This morning I finished making my first ever metallic gold 1940s style hair snood. Its something customers have been asking me about for quite a long time but I’ve never found a metallic yarn in a quantity that makes it possible to make a large snood without a join.
I always have a look in yarn shops for metallic gold but never have any luck, in the end I found this yarn online from the Turkish company, Ice. Turkey seems to be a pretty enthusiastic knitting country, a lot of yarns seem to be produced there now and its good quality too. Ice make a lot of more unusual yarns, I’ve bought from them before and never been disappointed.
So, I have bought six balls, each one is just enough to make one large snood with a fair bit left over so not entirely enconomic and the yarn is quite expensive so this batch of six will be the only ones I make. If you like them and want one please do move quickly, they’re a very limited run.
The other reason I won’t be making these regularly is the yarn is properly metallic, it’s gorgeous, it has a lovely sheen and teeny tiny little sequins that really catch the light so they’d be brilliant for performers but the yarn is quite stiff so it’s blimmin’ hard going on my hands to crochet with. Course, this means the snoods are a bit stiff too, so if you have one of my usual acrylic numbers it won’t feel anything like that.
I am going to keep looking for a softer metallic gold yarn, I think Ice do a lurex thread I can use alongside a ‘normal’ yarn but finding a base colour of a non metallic gold is also a bit of a challenge. Don’t hold your breath because I’ve been keeping an eye out for gold for years so far.
The book I’m struggling with
Things have gone a little quiet over the Easter weekend for me on Etsy orders so it gives me a chance to let you see the progression of an order I have just posted off to America.
I’ll take this picture by picture and explain what is going on. The first picture is the yarn I use to make the sparkly snoods, the cone on the right is super fine metallic blue lurex which I crochet in with the usual blue yarn. The lurex is a funny thing, it is really quite strong but feels very delicate as if it would snap at any moment. In the background of this pic you can see some of my snood making yarn, that wicker unit is crammed to bursting with the rest of my snood yarn and a small amount of Gin Poodle yarn also on the coffee table are a couple of books I’ve read and haven’t decided what to do with yet, a train timetable and a book and map that I intend to make paper flowers from.
Next pic is the snoods nearly finished, the silver one is pretty much done apart from adding the elastic, the ribbon bow and sewing in a label, the sparkly blue one isn’t quite finished, I’m putting a neat edge along the hair band here.
Next up is the book I am struggling to get anywhere with (The Last September by Elizabeth Bowen) which I’m reading in between making things. I just can’t get into it, I don’t like any of the characters and don’t really care what happens to them. I’m a quarter of the way through it so surely by now I should care a bit? I’ve set myself a modest target of reading 26 books this year and I’m already three books behind schedule. Ms Bowen is not not helping. Sometimes I just give up on a book I’m this apathetic about but this is a book I picked up through Bookcrossing so I feel like I owe it to its previous owner to let them know what happens to it so I’ll slog on.
The last two pictures are the snoods pretty much ready to go sitting on my bony knees – all I’ve got to do now is wrap them up in tissue paper and add some complimentary sparkly hair grips to the vintage postcard and send them off. The postcard is just over 100 years old, I bought a job lot of them and while they last I’ll use them as my notepaper or hairgrip holders in all my orders. This one shows Gertie Gitana who was a music hall actress also known as The Staffordshire Cinderella. This one was written on and posted, nothing exciting though, just some bloke Dave asking after his mate Jim and saying he’ll be home soon because they expect to be sent off to France soon. I wonder if he was a soldier in the First World War but he doesn’t say so expressly. If they are blank I usually write a message on the back but if they’ve been used I like to keep them as they are and just pop one in the package as a nice surprise. Not that it will be much of a surprise if the customer reads this post before the package arrives.
Yesterday I was knitting a purple sparkly Gin Poodle that I intended to finish off today but when I switched on my phone this morning I got the magic ‘cha’ching’ from Etsy that is the fantastic alert sound that you’ve sold something! I love that sound.
So, I’ve sold one of these bright red hair snoods which is fantastic because I like making these (I make everything to order) the red is so cheerful. The first thing to do is go ferreting about in my main yarn store for red.
This gives you an idea of how the love of snoods have taken over my home. This is only my main store, I have a big trunk, some boxes in the loft and a load more dotted about here and there. I know I’ve got some red but I know I don’t have an awful lot. Turns out I’ve only got about enough to make three snoods. So that’s OK, I’ve sold one and I can order some more yarn any time I like but then – cha ching! I’ve sold another one exactly the same. So now I’m forced to go shopping for more red yarn. Poor me.
This is all I have left, Not much is it? To put it in perspective here it is again next to a nearly full cone.
Yesterday I went to the excellent I Knit Fandango yarn fair in London, run by the excellent I Knit London shop at Waterloo. I had a fantastic time and bought some yarn but of course, I didn’t buy any red.
I think I’ve got enough to do another two snoods, so that’s the one other one that I’ve sold today and one more. I’m going to order some more red today so if the final one sells before it arrives red snoods will go out of stock for a while but hopefully will be back in stock by the end of the week.
I cannot remember who directed me to it but an absolute age ago I found this blog giving a pattern to make your own make-up remover pads by What You Sow. See below for a link to the pattern. Its a rainy old Easter Sunday so not much to do here but housework and crochet while the Mister gently snoozes in front of Touring Cars on the telly.
I’ve made a few of these for personal use now and they come out really well in the wash, I made them all in white cotton but one of them has gradually gone a nice pale blue in the wash. I love them, cotton pads are so wasteful, you have to use them to take off nail varnish but there isn’t really any need to use them for your make up when you can have these little fellers.
I use them to take off all types of make-up, they’re great for taking off eye make up as well as for foundation. I use them with toner too and I can’t say I’ve had any problems with them, they’re not rough on your skin but it is a different feel to cotton wool pads, these are much chunkier and they have the advantage of not shedding fluff all over the place.
I am also a big fan of the Dettol anti-bacterial additive that you put in the washing machine (£4.60 from Waitrose) if you’re worried about them festering bugs and bacterial this stuff will sort it out – its also fantastic to use on sportswear because it stops it getting whiffy as it ages.
If you don’t crochet you can buy ready made cotton pads from her here: http://www.whatyousow.co.uk/product/reusable-eye-makeup-remover-pads
She’s on Etsy too, you get five for £9.95 and she does nice muted colours too.
I’m being the nutter on the train again today, crocheting hair nets while I commute. I don’t know which gets me more funny looks, the crochet today or the trashy romance I was reading yesterday.
Anyway, I’ve had an enquiry via Etsy about one of my sparkly snoods, this nice silvery grey one in fact.
Link: Snood for sale in my Etsy shop
Most of my snoods are made to order and I only have a little bit of this
yarn left so I’m going to make up a long one for this potential customer who wants one that sits just below her shoulders and then I’ll have to see how much yarn I’ve got left and revise my listing accordingly. I’m guessing I have enough to make another five after this one but I find it hard to tell with cones.
This particular customer prefers a longer length snood, personally I prefer to wear one higher and for it to scoop up my hair, maybe I should make some extra-long ones? What do you think? Do you prefer a snood that holds up your hair or just covers it for decoration?
Have a look at this, its an experimental chain link scarf. If I’m honest its not my own original idea, I saw someone selling kits at the Knitting & Stitching Show at Alexandra Palace but I’d spent so much money already I couldn’t afford to buy one. It stayed in my mind though and here’s my attempt to replicate it.
The one in the kit was done using DPNs so I tried that for a bit but it was far too fiddly and time-consuming. It did give a great result though.
Now I’m just knitting strips and sewing them together but I don’t like the seams, its just not the effect I want. I’ve nearly finished this one now, and to be honest I’m also not convinced that using more than one colour is a good idea either.
For the next version I’m going to try crochet links, that should solve the ugly seam problem and I’ll be able to make lovely fat tubes rather than curls. I think I’ve nearly finished this one so I’ll see how it ends up before deciding whether its good enough to sell. I’d like to see how it gets on in a washing machine first really. I do really like it, when I’ve mastered the technique I’m going to make one in a single colour, or a graduated colour yarn… I really hope the crochet version is the answer because that would make it a fantastic train project.
I have a new customer who is supplying costumes for a vintage style tea shop in Northern Ireland, well turns out they are going to be wearing my snoods as part of their uniform!
Isn’t that brilliant? Hopefully the costume designer will send me copies of the promotional photos they’re having taken once the outfits are complete, I’ll post them here if she does remember.
With a bit of luck people will ask the staff where they got them and they’ll come to me, a good 1940s style snood is not the easiest thing to come by and if I say so myself mine are pretty good.
I’ve had today off work so I’ve completed half the order already, though I’ve promised to send them on Monday I’ll get them off sooner if I can. I wish I could take every Wednesday off work, its great having a day off in the middle of the week, it breaks it up so nicely you feel like you’ve had two weekends. Still back to work tomorrow. I’d have to sell about 15 snoods a week to be able to drop a day a week which is not likely to happen in reality. I know it doesn’t sound like very many to sell at all but it IS a very niche market!