racy mending

I have been playing around with ideas about mending and darning for a forthcoming article, and have been turning up some interesting tangential things in various digital collections. Pictured above are “Chicago’s top models for 1922” who have been co-opted to advertise the novel innovation of the seam ripper. The caption reads “Ripping is a… Read More

another dress

Here’s another dress I made for myself over the holidays. This is something I intend to wear for work: it is neat and smart, but also easy to get about in during my daily walks to the station and back. The pattern is Vogue 8146 — one of those ‘easy’ Vogue suit patterns, which includes… Read More

more on mauds

(photo from J.G. Martindale, The Scottish Woollen Industry, (1954)) You may remember that a while ago I got all excited about the maud — the traditional shepherd’s plaid that’s woven and worn in the Scottish Borders. You can see one above being used for its original function — protecting the shepherd and his lambs from… Read More

tweed frock

In a couple of weeks time, I shall be going to the US for some work-related events, chief among which is delivering a talk in this public lecture series. I don’t mind admitting that I’m the sort of person who thinks about what they will wear some time in advance of such an occasion. My… Read More


. . . is the pattern number of my new dress. It is an ‘easy’ vogue pattern, and, having worked myself up (or perhaps down?) into the the zen-like state that I must be in to cut out fabric and sew at the machine, I knocked it up over a few hours yesterday. I used… Read More


I’m working on something at the moment that is relatively simple in design. Lots of plain knitting, but now the fun begins, since its devil is definitely in its detail. This garment is all about the finish, and I’ve re-worked the bottom hem and its edging several times to get it just right. Despite ripping… Read More