Tuesday, 6 August 2013

Top of the (Knitting) Pops

Bellmans 596

In my continuing efforts to get all the pattern leaflets in the Knitting & Crochet Guild collection sorted, I dealt with the Bellmans patterns recently.  Bellmans was a chain of yarn shops that sold their own brand of yarn, and issued pattern leaflets from about 1960 until 1975 - they were taken over by Coats Patons  around 1970.  We had two boxes of their leaflets - about 530 different ones, so only small potatoes compared with the giants like Patons and Sirdar.  

 As usual, I made a note of the leaflets that we had most copies of, as an indication that they were the most popular.   This time, there are two clear winners.  One is a pattern for a helmet/bonnet thing, issued in 1966.   You could make it for yourself, so it's trying to be trendy (Mary Quant was designing similar crocheted bonnets about then)  and for your children as well, so it's trying to be practical winter wear.  I don't think it works for both - you wouldn't look cool in your bonnet if there was an 8-year-old boy wearing the same thing anywhere nearby.  (Although in practice there might not be much danger of that - any self-respecting 8-year-old boy wouldn't wear it.)  And the other winning leaflet has two crocheted ponchos.  This one dates from about 1970 - the price is in the process of changing to decimal.  I never thought that ponchos were a good idea, even when they were popular - all those draughts underneath.  So neither of them appeal to me, though I suppose we should appreciate them as part of our rich heritage.  (Sorry - feeling a bit intolerant today.)     

Bellmans 1248



  1. That bonnet is lovely. I've been looking for patterns like these and they are very hard to find. You are right about boys not wearing them though. They are very girly.

  2. Thanks for your comment. Maybe patterns for bonnets like that were only current in the mid-60s? I can't think of any patterns from any time since then, right now, though maybe my memory is at fault.