Monday, 29 February 2016

Patons and Baldwins archive part two - 1930's jumpers and cardigans

Are you ready for some more gorgeous 1930's knitwear? After showing half the jumper and cardigan patterns in part one, here are the rest of them!

Starting off with a couple of sporting outfits:

Apart from the knitwear I am liking the fact that our dapper gent is puffing away on his pipe as he contemplates his round of golf. Miss Asymmetric Block Stripe jumper appears to be keeping score rather than playing even though more women began to play sports such as golf in this period.

Even though I can not ice skate at all I would rather like to have this outfit in my wardrobe. I love the fact that the stripes repeat on every item and that you would be fully kitted out with a hat, scarf, gloves, jumper and socks!

Given the countryside background and the stick I would say that this is an outfit designed for a good walk. It consists of a jacket like cardigan with a low, single fastening and an A line type skirt. Nicely done in a country tweed!

Next is a skirt and top:

The jumper has a neck tie fastening and a raised stitch stripe detail and the skirt gives the appearance of pleats which may be achieved by the stitch pattern used.

Now for a few in colour:

This one is very interesting with it's two colour neck and cuffs and the two colour triangle pattern on the front which is then repeated on the sleeves. The main body appears to be knitted in a tweedy type yarn. Look at her amazing hair, white blonde with perfect waves!

I like the yellow and blue colour work on this jerkin which gives the appearance of lapels. The yarn used in the main body again appears to be a tweed type. I can't tell if the belt is integral to the pattern or is there for styling purposes.

I like the repeating bands of colour on this one too and the low waist fastening for the cardigan. These three patterns were obviously part of a set, presumably for the tweed type wool. I have never seen any like this in all the P&B patterns that I have come across before. It is worth noting that it is possible to just make out some asymmetric button detailing on the front of the skirt.

The rest of the patterns are jumpers and cardigans:

The background of this one says cruise liner to me with its curved lines and fancy rug. Very elegant!

I like this fancy neckline on what is otherwise quite a plain and loose fitting jumper. I think the cowl neck ends in a flat bow on the shoulder and this is possibly knitted in some sort of lace stitch.

I find this one interesting but I am not sure that I want to wear it. I like the shape and fit of the jumper itself, especially the deep band of ribbing at the bottom. But what is that in the centre? A one eyed monster sticking it's tongue out? A buttoned in handy tissue/napkin? I'm really not at all sure.

I do like this. I like the use of the darker colour to add some depth and interest to that large pointed collar. The lace type stitch is very pretty too.

Is this the tweed wool again? I love the striped yoke which makes it look as though she is wearing graduated strings of pearls. I also like the slight puff to the sleeves where they are gathered around the arm. I would definitely add this to my wardrobe!

This is another that I am not quite sure about. I like the simplicity of the dark bottom half forming a triangle in the centre of the paler top half. I like the idea of the scarf with the alternating light and dark bands but I think I would want to be able to tie it. Like this I think I would just dangle it in my soup, cuppa, ketchup etc.

I like this one a lot. I think the zig zag stitch pattern is lovely and very effective. The wide ended scarf looks like it is knitted using the main yarn and then angora (those rabbits again) to form the stripes. It looks to have a woggle/band to hold it in place which is also angora. I think the wide ends may be fastened on with buttons at the sides too. Lots going on but I think that it works.

These two patterns are included to give a sense of what it was like to flick through through the pattern folders in the archive, finding these amazing garments at every turn of the page. The one on the right uses angora to create stripes too and the one on the left has very interestingly shaped sleeves.

Did you have a favourite? Or do you want nearly all of them like I do?!

You may be interested to know that a part three, which does not feature jumpers or cardigans but features other goodies, is on the way!

Tuesday, 23 February 2016

Patons and Baldwins archive part one - 1930's jumpers and cardigans

I have written about my enjoyable trip to the Knitting and Crochet Guild archive here and here, focusing on the garments that we were shown. As well as garments the archive holds books, needles, magazines, yarn charts, gadgets and many, many patterns. I was very excited to get the chance to look at some of the patterns that were part of the Patons and Baldwins archive which the Guild now holds.

There are folders full of amazing knitting patterns like this fabulous butterfly outfit. I think this may be a swimming costume with a skirt and long line cardigan to match. I was almost drooling at some of the patterns and I hope that I will find them out in the wild one day. Imagine a wardrobe full of these beauties!

A child's geometric jumper.

If you are not a knitter there is no need to stop reading right here as knitting patterns are also brilliant source material for fashion history. Obviously, people wanted to knit fashionable garments so knitting patterns followed the variations in fashions. So in these knitting patterns you can see many 1930's traits: big sleeves, bows, interesting necklines, geometry, chevrons, colour blocking, yokes.

Knitting patterns are also a good way to see how clothing was styled,  to see what normal people rather than film stars wore and to see glimpses of skirts, accessories etc. They are also a good source of hairstyle inspiration!

A pretty button shoulder feather and fan jerkin. Notice the chevron yoke on the skirt.

Patons and Baldwins was formed in 1920 by the merger of two wool companies, John Paton, Son and Company from Alloa, Scotland and J&J Baldwin and Partners from Halifax, West Yorkshire. They focused on producing wool for home knitters and knitting pattern support to go with it.

Cute lace short sleeved jumper with a integral neck tie.

By the 1930's the company had factories and buildings across Scotland and the North of England and also in Canada and New Zealand!

A deep V neck cardigan with a lace stitch and lovely square buttons.

Look at this glamorous evening dress bedecked with bows! The pattern is for an angora evening jacket and a waistcoat.

I have read somewhere that P&B owned an angora rabbit farm which would explain why they produced many angora patterns between the 1930's and 1950's.

There is a lot going on in this jumper. Epaulettes, a chevron yoke and either beads or some kind of metallic thread embellishment.

There is nothing new about colour blocking! This has a lovely ribbed body that continues up the front of the jumper with a striped yoke, a belt and colour block sleeves.

Lovely chevron striped jumper with a high tied neck.

I do like an all over cable cardigan and this one has a lovely pointy collar.

After the Second World War P&B decided to build a new, modern and efficient factory in Darlington. It even had it's own railway siding for speedy transport. The factory was complete by 1951 and was the largest wool factory in the world! It became a tourist attraction, I would have loved to have looked around. Find out more here and here and here.

I like this with the large stripes on the sleeves and the asymmetric front.

Gorgeous voluminous sleeved jumper with an integral bow at the neckline.

This one also has amazing sleeves and a beautiful stitch pattern. The bell type flowers remind me of the pattern on this 1950's cardigan that I knitted.

Patons and Baldwins merged with Coats in 1961. Patons wool is still available to buy.

Such a smart long line cardigan, belted at the waist. It has a lovely stitch pattern.

I want nearly all of these marvellous knits! The 1930's is not the period that I am first drawn to fashion wise, though it is growing on me now that I look into the fashions more and more. I think I was maybe put off by all the slinky, bias cut evening gowns which I would look a total horror in but when looking at everyday clothes I see fashions that I would like to try.

Luckily, this is not the end of the 1930's knitted gorgeousness as part two is on it's way!