I used to make most of my own clothes, but gradually I found I had more money & less time, & there were more things in the shops I liked. Now I just make clothes occasionally, for the fun of it. I quite like experimenting with different shaping methods & stitch combinations.
When I was finishing school, picture jumpers were a new idea. Sirdar published one of the first patterns for a landscape. I got a lot of wear from mine!
A basket of flowers seemed such a good idea for a spring hat. The trouble is that when it is cold enough to wear the hat, spring flowers seem out of place. I've never managed to wear it.
This is one of my early attempts at design. A 4 ply bat wing mohair jumper, needless to add, made in the 80s. It is knitted from side to side, with the red section in stocking stitch, then the multi coloured cable was knitted from the bottom of the garment, incorporating the stitches from the body as I went until I'd knitted down to the bottom of the other side. Then I picked up enough stitches from the side of the cable to complete the piece in feather lace. It took ages!
This waistcoat started as an experiment in knitting in random directions, adding in canvas work & embroidery. After a while, it reminded me of a cottage garden, so I knitted the top section as sky.
An aran cardigan from a commercial pattern. I love the pattern in the peplum, but in such thick wool it is very heavy.
This tie front shrug has leaves in the lace round the cuff, in a paler shade of green, and a leaf & bobble pattern in the same paler shade on one of the fronts. It is a modified Rowan pattern.
This is my dragon cardigan. Round the bottom, there is a serpent, with a head at one end and a squiggly tail at the other. Above that is written "Beyond here there be dragons," with a chain stitch swirl every time there was a loose end to finish. Then above that there are aran swirls for bodies, and at the top of the neck a separate piece forms a head,
This experiment was to create something from a mixture of stitches round a theme. All the stitches used look like or are named after roses or leaves.
An experiment in putting together cable patterns together as I went along, picking up stitches & joining with 3 needle cast off wherever possible to cut down on making up time.
This cardigan is knitted in the round, from a collection of scraps. It is shaped by increasing or decreasing to make a right angle bend in the row, as shown in the schematic. The increases at the bottom of the front were spread to make a curved edge.
Here is another cardigan from scraps. This time in garter stitch triangles. Two sides were picked up from adjacent pieces, & then decreases were spaced so the row ends made the third side.
This one is knitted in large triangular panels, forming a curved skirt section. Starting with a lace edging, the sections are decreased until they all meet in a point in the middle of the lower back. The bodice was then knitted in square shapes in moss stitch, & full lace sleeves were set in. Although the body shaping has worked nicely, it would have been better to make the sleeves fuller round the elbows.
Experiments in simple shapes. The bamboo one on the left went out of shape after a few washes.