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

Friday, December 24, 2010

Season's Greetings!

Copyright Arbour House Publishing

Thank you all so much for all your support this year.

with lots of love
Ruby xxx

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

A Stitch in Time Vol 2 Available to Pre-Order Now

The last few days have managed to slow me down a bit, but ultimately we've only ended up about four days late with the exciting news that A Stitch in Time Vol 2 1930-1959 is now available to pre-order. YAY!

Copyright Arbour House Publishing

I've put together a lovely package of goodies to go with the book to thank everyone who pre-orders. There are mini skeins of yarns that are used in the book, including samples of the forthcoming Excelana. There is a fabulous project bag, discount vouchers for yarn shops and for Excelana. There will be a discount code to use if you wish to purchase the Crochet book when it is available and there is a printable gift certificate emailed to you in case you are buying the book for someone else.

The most exciting thing of all for me, is that the book will be hard back (or case bound) and will contain 75 patterns. So its grown a little since Volume 1. More of the designs from the book will be revealed over the next few weeks both here on the blog and on the susancrawfordvintage website. For the eagle eyed amongst you (of which I know there are many) the cover will be exactly the same as shown but without the words 'and crochet'. I'll have a new version of the cover up shortly.

I am always so grateful to everyone who pre-orders as it really helps get a gauge of the interest in a publication and therefore how many books to get printed. As self publishers you obviously choose to take the risk along with the benefits, but it helps tremendously to know there is a market for your product, so again I really appreciate your support.

I hope you love all the goodies offered with the pre-order and that Stitch in Time 2 makes you as happy as its making me!

for now
Ruby xx

Saturday, December 11, 2010

The Real World

Having spent the last week at the Clothes Show Live at the NEC in Birmingham, I was painfully aware on my return home, of the real face of disposable fashion. Its very easy to hide away from it usually. I rarely go to the ‘high street’ and don’t really buy clothes from main stream shops. I endeavour to buy only second hand, make my own or buy from carefully chosen retailers or small companies. Occasionally I venture to the city centre but rarely if ever, come back with clothing from a high street store. So to spend a week, face to face, with cheap knock offs of what the high street do, was quite depressing. Stalls selling ‘hand knit’ cardigans, capes and christmas themed sweaters for less than £10 were everywhere. On the last day, dresses were being sold at two for £1.  In our area of the show, all the stand holders were there to promote hand made garments, jewelry, home furnishings etc. It was a hard six days with many of my fellow stand holders losing a considerable amount of money, after being assured by the organisers that there would be tens of thousands of people coming past their stands eager for something new and exciting. Of the few people who, despite the lack of signage, promotion and the complete lack of heating in our area, did venture over, many were very positive. Some however, were distinctly disappointed that I wouldn’t sell the garments from A Stitch in Time for £20 or £30. I explained many, many times about the time consuming nature of the knitting but how the end result was so worthwhile. Some people got it, some even bought the books as a result of this argument, more unfortunately just walked away as they couldn’t or didn’t want to spend the time knitting them.

Significantly, one of the most popular display garments on the stand was the Perfect Christmas Jumper, persuading many customers to start knitting again, or to challenge themselves with something more complex, or even to learn knitting so that they could work their way up to a christmas jumper for next year. This patience and lack of need for instant gratification is what I so wanted to inspire, and would have been delighted if even just one person had been persuaded to knit it. Its ability to inspire people to take up their knitting needles, is what makes this pattern so important to me, and why I was so distressed to see such a poor interpretation that could be bought without a second thought, out there on the high street. In addition, whilst still at the show, we heard one purchaser mention as she walked away, that she was going to run some up on her knitting machine and sell them at car boot sales and a ‘cheap and cheerful’ retailer working out how cheaply he could get them made for in acrylic and machine knit for his market stall. So all in all, the H & M issue came on top of an already depressing week.

I already feel as though a whole week of creativity has been lost in the void that was the Clothes Show Live and desperately want to get on with getting Stitch in Time 2 pre release sorted, new kits and patterns onto the website and new designs worked on. To start trying to fight a major high street giant is beyond my means financially and beyond my strength mentally and physically. I have shown mine and theirs together on the blog, I have named and shamed on Twitter, and I will send an email to make them aware of the similarities of the two garments, but I won’t be going any further. I need to focus on creating, designing and making and I think the anger and frustration that may very well ensue from any sort of protracted argument with such a huge company would, quite frankly, finish me off.

The tale is told, I’ve shown it for what it is, a cheap copy, but I need to keep going with my planned path over the next few months and not let myself be drawn into something that I might struggle to get out of! It might not be what everyone might prefer me to do, and it doesn’t bring about justice, I realise that, and I do hope, people don’t feel let down by me, but I have to do what is better for me, and with such an enormous work load ahead of me over the next few months, the choice is made.

Thank you everyone for your words of support and some extremely good advice. To know you are not on your own makes all the difference.

ETA. The Christmas Jumper makes an appearance on Glee

for now
Ruby xx

Friday, December 10, 2010

Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery?

My Perfect Christmas Jumper published November 2009
  From H & M this winter          

This has just been brought to my attention on ravelry. Notice any similarities? Even the 'mock' box sleeve heads. As a designer, you always worry that this will happen but this seems so unashamed. I have to say its made me feel very sad. I could rant and rave and say a lot of things but as the song says "a picture paints a thousand words..."

for now
Ruby xxx

Sunday, November 28, 2010

The Christmas Hoodie

I was very excited yesterday to see my new design 'The Christmas Hoodie' on the cover of the Christmas Issue of Knitting magazine. (You can just see my name on the right hand side of the cover!)

So yesterday, whilst we were out photographing some new designs (more tomorrow) I took some of my own photos of this gorgeous jacket ready for when rights revert to me in six months.

Copyright Susan Crawford 2010
The hoodie uses Jamie Possum Plus 4 ply yarn in claret and amazingly only uses 10 50gm balls for the first size. It is knitted in one piece from the bottom up with intricate but fun to knit bobbles on the pelmet, which also   has shaping panels front and back leading to a ribbed waistband, emphasising and minimising the waist line.

Copyright Susan Crawford 2010

From here wandering cables travelling up the body, drawing the eye inwards creating a slim line silhouette. The pelmet detail is repeated on the bell shape sleeves which also feature attractive puff sleeves.

Copyright Susan Crawford 2010
 The hood is shaped as a traditional opera cloak hood, falling and resting on the shoulders. It is knitted in stocking stitch sideways, to allow the stocking stitch to roll back from the face, providing an elegant frame.

Copyright Susan Crawford 2010

My beautiful new model is a friend of my daughter's, and amazingly, this is the first time she has ever modelled. She was a delight to work with and, as with each model I photograph, she brought a different dimension to the clothing, which I really enjoy discovering.

Copyright Susan Crawford 2010
There's a definite romantic quality to these images, quite different I feel to other photographs I've taken. More beautiful photos tomorrow.

Oh something I always forget to do! If you are a member of ravelry, you can favorite or queue the hoodie here.

for now
Ruby xx

Monday, November 22, 2010

Thank you, two decisions and a Christmas Gathering

Thanks to everyone who posted here, on the knitonthenet group, and on my ravelry forums, in response to my Crochet Conumdrum. Every single person who has posted has stated that they would prefer two separate books - A Stitch in Time 2 devoted to knitting patterns, and the Mystery Titled book devoted to crochet patterns of the same period. So I think the decision, except for a title for the crochet book, is made. A Stitch in Time Vol 2 will be knitting patterns only (although there maybe crochet finishing techniques here and there!).

The feedback everyone has provided has been fantastic. Thank you again for your help, it has really helped me make the decision.

The second decision I have made, is that after much persuasion I have decided to take a stand at this year's Clothes Show Live at the NEC in Birmingham. It runs from 3rd to the 8th of December (6 days!) and I have a stand in the Sknitch area which is focused on knitting, sewing and craft. My stand will have as many garments from A Stitch in Time 1 & 2 and Vintage Gifts to Knit as possible along with other designs I've done for magazines and knitonthenet. After the initial success of the Vintage Kits that I put together for Alexandra Palace I will also be formally launching the Vintage Knitting Kits collection at the show.

What I find really daunting is that for the first time this show is just about my work, and as such the stand is going under the name of Susan Crawford Vintage Knitting. Those of you who know me well, know that promoting myself is not something that comes easy, and I have always preferred to go under the banner of knitonthenet, Arbour House Publishing, A Stitch in Time or even Just Call me Ruby. They are all designed to provide me with something to hide behind. So this is a big step, but exciting. Confidence has never come easily for me, but I am hoping that I finally feel ready for this, to put myself out there.

Its all very exciting, scary, enormous and serious. I even need to prepare a press pack. If you are visiting the Clothes Show, do come and find us in the Sknitch area on stand SK23 - Susan Crawford Vintage Knitting.

On a much more relaxed note, I will be visiting Baa Ram Ewe in leeds for an evening of Vintage Christmas loveliness with mulled wine, mince pies and knitting. What could actually be better than that I ask you?

 If you live in the Leeds area do come and see us and have a thoroughly delightful Vintage Christmas Evening.

For now
Ruby xx

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Crochet Conundrum for Stitch in Time Two

Some of you may already have read on ravelry or the knitonthenet blog that I have a bit of a conundrum and I am hoping you can help me make a decision with Stitch in Time 2. I currently have too many projects than are allowed for the number of pages for the book (already bigger than SIT 1) and am having to make some big decisions.

The main issue I have is with the number of crochet patterns. It keeps resulting in either:

1) Too many crochet to knitting patterns for knitters to be happy.

2) Not enough crochet patterns to justify it being classed as a knitting and ‘crochet’ book.

My gut instinct is to suggest something completely different which is this -

Remove the crochet patterns from Volume 2 giving me the right project and page count and put together a separate volume of the crochet patterns, which also gives me the room to add some beauties which I just can’t include in the main volume. This book would obviously be available as a separate purchase but we are looking to have it ready at more or less the same time as Volume 2 and include a special offer price for buying both together. (It would be a smaller volume so also cheaper).

I feel this then gives crochet the respect it deserves rather than as a foot note to the knitting patterns, and gives all purchasers knitters and crocheters exactly what they expect from whichever book they purchase.

I would be really grateful if you could all give me feedback on this. The overwhelming response to date, is to separate the two books. As I've said earlier this is my gut instinct too. My one major concern about going in this direction is the additional costs of a second print run, which will increase our outlay dramatically. And having never offered a separate crochet volume before this is a new market for me. So my final question I guess, is:

Would you buy a book on vintage crochet pattern 1930-1959 in the same format as Stitch in Time or would you just stick to the knitting book?

Thank you so much for your help in this matter. Its a huge decision to make in many ways, and I really want to make sure I make the right choice.

for now
Ruby xx

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

A new design and a puzzle...

As you probably all know, I am a big fan of Shetland wools and I have a new design published in December's issue of Knitting (by GMC) using Jamieson & Smith Shetland Aran in a vibrant shade of orange. This is how she looks in the magazine.

copyright GMC publications

The wool is easy to work with and seemed to enjoy being worked into the twisting cables of the design. The original inspiration was victorian and edwardian evening cloaks made of devore velvet where abstract patterns have been burnt out of the lush, rich velvet pile. The theme suggested by the magazine in fact, was theatrical, and is a theme that given enough time, I would love to do a whole book of designs for! The collar is knitted to stand high, framing the face and to keep the neck warm - maybe when waiting for the handsom cab after seeing The Importance of Being Ernest or the like? I contemporized the style slightly with an interesting cable edging which is worked around the bottom of the cape once the panels have been sewn together. The cape itself is made up of five panels with cable patterns to the fronts and back panels, with the side panels in reverse stocking stitch. The ornate buttons I used are actually 1930s buttons but have a look of tortoise shell which I thought echoed the era I was inspired by. The hand openings are easily created  at the side seams and the rib band is picked up after the panels are put together.

The pattern is exclusive to Knitting for six months and then the rights revert to myself when it will be made available as an individual pattern. I'm looking forward to making myself one of these at some point! Below is a detail shot of the cable before I frantically sent it off in the post. (Late as always!)

copyright Susan crawford 2010
You can see the colour is a lot darker on this photo, and in reality its probably somewhere imbetween the two images.

And now a puzzle...

A little something I have been trying to do some research on has unfortunately not got very far. A lovely lady came to see me at the Knitting and Stitching show at Alexandra Palace with a fascinating photo of some yarn that she had, with a completely unfamiliar label, both to her and to me. She asked me if I could possibly find out anymore about the yarn and where and when it was made. Below is the image of the balls and their amazing ball bands.

So what do we know? Very little. It came with another similar yarn called Southdown 4ply that also features the stags head logo and is made in England. Southdown is a breed of british sheep and I am wondering if Kangaroo implies Merino (corny but the most likely reason for the name). I don't want to say any more than that so I don't lead people in any direction, but am really keen to know if anyone knows the manufacturer and the probable period of production. Please either comment on the blog leaving me a contact or email at the address above. I would be really grateful for any information no matter how tiny!

for now
Ruby xx

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

Monday, September 27, 2010

A Stitch in Time Vol 2

I feel like I have been waiting a long time to get the chance to show you all this, but here is the first sneeky peek of the cover of Volume Two of A Stitch in Time.

Copyright Susan Crawford 2010

The  beautiful garment photographed is from the 1930s. The original was also black and silver and I really wanted to try and capture an almost black and white feel to the cover image. I also used some Hollywood style back lighting and of course, it wouldn't have looked half as good without my wonderful model, Theo. I have knitted the garment in Knitshop Mulberry Silk, which drapes beautifully and has a fabulous sheen, exactly what this particular garment needed.

Volume 2 will also contain 60 patterns divided up between the 30s, 40s and 50s in the same format as Volume 1. The book is not yet published but pre-ordering will be available soon with some special limited editions also to be announced.

I will start sharing more teasers with you all very soon.
for now 
Ruby xx

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Goodbye to Summer

I always knew this was going to be a very busy summer, but its been even busier than I ever anticipated. Looking back at my blog over the last few weeks I can see a heap of things have been missed out, so I thought I would finish off the summer with a round up of what else has been going on.

The weekend after Vintage at Goodwood was my very good friends John and Juliet of John Arbon Textiles wedding. It took place in the lovely village of Lynton, with a picnic and party on Exmoor itself. John, Juliet and I all share a love of all things vintage, and a terrible collecting habit that none of us can shake! As previously mentioned I was working on garments for the wedding picnic for them both using the beautiful Excelana yarn that we have been developing together. Ultimately I only managed to get one garment completely ready for the day :( John's wedding vest will be to follow shortly, and both will ultimately be available as patterns. For Juliet I made a simple 50s style round neck cardigan, with fair isle detail on the sleeves and original 50s buttons, using shade 'Ruby Red'. The poor weather prevented me getting many photos and those that I took are on my daughter's laptop so I'm going to have to show you the cardigan another day  I'm afraid.

The yarn colours can now be revealed though. There are eight colours which all work together beautifully creating a coordinated vintage palette. Their names are:

Saharan Sand
Nile Green
Cornflower Blue
Persian Grey
Ruby Red
French Rose
and Powdered Egg

Our ball band and logo has also been created and here is a quick glimpse of what to look out for in your yarn shop!

Copyright Susan Crawford 2010

Once we returned from the wedding, with an eight hour drive from Devon, we then had to unpack and then repack almost immediately to begin our epic car and ferry journey to Shetland, for the In The Loop Two conference being held at the Shetland Museum. The journey started with a seven hour drive to Aberdeen followed by a TWELVE hour ferry journey across the North Sea.

our ferry

leaving Aberdeen

We made a grave mistake on the outgoing trip. To save money we opted for the sleeper seats rather than a cabin. Don't do it! We did not sleep for ONE minute through the night. Fortunately on our arrival in Shetland at 7.30am our lovely landlord for our stay let us into our apartment right away so that we could at least sleep for a couple of hours. The following day was the conference reception and a chance to get to meet the other delegates and speakers, then first thing on Thursday morning the conference began for real - with my talk as the opener. I was very, very nervous. I was doubly nervous when my presentation decided to loose fonts when checking through it on the wednesday night. I think I did actually become a diva and through a tantrum!

In the loop goody bags

The Thursday morning came, and actually my talk went very well. It sparked some debate and discussion which was exactly what I had hoped and I introduced my new 'explanation' of my work. This was it:


This stands for, Tradition + Reinterpretation + Progression = Renewal

and that I believe is what I do. My talk focused on my use of nostalgia as inspiration, the process behind the making of Vintage Gifts to Knit and the work I'm currently involved in at the Shetland Museum, the writing of  Vintage Shetland.

I met some lovely, lovely people whilst we were there -

Annemor Sundbo

I was heavily inspired by the incredibly knowledgeable Annemor Sundbo (a whole post about this amazing woman's work to follow)

Louise, Me, Zara, Rachael

I hung out and had fun with the fabulous ladies from Prick your Finger, Rachael, Louise and Zara

and had some great chats with lots of lovely knitters from all over the world. Gavin had a great time too, not spending all of his time with the knitters, he escaped to do some fishing

Wrestling Sharks!
And some thinking

Gavin in hat by Babylonglegs

You can see him here in a marvelous hat, very kindly gifted to us by the talented babylonglegs. This is both her yarn and her design. It was given to me, but someone has claimed it.

It was a marvellous event, I came away stimulated, inspired and exhausted! I don't think it could have been better except if it had lasted longer. I never come away from Shetland without being inspired and I think the most incredible inspiration is the light, colour just works in spectacular ways there and also, possibly surprisingly, there is such an abundance of colour all around you.

shetland colours

I didn't expect to see so much orange reflecting my knitting all around me.


Seaweed Ribbon
 This looks just like a beautifully wrapped birthday present!
Coming home we booked a cabin which was a far better idea, particularly as it was a pretty rough sailing. And so, it was A Dieu to Shetland...

Leaving Lerwick
Lerwick in the distance
However we got through it and arrived in Aberdeen on a beautiful sunny morning, and then home...

... for a few days before driving back up to Edinburgh for one final trip before the summer was officially over, to take my 'little' girl to her new home, whilst she studys for a BA in Film at Edinburgh College of Art.

So Goodbye to Summer!

for now 
Ruby xx

Sunday, August 29, 2010

In The Loop Two

Its been a busy week since getting back from Goodwood, some good reasons some not so good. One good reason though is that tomorrow morning we drive off into the sunrise for a 24 hour journey to Shetland. We are trying the ferry for the first time as we have a heap of stuff to take with us. We have a nine hour drive to Aberdeen and then a fourteen hour ferry trip! Overnight, so hopefully I will sleep through most of it. I'm not really a boat person so this is a big test for me.

The reason we are going is that on Thursday morning I am the opening keynote speaker at the In The Loop Two conference being held at the Shetland Museum. I have a 45 minute slot which is quite a long time to be talking! I am also official photographer for The Knitter which is rather exciting, so will be going everywhere with my camera round my neck to make sure I don't miss anything.

I will report back with a longer post on our return, but in the meantime wish me luck for my boat ride.

for now
Ruby xx

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Vintage at Goodwood - Part II

There has been quite a lot of negative feedback about this event. I for one, am really not in a position to comment on the organisational side of things as I wasn't directly involved in that side of the event, and to be honest despite one or two hiccups, had a thoroughly lovely time. I was invited to attend as a volunteer to teach knitting at the Vintage School sponsored by Oxfam.

 Each attendee paid £5 for their class which was donated directly to Oxfam.  I taught some lovely ladies to crochet, some to knit and some how to make handknitted dress clips and buttons.

The high street was cleverly constructed using prefabricated buildings which were disguised with ply wood shop fronts like Hollywood films of old.

I had my hair curled here.

And watched Curse of the Werewolf at midnight here.

One of the highlights for me was bumping into glamorous retro girls wearing garments from A Stitch in Time. I tried to get photos whenever possible, without scaring people half to death! Here are two To Set off your Summer Frocks together.

This photo was taken just before The Chap Olympiad where my old friend and model for A Stitch in Time, Fleur de Guerre was working. Here are Fleur and I together.

 Bizarrely, during the photography for  A Stitch in Time I don't think there was a single shot of me and the models together. I'm going to make sure I get some this time round when photographing Volume 2. I also bumped into my friends The Shellac Sisters, who very kindly volunteered to come and DJ outside of my Vintage Knitting class.

One of my favourite places was the Torch Club, which was a 1940s themed dance hall. Here's me with my hair newly curled, and Gavin in his new slip over. This slip over matches the Father's new socks pattern from Vintage Gifts to Knit and will also be available as a pattern in the near future. Gavin got into the spirit of the event too, buying some brylcreem to slick back his hair and shaving off his beard to leave a 40s style moustache.

There was lots of music on over the three days - my favourites were Earth, Wind and Fire, who were  everything I wanted them to be and more, and Heaven 17, who took me back to my youth, playing songs from Penthouse and Pavements and finishing with Temptation. I unfortunately missed Squeeze who made a guest appearance during someone else's show. We particularly enjoyed the Let it Rock! stage at night, although the name is somewhat misleading as it had a very eclectic line up of musical acts from The Lady Luck Club to Wanda Jackson to The Damned, with a little Burlesque thrown in too!

Despite some rain, having to camp - which bizarrely, I thoroughly enjoyed and having several copies of Vintage Gifts to Knit stolen, which really saddened me, I had a great time, and hope there will be a next time.

For now
Ruby xxx