Wednesday, 11 May 2011

Charity Shop Bargain Brings Back Happy Memories

Yesterday, I found a couple of books in a local Charity shop that set my pulse racing and bought back happy memories of 1980s knitting, my sister dug deep in her pocket and bought them both for me at the princely sum of £1.35 (about $2.20).
The first book was the Sasha Kagan Sweater Book, I can remember borrowing this from the library in Stepney (back in 1984 it would have cost me a 1/12th of my weekly wage) and dribbling over the amazing pictures of garments knitted in a Fair Isle style. This was the first time I had seen this technique used to create fabulous pictures and back then the cardigan that I wanted to make was the Winter Scotties cardie... even if it was in 2 ply... yes, you read that right 2 ply! I never got to make it but there is a Scottie dog beret which even now is tempting me, although I think I might give the leg-warmers a miss!
The other book was The Sweater Book and excluding some of the shoulder pad heavy patterns, a number of them would translate really well into designs for 2011... although I am not sure I would submit a child to this!
So I thought you might like to see a couple of items I made back then from Patricia Roberts patterns... the first is a Sampler Sweater which I made in 1985, I bought the pattern and wool from her old shop in Covent Garden as a Christmas present to myself as I was going to be spending Christmas on my own, I remember having to wind up the skeins of wool into balls using my dining chairs to hold the wool!  It was the first time I had ever knitted from a chart and I worked into the night so that I could see the yacht, house, the night sky and the tree developing.  Although I have to admit the extra long cable between main sweater and the bodice still bugs me...
And the next is the Bow Tie cardigan, an absolute classic of the 1980s down to the shoulder pads which I used wear with black leggings and a black felt hat, and I thought I looked the bees knees, fortunately for me, no pictures survive!
 
I have realised that both these pieces are over 25 years old, but on searching for them, I discovered my first ever completed piece of clothing... An Aran cardigan made when I was 11 and my mother thought I should be kept busy as I was off school for a month with Glandular Fever.


Oooh when looking for my old pattern book I found a UFO (UnFinished Object) a Patricie Roberts cardigan using blackberry stitch to simulate bunches of grapes... and some of the skeins are not even wound up... it must be over 25 years since I started it... I think it might need finishing, what do you reckon?

12 comments:

SeniorCrafts said...

Oh Ros the Bow Tie Cardie is just the best!! Clicked on the pic to see the detail... Do knit the Scottie Dog Beret (in 2ply?) and show us! Nancy

Polly Polkadot said...

My son would fill the pocket on that child's jumper to bursting point - he thinks pockets are amazing!
Did you have the hair to match the jumpers?

Crystal Velvet said...

Thanks for the memories.
I too wore a wonderful selection of 1980's jumpers. My best was a zig zag effect in mohair in grey and red. They were not compatible wools and the red shrunk up in the wash, but I simply stretched it until it was down to my knees. I absolutely loved the thing.

CHRIS LINACRE said...

great post Ros made me smile and recall some of my old knits too

Carol said...

That was a trip down Memory Lane, thankyou.

two hippos said...

What brilliant finds! I love the fact that you have kept your wonderful knits too,

thebutterflyexperience said...

Great Bow Tie Carrdie, I'm sure my Mum had somthing like this!
x

Rosebark said...

From one Ros to another! I too am a charity shop trawler and find the occasional gem among the dross including The Harmony Guide to Knitting Stitches volumes 1 and 2 in South Croydon recently. Daughter has laid claim to these as I already have the Odhams knitting collection which include much info on stitches. Love the sampler sweater and the bow tie one!

rosiepink said...

That brought back memories - I had The Sweater Book too!
Charity shops are brilliant for odds and ends like buttons and yarns - especially with the demise of the local 'knitting shops'

Sandie said...

Hi Ros, just discovered your blog! I'm not a great knitter....pretty good at it, but very slow, so I get bored! It was my mum that I always went to for knitting, and she knitted constantly. ~This p0ost was a trip down memory lane for me too! Loved it!

Picto said...

I'm another charity shop trawler, I don't always buy but always look, you never know what you may find. Great sweaters.

Jan x

Anonymous said...

learned a lot