Sunday, November 13, 2011

Knitting With Vintage Yarns



I knew it was going to be a good thrift store day when I spotted the plastic pitcher full of older knitting needles.  I am completely outfitted in the needle department, so I rounded the corner to the spot where they keep the yarn, and for $2.50 (it was half price day) I picked up this vintage vest kit, compete with pattern, yarn, and even the plastic rings to make covered buttons.  This is a special find.  The kit has been stored in its original plastic bag so the yarn is clean and the labels are intact.  The pictures of the patterns you can knit from this kit may be the most charming part of the whole package.

I'm not sure that I'll use the yarn to knit myself a pink mohair vest.  I feel like there should be an age limit for wearing pink mohair, and that the cut-off is about 25, but maybe I'll change my mind.  I can easily use the yarn for weaving with a coordinating more sturdy yarn in the warp, or maybe I'll knit a shawl or cowl.  There's plenty of yarn to make something special so that this yarn can finally live up to its full potential. 


I happen to be knitting myself a vest right now from some vintage wool I bought on eBay a few years ago. I'm almost done knitting the back.  I love this gold color (which is more accurately rendered in the photo below).  Yes, it's that 70s harvest gold, but I've had to stop myself more than once from buying sweaters this color in the store, so I know it's in style again.  Knowing I have this yarn has made me resist buying a gold sweater, and now I've cast on this free vest pattern from Lion yarn  to put this loveliness to use.
 

I knit with vintage yarn because of the savings over buying brand new, plus there's the satisfaction of using something that another knitter loved and saved, but never quite got around to using.

I do buy new yarn too, of course.  I knit this fun scarf for my friend Bernadette's birthday gift.  Over the summer we got together in Ashland, Oregon for a few days, and she told me in advance that she would take to The Websters, one of the best yarn stores ever.  The place definitely lived up to its reputation. 


 I bought a few skeins of my favorite Noro yarn, and some coordinating harvest gold yarn, which I mixed into Shizuku, a free pattern on Ravelry by Angela Tong.


The pattern is fun to knit as well as fun looking.  The little leaves/dangley things are easy to knit, and the famous Noro color changes keep me knitting to see what's next.

I guess I've been in a harvest gold mood for awhile.  Well, that's fall for you.

8 comments:

DebbyMc said...

LOVE that scarf =-) And the cable design on the back of the vest is intriguing, cables within cables. I've been in a bit of an orange adoring mode for awhile now =-) We must really be enjoying Fall...

Magpie Sue said...

My first thought when I saw those balls of pink was "shawl!" No one's ever too old for a lovely pink shawl. ;- )

I'll let you have all the harvest gold you want. You can have my share too. I appreciate it in small doses but wasn't a fan back then and still am not now. The shawl with the Noro yarn is lovely though.

I've been reading a couple of the Yarn Harlot's books lately, courtesy of a quilter friend who also knits. Having grown up with knitters I can easily relate and enjoy her essays a lot. If I could just get over that whole tension business I might even pick up a pair of sticks someday myself...

Debra Spincic said...

Are you kidding? I am never too old for pink anything!!

My biggest lament has always been that when fall and winter hits, all the clothing colors turn to autumnal and winter colors and I can't find a pretty pastel sweater anywhere.

Isn't it grand that we are all so different?

I need you to come sit with me and force me to finish knitting my newest sweater.

beth said...

Ooh! I love everything you showed here today! Again...you've made me sorry I don't knit. I like your idea of using the mohair with something else in your loom. Can't wait to see what you make!

floribunda said...

wow -- I'm remembering all the mohair sweaters my mother made for my sister and me back in the 60's... don't think I ever had a pink one, though!

I love that Noro scarf, and will have to add it to my list!

Judy S. said...

I'll bet that mohair yarn would mix really well with some Noro colorway, or a pink shawl would be very nice too. Aren't cables fun? Now I'm off to find your scarf pattern; it looks like fun! Thanks!

Allison Ann Aller said...

Lovely projects...one of these days I will branch out from quilting and give weaving and knitting some time. You make it look so satisfying...mi

Susan Elliott said...

I wish I had just 10% of your thriftiness. I'm always amazed how you re-make old materials and create something wonderful and new. And how you enjoy every minute...I'll never forget the jello dye...or was it kool-aid? See? I'm hopeless...

But you sure get my thinker thinking...you teacher, you...xo