My Sewing and KnittAntics

Frenzied Sewing and Hand Knitting Antics jazzed along by Machine Knitting.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Burda WOF August 2008 Cabled Sweater

This may end up in the dustbin.The front and back are done, yoke almost finished.But where is the rest of the yarn to finish the sleeves?
Yarn is now discontinued and unable to locate online. YIKES !!!!!

More like a disaster in the making than WIP.Oh well at least I get practice on a new to me version of cabling without a cable needle

I did find an amazing tutorial for cabling sans cable needle.


Thursday, October 02, 2008


If you have a rack sized DD to K cup , then you will know who or what Bravissimo is.

Just got the latest catalogue and they have extended their clothing range to include suits and coats.
They are probably one of the very few companies that offer knit tops , dresses , jackets and coats for full busted women( and not necessarily bigger or plus sized ones)

Even if one wasnt able to buy the garments, they showcase styles that look great for us needing to do VVFBA to get clothes to fit .

Me I am going back home in a few weeks time so will be able to visit the Ealing and Covent Garden shops in person.


Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Like Eons ago

The new Bergere de France swatch book, CD Rom and magazines arrived the long route , via London.

One of quilts I made whilst containers were on the high seas. Wont be making many more , but great dressmaking skills and tips picked up.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Blog Hiatus

In the fashion of Gordon Ramsey "The F word" DONE

Relocation DONE
Crafting items :Packed,Boxed and Shipped. DONE
Me in new habitat: DONE

Blog going into hiatus: for now

New Phase of life begins.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Summer 2007 Yarn Sales

Yep , not one but two gigantic Liberty of London Sale bags
The summer sales are underway.
Liberty kicked off today with yummilicious offerings
Jaeger is going to be phased out , and all the yarns are going or gone.That is a shame because they do have the some of the best, classic yarns around.
Glee all round because they were deeply discounted

Yarns in the Sale
Jaeger Aqua :all shades
Jaeger Sienna : all shades
Jaeger Extra Fine Merino DK
Rowan Kid Silk Night :red
Rowan Kid Silk Haze : mustardy yellow
Rowan Cotton Rope
Rowan Kid Classic
Rowan Holiday or Glimmer: the dishrag looking one
Felted Tweed : some stray packs
The Biggies: sorry I didnt even check
? Very little Rowan Calmer perhaps already snagged

Pattern books from Jaeger/Rowan to match the yarns
The prices are really low, they wont be matched even by the online Rowan seller that seat on mountains of discontinued yarns and then have to shift years later.

John Lewis Paternership sales start on Saturday and they will have in addition to Rowan/Jaeger yarns from Debbie Bliss, LHarding , Patons, Sirdar and Noro

Phildar Soldes
they have started their summer sales online.Guess the best of the sale stock is gone.Well worth a look as they ship worldwide, so buying at 50% discount wont break the bank

I wont be flashing the contents of the bags , since the majority aint mine.
Orders to be mailed out or passed on at rendezvous next week.
It pays to play nice on the internet( none of the "who is she/he that is so pervasive) then you might get some kind knitter helping to spread the yarnie/crafty love.

Presenting my new to me knitting machine

SIT Singer Memo 11/Superba S47/White 1502
French 5mm double bed knitting machine
Three weeks before departure, and hopes of getting the machine to ship out fast fading.I decided to put in a request online for a machine lurking in some attic.Three hours later, I got a postive response.Machine in nearly new condition (despite the fact it was purchased about two decades ago) was mine if I wanted .

Cost was exactly what the crafter had paid for it only a few weeks ago local to her. When I snet payment , the cratfer recognised my name.We had met online in 1998 whilst hunting for OOP Issey Miyake patterns.Suspect I hadnt behaved ghastly or else she might have retracted the offer LOL. Not the reason to aware ( the opposite of bolshie, crappy blah blah blah) that goes on the in cyberspace but this experience is a definite bonus
The machine arrived with a gazillion extras like transfer carriages ,bags of tools, packs of needles and a very much sought after colour changer complete with instructions.

Phildar/ Bergere de France is why I got into machine knitting. Many of their handknitting patterns have instructions /charts or adaptation for machine knitting .The 5mm KM does knit up to light DK like Pure Laine, Oxygene, Canasta etc.It makes using the original yarns even more appropriate.
Suspect I have me the perfect knitting elfin to churn out double time even more French sweaters.

Remember chaps, IT DOES PAY TO BE NICE

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Monday, June 18, 2007

Translating French Knitting Patterns

Small post regarding French knitting patterns.There are some exceptional French knitting publicaions.Phildar, Bergere de France, Anny Blatt , Bouton D,or, Fait Main , Tricot Ideal, and offerings from Marie Claire Idee.
What these publications offer for me is the great designs, so not old granny looking sweaters, the
excellent schematics, le mathematique or the modular way that increases/ decreases are written.Stitch glossary at beginning of pattern and the use of charts

French patterns dont translate well into English,( they dont do the three rows before the 34 th row after the second to last decrease nonsense) that is rife with certain English knitting patterns.

Phildar Le Conseil Tricot
Excellent resource on the basics, some stitch patterns, their methods for increases/ decreases/ finishing knits with graphics that are easy to understand

Phildar Knitting Glossary
Searchable glossary

Bergere de France Downloadable Glossaire
A downloadable pdf glossarie.
Trucs and Astuces
Their knitting hints and tricks guide online

Chez Plum article: Knitting from French
Excellent overview with further links and a very good explanation on the mathematique.
The formulae for dealing with shaping( increases, decreases and cast offs)
Similar to the Japanese knitting notations.

Best option would be to learn the notations, and abbrevations for knitting tasks. And knit directly from French .A dictionary would perhaps only be necessary for finishing instructions, short rows etc and completing specific tasks

Me , I am off to continue packing.

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Sunday, June 17, 2007

BdF Update and Fabric Dive Enabler Alert

Clearly on day release from the Zoo.Postings on blog, whatever next.I had planned a "sweatshop" weekend sewing like a loonie , but have done zilch.Oh well.

Local Enabler Alert for Locals and Londoners
The fabric dive, Material World have just cleared out stock from "The famous British Plaid company "factory ends.

The " Plaid" lining
Plaid bias binding in cotton and silk .
Buttons with crests, other button assortments.
Fantastic selection of Italian wools , linens , and the trench cotton used for their summer pants , skirts and trench dresses.
Gutermann silk buttonhole on 10m and 50m spools.Extremely rare on the retail market.
As ever NAVY.....................just a customer

Bergere De France Update
The post including details on their Cd generated some blog traffic.
Article # for them are
2006/2007 ; #119.771
2005/2006: #691.331
2004/2005: #655.491
2003/2004: still available just not listed on the website.Contact me for details

As I have just been astonished by the generosity of an online knitter in locating a sought after Knitting Machine( more when it arrives next week) I will be ordering bits from with BdF this week .
Done , just waiting for postie with my colieco

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Easy Unlined Jacket? That,s telling porkies

If one is told that making an unlined jacket is easy,Abi says that,s porkies ( cockney slang for lies.Porkie pies ?get it)
I line most of my garments, even line/cotton summer togs.I had just finished a duo , skirt and jacket combo in a silk/linen/tencel fabric.
Yummy colour , feel and drape but not suited for anything structured.
Unlined jacket.Yikes , with the overlocked seam edges exposed.
No I dont think so. Not very pretty

The alternative was to draft a half back lining , front part lining by extending the front facing to match at side seam similar to armhole chest piece or plastron.
Description and details for drafting the lining pieces can be found in Singer Tailoring or Taunton Press Easy guide to lining( I dont advocate blatant copyright violations)
Fusible knit interfacing cut to match the lining pieces, shaving away 2 cmm at outer edges, with pinking shears to soften /reduce strike through.

HongKong finish on every exposed seam edge tadded a few hours to project.Lucky I had Ambiance lining bias roll( from Paul Costeloe factory sale)
Perhaps twice or thrice as long as it would have taken to sew a full lining.


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