Four generations of knitters

Family knitting

Knitting stuff from the family album; late 40's and early 50's. Looking back at these photographs, I'm surprised how many layers of clothing people wore in those days! Here's one of me and my cousin Rog at the seaside. We've been paddling in the oh-so-chilly North Sea and are getting our feet dried. I'm not sure where the photo was taken; probably Cleethorpes, Bridlington or Scarborough.


I'm wearing a smocked dress, knitted playsuit and cardigan. At least that's what you see; underneath would be knickers, vest and liberty bodice. Rog is wearing a shirt (sleeves rolled up; very Northern seaside!), tie, sleeveless slipover knitted in an Argyle pattern and shorts (plus, no doubt, the obligatory pants/vest/liberty bodice combo underneath). A liberty bodice was a nasty little sleeveless number you wore over your vest as an extra layer so you 'didn't catch a chill'; the bodice fitted tightly, fastened with small rubber buttons down the front and felt incredibly restrictive. I hated wearing mine.


Here's Rog wearing the Argyle slipover again. I'm ladylike in another smocked dress and fluffy knitted cardigan.


This was taken at Withernsea, summer 1950, with my Dad. I'm well wrapped up again; this time in a knitted playsuit (no, I'm not a funny shape; that's a dress bundled up round my middle under the playsuit), topped off with a colourful knitted cardigan.


And finally, here's one taken in 1948 in the allotment at the back of our house in Goole. The Fairisle jumper worn by Laura (Mum's sister, mother of Rog) was a favourite family pattern. I love the dancing people borders and the puffed Forties-style sleeves. I'm obviously very intent on something happening off-camera. I wonder what it was!


Talk about blast from the past a version of that fairisle 'paper doll' style jumper did the rounds in my family too around that time. At around 3/4years old it was probably the piece of knitting that turned me on to yarn and stuff. As little more than a baby to me it seemed magical to see colours fiddle through Auntie Hilda's fingers turning into rows of little people. Brilliant blog! Bee x

These pictures absolutely made me melt.

I grew up largely in Hawaii, so when I read of people in England wearing not merely clothes but wool clothes to the beach, I couldn't fathom it. Now I've been to the seaside in England and I understand!

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