Vintage USA Crochet books

Last September I wrote a short Blogalicious post recommending Cassie Stephens blog. It’s so fun and often very interesting as you’ll learn about artists and techniques her school students are focusing upon . I sent Cassie a 1970s Simplicity dress pattern which I came across in a craft Charity shop last Autumn, it was just a little gift. A couple of weeks ago Cassie left me a comment asking for my address. Ooooohhh! I didn’t expect anything in return but I was taught never to look a gift horse in the eye, so emailed my details. A parcel arrived at lunchtime. 031 It’s so kind that someone would spend so much sending a parcel to a stranger, what a lovely thing to do.032Professional looking packing! What is inside??!! (Such a blogger thing to do; we can’t open a parcel, spot a huge spider or see a bunch of flowers without grabbing our camera!)033Moon Pies! I’ve heard of these but never eaten one. Woo hoo! Slightly squashed and a bit soft so I’ve put them straight in the fridge. It doesn’t matter, I’m sure they’re going to taste yummy. After a Winter drinking far too much hot chocolate and as many marshmallows as I could pile on top I went cold turkey in the Spring, so these are very welcome. Cassie writes that they’re ‘a made in Tennessee delicacy, right after barbecue and whisky’! Apparently the best way to eat them is microwave for 10-12 seconds and enjoy with a sugary soda. Can do! No issue with those instructions. At all. 043044 It’s a comprehensive little book, published in 1971. 045 046 Top marks for including a chapter for Lefties! This beats many current How-to-Crochet books.040 This really is treasure! I’m so pleased to own this booklet and will take good care of it.041 10 cents. 042 So, this was published in 1941, I wonder how far ‘away back’ they mean?047 There’s something about the girl below that makes me think of The Sound of Music. It must be the blond hair and hair style.038 I watched a friend tatting once, I’d never seen it done before and would like to learn sometime so I’m adding it to my mental list of skills I’d like to acquire. It’s growing all the time.035 Using a finer hook than I usually crochet with and fine crochet cotton appeals, but I can never imagine myself wearing a crochet collar. Maybe one day I’ll send Cassie one? I can somehow imagine her rocking that look in a vintage style dress with her usual aplomb.034 Pom-poms ahoy! 037 So interesting to see these diagrams. 036 Well, if you have been following my CAL posts since the beginning you’ll know that I’ll never be using the popcorn stitch for a whole bedspread! Can you imagine?! A row or so of blocks for one end would be painful but ok, but urgh a whole bedspread full of blocks would be way too many! But looking at the picture I wonder if the USA popcorn stitch might be the UK bobble stitch? I need to check the stitch details. Things might be looking up for this bedspread.039It’s interesting to see which of these companies, threads and yarns are still around, this booklet was published in 1941 after all. 72 years ago! The new enthusiasm for crafting is exciting and there’s so many contemporary makes we can see and read about to inspire and teach us, but these are not new skills; it’s just that they’ve become popular again. This gift could not have come at a better time. When I was out shopping for my Graduation kit on Friday I started to feel a bit odd and by the time I got home I was ready to crawl into bed, which I did. Basically I haven’t spent much time out of it until today. I’m still feeling pretty ropey and am not able to eat much other than dry toast and sip water but can feel I’ve turned a corner. No graduation, no champagne or meals to celebrate, but I’ve had very, very sweet messages from my student friends saying how much they missed me on our special day. The most touching messages were from the two friends whom I was to sit between in the hall. The seating’s alphabetical so they knew that the empty chair was mine. Cassie’s presents could not have come at a better time. They’ve really, really cheered me up. I text Someone at work earlier to say we’ve got treats from Tennessee. His reply? “Woohoo. Or, more correctly, Yeehaaw.” Exactly how I feel.Thank you VERY much Cassie.

Truly Vintage Crochet Patterns

I’ve just had a surprise parcel delivered, it’s incredible and I wanted to share my haul with you.
A friend who sent me sewing magazines, patterns and books recently has now sent me a whole bundle of crochet patterns. She’s having a major clear-out before decorating and has been giving piles of these away, I think they belonged to her Mother.

The term vintage is currently used so often that it’s becoming an almost meaningless term. Dictionary.com offers these definitions:

vin·tage

[vin-tij] Show noun, adjective, verb, vin·taged, vin·tag·ing.

noun

1.the wine from a particular harvest or crop

2.the annual produce of the grape harvest, especially with reference to the wine obtained

3.an exceptionally fine wine from the crop of a good year

4.the time of gathering grapes, or of winemaking

5.the act or process of producing wine; winemaking

adjective

6.the class of a dated object with reference to era of production or use: a hat of last year’s vintage

7.of or pertaining to wines or winemaking

8.being of a specified vintage: Vintage wines are usually more expensive than nonvintage wines

9.representing the high quality of a past time: vintage cars; vintage movies

10.old-fashioned or obsolete: vintage jokes

11.being the best of its kind: They praised the play as vintage O’Neill.

Origin:

1400–50; late Middle English  (noun) < Anglo-French,  equivalent to vint ( er ) vintner  + -age -age;  replacing Middle English vindage, vendage  < Anglo-French; Old French vendange  < Latin vīndēmia  grape-gathering, equivalent to vīn ( um ) grape, wine  + -dēmia  a taking away ( dēm ( ere ) to take from ( see redeem) + -ia -y3 )

Related forms

non·vin·tage, adjective, noun

un·vin·taged, adjective

In my surprise haul I believe I truly have a collection of vintage crochet patterns, but you can see a few of them and judge for yourself. This only a selection, including a few adverts I thought might make you smile:

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Goldilocks and the Seashell Scarf

I’ve crocheted another few rows in the brightish light of the morning. The trebles of the Rainbow Granny Stripe blanket are far easier to do when it’s night-time. I’m even able to glance up at the tv now for a second or two. I’m not nearly as good as my friend whom I first met at a convention last autumn. She was looking at the speaker all the time, but her hands were busy beneath the table crocheting! I was in awe and definitely experienced a good measure of wonder too!

She’s clever with beads too, her pendant was featured on the cover of a UK jewellery magazine recently.

Anyway, I’m losing focus as usual, the main point of showing more Seashell Scarf pictures is I’ve hit a snag. A big one. I looked at the ten rows of seashells and realised it’s too wide. (14″) I’m not actually going to wear the scarf that thick!

I know; it’s like a soap opera now. First I can’t do the dtr and wail, then it’s too narrow with chunky yarn, and now it’s too wide. This is like a version of Goldilocks for beginner crocheters!

Before I undo it all (all those dtrs!!!!) I’m going to consider if it can be used for anything else. I wondered if I could make ten row ‘squares’ and fix them together to make a throw, but will the edges be too wibbly and fragile to do this? Meanwhile I will start another using the second skein of yarn. I’ll try either 26 or 32 ch to begin, since my advisor Caryn has worked out that you need 6 extra ch per shell. Four shells is probably the best width, three was too few, ten is too many. Fingers crossed.

A surprise in the post from V cheered me up in the midst of scarf trauma. There are some good stories about the mice in the cottage. I’ll tell you about the Christmas mice sometime.

These Woman’s Weekly pages look vintage don’t they? (We don’t seem able to say old these days, it’s all ‘vintage’. As I’m apparently a kool-crochet-kid according to Patch I’m going with the flow.)

In fact that the pages aren’t really that old at all. :-)

Thank you V for thinking of me. I love little surprises in the post.