2020.07 Let’s celebrate!
This July is the month of celebration, as I finished both the Art Deco sweater and the antique diamond lace collar! Finally, after months of effort! Just poured myself a glass of rosé 🙂
2020.05-06 Victory Jumper & Knitted Baby Booties
I love vintage patterns. Very excited to start knitting this classic 1945 Victory Jumper, one of the original 1940s patterns from Britain. During the Second World War women in the country were encouraged to contribute to the war by knitting, in particular for the troops. Many patterns were given away for free. This pattern, together with some others are now freely accessible from V&A’s website. The yarns as suggested for knitting the jumper are discontinued, but I find the Irish Studio Donegal Darnie yarns good alternatives.
I’ve been spending time knitting a pair of baby booties for a new born family member. My second time knitting these booties, last time for a baby boy, and this time for a baby girl. Same choice of yarns though, which I find the variegated colours fit for both genders. Click here for more about the booties.
2020.03-04 Art Deco Sweater
Knitting this Art Deco sweater has been one of my major stay-at-home activities during the COVID-19 lockdown. The pattern is obtained from the book Art Deco Knits: Creating a Hand-knit Wardrobe Inspired by the 1920s – 1930s by Jemima Bicknell, which I bought a while ago. The yarn is Økologisk Sommeruld from CaMaRose, a summer yarn spun with organic wool and cotton fibres. My first time knitting a sweater indeed—fingers crossed!
2020.01-02 Splash Mini Scarf & Bobbin Lace – Bedfordshire Teardrop Edging
I like the idea of mini scarfs, portable yet can still keep you warm. The sophisticated scarf pattern is available at the book Japanese Knitting Stitch Bible: 260 Exquisite Patterns by Hitomi Shida. The frills at both ends are vivid, and the variegated splashes of colour help adding some fun feeling.
For the Bedfordshire teardrop edging, the pattern is adapted from an antique pricking by Christine Springett. The smaller the pattern the potentially more difficult to make is what I would feel in the world of bobbin lace. Having broken lots of times the fine cotton threads I manage to control the tension better.
2019.12 Parelli Shawl & Beanie for Him
I have been doing some Art Deco knits recently. I went with Parelli Shawl design from the book Art Deco Knits: Creating a Hand-knit Wardrobe Inspired by the 1920s – 1930s by Jemima Bicknell. The leafy pattern is classic and timeless. Knitting with laceweight yarn is challenging but the fineness of the completed piece worths all my time and effort.
Another project is a beanie for him, a Christmas gift indeed. I mix and match some leftover yarns that are not enough to make something if knitted individually. I tend to go with the flow and let the remaining length of the yarns to define the design.
2019.11 Antique Diamond Lace Collar & Slovenian Lace Workshop
I started this antique diamond lace collar pattern prepared by Christine Springett a few months ago. I am excited to learn the new technique on how to make the raised tallies, which is like magic to me. This is indeed my first time handling 45 pairs of bobbins—I’d better concentrate!
I also attended a Slovenian lace workshop conducted by OIDFA. The warmth and knowledge of Simona Strgulc Krajšek, our wonderful Slovenian bobbin lace teacher simply inspired all of us. I’m thrilled to be able to make a number of beautiful Slovenian lace flowers under Simona’s guidance, and I would never underestimate the difficulties of making these flowers despite of their small size!
2019.10 Bobbin Lace Edging with Little Hearts & Knitted Baby Booties
I love black; I also like using black threads to make lace. I came across the book 100 Traditional Bobbin Lace Patterns by Geraldine Stott and Bridget Cook which showcases various lovely Bucks Point lace patterns. My first attempt was the pattern called Little Hearts with 12 pairs of bobbins and 1 single gimp.
I am as well spending time knitting a pair of baby booties for a new born of a friend of mine. I decided to go with the lovely design from prjaga.ru, where the clear instructions facilitate my knitting. My choice of yarn is the hand-dyed variegated Irish Townhouse yarns bought in This Is Knit in Dublin, which comprises 80% superwash merino, 10% cashmere and 10% nylon.
2019.09 Bobbin Lace – Bedfordshire Handkerchief Edging
The more I practise making Bedfordshire lace, the more I fall in love with it. Vivid and elegant are the words that I would use to describe this style of lace. Not easy to learn with usually requiring a lot of pairs of bobbins to complete, but the satisfaction I get after completion is beyond belief. My recent piece is this edging which is perfect to be used as the edge of a handkerchief for the bride. Pattern prepared by Christine Springett.
2019.08 Bobbin Lace – Brooch & Sachet Edging
August has so far been busy, not for handicrafts, but for a summer vacation with my dearest family whom I enjoy spending time with. I still managed to learn a few new techniques in bobbin lace from Ann Margaret Keller, my bobbin lace teacher including spider and rose ground filling, as well as making leaves, plaits and picots in Bedfordshire lace (a style of bobbin lace).
2019.07 Bobbin Lace – Circular Torchon
July began with more bobbin lace making, this time a circular torchon designed by Ann Margaret Keller, my wonderful bobbin lace teacher. It is more difficult to see what I am doing with black cotton threads than using white or other lighter colour threads; I am therefore relying a lot on daylight to make the piece. The high-quality black threads are from Fil au Chinois available at Maison Sajou in Paris.
While I thought the most difficult part was to make the torchon, mounting the recycled, slightly stretchy recycled denim fabric on as a mat was even more challenging, which I struggled for quite a while to complete. Now I have a new mat to serve my afternoon tea.
2019.06 Bobbin Lace – Srce (Heart)
Idrija, Slovenia has unique bobbin lace making tradition. Designed by Simona Strgulc Krajšek, this beautiful heart is one of the iconic heart patterns, in which the level of difficulty is suitable for me to practise as a beginner. I used nine pair of bobbins and the high-quality Fil au Chinois cotton threads which I bought in Maison Sajou, one of my favourite shops in Paris to make the lace.
2019.06 Denim Blossom Brooch
I was reviewing my previous works while an idea popped into my mind: how about making a twist on the felt flower brooch that I made earlier with recycled denim fabric from my old and torn pair of jeans, plus a bit of stitching with colourful with DMC cotton threads?
2019.05 Willow basket for now, perhaps a handbag in the future
It was the second time that I joined the willow basket making workshop at Tinahely Farm Shop in Co. Wicklow taught by Heike. I aimed at making a smaller and more delicate basket than my last one, which I thought should be easier, but Heike told me that smaller baskets are indeed more difficult to make. What a challenge I gave to myself! I’m glad that the basket turns out to be very nice, and now I’m thinking upgrading it into a handbag. Yes, a handbag. Sounds a bit crazy but I’m exploring the possibility. See if it works.
2019.05 Rhinebeck Hat
I’m truly a fan of Woolly Wormhead; her creations are simply amazing. I bought the Rhinebeck Hat pattern and now following the instructions to knit myself another hat.
2019.04 Bobbin Lace
Lace making seems so distant from me until I joined the Guild Lace Day organized by the Guild of Irish Lacemakers and met my current bobbin lace teacher Ann Margaret Keller. It has been an amazing experience so far learning bobbin lace, and currently I’m making pincushion designed by Ann and a heart designed by Simona Strgulc Krajšek. What is bobbin lace? Click here to read the good introduction from the Guild.
2019.03 Winter Dunes
I found this beautiful rib and fan pattern at Drops Design called Winter Dunes and decided to give it a go. I’m using the hand-dyed variegated Irish Townhouse yarns bought in This Is Knit in Dublin. This double-knit yarn comprises 80% superwash merino, 10% cashmere and 10% nylon. It’s a pity that winter is gone and I’m still in the process of knitting—can’t wait to finish and wear it.