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Candy apples and razor blades; I remember Halloween. Unfortunately, as evinced by last year’s sorry excuse for a scare, my pattern collection does not and so I’m forced to get a little more esoteric in the search for something in the macabre spirit.

This week’s pattern comes from the very specifically themed 5th Avenue Fashions, shot on and around the Empire State Building. Tourist magnet, glowing beacon, the very symbol of the city, what frights could possibly await at the top of New York’s famous icon, barring a giant gorilla on the loose?

Wooooooh! Wooo! woo. Eh. It’s no Q The Winged Serpent, but tell me that underlighting and sly grin don’t imply she’ll push you off the balcony the second you turn your back? What inspired the book’s photographer to light her like that? Especially given that, in the 1930s, underlighting was shorthand for ‘terrifying monster’?




At a time when Hollywood had gauze shortages from soft focus ‘glamour lighting’ their leading ladies, harsh underlighting screamed menace and terror. Also it doesn’t help her direct gaze resembles a more modern movie psychopath:

All work and no crochet make Jack a dull boy.

This night, anything goes…

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This week’s free pattern comes courtesy again of the Handicrafter, Vol IX, No. 3. It is fancy, as it was designed in Europe for one-year-olds. Ah, the jaded tots they must have over there, draped in Chanel and smoking with a practiced ennui.

I’m pretty sure the reason I chose it for this week is not actually part of the pattern- in the photo it looks as if there’s a little ascot running down the entirety of the front topped with metal buttons. Being an Obsessive Nerd™, I just spent the last 15 minutes graphing the written instructions out. Being lazy, I took a photo using the crappy built-in computer lens instead of scanning it in. Et voila:

As you can…sort of…see, the pattern is a Deco geometry of triangles creating the illusion of a ribbed pattern. Delightful! The metal buttons turn out to be rosebuds. I say stick with the metal buttons, that way in case time travel is suddenly invented your baby will look retro-cool instead of wussy. The pattern is, as always, below the jump.

They had a fight, Triangle wins, Triangle man.

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Another pattern this week from The Workbasket. Though I’m normally all about keeping patterns true to the original, I’d like to see this with a scoop neck and longer sleeves, a more 1930s feel. Just a thought. It would definitely look nice in emerald green or other jewel tones.

Pyramid schemes and stitching.

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I was searching around online for a free, vintage, low V-neck cardigan, but alas! I found none meeting my stringent criteria…until I looked in my own reams of vintage goodness (duh) and found this lovely twinset amongst the archives. That’s right, this week you lucky folk get TWO patterns on the page of one, and I drop another bit of information into the growing sea of information we call the internet.

The cardigan’s how I chose this pattern, but the shirt underneath is Deco perfection in clean-lined simplicity. I have daydreams about acquiring the perfect bright jade cashmere/wool blend (and not finding it online, I mean unlocking mystic secrets to gain access to an ancient temple inside of a mountain and rescuing a village of French spinners from an evil sorcerer with the yarn as a reward sort of daydream) and working something like this up. Twinsets mildly confuse me though. Was it very cold 50 years ago requiring a sweater over your sweater? Did convenience compel patterns to add in something extra? Or perhaps people really, really liked matching?

Minerva’s patterns are mostly visual, with written parts giving specific instructions but ultimately referring back to the gridded illustration for overall working. It can seem intimidating, but by reading through the entire pattern first (which is always a good idea anyway) it’s easier to see exactly where you are using the grid. Each ‘box’ is one inch. Right click, save and enjoy.

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