Channeling Gatsby

Maybe it’s all the hubbub about The Great Gatsby (which opens tonight!), or maybe it’s because I’ve been watching Boardwalk Empire at home, but the 1920’s are on my mind these days, and awesome knit pieces from or inspired by that era keep popping up before my eyes…

There are still some original patterns from that era you can find floating around the internet, like this adorable jumper:

"1923 Summerland Sweater" by Mrs. Edna Weeks, from Needlecraft Magazine, July 1923

“1923 Summerland Sweater” by Mrs. Edna Weeks, from Needlecraft Magazine, July 1923

but the problem with original patterns is that they read more like vague recipes, the terminology is usually very different and the authors usually make a lot of assumptions about the skill level of the reader. I prefer modern patterns that are made up in a 1920’s style:

"Maxine Elliott Shell" by Emily Johnson

“Maxine Elliott Shell” by Emily Johnson

I’ve had my eye on this pattern, the Maxine Elliott Shell, for a couple years. I haven’t quite found the right combination of yarn and beads, but it’s definitely on the to-do-one-day list. If you’re not familiar with Emily Johnson’s Family Trunk Project, you should check it out. I’m not sure if she’s still actively collecting for it or working on it, but Johnson has amassed a lovely collection of original designs based on vintage memorabilia and family history. Read more about it at:

"Clair de Lune" by Carol Sunday

“Clair de Lune” by Carol Sunday

More recently, designer Carol Sunday posted this pattern, “Clair de Lune“, on Ravelry. It’s based on one of her previous designs, a lace shawl pattern (“Pachelbel“), but with short sleeves inserted into the rectangular shape. As Sunday describes it,

This loose 1920’s-inspired shrug is worked using a combination of two stitch patterns that are at the same time exquisitely beautiful and deceptively simple. Elegant and relaxed over a chemise or equally awesome with a tank top and jeans.

I love the idea of being able to throw on a garment like this and instantly look a little more elegant, so I’m hoping to knit this before the end of the summer (and I’ll let you know how it goes!).

For now though, I’ve just finished this:

the season of Gatsby

the season of Gatsby

This was made from the “Patsy Flapper Hat” pattern by Laura Mathy. The pattern isn’t super straight-forward, but with a little experimentation and some help from the comments made by other Ravelers who have knit it before, it turned out splendidly! This was my first time felting with Berroco’s Ultra Alpaca (in the new “Slate” colourway), and because I felted it by hand in the bathtub (rather than in a washing machine) I was able to watch it grow (which is normal but still a little alarming!) and then slowly shrink, becoming more dense and uniform.  It’s finished with a Kawartha Wilds Stoneware button on the side – lovely! And now that we’re back to sweater weather in Southern Ontario for the next few days at least (brrrrr!), I might just get a chance to wear it out on Gatsby weekend!

Have a GREAT weekend everyone, Gatsby or not! 😉

  • kikichiikii
    Posted at 14:15h, 10 May Reply

    See! when I try to find beautiful hats like that I am left defeated and hatless! Apparently I just need to find someone of your obvious talent to make me one 😉

    • needlesinthehay
      Posted at 14:21h, 10 May Reply

      You need to learn how to knit! 🙂

      • kikichiikii
        Posted at 14:32h, 10 May Reply

        I know the basics….not anywhere near your level tho haha!

  • shejustaintright
    Posted at 14:42h, 10 May Reply


  • Kelly
    Posted at 18:52h, 10 May Reply

    It suits you to a T!

  • Friday Dispatch: New Kits in Stock! | Needles in the Hay
    Posted at 10:45h, 05 July Reply

    […] based on her previous “Pachelbel” shawl pattern. I first posted about this pattern a couple months ago, and I cast this on as soon as I received a shipment of Fleece Artist’s Sea Wool (70% Merino, […]

  • microwave ovens
    Posted at 12:58h, 17 October Reply

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