If you asked me to tell you what the past week has been about, I would probably say ‘knitting’. Or, more likely, KNITTING OH MY GOODNESS IT NEVER ENDED. And even though the knitting was worked in amongst some pretty awesome other things, it was always there. Always sitting there, with its deadline lingering somewhere close.
But I am here to tell you that I met that deadline. In fact, I took it by surprise and arrived a day early, which is always irritating to every host who is not expecting you for twenty-four hours and is still in the middle of preparations. Alas, I did not care, as I had finished my dad’s present and now had some free time in which to revel in this joyous feeling.
I made use of said free time by switching back to one of my other knitting projects because it turns out that too much knitting is never enough.
When I wasn’t knitting, however, I had a chance to visit some op shops and find a couple of treasures that just beg to be shared. So here they are.
Firstly, we have this knitting book from the 1960s, which I found in an op shop in Rye. Not just any knitting book. Oh no. It’s… Well, have a look for yourselves.
Personally, I couldn’t care less for football, but I know plenty of people who enjoy it a great deal. Plus, it’s more of that social history thing that I love. It’s so much fun to imagine how many jumpers, scarves and cushions (yes, cushions) were made from this book; how many kids went to school wearing team jumpers their mum or grandma had made. We know someone definitely received a North Melbourne jumper, thanks to the notes on the page below.
Football fans, please note the page on the right, featuring the South Melbourne Swans, not the Sydney Swans we know today.
The book includes pattern grids for all of the logos of the time. Don’t you just love the old Saints’ logo? A stick-figure man with a halo. That’s sophistication for you!
The best pattern is towards the end. Part-beanie, part-scarf – we have christened it the hat scarf. I’m told by people who actually go to the football in the middle of Winter that this would be an amazing addition to any football-goer’s wardrobe. More to the point, I already have two requests for the hat scarf. But really, who wouldn’t want one?
As much as I enjoyed this glimpse back our football supporting past and the vital role played by home knitters, it wasn’t actually my favourite find of the week. That came yesterday, when I wandered into the Bayswater Vinnies and made my way to the crafy section. This treasure was just sitting there at the front of the box of patterns, miraculously overlooked by anyone else.
A glorious coat pattern from 1968! How wonderful are the illustrations? It’s entirely possible I would have bought it for those alone. If the stick legs weren’t ridiculous enough, then just take a look at the hat on the girl with the checked coat. What on earth is going on with that?
Ridiculous hat-wearing aside, I have plans to make this coat because it is too adorable for words. It would be fantastic if I could find the material for it in an op shop, too, but I’ll settle for using a pattern that cost me a grand total of fifty cents.
This is what makes op shops amazing in my view: something that cost you next to nothing is valued more highly than things you bought brand new. I think I may be addicted to that feeling.