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antique textiles History Textile Arts wool

“Don’t know where the snow falls from”

Let’s step outside the 1940s stuff, today and talk about something else. Am about to raise some money to publish the new book (I will go on about it here and on social media,  when the Kickstarter is live, hopefully in the next week). If reaction at the barnstorming talk about it we did last […]

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antique textiles inkle weaving Textile Arts viking crafts

Inklings

The administration of Robert Watson’s estate  (Shopkeeper. Selby, Yorkshire). Sept 10, 1689 Inventory Nov 8th, 1688 Goods in the Shopp 5 doz of stockins att 7s, £1-15-; one doz ditto 13s; 3 doz of childrens stockins att 2s 6; 120 yards of blew linn, 8-17-8,…. 8 pr. of worstet stockings att 2s 6d., £1; 5 […]

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Textile Arts Tolkien

There And Back Again

“I wish I was at home in my nice hole by the fire, with the kettle just beginning to sing!” It was not the last time that he wished that!   The Hobbit, J.R.R.Tolkien, 1937, Chapter 2.   Two years ago, I decided to do something not at all Living History, veering slightly into Cosplay. […]

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Hand spinning Textile Arts

The Bewitched Spinning Wheel

  Proof that sometimes, carrying a bit of ballast is a Good Thing. And also a timely reminder to oil and maintain your spinning wheel! From ‘The London Evening Post’, February 24th – 27th, 1759, comes this cautionary tale: We hear from Wingrove, near Aylesbury, in Bucks., that a few days ago, one Susanna Hannokes, […]

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antique textiles Brontes Genealogy Textile Arts

On Reverse Engineering. And Ag Labs and Farmers.

  A quick heads-up. I have two pieces out this month.  One for the knitters and one for the genealogists. For the knitters,  there’s something about reverse engineering knitting from old photographs (‘The Knitter’, Issue 107).  Probably something I should go into more depth with here on the blog, some time soon.  Over the few […]

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Brontes Textile Arts West Riding

Charlotte Bronte’s Baby Socks

        ‘The Knitter’, Issue 100, is out now and in the shops. To celebrate the 200th anniversary of Charlotte Bronte’s birth, this year, I’ve contributed an article about a fascinating and previously unknown piece of knitting; a pair of baby socks, made for Charlotte’s baby,  which were destined never to be worn. […]

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Hand spinning handspinning Textile Arts

Badger-Faced Shenanigans

The sun came out, so yesterday I washed about 1lb of fleece for the ‘Spinning For Beginners’ Workshop, here at the Farming Museum this weekend! In the morning, we have our first ‘Like Fair Isle… But Yorkshire!’ workshop, which is going to look at Yorkshire two colour knitting. In the afternoon, Beginner spindlers will be […]

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Genealogy Textile Arts

Spinner and Weaver of Ballyknock, County Mayo

If you’re a descendant of the Lavelles/Lavells, of Ballyknock, County Mayo, do get in touch. I have something of your’s! Occasionally, at the local car boot sale, I find some lost genealogical treasure and often think it would be cool to re-unite it with its rightful owners. My parents’ generation threw away old certificates “because […]

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antique textiles ganseys Textile Arts

Casting On a Gansey and… Tishies!

  What do we want from a gansey cast on? We need it to be: Strong – maybe with double or triple yarn Elastic Attractive     Historically, the simple Backwards Loop Cast On seemed to be popular. It was certainly a cast on described in some of the earlier knitting manuals of the 1830s-40s. […]

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antique textiles Feminism History Textile Arts

Red Petticoat

On the day we got our (catastrophic) election results, I thought I’d hoist the red flag (well, red petticoat) and talk about living history then and now, and the random thoughts I had whilst re-modelling a piece of ‘costume’ from the 1980s. Comrades, the Red Flag is at half mast today. But the red petticoat […]