Ladies' Needlework, Knitting Tales and Poetry: A Melange of Instructions and Amusement (eBook)

Be enchanted by the knitting patterns of 1849 London. This eBook includes lace and cable patterns, borders and edges, and full projects for a purse, doilies, a bonnet and more!

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The 1840s were full of change, especially in the social class system. By 1849, a middle class who could both read and write and afford entertainment like books and magazines had developed. Though free public libraries were still things of the future, many private citizens set up subscription lending libraries. One such individual was Mr. George Curling Hope of East Sussex, an area on England’s south coast about 50 miles (80 km) from London.

His library was quite successful and his wife even had a wool shop next door, so it comes as no surprise that Mr. and Mrs. Hope started publishing books and at least one magazine on knitting, canvaswork, embroidery, netting, and crochet from about 1842 to 1867.

Reproduced for you here are the title page, the editor’s “Address,” and the knitting content from the 1849 Knitting and Crochet: Tales and Poetry: A Melange of Instruction and Amusement for the Work-Table being the Year’s Volume of the “Ladies Needlework Penny Magazine.” The 17 patterns range from edgings and insertions to doilies, from an opera cap to an antimacassar, and there’s more—an enigma, a poem, a “household hint,” and a charming chart for “Magic Slippers”! Each is exactly as it was printed in the original.

P.S. We have a challenge for you:
All but two of the patterns in the original book are accompanied by illustrations (many books from this period included no illustrations). Our challenge to you: create the “Elegant Knitted Purse”, one of the two with no illustrations. See the eBook’s introduction for more details and to get your finished product in the Traditions Today Newsletter!


SKU: EP4313

Format: eBook

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Customer Reviews

Just purchased - can't wait to get knitting! Review by Stella

As soon as I saw this book I just knew I had to have it. Just purchased it and viewed it straight away and given it a 4 star rating even before I knit any of the patterns. My Great Great Aunt would have been knitting in the East End of London in the 1800's. Fancy Knitting was her occupation and I hope I can live up to her reputation as a craftswomen - I am sighted but my Great Great Aunt was blind.

(Posted on 2/8/14)

beautiful, unusual patterns; one error Review by Carol Harris

I only bought the book yesterday so obviously I haven't tried all the patterns yet! But many of the pictures show unusual, very lacy items that I can't wait to make. In fact, I've done almost nothing but play with the book and drool over it since I downloaded it yesterday afternoon. I work better from charts so I made myself a chart of the doily on page 28, which looks like it's going to work just fine. Then I thought I would chart the Deep Wave edging on page 34, which was more challenging because the number of stitches in the row varies quite a bit. So I started knitting the edging; got two repeats done and it is gorgeous --- except that the heavy lines framing the wave in the openwork centre were broken. I didn't see this break on the picture; the lines are perfect there. In charting I had found it a little odd that there were two decreases side by side in row 3 (which doesn't happen anywhere else in the pattern). In fact, this seemed to be what was causing the break. I replaced "2 together, 2 together, knit 2" by "2 together, knit 1, 2 together, knit 1" and it has fixed the problem: I have knit two more repeats with the corrected instructions and the lines seem to be right now. (I'm publishing this here to help others who encounter the same problem; if this isn't the right place, could you please move it or tell me where I should publish it.) One final comment. I'm not sure what your audience is for these books, but it might be useful to indicate that "forward" = yo (I suppose it is fairly obvious). Also, is it actually true that the only single decrease these old patterns ever used was k2tog, or when they say "2 together" can it actually be k2tog or ssk (or even p2tog...) depending on the context? It's hard to tell from the pictures. Overall a very interesting book which I expect will give me many more hours (days, weeks?) of knitting pleasure! Thank you for making this available!

(Posted on 12/14/11)