This tea cosy, coffee cosy, and egg cosy are from the delightfully thrifty Harmony Odd Ounce book from the 1960s, full of "easy to make gifts and toys using oddments of leftovers".
They look wonderful knitted up in bright period acrylics as suggested by the Odd Ounce book and wouldn't look out of place on a vintage 60s coffee table (or lost in a meadow, as they appear to be in the photo).
My version (below) was made out of some leftover purple organic cotton dk and dusky pink acrylic dk for a softer, more 1950s feel. This is a timeless tea cosy pattern and very practical, too - bunching up the stitches to make the ridges creates a generous pocket of air inside each ridge, which acts as insulation and keeps your tea warm forever.
Tea cosy knitting pattern for a 6 inch high tea cosy:
Yarn: 2 ozs dk main colour, 2 ozs contrast.
Needles: UK size 7
Using main (M) cast on 96 sts. Join in contrast (C) and work as follows, making sure that C is twisted over M before starting next row. Note: Yf (yarn forward) in this pattern always refers to the colour used for last 8 sts.
1st row: * K8M, draw C across back of work to 3/4 inch and k8C, draw M across back of work in same way; rep from * to end. Twist M over C before commencing next row.
2nd row: *K8C, yf, bring M across front of work, draw up to 3/4 inch and tke to back of work, k8M, yf, bring C across front of work, draw up to 3/4 inch and take to back of work; rep from * to end.
Repeat the last 2 rows until tea cosy measures 6 inches, ending with a wrong side row.
1st row: Keeping pattern correct * sl1, k1, psso, k4, k2tog; rep from * to end.
2nd row: * Sl 1, k1, psso, k2, k2tog; rep from * to end.
3rd row: * Sl 1, k1, psso, k2tog; rep from * to end.
4th row: K2 tog to end.
Thread yarn through remaining sts, draw up and fasten off securely. Work another piece the same. Join seams leaving an opening at each side for spout and handle. Crochet round 2 large curtain rings, one in M and one in C. Secure to top. I didn't have curtain rings so just made two rings of single crochet - or you could cut two ring shapes out of the side of a clean plastic milk carton and crochet round these instead if you wanted extra stiffness without buying curtain rings...