Thursday, 24 November 2011

Mabel Lucie Attwell knitting patterns

After yesterday's post about 1920s baby and maternity wear, Marigold (from Mellow Fruitfulness blog) pointed out that the illustrations were very similar in style to Mabel Lucie Atwell, and she also told me that Atwell had designed knitting patterns for Jaeger. And here is one! Children's Woollies, published circa 1925, featuring Atwell's Jaeger Twins on the cover.

Originally part of Leach's Sixpenny Knitting Series, this hard-to-find pattern is now worth slightly more than sixpence. A copy had been sold at Bloomsbury Auctions this year as part of a small collection of children's books for £400. Better start saving, or praying to the Jumble Sale Fairy...

Wednesday, 23 November 2011

1920s baby clothes

Weldon's Simple Baby Clothes and Materity Wear - a broadsheet-sized home-dressmaking magazine from the late 1920s, and a fascinating glimpse into the glamorous world of what the well-dressed tot and ma were sporting.

"Surely there is no more delightful task than preparing an outfit for the Little Stranger. The wee garments are so dainty and easy to make, and as we stitch into them all the best wishes in the world, we wonder perhaps if we are working for some small boy or girl who will one day become a national hero or heroine."

Long, simple gowns were de rigeur for the newly arrived Little Stranger: "Dainty and protective with bonnet for Miss, or Hat for Master."

Styles for older children echo the adult fashions of the 1920s - I love this little cloche hat. "Dainty frock in Ayesha or washing silk and Coat and Bonnet of velour, etc." Ages 6 months to 2 years.

Children aged 6 months to 5 years could wear this elegant hat: "Fashion votes for a silk or satin Bonnet, with gauged crown and cuff brim, to match her coat, and she will be so smart. A tiny daisy spray from transfer No 14102 will be pleasing on the brim".

Mummies, of course, were not to be outdone in the maternity fashion pages. Long, flowing dresses and coats to accentuate the 1920s ideal androgynous figure, and not a baby bump in sight.

"I'm eight months pregnant, you know."
"It shows, my dear, you are looking simply elephantine."

Monday, 14 November 2011

Brown jumpers

Brown autumn jumpers. Here, two 1970s families model a variety of shades of brown, from yellowish to deep russet. Perfect camouflage if you are planning on hiding in a pile of leaves and jumping out and scaring people.

Children always look slightly uneasy in knitting patterns like these. You can tell that those people aren't really mummy and daddy. That little girl on the Templetons pattern is thinking "I'm holding a stranger's hand!" The little boy on the Ladywood pattern is having to pull off the double whammy of putting his hand on a strange girl's shoulder while looking amused that fake daddy is looking at fake mummy. Give him an Oscar!

Christmas orders

Last posting date for Christmas from the UK to the USA is 9th December, by airmail. I'm already getting busy so if you'd like a custom knitting or cross stitch order, please let me know as soon as possible, I would hate for anyone to miss out!