At the opposite end of the spectrum, you sometimes get such amazingly wonderful customers at markets that you almost want to give your stuff away to them for free. Saturday brought me one of these people:
Tara has dreads so the bigger newsboy look is perfect. She found me through her friend Danny**, who owns six of my hats, and they both came to the Edgemead market to check out the new stock. She sent me some photos of herself later that afternoon, wearing one of her two new hats.
I know, right?! Anyone who looks this good in a Jam Tarts hat should be the one getting paid (and she’s beautiful on the inside, too).
** and this is Danny, whose face could also launch a thousand ships:
Hey guys, just touching blog base quickly with John’s birthday present – one of those manly beanies with a beard and moustache attached.
He was laughing so much I couldn’t get a good picture, as you see. I have wanted to try one of these for ages, but was concerned that if I gave it to the obvious choice (Rob), he might actually wear it in public. With me.
I love this fabric, I call it Fake Snake! I found it in a funny little shop off Grey Street in Durban many years ago, and purchased it with no specific purpose in mind. (That’s how stashes are born.) And now that I am hat-mad, here is the first of many:
Hats are pretty much what I’ve been concentrating on lately, trying to get my “perfect pattern” for different styles and doing lots of sewing in preparation for the spring and summer markets.
I experimented with some shiny velvety stuff last week, and came up with these: the pics don’t really show how gorgeous the purple and brown velvets look in real life. And that exquisite girl in the crimson one? That’s Danny, one of my loveliest and best ever customers from the Edgemead Market. She bought four hats on Saturday, which I have taken as reassurance that I’m on the right track here.
Think I’m not fitting in any crochet? WRONG!!!!! Just working the last stitches on a big project, hope to show-and-tell soon.
The Ella hat was big news for me this winter (purchased from etsy here). It’s a great pattern and, surprisingly to me but then who am I to judge?, two Ellas have been bought by men. For themselves. Young men, guys really, not big burly rugby player types. How cute is that!?
Anyway, when Nicola asked me to make two baby bonnets for her 6-month old niece in Durban, I thought I’d try the same pattern but using thinner yarn and a smaller hook.
Ta-da! Worked perfectly:
(pompoms still to be attached when I took these pics).
And on the magical little person herself:
I mean, look at that face!!! I should be paying that girl to model for me :-)
I found this tutorial by Yolanda Lopez on youtube the other day, and got all inspired. She says 30 minutes, but you don’t even need that long if you already have your sewing machine threaded up and ready to go.
I used a thinner fabric, and here is my version:
It’s a particularly cute beanie because Yolanda’s pattern includes a simple but effective way of giving the back a pouchy shape rather than a limp-sock shape. No-one wants that limp sock look, right?
When I was little, fairies and pixies lived at the bottom of our garden. I like to think they would have worn something like this to keep their little heads warm in the winter.
The first one is actually a Flying Fish gone wrong. It was the first item to be purchased at the next market I attended, so the second one was planned. With extra beads, a curly-wurly and a pompom for luck. There’ll be more…
Being now officially hat mad, I have wanted to come up with more than one design for the newsboys. Some people love big and puffy, and some people prefer a more compact look. I tried making a pattern based on my existing knowledge, my (self-taught) pattern-making skills, other people’s experiments, and designs on the internet. I downloaded some free stuff (none of it turned out remotely how I wanted) and even purchased a few patterns, but again, I wasn’t finding my happy place.
Many frustrating weeks and a lot of wasted fabric later, I pitstopped for one of Jeanne’s double-shot cappuccinos (there’s some linguistic serendipity coming up here…) at Salisbury’s in Woodstock. Across the road is Sally Low’s gorgeous vintage clothes cum ceramics shop, so of course my feet naturally led me there once I’d absorbed the caffeine. I found this:
I rushed home and ripped it apart…
and cut my own pattern from it…
This cap (cap – cappuccino, get it!) has four differently-shaped panels at the back and the front is a semi-circle from brim to brim fitted with a shaped tier underneath. I learnt about inserting a short strip of elastic at the back in the seam of the lining on my search, and this works like a charm here. One or two other minor modifications, and I believe I am well satisfied.
Carol modelled the new hat in Tulbagh yesterday, where we participated in the Christmas-in-Winter festival. Happy days :-)