cherry cheer

Good morning, and happy Friday, everyone. Thanks so much for your comments on yesterday’s post. I’d especially like to thank Vivienne Richmond, who kindly shared the booklet that accompanies the exhibition she curated about the darning and needlework collections of Whitelands College. Like many samplers, those in Vivienne’s exhibition originate in the classroom – eighteenth- and nineteenth-century girls educated in charity schools and orphanages (like the Amsterdam institution which Elien mentioned in her comment) were the makers of many of the beautiful darning samplers held in museum collections today, and the samplers in Vivienne’s exhibition were produced in the instructional context of the UK’s first all-female teacher-training college. The exhibition includes examples of some extraordinarily fine work, including damask darning, and buttonholes, and you can download and read the booklet here. Thanks, Vivienne!

Today I’m returning to the buttons I picked out last week.

I bought this pinafore on ebay and, because of my short-waisted, meagre-chested proportions, needed to make a few adjustments to make it fit. I’m pleased with this useful, comfortable garment now, especially the shortened straps with their cheery cherry buttons!

My cherry-red Pabaigh goes nicely with my spruced-up pinafore.

Pabaigh is a design that I knitted two years ago, as part of my Shore book (one of my favourite collections!). This particular sweater has, since then, seen an awful lot of wear.

I know those of you who live in warmer and much less windy climates might find the idea of a roll-necked knitted tee a bit unusual, but in our part of Scotland, it’s ideal for this time of year, worn alone, or over layers.

Any beginner might manage this simple, boxy knit.

Worked at a fairly open gauge for this yarn (6 stitches to the inch) Pabaigh is a straightforward design that knits up really quickly.

I’ve probably said before that one of the things I most enjoy about Milarrochy Tweed is how well it wears. Because the yarn’s a single-ply , and because of its irregular thick-and-thin tweedy appearance, it can seem fairly fragile in the hand. Once knitted up though, the fabric is incredibly robust and stable. As one of my favourite throw-on walking garments, my Pabaigh has seen a lot of wear and movement over the past two years, but it hasn’t pilled at all.

I knitted my Pabaigh in the Cranachan shade: a light, luminous red, very like a glacé cherry, enlivened with tweed flecks of pale and darker green.

An undoubtedly jolly red, a red for inanity and goofing.

I think I’ll be wearing this comfortable, cheery, cherry outfit for the next wee while.

Today I feel grateful for this spell of wonderful fine weather, for the housemartins who have returned to refurbish their nests under our eaves, and for the many pleasures that spring brings to my part of Scotland. Wherever in the world you are, I hope you are looking after yourselves, and enjoy a safe and restful weekend.