Which Stitch Markers Are Best

When I first took up crochet I didn't have any stitch markers, I didn't even know stitch markers existed. It wasn't long before I knew about them and I learnt the value of using stitch markers, aka stitch savers. That first frustrating experience of when a project accidentally unravels because there's nothing holding onto the stitch to stop it coming undone or your crochet circle grows in ways it isn't supposed to and the worth of this tiny tool became obvious very quickly. But there are so many styles of stitch marker to choose from, locking, circle, coil-less, plastic, safety pins, thread, 3D printed... does it really make a difference which one you use? Is it just how pretty they are? I walk you through a dozen different stitch markers from items you have lying around your home to the fancy artisan styles. I share with you what features to look for and those that don't really hold up to the task.

February HSM Wrap Up - Blue Challenge

At the start of the month I pondered what to make for the Blue HSM Challenge.

But did I stick to the plan?

1) Finish bustle UFO

I did not finish the bustle UFO.

However I did draft a pattern for the Woman's Bustle England, circa 1875 - LACMA and I made a mock-up. The pattern needs only a minor tweak.

Bustle English style 1875

2)  Tampico bustle mock-up 2.0

bustle style 1875-1880

The main change I wanted to make to the tampico bustle mockup this time was the pleat width. I used 1" pleats and I'm much happier with the results.

I used the binding attachment for binding the edges because I'm determined to get the hang of this gadget.  Just as I was finishing it up I realised that some of the issues I was having with it might actually be the differential feed on the machine and not because I'm using a cheap knock-off of the official attachment which is outrageously expensive. A few adjustment later and the results were much better, unfortunately I only figured this out on the last 2 binding strips.

binding attachment

This time I decided to try the bustle without the fabric side sections (because the stash did not provide). This puts the style somewhere between the 1880 bustle at the Met Museum and the other 1875 bustle at LACMA (as in the one I didn't make).

Complete! That's right, it did not become another UFO. It's not perfect but it is completely usable and not only did I get closer to having a perfected pattern I finally solved the issues with the binding attachment.

3) Satin Skirt UFO 

Well the skirt itself is still buried in the stash somewhere but I did make progress.

I decided I should start with pattern hunting for a Victorian bodice.

I found some bodice drafting instructions I might use from my digital libarary however they are a little later then I want so I shall keep looking.

Currently the choices are:

Every Lady her own Dress Maker published 1896 or the Ladies Tailor Complete Instructor published 1892.

Edit: While hunting down the links for the above two books I found  The Parissian Tailor Complete Instructor and Practical Guide to Ladies Tailoring; Third edition (incorrectly listed as the first edition by Open Library); published in 1895. This publication looks to be the most informative of the three.

Then I got side tracked in Open Library, here are some of the wonderful books I stumbled across;

I finally found this book:

Divisional and exact measurement systems for garment cutting New and rev. ed. - published 1876

where I decided I had best stop looking as that is around the correct date that I am after and there are many, many more tailoring books available. 

4) Wash the wool blend fabric.

Err, no, didn't happen.

Stay tuned for March challenge!