Rachel Hunter’s Quaker Mittens

Rachel Hunter’s Quaker Mittens

Mittens for a Friend, inspired by the Quaker, Rachel Hunter (created by Diana Gabaldon in her series Outlander)  are being released to coincide with World Quaker Day, October 2nd, 2016. These mittens feature the Quaker proverb You lift me, and I’ll lift thee, and we will rise together, which speaks to this year’s theme: Connecting Friends, Crossing Cultures and Changing
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The Skye Boat Poetry Mittens

The Skye Boat Poetry Mittens

A dream ends on Outlander.. Mittens for a tragedy.. Since Bear McCreary used the Skye Boat Song melody as the basis for his Outlander theme youtube.com is awash in versions of this old song, but this one strikes me as particularly authentic.. if the song can be called authentic at all.  The Skye Boat Song
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Bree’s Blue: To Dye With Indigo

Bree’s Blue: To Dye With Indigo

If you can only have one Outlander Adventure… make it dying with indigo. Bree made herself a blue wool dress, using indigo to dye the wool.  Which made me wonder.. what color was Bree’s dress? That’s simple, indigo blue, right?  Well.. not necessarily. I’ve kept a flock of sheep for decades… and have never dyed with indigo.
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Other Outlander Knitting Patterns

Other Outlander Knitting Patterns

I’ve been asked to put up Outlander knitting patterns for specific knits seen on in the Starz film adaptation of Outlander. I have rather strong opinions regarding those knits, which the costume designer started out justifying as authentic to the 18th century, then revised to being not necessarily authentic but authentic to  her vision of the 18th century, regardless
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Keeping it Together: Ribbons and Tapes in the 18th Century

Keeping it Together: Ribbons and Tapes in the 18th Century

From a wedding scene to the court of Paris, to Jamaica to the Colonies… Outlander, and the 18th century, is bound together with ribbons and tapes.  Whether part of a marriage ceremony, a necklace (for a jet fish) or a bit of finery purchased as a token of love, ribbons and tapes hold the 18th century
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A Lady Wears Lace: Bree’s Mittens for her Lord John Grey’s

A Lady Wears Lace: Bree’s Mittens for her Lord John Grey’s

The historic record is pretty firm on two points: women in the 18th century did not drape themselves in knit shawls, and light, angora, lace, mittens.. weren’t part of the wardrobe either.   There’s a school of thought which argues that they did exist, they just didn’t make it into the inventories, paintings, or records
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Staying True to Outlander: A Lace Shawl for Amanda Claire MacKenzie

Staying True to Outlander: A Lace Shawl for Amanda Claire MacKenzie

 For decades, including when I was visiting museums on school trips, 18th century costuming included the ubiquitous plain brown knit shawl.  In those days costumes also included zippers, machine sewn seams, and occasionally, sneakers. Today reinactors are encouraged to create their character with as much historically accurate detail as possible, making sure any visible seams
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A Bonnie Scottish Bonnet

A Bonnie Scottish Bonnet

Knitting was just made for audio books, but Outlander, or rather the 18th century, is woefully short of knitted garment inspiration. It isn’t that they didn’t know how to knit a garment, small shirts were knit for infants and children, but knitwear was not fashionable.  Furthermore, home knitters during this period can barely keep their
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Even More Indigo: River Run Blue

Even More Indigo: River Run Blue

Thanks to Outlander this summer I grew Japanese indigo in my garden.  To be truthful, I didn’t have a whole lot of faith in the roughly one square yard of indigo plants yielding very much color, or any color at all if I’m being honest, so I ordered a neat little kit which makes a
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Poetry Mittens: Useful Beauty (and patterns)

Poetry Mittens: Useful Beauty (and patterns)

“They will habitually prefer the useful to the beautiful and insist the beautiful be useful.”   Alexis de Tocqueville’s observation on New Englanders. Poetry mittens, designed to show a young woman’s skill in needlework, her piety, and her ability to read, appear at the end of the 18th and early 19th century.  I like to
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