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

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Focus the mind

I can't get myself to focus on one thing at the moment. I have a sketchbook of ideas but in my head they are all swilling round, merging, changing, morphing. I think its the weather. I sit looking out of my window at BIG sky, really BIG sky, but its been dark, cloudy, windy and wet for days and days. i love looking at the sky but not when its like this - and just like the weather, I'm unsettled. If its possible to have too many ideas, thats where I am. I need to channel just one thought and run with it. Have started writing lists today which is helping, as it always does, and tidying the house, which also always helps.

Before christmas, I put most of my stash in the loft to tidy my study/studio/dining room and its all still up there. I need to see it and touch it to help me make decisions, but... everywhere will be untidy again.

But I think I know where I'm going to start - will have to buy more yarn though, surprise, surprise. Will let you know more about it shortly.

for now
Ruby x

Monday, January 01, 2007

Last Post - for today!

This is just a little glimpse of my design for for their February issue. It uses Rowan Little Big Wool and is a great starter project for people wanting to move on from scarves. Its also a great present pattern as it can be knitted in a couple of evenings. Look out for it soon.

For now
Ruby x

Latest pattern on

This is the first of my recycled garment patterns which is available free on Its very simple but can save so many sweaters from the bin. I love it and hope to have more ideas for you soon on both the likes of and my own website which I should be getting to work on very soon. More details about this soon...

Next sewing project

This is a Liberty print I got in a sale early last year, and have been humming and hahing about what to use it for ever since. However since designing the Angora Hearts cardigan for (See picture on blog) it all fell into place. This fabric actually inspired the colours for the hearts cardigan and likewise the cardigan has inspired the choice of project for the fabric.

I am going to make a 1950's dress with a fitted bodice with wide straps and a full skirt and wear it with the cardigan. I have found a vintage Vogue pattern from 1952 that I'm going to use. The cardigan is quite cropped so the dress will mean no gaps or belly showing problems. Will give you a progress report on this one soon.

A bit of a blur

This is a sirdar pattern using their Blur yarn, a mohair, acrylic mix. Love the zig zag pattern, love the colours, love the jacket, except its huge! Enormously oversized in fact. The pattern dimensions aren't very clear and the final size for this jacket, which is for a 38/40 inch chest is about 54 inches. The drop shoulder is at my elbow and the sleeve starts at my waist. So if you would like to knit this one definately knit a size smaller than you normally would. I was really disappointed when I first put it on. But I've since paired it with a big copper coloured belt and turned the sleeves up(still a bit annoying) and everyone who's seen it on thinks it looks great. So I'll keep wearing it for now. One thing it has washed really well.

And next - Sublime

This little waistcoat was a handy use up of 7 balls of Jo Sharp silkroad aran I didn't know what to do with. The yarn is fab and feels good on. The pattern is from the Sublime aran book. The pattern is easy, but a bit vague in places. Very pleased with finished garment though. Have already it worn several times, both casual and smart.


I just love this sweater. I saved it for the family get together on boxing day and not only felt good but felt comfortable as well. The pattern is from at www:// but I used RYC cashsoft aran which is just gorgeous to knit with and to wear. The gold ribbon matches up with the skirt I wore with the sweater at christmas. Even though the RYC yarn has exactly the same meterage as the Debbie Bliss yarn used in the original I needed an extra ball so had to ring the yarn shop up in a bit of a panic but they had just the one ball left. What a relief.

Butterfly dress & a Happy New Year

Phew, its taken me much longer to get back to the computer than I expected - all the usual christmas stuff just got in the way - but it was worth it. I wish everyone best wishes for 2007, however the weather here isn't promising, the sky is black, the wind is wild and the rain is coming down in icy cold sheets... what a miserable start to 2007. Never mind, it means instead of going for a bracing walk by the sea I can start getting my blog updated.

First of all, and long over due, here's a better photo of my lovely butterfly dress. The pattern is a Vogue original 1940s tea dress that I've played with slightly. I got the fabric from a patchwork shop and it was a reject, in places the butterflies are fainter than in others but I rather like the effect. I got about 10 yards for about £10. I then embroidered over two of the butterflies on the bodice and three on the front skirt panel with a scarlet thread, mainly using chain and satin stitch.
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I used scarlet bias binding on most of the seams, but particularly the hem so when you walk or cross your legs you get a little flash of red ribbon. I tweaked the fit to be just right and it fits like a dream.