Show in Alexandra Palace, London, probably the largest event of its kind in the UK. It was a big, scary commitment and we hummed and haa-d for weeks over whether it was the right thing to do or not. In the end, we went. Just the two of us, Gavin and I, which for a four day show plus a day setting up is hard work. We were staying at friends on the south side of the city, which with Ally Pally (as it is known) being in the far north, involved an hour and a half drive in and out of London each day. Somehow we got everything into our car we needed for the show and got to London and managed to finish setting up about 15 minutes after the show had opened on the first day! All I can say, is that its the busiest event I have ever had a stand at.

Here's the stand just before opening time - the air conditioning has already frazzled my hair!

The stand on day one, again just before we opened

one of the rails crammed with garments from Stitch in Time Vols 1 & 2

 We were busy from the moment the show opened each day to when it shut. Many lovely knitters came to see us and say hi, some even came in garments they had made from the books, which I love seeing.

The Town & City Cape from Vintage Gifts to Knit

 Adorable Little Bed Jacket also from Vintage Gifts to Knit and I'm in The Midas Touch from A Stitch in Time Vol 1
 My lovely friend and cover girl, Theo, spent the day with us on Thursday, modelling some of the garments from A Stitch in Time, Vol 2.

On Friday, we had a visit to the stand from Sandra Polley, author of Knitted Toys, published by our very own, Arbour House Publishing.

Image Copright Arbour House Publishing 2010

Sandra signed copies of the book for a couple of hours and got everyone very excited with her amazing meerkats and other fabulous toys.

Image Copyright Arbour House Publishing 2010
By Friday night, we needed a chill out, and our lovely friends Rachael and Louise from Prick Your Finger came to whisk us away to Soho and Lorilee's for pizza and wine.

I had to work for my supper though, signing copies of Vintage Gifts to Knit after pudding!

Copyright Rachael Matthews 2010

Here I am looking rather bedraggled, crazy and tired after a 5.30 start and a long, long day.

One of the biggest thrills of the week was seeing my new design for Knitting Magazine being displayed on GMC's hugely impressive stand at the show and receiving hundreds of compliments about it. Now it has been on the stand (and therefore in public) I can show you a little photo of it. It is knitted in Jamie Possum 4, in a gorgeous deep red.

copyright Susan Crawford 2010

It is knitted in one piece to the underarm then divided for the fronts and back. the cables travel assymetrically up the body, with the fronts different to the back.

Copyright Susan Crawford 2010

The shaping on the peplums is worked on the stocking stitch panels and then a ribbed waist draws the garment in. I carefully placed the cables to create shaping panels which draw the eye in and slim the wearer's body.

Copyright Susan Crawford 2010

The sleeve heads are full and gathered in at the top, and the hood is also gathered up to create a flattering opera cloak effect. Stocking stitch is used on the hood to create a perfectly rolled back edge to frame the face. I am delighted with this design. I feel it uses all my vintage styling, shaping and finishing techniques to create a modern garment that can look dramatic and glamorous - imagine it worn with a full 50's white skirt and fur muffler for that White Christmas look or alternatively, worn casually with jeans or dungarees for a trip to the supermarket. I believe it will be released in the Christmas special of Knitting in December. After six months the rights revert to me and I will be releasing it as a single pattern.

I have a huge announcement on its way in a few days time, for everyone waiting for A Stitch in Time Vol 2, so do watch this space!

for now
Ruby xxx