Saturday, May 25, 2013

The Home Book of Pleasure and Instruction

Published in 1867, The Home Book of Pleasure and Instruction was edited by Mrs. R. Valentine.  The title page then goes on to list 17 contributors:  Mrs. Aylmer, Edward Dalziel, Miss Dyson, Mrs. English, Miss Hartshorne, Rev. C. Hartshorne, Miss Johnson, Mrs. Maule, Captain McCoy, Mrs. Mee and Miss Austin, Mrs. Ogilvy, Miss Peard, Miss Stephens, Albert Warren, Henry Warren, Elizabeth Watts, and Miss Yonge.  The Contents page often lists which of the contributors the instructions came from.

The book includes the following netting information:
  1. Very Pretty Antimacassar on Net by Mrs. Mee and Miss Austin - with illustration (page 307)
  2. Edges in Netting by M. J. (page 307
  3. Another and Wider Edging by M. J. (page 308)
  4. Mignotte Netting by M. J. (page 308)
  5. A Pretty Edging or Frill in Netting by M. J. (page 308)
The antimacassar appears to be attributed to Mrs. Mee and Miss Austin.  If you follow the "By do." (which I took to mean "By ditto" or by the same person listed as the contributor for the previous item), you eventually back up to a pattern which says "By Mrs. Mee and Miss Austin."  The design on this antimacassar is fastened onto the diamond-mesh netting using a crochet hook rather then the usual embroidery methods.

The section on Netting, which includes the other four patterns, is listed as "By M. J."  My guess would be Miss Johnson.  I don't know why only initials were used in the Contents for this contributor when all the other contributors' names were spelled out.

The size of the mesh sticks in these patterns is indicated by a circle or a line meant to portray the correct size.  While this method of sizing worked fine if you had the original book, since I am looking at a digitized version of the original, I'm not sure what size mesh stick to use because I don't know if the digitized version of the book prints the same size as the original book.

*     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     

Several years ago I made a top-down net bag to hold the baby bibs I give as presents to new babies and their mothers.  This was one of those bags, and I made it only once.  When I make a bag the first time, I assume that I will make mistakes, so, while I write down the instructions, I do not usually keep track of how much yarn I am using.  That comes later when I make the bag a second time as I am following the directions I wrote down.

I did make two changes to this bag.  I made this one out of cotton yarn, and I made it a moebius bag by twisting the handles.  I have such fun using them - a single surface with a single edge - to carry things.  

Saturday, May 18, 2013

The Illustrated Girl's Own Treasury

Although no author is listed for The Illustrated Girl's Own Treasury, published in 1861, the title page indicated that it was created by editors of The Illustrated Boy's Own Treasury.  I was surprised that netting was only mentioned once in The Illustrated Boy's Own Treasury, and that was in reference to harvesting coral.  Nothing was said about how to make it.

The Illustrated Girl's Own Treasury does mention netting several times and describes how to make it, both  plain and fancy stitches.  There are also several illustrations included.

  1. Preparation for Netting (page 91)
  2. Plain Netting (with illustration) (page 91)
  3. Square Netting (with illustration) (page 91)
  4. Oblong Netting (with illustration) (page 92)
  5. To Make a Piece of Netting of Six, Eight, or Ten Sides, Working from the Centre (page 92)
  6. Round Netting (with illustration) (page 92)
  7. Honeycomb Netting  (with illustration) (page 93)
  8. Long Twisted Stitch  (with illustration) (page 93)
  9. Grecian Netting (with illustration) (page 93)
  10. Ground Net  (with illustration) (page 93)
  11. Spotted Netting (with illustration) (page 94)
  12. Diamond Netting  (with illustration) (page 94)
  13. Large Diamond Netting  (with illustration) (page 94)
  14. Spotted Diamond Netting (with illustration) (page 95)
  15. Leaf Netting  (with illustration) (page 95)
  16. Double Stitch (page 95)
  17. Long Stitch (page 95)
  18. To Work with Beads (page 95)
  19. Mesh (page 95)
  20. Embroidery on Netting (page 96)
  21. Implements (page 123)
  22. Contractions in Netting (page 128)
  23. Printer's Marks (page 129)
  24. Jewel-Box for Mama (page 136)
  25. Silk Net for the Hair (page 144)

*     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     

Back in 2007, I net a small bag using crochet thread.  The base of the bag was net first in the shape of a circle.  I wrote down everything except the amount of thread I used.  Recently I figured it would be a good idea to know how much thread I used, if I wanted to let others use my pattern, so I followed what I had written down and made the following bag.

When I showed my newly-completed bag at a local knitting group, one of the women exclaimed how perfect it would be to use when she went to an event where she did not want to carry a large handbag.  This bag would hold her wallet, keys, and maybe even a sandwich.  She could place it on her arm, and it would not slip off.

I liked her idea but explained that the size 10 crochet thread I had used may not be up to the stress which keys and a wallet might place on it.  Some of the threads had broken on my original bag, and that bag had just carried lightweight self-inking stamps.

I suggested making it with larger mesh and and string.  The string would be much sturdier and less likely to break.

I finished making this bag at the Connecticut Sheep, Wool, and Fiber Festival.  I thought that location was very appropriate since that is just the type of event my friend would use it at.

She thought it was just perfect, and now I know just how much thread or string each bag takes to make.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

The Ladies’ Complete Guide to Needle-work and Embroidery by Miss Lambert

In 1859, Miss Lambert published another needlework book, The Ladies’ Complete Guide to Needle-work and Embroidery.  While items 1-28 listed below appear in her earlier books, items 29- 41 are not included in either of her other books.

  1. Netting (page 15)
  2. Plain Netted Gentleman's Purse (page 228)
  3. A Lady's Purse (page 229)
  4. A Gentleman's Purse with Ends of Different Colours (page 229)
  5. A Lady's Purse with Points (page 229)
  6. A Pretty Purse with Chine Silk (page 230)
  7. Netting With Beads (page 230)
  8. A Plain Netted Purse with a Bead Mouth (page 230)
  9. A Pretty Seme purse with steel or gold beads (page 231)
  10. An Elegant Netted Purse with Steel Beads (page 231)
  11. Plain Netted Mittens (page 232)
  12. A Knitter's Bag with Ring (page 232)
  13. A Checked or Dice Pattern Purse (page 233)
  14. Grecian Netting, or Filet Rose (with illustration) (page 233)
  15. A Purse in Grecian Netting (page 234)
  16. Mittens in Grecian Netting (page 234)
  17. Netted Fringe (page 235)
  18. Single Diamond Netting (with illustration) (page 235)
  19. Treble Diamond Netting (page 236)
  20. Diamond Netting of Five Stitches (with illustration) (page 236)
  21. Seme Purse, Diamond Pattern (page 238)
  22. Plain Open Netting, or Filet a Baguette (page 239)
  23. Fond de Berlin (in French) (page 239)
  24. Filet Rose (in French) (page 240)
  25. Filet a Baton Rompu (in French) (page 240)
  26. Filet Rond (in French) (page 241)
  27. Netted Mittens with Silk and Wool (page 241)
  28. Netted Cuff with Silk and Wool (page 242)
  29. Long Net Purse for a Lady (page 301)
  30. Long Net Purse for a Lady (different pattern) (page 301)
  31. Round Netting for a Gentleman's Long Purse (page 302)
  32. Honeycomb Netting for Veil (page 303)
  33. Very Pretty Long Grecian Net Purse for a Lady (page 304)
  34. Grecian Net for a Veil (page 305)
  35. Single Diamond Netting (page 306)
  36. Diamond of Five Stitches for a Long Purse (page 306)
  37. Dotted Net (page 308)
  38. French Ground Net (page 309)
  39. Scollop for Borders of Veils, Collars, Caps, Etc. (page 310)
  40. Another Scallop for Border (page 310)
  41. Scollop (page 310)
*     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *

Since I  have only one of my grandmother's patterns left to make, and that one is over 38 inches in diameter, I decided to make some smaller doilies for a few weeks.  There are still many doilies I designed that need to be made again so I can photograph the entire doily instead of photocopy just a rectangular portion.

I started this one, Double Star, during the afternoon I was demonstrating at the Connecticut Sheep, Wool, and Fiber Festival.  

This doily was originally the result of two questions:
  1. How would a 5-pointed star look in the center of a doily? 
  2. Can I make a doily with only 5 points for its edge?
Many of my grandmother's doilies had centers with multiple points.  Those centers all had more than 5 points.  She had also made several doilies with multiple points along the edge, but none with only 5 points.  The answer was this 13 inch doily.

Saturday, May 4, 2013

The Ladies’ Hand Book of Fancy and Ornamental Work by Florence Hartley

Several years ago I ordered a paperback copy of The Ladies’ Hand Book of Fancy and Ornamental Work by Florence Hartley.  It was originally published in 1859.  If I had known that it was online, I would have just downloaded it.  The contents are the same.

  1. Netting (page 177)
  2. Plain Netting (page 178)
  3. Grecian Netting - with illustration (page 179)
  4. Plain Open Netting - with illustration (page 179)
  5. Diamond Netting - with illustration (page 179)
  6. Diamond Netting, of Five Stitches - with illustration (page 180)
  7. Netting With Beads - with illustration (page 181)
  8. Net for the Hair - with illustration (page 182)
  9. Netted Curtain - with illustration on 183  (page 184)
  10. Short Purse in Netting - with illustration (page 186)
  11. Needles (page 188)
*     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *

Over the years I have re-created 62 different doilies patterns that my grandmother created.  She did not write down any instructions; she just made the doilies.  She taught me how to "read" a net doily and then make it.  These doilies included those she gave me to use as patterns, some my mother owned, one owned by her sister-in-law, Ida Winter, and photocopies of doilies in the possession of her daughter, Elaine.  

I finished writing the doily instructions several years ago.  At that time, after I finished making the doily, I made a photocopy of as much of it as I could.  Often that was just a rectangular section from the center to the edge.  Eventually I purchased a digital camera and started taking a photograph of each doily so I could see what the entire doily looked like.  Since I had given away most of the doilies I had made, I had to start making them again.

This week I finished Sunburst.

I thought it was the last one I needed to photograph; however, while looking through my patterns, I discovered an additional Pineapple Doily that Grandmother had made.  The edges of the two doilies are slightly different, so I guess I have one more doily to finish and photograph before I can say I have digital photographs of all the doilies I have access to that my grandmother designed.  To see those I have made, look at Grandmother's Legacy.