Monday, June 25, 2012

A little swing in your step...

I love dancing so much but I can't get over how hard Swing/Lindy is to learn compared to Rockabilly. I really struggle with the foot work as its so different.

Jakk and I are onto our third class with SwingOut Sydney (same-sex Swing classes) and it's finally starting to gel thank goodness. We love Swing music, and its so lovely to be able to dance to it.

Its nice to be in a class that you don't have to worry that someone might be 'weird' about partnering up with a queer. I should point out that is a really rare occurance, and 99% of the people on the vintage/dance scene are fabulous, unfortunately you do encounter the 1% from time to time.

Here's a little video of us last night if you want to have a chuckle! (and yep, i'm wearing Freddies Dungaree Dolls if you want to see what they look like on a bigger girl).


Thursday, June 21, 2012

FO: 1950s Ridge-Stitch Beret, from Bestway

I've been meaning to knit a vintage beret pattern for so long now, and this beret pattern really ticked a lot of boxes for me.
I needed one to cover my bad-hair days, and wear to work when I ran out of time setting my hair! (I've gotten it down to 45 minutes, so, not too bad).

It was an interesting knit made by making each triangle seperately, seaming them up, then knitting from the edges down to the band.

The pattern comes from my Etsy store, its Bestway B2515 - but i'm pretty sure the pattern image has an early example of photoshoppery on it, as mine doesnt really look like that!

I was impressed with the yardage on the yarn (Brooklyn Tweed LOFT) but not so much with the breakage. Its very fragile, but very pretty. I know a lot of knitters are huge fans of it, but I'm not sure I'd use it again.

I knitted the pattern exactly as written, except for the little tab on top - I made mine shorter.

Overall, very pleased and I can't wait to wear it out properly. Its converted me to berets, and I think I may have to make the Pictorial Beret from A Stitch in Time Vol 2 very soon (especially after seeing lovely versions, like Tasha's).

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Rock and Roll Markets, a quick peek

Naughty naughty, I forgot to post some photos from the re-vamped Sydney Rock and Roll Alternative Market on the 3rd of June!

The market used to be in Tempe, but its moved to a much better (in my opinion) location at the Manning Bar (Sydney University).

And it bucketed down with rain!

Despite the above photo, there was actually a lot of people there and the dance floor was packed.

Outfit: Beaded cardigan - Goodwill, San Francisco; Skirt - self made; Top - Portmans; Jewellery, Viva Las Vegas. Unfortunately, dancing and the rain had gotten to my hair by the time this photo was taken!


My two favourite stalls, Coco Repose (hidden at the back) and Retro Station came up from the Sydney Antique Centre bringing shiny goodies for everyone to drool over, plus there were about 30 other sellers spread around the market.

I really hope the crowd was big enough for the market to keep running, as its a lovely (and free) thing for Sydney to have. If you havent been yet, I really recommend checking out the next one.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Simplicity 1777, new vintage release

This lovely Simplicity 1777 new release arrived in my inbox- isnt it lovely? I've made (and love) 3673 and 3688, and I think this needs to join the collection.

Bust size 6-22, and available as a download too! I love the brown floral fabric the model is wearing and the red version is a great modern look as well - i'm assuming thats why they are both above the knee.

I hope Simplicity continues to bring out its old vintage back catalogue, theres a vintage gold mine in there i'm sure!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

A small peek for July...

July is Curvy Month!

I've read the comments (and understand the pain) of larger grrls having to up-size vintage knitting patterns - but it doesnt always have to be so!

While the average size certainly was 32-34 inches 70 years ago, knitting patterns were made in 38 inch and larger. I've always tried to source them for my collection, and for the month of July i'm going to post ten free fabulous 'out-size' knitting patterns from the 1930s-1950s.

No frumpy patterns, just lovely interesting looks that you'll want to knit.

Watch this space, the first pattern will go up 1 July.


Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Nautical Shortie Coat from Patons No.430, 1950s

Despite the model looking like one of the Children of the Corn, this jacket is adorable and a quick knit too.

It looks very easy, I wish it went up to a 38-40 inch bust though!

Thursday, June 07, 2012

Men's Horse Head Fair Isle Vest, Patons R.14

What's not to love about this vest - fair isle and horse head motifs!

It's called 'Pacific', and comes from Patons R.14, Specially Requested Reprints - a collection of men's jumpers published in the early fifties.

I would love to knit this for Jakk, but its (unfortunately) not her cup of tea. If anyone does knit it up please let me know, i'd love to see it.

(right click on the image, and select 'Open in a New Window' to get the full size picture)

Monday, June 04, 2012

Final Chapter - Chicago.

Finally, the last holiday post and its about Jakk’s and mine favourite place – Chicago.

Amazing buildings, friendly people and great food – everything we were looking for. For us it felt like Chicago was like a cross between New York and Melbourne.

I’m trying to remember how we filled our days – mostly exploring the different neighbourhoods (turns out we were staying in the gay area and antiques district, what serendipity!), visiting the fantastic Art Institute and eating delicious food.
And finally drinking decent coffee (sorry America, I love you but what’s with your coffee situation?).

The Frank Lloyd Wright area on the outskirts of town is beautiful and well worth the trip to soak up the atmosphere and see the lovely houses. I didn’t realise there was so many of them, too bad it was FREEZING on the day we decided to do the walking tour. I think I nearly lost some fingers from frostbite.

And we were very lucky, because Chicago Modern Vintage fair was on while we there – vintage lover’s heaven!
Thats me on the lower right.

I think we bought the most clothing etc in Chicago (we each needed an extra suitcase to get home), the prices were good and the range was extensive. It was only a short walk from Ashland station and I really recommend going if you’re in the area when it’s on.

Probably the biggest highlight was getting to meet Tasha from By Gum By Golly, and her lovely partner Mel. It was like reuniting with an old friend and I’m a bit sad that we live so far away from each other.

I think I could easily live in Chicago, it’s a really great city.
Plus, the lake looks like the ocean and I could swim there without my fear of sharks getting in the way!
It really was one of the best holidays i've ever had, and hopefully we'll back in a few years to explore places we didnt get to see this time around.
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