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

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Diamonds Are Forever and It Cannot Fail to Please Released as Single Patterns

I'm really pleased to announce that, due to demand, I have released Diamonds Are Forever and It Cannot Fail to Please as single PDF patterns.

Diamonds are Forever is knitted in the round from the bottom up and features a stunning yoke knitted in an extra-special Excelana 4ply wool limited shade of Deepest Charcoal, to work alongside Persian Grey. The yoke also features Saharan Sand and Sweet Chestnut reflecting the amazing range of natural colours found in the fleeces of our Shetland and Icelandic sheep.  

Gentle waist shaping with 1.5 inches of positive ease, creates a flattering yet tailored fit.  This design is reminiscent of early 1960s knitwear designs which focussed on what was considered at the time, a woman's more 'active' role in the working world.  It also reminds me of the sweaters which Bond Girls from the 1960s wore, (hence the name) and the way that women reflected the changing times with their wardrobe and didn't compromise on design.
This beautiful colourway will be available to order as a very limited edition kit from mid-November. More details will be announced once the kits are ready. 

You can buy the PDF pattern from the Susan Crawford shop on Ravelry here (You do not need to be a member of Ravelry to make a purchase from the site).

The PDF pattern costs £5 (however, please see the bottom of this blog for a very special offer).

You can also purchase or take a look at all the possible colour combinations of Excelana 4ply in our shop here.

Materials required:
Excelana 4ply (100% pure British wool - 159m/174yds per 50g ball)
7 (9, 9, 12, 12, 14, 14) balls, shade Alabaster - A
1 ball, shade Saharan Sand - B
1 ball, shade Sweet Chestnut - C
1 ball, shade Persian Grey - D
1 ball, shade Deepest Charcoal - E

Needles and Notions needed:
One 2.75mm (US #2) circular needle
A set of 2.75mm (US #2) double pointed needles (DPNs)
One 3.25mm (US #3) circular needle
A set of 3.25mm (US #3) DPNs
Stitch markers
Stitch holders

The second freshly released pattern, It Cannot Fail to Please, is a beautiful form-fitting pullover, featuring an all-over lace design, which has 4-6 inches of negative ease to really show off the lace detail.  It is knitted flat, in pieces, which are seamed together.  The lace pattern is incredibly easy to knit and there is only shaping at the armholes and sleeve heads.

Some of you may well know this show stopping sweater from A Stitch in Time volume 1 where it has remained one of the most knitted patterns since the book first came out in 2008! These newly released photographs show the design knitted in our own Excelana 4ply wool in the gorgeous Damson Wine shade.

I'm also pleased to say that I've spent time re-writing this pattern, extending it to include both written and charted instructions, plus additional sizes.  I do hope you enjoy it!

You can buy the PDF pattern from the Susan Crawford shop on Ravelry here (You do not need to be a member of Ravelry to make a purchase from the site).

The PDF pattern costs £5 (however, please see the bottom of this blog for a very special offer).

You can also purchase or take a look at all the possible colour options of Excelana 4ply in our shop here.

Materials required:
Excelana 4ply (100% pure British wool - 159m/174yds per 50g)
5 (6, 6, 7, 7, 8) balls, shade Damson Wine

Needles and Notions Needed:
1 pair 2.25mm (US #1) needles
1 pair 3.25mm (US #3) needles
Stitch holder

To celebrate the release of these gorgeous patterns, you can purchase them at 50% off the normal price until midnight on the 1st of November (GMT).  Simply use the following code when proceeding through the Ravelry checkout - GULLIVER 

Now, I can hear you all asking, what has Gulliver got to do with anything?!  Well, Gulliver is our new Shetland Ram!  With the invaluable help of The Shetland Sheep Society, we got in touch with a wonderful local breeder who was looking for a new home for one of their favourite rams, Gulliver.  Last week, we made the short trip to South Lakeland in Cumbria, to pick up 'Gully' and bring him home to Monkley Ghyll. He's now settled in and waiting

to meet our Shetland ewes on the 5th of November, which is traditionally the date when Shetland rams (or tups), are introduced to the flock. Gulliver has 'Smirslet' marking which intriguingly features back white legs. His fleece is also the less common light fawn which I can't wait to turn into yarn! By putting him in with the ewes on the 5th this ensures that lambs will be born five months later, in April, as the days are starting to get longer again and the weather kinder.  And so, with romance about to blossom on the farm, I shall sign off.

For now,

Susan xx

Images Copyright Susan Crawford 2015. Images not to be reproduced without the permission of the copyright holder.

Friday, October 23, 2015

Temporary Suspension of Pattern Support

As you all know, I am currently in the midst of preparations for the publishing of the Vintage Shetland Project book.
I simply have such a huge workload at the moment, that it is with much reluctance I have had to decide to make some temporary changes. This is to ensure that I have enough time to finish the Project by the deadlines needed. 
So, with this in mind, I have decided to temporarily suspend pattern support until the beginning of the New Year (2016). 
It’s not been an easy decision to make, however, if you visit the Stitch in Time Susan Crawford Vintage Designs group on Ravelry I am sure there are many fabulous members who will be very happy to help with support whilst I am unavailable. 

I hope you all understand and thank you all again for your continued support. 

For now, 
Susan xx

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Can you help me with some research?

I'm currently working away on the research for the Vintage Shetland Project and I wondered if you, dear reader, could help me with some of that research. One of the most striking of the garments in the Project is the 'Rose Cardigan' featuring a repeating flower/rose motif. This type of flower motif, usually accompanied by stem and foliage, seem to have been popular for a relatively short length of time in the late 1940s-early 1950s and I'm ploughing through my pattern archive trying to find as many examples of this type of motif as I can to date their arrival and demise.

Trimmed with Roses from A Stitch in Time Volume 2 is another example of these motifs, only the motif is bigger and uses a combination of stranded and  intarsia techniques to create it.

So how can you help? Do you have a vintage pattern or pattern book archive - particularly containing patterns published in the UK? I'm only looking for flower motifs from before the 1960s, I don't need any 1970s or 1980s examples. If so, could I ask you to take a flick through your patterns and see if you can find any examples of flower/rose motifs of this type. If you do find any could you scan the cover image, an image of the garment if different from the cover and the chart/instruction for the flower - I don't need the pattern otherwise, just the motif. If there are any other date references these would be very useful too. Please then email the information to

To say thank you let me know in your email any single PDF pattern of mine available on my ravelry pattern page you would like and I will send it to you via ravelry free of charge.

for now,
Susan xx

Friday, October 02, 2015

Yarndale Success!

What a whirlwind Yarndale was this year!  As some of you may know, Yarndale is a yearly yarn festival taking place at Skipton Auction Mart in North Yorkshire, England.  It took place last weekend, the 26 -27 September.  As I’ve mentioned in a previous update of my blog, we decided to try a different layout for our stand this year.  One which gave a preview of the Vintage Shetland Project.

What wonderful feedback and interest we received!  We had three of the garments from the Project on display for people to examine and lust over, with a preview brochure for you to take home.  Plus we also had a ‘squishing rail’ of hanks of our lovely Fenella yarn with shade cards available.  My colleagues Tracy, Jo and Tess were also on hand to answer any questions, take pre-orders of the Vintage Shetland Project book and orders for all our yarns and kits.  We were overwhelmed by the response to the garments and the interest in the book.

Included in this post are photos taken by one of our fantastic customers, at the Yarndale show.

Here you can see the Beaded Yoke Sweater knitted in Limoncello from our Fenella yarn range and also a beautiful cardigan which is knitted in six shades of Jameson & Smith 2ply jumper weight.  This particular garment is one which I’m also displaying at my mini trunk show during Shetland Wool Week.  Here’s some more photos showing some of the detail on this very wearable cardigan.

My colleague Tracy’s, favourite garment was also on display.  This beautiful slipover is knitted using 5 shades of Jameson & Smith 2ply jumper weight and is such a timeless piece.

I know she is itching to start knitting it for herself!

It was such a pleasure to be able to share these garments with you at the show and to receive such positive and supportive feedback.  Thank you to you all.

For now,

Susan xx