Great Knits of the Nineteen-sixties

spaniel and friends

I’m fascinated to go through the colour slides that I’ve gathered together from my mum’s. This photograph of my brother, my dad and Vache the springer spaniel was at the tail-end of an Agfacolour film, partly exposed to the light. I’ve had to do a bit of work in Photoshop to improve the exposure.

It reminds me so much of the knitting patterns of the period so I spoofed this up and e-mailed it to my sister. She writes;

‘Amazing picture!

I knitted those jumpers myself. Bill’s yellow polo neck was one I made to wear for riding lessons with Mr Dunn at Warmfield when I was 8. (Mum and Dad wouldn’t let me have a riding hat because it was too expensive and Health and Safety hadn’t been invented.)

The grey school jumper was from the same pattern but the V-neck version. In those days the yarn was pure wool without the advantage of added synthetic fibres and it looks as if both jumpers have felted and shrunk in the wash.

I think I still have the pattern.’

Even at that age my sister had a quirky sense of humour and I’m guessing that she must have taken this photograph and that she’d directed us to assume to poses of ‘knitting pattern boys’. Bill, who has always had theatrical leanings, is playing the part perfectly while I have been distracted, as I always am, by the nearest animal. My dad is probably wondering if Linda is operating his Akarette 35mm camera as she should.

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    1. Today’s children are really missing out. They’ve never know the delights of felted, hand-me-down homemade jumpers.

      1. Yes, they are. There are so many handmade things, made with care, they will never use, never learn to make themselves, then make for others, and teach others to make.

        1. While it’s true that children like to have boisterous fun I think that it’s true that they also like to settle down and become totally absorbed in some kind of craft activity. By the time of that photograph I’d already produced several booklets of drawing and writing and at least one holiday book, which I’ve still got. I must have spent hours and hours producing them.

  1. A very nostalgic photograph, looks like a genuine knitting pattern photograph. I remember the time my mum knitted me a pair of swimming trunks 🙁

    1. Bill and I missed out on a glittering modelling career. Luckily we escaped the knitted trunks.

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