The August 1935 issue of Needlecraft- The Home Arts Magazine is one I think knitters will be interested in working from, because it includes several appealing vintage knitting patterns. This issue also includes some outstanding vintage crochet work and a variety of other interesting needlework as well.
The original price of this issue was only ten cents. The cover illustration is adorable. It shows a young girl working on her embroidery. The cover art is signed Mary Serwood Wright Jones.
This issue contains a gorgeous photo of a crocheted teacloth design by Mary Card. Her designs are consistently imaginative, beautiful, creative, well-thought-out, well-designed, and SPECTACULAR! It was her work that really got me interested in these old issues of Needlecraft magazine to start with. I cannot rave enough about the quality of her work!
My jaw literally dropped when I first saw this piece. Mary Card calls it “Scene From a Formal Garden, an exquisite teacloth border in filet crochet”. I’d describe it as being a tablecloth or table linen featuring a detailed crochet border that’s decorated with peacocks, columns, birds, butterlies, flowers, and botanical motifs. The picture of it takes up most of the magazine page.
The finished teacloth measures 44 inches square. The chart for working is NOT given in the magazine– and the written instructions are not included in this issue either, unfortunately. A chart for this design does exist, but you had to send away for it separately, and nowadays the charts are extremely rare and hard to find. If you can work from a picture you might be able to reproduce it anyway. Either way, I think you will be inspired by this amazing work of art.
A New Coverlet Design For Knitters- This is a hexagon pattern with mass appeal, and I can see it being of interest to today’s knitters given the current popularity of hexagon patterns. “The hexagons of which this coverlet is composed measure 8 inches on each side and from center to point. A 400 yard skein of bedspread cotton will make 2 medallions or 40 inches of the 9-inch fringe”. Also shown is the matching cushion. This design is really imaginative; it combines cables with lace, and is complex enough that it should keep you challenged and entertained throughout the entire project (which is good considering that an afghan is a hard enough project to get finished, without worrying about boredom midway through!) It includes instructions for the medallions plus the double-cable border. I have never seen an afghan or bedspread pattern quite like this one…although the overall effect is traditional, it definitely has its own unique twist. Would look great in a cottage chic, traditional, shabby romantic, eclectic, or Victorian style interior design environment.
Smart Knitteds For Sportswear- “A knitted blouse and matching cardigan with flannel or tweed skirt are popular in sports circles…” Includes knitting instructions for both the blouse and the cardigan.
Other interesting articles, projects and inspirations include:
Are You Making the Most of Your Windows?
Bits For Beach, Bridge and Bazaar
News Flashes From a Needle-Minded New Yorker
Modish Quilted Costume Accessories- according to the article, “quilting is playing a stellar role in the fashion drama of 1935!” The photos with this article are dramatic and interesting.
Dining Room Linens With Floral Border
Cooking- The “Food Facts For Home Folks” regular column in this issue focuses on August Menus- semi-cold dinners with hot vegetables or dessert.
Great vintage advertising- the back cover is a color Lucky Strike ad; the inside front cover is a listerine ad; there are numerous other partial page ads for a variety of products, including a comic-strip style ad for Rinso soap.
I’ve sold off most of my vintage needlecraft magazines, but this is one I held onto — if that tells you anything. It’s one of my most-loved needlework references. I’ve spent hours staring at Mary Card’s tea cloth in fascination, and I’m hoping to knit those hexagons someday! If you get your hands on a copy of this issue, I’m betting you’ll enjoy it too.