Saturday, June 13, 2009

Inspired by the Past: Vintage Patterns

I love vintage crochet and knitting patterns. Perusing a stack of vintage pattern books while drinking copious cups of tea is a great way to pass the time. I love flipping through the pages looking for unique designs and techniques that cannot be found in newer pattern books.

My latest creation for my Etsy shop is inspired by this crocheted green Jewelled Collar Necklace. It is a pattern from 1954 Coats & Clark's pattern book of knitting and crochet projects. It is worked in crochet thread and embellished with sequins and beads.

I like the idea of these collars. They are great for dressing up white t-shirts, cardigans or collarless dresses. Of course, they are also quite pretty worn on bare shoulders. They are so versatile.

My Jewelled Collar Necklace is crocheted in soft organic cotton yarn. You can see how I was inspired by the shape and embellishment of the 1954 version.

I modified the pattern to take into consideration the gauge of my yarn which was larger than the crochet thread of the original version. I kept the pattern the same for the first two rows, so I would have spaces between the double crochets to weave my white satin ribbon. The remainder of the pattern I modified to suit my yarn and myself. My thicker cotton yarn could not achieve the same detailing like the delicate picots on the 1954 collar which were easily made with finer crochet thread.

As for the embellishments, I thought sequins would be too over the top for my pastel blue yarn and feminine ribbon. But faux pearl vintage beads from the 1960s complimented the feminine feel. I'm very happy with the outcome of this project.

Vintage patterns can be a great source of inspiration for your crochet or knit designs. So, give those old pattern books a second look. You never know what will inspire you.

Happy vintage pattern hunting!


Anonymous said...

I like that top collar.