My Millbrook cardigan is technically done. I have finished knitting it, in other words, but there will be quite some finishing to do. 1. I have knitted with oiled yarn, so I am yet to see what the actual fabric will look like once the oil has been washed out (note. I did knit a swatch and washed it - but that was with another colourway one year ago). This cloud of unknowing feels quite exciting and a bit whatwasIthinking.. Right now the knitted fabric has a flimsy feel to it, but I expect/hope for the fabric to bloom.
2. I am thinking of reverting to the picot-edging used in the original pattern. The neckline feels quite bare. Last night I tried knitting a little collar and it did not look quite right. Then I crocheted an edge around the neckline which stabilised it, but still looks too bare.
3. I still have not decided on buttons (this will have to wait until I have washed the cardigan and figure out just how stable/unstable the buttonsholes are - cf. flimsy material). Currently pondering whether to crochet buttons myself.
4. And, finally, the usual flurry of finishing: weaving in ends, tightening buttonholes, blocking (as it is a lacy cardigan) etc.
I have tried Millbrook on and it is a seriously cute, vintage-looking cardigan which is perfect for spring/summer-wear. I need to think more about what I need to have in my wardrobe and Millbrook fulfills a need I did not even realise that I had: a light woolly cardigan to wear underneath my spring/summer jacket.
This sudden realisation that I need to knit wearable pieces stems partially from the Millbrook epiphany, but also from reading Cargo Cult Craft. Essentially a sewing blog rooted in a love of social history, Cargo Cult Craft is a thought-provoking blog with eye-candy. I am quite intrigued by its Fashion on the Ration! project:
I’ve allotted myself 66 clothing “coupons” — the 1941 ration for each man, woman and child in Britain. Like the original, my ration will have to last me one year — from January 23, 2010 to January 22, 2011. Armed with my ration, my stash and period tips and techniques, I will maintain my everyday wardrobe while sewing a wartime wardrobe from vintage patterns and style sources.
So far Fashion on the Ration has been a bit of an eye-opener for me, despite my initial misgivings ("gimmicky" and "bit precious"). By thinking very hard about her choice of material and what basic needs her clothes have to fulfil, the blogger is engaging with her clothes-making in a very interesting way. My favourite part? She jots down notes on what she has learned from every project. And I'm learning from her despite my craft of choice being different from hers.
PS. I have finished reading Sarah Waters' "The Little Stranger". More on that soon.