Wednesday, 29 October 2014

More Elizabeth Forster Designs

The first designs by Elizabeth Forster that I saw were illustrated in her book, The Wandering Tattler.  The designs had been published as Wendy pattern leaflets, and a year later I found copies of the leaflets in the Knitting & Crochet Guild's collection - they are illustrated here.

There were three more pattern leaflets that she designed for Wendy in the display of her archive at Norwich Castle Museum earlier this month.  All three date from the 1970s, and I had already picked out two of them as possible Elizabeth Forster designs when I was sorting Wendy pattern  leaflets in the Knitting & Crochet Guild collection two years ago.  I knew that she had done a lot of work for Wendy Wools and that her designs were often inspired by her travels, so I kept an eye out for likely leaflets. Leaflets 1593 and 1721 were two of those I thought were hers.  (I think that I was probably right about the others that I picked, too, but that hasn't yet been confirmed.)    

Wendy 1593

Wendy 1721
 They are very 70s shapes - the hooded tabard looks very dated now.  And shawl-collared belted jackets are a bit Starsky and Hutch, for those who remember 70s TV.  But I like the colour work - though in both cases, the belt breaks up the pattern and tends to spoil the effect, especially in the tabard.

The third Wendy pattern on show in Norwich is not one I had picked as a possible Elizabeth Forster, because it is less obviously 'ethnic'.  But it might be based on a motif she saw somewhere - in a mosaic maybe?  The yoke pattern with its expanding diamonds and graduated colours is a very nice effect, and it's a classic sweater shape that you could knit now with very little alteration.  

Wendy 1815
  There's much more research to be done into Elizabeth Forster's designs, of course - these are just a few examples.


  1. I love these graphic designs. Hard to imagine anyone wearing a tabard these days, but the first cardigan is great

    1. Well, I thought ponchos were a thing of the past, but apparently they have made a comeback, so tabards may be next....


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...