Monday, October 27, 2014

Rummaging at the fall sale

The days when I would rampage through a rummage sale gleefully picking up amazing vintage things drifted away when my tiny house started to fill up, and I've bought very little new or old since I realized I have to pack it all up for the renovation... but it would be wrong not to buy anything at the twice-annual Sale at our local United Church.

Just as it would have been wrong - very, very wrong - not to buy this 1962 pattern booklet.  I don't know which of those hats I'd dread making first, do you?  Maybe the pink Robin Hood one.  The turban might actually be pretty awesome for a chemo cap, and the crocheted pillbox could be updated with something bulky with lots of halo for a sort of Russian look, don't you think?

And check out the back cover.

Those yellow and blue men's socks are completely on point with the very colourful socks I see in the men's stores I pass downtown, and I have no quarrel with the very cute blue and white mittens either.  But do you see those dark green crocheted slippers in the top left corner, just above the pink ones with ducks on them?  Well, try to imagine any man in your life wearing those - and know that there are two more patterns for men's crocheted slippers inside.  Gulp.

Best of all though - and I do mean best:

There are no words.

Now, the thing about this very exciting sale is that I always find something truly fantastic, by which I mean useful, and often that happens in the textile room.  (yes, you read that right. there is a reason they call it The Awesome Fall or Spring Sale.)

This time, it was a stitch dictionary.

It looks like it was published just after 1963 under the protective wing of Pinguin Yarns,  and initially I thought No, nope, Swimming in stitch dictionaries, they're all the same, I have too much to pack already.  But then I came to my senses.  And thank goodness because this tattered little book has much to recommend it.

For one thing, it was owned by a woman with beautiful handwriting.

I love that sense of walking the path of another, older-than-me knitter, don't you?  Also, it's got tons of amazing information in it.  There are detailed and well photographed instructions for knitting, crochet, and tunisian crochet.  But also - fork, or hairpin, crochet.  Had you heard of this?  I hadn't.  It looks really pretty.

Also: two pages just on knitted chevrons.

I've never given much thought to chevrons, but now I see the error of my ways.   There is a lot of yum there.

Most of the book was printed in black and white, but four sheets were done in colour.  I always love to see the fashionable colour combinations of times gone by, and this page was my favourite, with the Christmas-y design at the top left corner.

In fact colour is my favourite part of this very special rummage sale.  I always find the coolest, most colourful things.  Like this fruit-print jug from the kitchen gadget table...

(okay, there were two, and I bought both)

and this linen dresser cloth in pink polka-dots, which was perfectly ironed when I bought it and got a bit crumpled from being packed next to one of the orange jugs.

Writing all this, I realize I am not going to be in the neighbourhood at the time of next year's spring or fall sales.  I'll have to ask Trish to let me know when the signs go up because criminy, it'd be awful to miss any after so many faithful years! 

Hope your day is full of delicious discoveries and I'll see you tomorrow.


Trish said...

Yes! The ubiquitous printed oranges jugs! I remember those well!
Nice score with the stitch dictionary - you clearly beat me into the textile room! (I got hung up at the sweater pile, unsuccessfully looking for cashmere...)

Mary Keenan said...

I'll let you borrow the stitch dictionary, Trish - would you like a loan of the men's slipper patterns too? (kidding!)

Unknown said...

Love this post. I remember the sequinned hats...a knitting friend and I were contemplating how I might make my planned scarf light-reflective. She had some 1/2" ribbon that was light reflective on one side...I could cut circles, punch a hole and sew them on. Which was a possibility, if nothing else was out there. Ha! I found some light-reflecting thread (on etsy) so I am knitting it in some strategic bands on the scarf. As far as yarn, all I saw was acrylic Red Heart in some ugly colors...not!

Mary Keenan said...

Hey Paula, that is a great idea to make a scarf light reflective!! Who knew you could get thread to do that job??