Summer is in full swing in Yorkshire, and I reminded myself this morning that there are still two months to go until the major leaf fall of autumn, to stop myself being alarmed by the the yellow tinge that is beginning to touch some of the trees roundabout here. It is lovely and warm though, and we had some thumping summer storms at the weekend.
So, cool, airy knits are the current attire of choice for knitting enthusiasts here, and Lace Knits features plenty of them, mostly shot at the ruined weavers cottages I wrote about in my last post.
The Lindley Camisole and Headband
These are knitted in Rowan Fine Lace in my favourite colour of the range – ‘Chalk’. I adore blue-greens, particularly in medium to light shades, and since publishing Lace Knits I have made myself a Fenay (see below) in this shade.
The camisole is one of several garments in Lace Knits featuring princess line shaping. This is very flattering to feminine curves, so I have been itching to use it for a couple of years now and have really splurged on it in this book.
I designed the headband as a quick project for practicing figured lace. The same lace features at the top of the camisole front, and is the only part of the garment which is knitted with the yarn held single. Held double the yarn functions beautifully as a light dk/sportweight.
The Edgerton Shawl and Mitts
We had a lot of fun styling these on the shoot, with Alice wearing shoes that were at least three sizes too big and trying out various poses from the 1950s. Our stylist was Susan Crawford, who specialises in vintage fashion, and I loved how she injected such knowledge and passion into the shoots.
The Linthwaite Shawl
This is my personal favourite of the shawls in the book, and I have worn it much this summer with everything from jeans and a t-shirt to an elegant summer frock. Susan styled it wth a beautiful original 70s velvet skirt.
The Fenay Bolero
This is possibly my proudest design in the book, and the one which gave my technical editor the most headaches! I love the feminine daintiness of the Estonian flower lace pattern it features, and though it is a complex stitch pattern, I was determined to use it for a garment with a full size range. This was an enormous challenge with such a stitch pattern, especially as I planned to provide charts that could work across the full size range without knitters having to work out how to increase or decrease in pattern for their size.
Fenay also features Ziggurat shoulder shaping, a clever way of commencing seamless top-down garments that are to have simultaneously knit set-in sleeves. Other techniques for achieving this involve lots of provisional cast-ons and working several pieces separately at first, creating many ends to sew in later. Instead Ziggurat shoulders involve a standard cast-on, and is worked in one piece, creating only one yarn end to sew in later. It is the genius invention of Swedish designer, Åsa Tricosa, and I am very grateful to her for her kind permission to use the technique. Do check out her wonderful Ziggurat designs.