I know I just did a post on winter magazine covers, but these escaped my notice and I thought you would enjoy them. I'm also traveling back from visiting family, so I don't have time to do a full-on post today. Also, how freakin' awesome is that collar/fan detail on dress of the above cover? Sigh.
Life cover, December of unknown year; illustrated by Coles Phillips
American Girl (December 1931)
I hope you like these holiday illustrations and have/had a lovely holiday, which ever one you celebrate!
The Broadcast Sweater I recently finished was entirely worked on circular needles, which is a huge change from the vintage sweaters I've done in the past. The pattern calls for 32" long circulars, but I only own the needle size (required for gauge) in 35" length. I felt pretty silly buying a whole new set of circulars just because of 3" difference, so I decided to look into this whole Magic Loop thing.
Off the bat, the magic loop technique looked like it was something close to what I needed, but not exactly. Then I saw a tutorial video for the Traveling Loop method and was super happy that I didn't need to buy new needles. I tried it out and it worked like a charm!
So, if you find yourself with circular needles that are just a shy too long for your project, opt to do the traveling loop over buying shorter circulars!
According to the Nov 28, 1949 issue of Life, the way the story unfolds is that veteran show girl Evangeline Sylvas heard of a new act to share her stage that was similar to hers. Sylvas, who was known as The Oyster Girl, emerged from a large oyster shell and launched into her routine. The new girl performed some of her act in a water-filled tank, and then emerged from the tank to complete her routine. Divena was rumored to get top-billing over the sexy oyster pearl. Sylvas did not like this.
Two action shots of Sylvas breaking the water tank. Images from Life [source]
In the middle of Divena's act, Sylvas broke open her stage tank with an axe, with Divena still in it! The water rushed to the floor, ruining the carpet for the venue, and (according to Life) Sylva's reached into the tank and pulled Divena by her hair.
Sylvas went to jail for her actions, but according to a later Life article, she was extremely remorseful immediately following the incident. The two dancers reconciled and were long-time friends after the whole ordeal.
You can read the original article in Life via Google Books here. You can also view the later Life photo-article interviewing Sylvas in March 2011 about the incident here.
Regarding the title of this post - I'm not sure if I should be embarrassed at the pun, or congratulate myself. It is definitely a headline I would expect from a 1930s rag!
Image Note: Life Magazine so awesomely has an iframe feature that allows you to place their images in your blog (just click the "Link" button while in their image galleries). Unfortunately, the iframe coding wasn't loading in my blog, so I had to stick to doing the old fashion linking the source through the caption. Please note that all these images are copyrighted by Life Magazine.
Firstly, I want to thank you all for your kind words and encouragement about knitting gloves for my pen pal in Afghanistan. I honestly had no idea that it could get cold, much less snow there, but you learn something new everyday.
I was finally able to start these gloves a few days ago and they have been a very speedy knit indeed. I have had to learn a few new techniques, such as casting on in the middle of round (technique here). I also decided to use lifted increases for this mitten rather than my normal technique (video tutorial here). I have to say that I am completely smitten with lifted increases - they are nearly invisible and don't leave marks of holes in their wake.
This pattern has a different way for creating a thumb than I am used to, but I think I may like this approach better. We shall see once I actually get to knitting up the thumb!
My brother heard I was knitting up these gloves and he so thoughtfully suggested I sew leather patches onto the index finger and palm for grip. I am so happy he came up with this idea because I was concerned about slippage with these mittens and leather pads would certainly solve that issue!
I'm still speeding through the left mitten, but I will keep you all updated as I finish them and sew on the leather pads.
I finally found enough time this month to weave ends and block the Broadcast Sweater. This project was a super quick knit. In fact, I finished it a few weeks ago, but have been so busy with holiday fair and shop stuff that I just didn't have the chance to finish it. Isn't that the most annoying of all knitting disturbances, when you are 98% but just can't finish it? Sigh. It is done now though!
Not only was this the first time I knitted a sweater completely in the round, it was also the first time I blocked a full sweater. (I normally do it in flat pieces, then seam them, which allows for quicker drying time.) Due to the two layers of knit, the cold weather, and my rush to finish, the sweater was blocked in less than ideal conditions. Firstly, the only place I had room to block the sweater was in a tiny desk in my office (because my other larger desk was completely covered in plastic pigeons). My office happens to be the coldest room in our apartment, so it too FOUR DAYS for the darn sweater to dry. And guess what partially wet sweaters attract? Kitties.
Yes, my kitty jumped and made herself at home on the blocking sweater and moved around my carefully positioned/measured sweater. This led to the shoulders being a little out of whack. The kitty messing with the shoulders led to the sleeves being a little longer than they should be. While it is wearable, I know how the shoulders should be, so I do want to reblock this sweater in the future.
For right now though, it is cold and this sweater is very warm and comfy, so I am wearing it as is. I have folded up the sleeves to give it the 3/4 look it should have. When I reblock the shoulders, I won't need to do this anymore, but I don't really mind folding them either. I probably won't reblock the sweater until after winter though, that way the weather will work in my favor for quick drying time and deter kitties from wet sweater nap time.
The pattern is very nice indeed and I love the sweater. But the next sweater I make, I will not block in a rush!
The Letter Writers Alliance has over 2,000 members now! Woohoo. Above is our 2,000 member, Elsa, who became part of the LWA at last week's Renegade Holiday Show. We also sold out of the Chicago Snowflake holiday cards and our Pigeon Post Kits* both days of the fair! We have them both back in stock, along with our other holiday cards, in the online shop.
Now, to celebrate, here's a video of me mailing off one of our Pigeon Posts in the corner mailbox. (Yep, it doesn't need to be mailed in a packaged box!)
Thank you so much to all of you who support the LWA and the USPS. Keep writing those letters!
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*The kit we now are selling for Pigeon Post is a bit different from what we originally released. We now give you all the tools you need to write the message and mail the Pigeon yourself (we even include postage).
We realized that in making the Pigeon Post a service where we deliver the pigeon, we took all the fun out of actually putting the Pigeon in the mail box! So, we changed it to suit you better and to encourage you to be a little more adventurous with your mail. Happy pigeoning.
Chicagoans celebrate the repeal of Prohibition at the Congress Hotel. (Image used in Ken Burns' documentary Prohibition.*)
Let us raise a glass and celebrate the repeal of Prohibition on December 5th, 1933, 78 years ago on Monday! What shall we drink? Hmm, how about something a little different and unique. Lets us go with...
Captain Cook 50% Gin 15% Luxardo Maraschino 35% Orange Juice
Shake over ice & strain, Orange Twist Garnish
The orange juice will be good for those with an early winter cold and for those who are not sick, a great way to trick you into thinking the drink is healthy for you!
Citizens of Detroit heeding a "last call" in the final days before Prohibition went into effect. (1920)
I shall enjoy this drink while writing and sending out my holiday cards this weekend. I normally send out my holiday greetings earlier than this, but I've been pretty busy, so they have been delayed. When do you normally send out your holiday cards?
*I am unsure of the original sources for these images, but they were used in Ken Burns' documentary Prohibition, and I got them via Fine and Dandy. If you know the original source, please inform me so I can credit them.
Kathy here. I'm the history nerd behind this blog as well as one half of the stationery shop 16 Sparrows. I'm also co-founder of the member- based group, The Letter Writers Alliance. If you are new here, check out some of the most popular posts and work your way from there.
Thursday, March 20th
Chicago, IL Fountain Pen Workshop
Chicago Public Library
West Town Branch
1625 W. Chicago Ave. 6:30-7:45 pm
Free Event RSVP required: Please call to 312-743-0450 or visit the West Town branch to register.
All images, unless otherwise noted, are copyright by me. Please do not use my images without asking. Artist images are copyright by the respective artists. Recipes, magazine spreads, and historical items are copyright by the respective owners/companies.