"Let's be cheerful"! We have no more right to steal the brightness out of the day for our own family than we have to steal the purse of a stranger. Let us be as careful that our homes are furnished with pleasant & happy thoughts as we are that the rugs are the right color and texture & the furniture comfortable and beautiful"! Laura Ingalls Wilder

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

the finished tomten





Many months ago I finished knitting the Tomten by Elizabeth Zimmerman.  I loved the entire process, even when I had to remove and remake an arm.  The real glitch came after basting in the zipper.  I had never done a zipper in a knit before and I was so pleased to find that following the instructions on this Youtube video it was a cinch.  The zipper was snug and perfectly basted and I was about halfway through some small invisible securing stitches when I decided that it would be easier to continue if I opened the sweater up...  Uh oh. "Eegads, why won't it come apart?"  I had taken the measurements along with a snippet of yarn to the fabric store (which is 50 miles away) and chosen a nice heavy duty zipper.  I thought that I was being so careful because I knew I couldn't just zip (like the pun?) back and exchange it.  What I hadn't considered was that there are 2 types of zippers, those that come apart at the bottom and those that don't.  Fifty fifty chance. You've already guessed which one I had just spent hours fiddling with.  

Here comes the happy part of the story.  I decided to run to the thrift store yesterday to see if I could find some little pink buttons for the Maile (which I did) and there was a box of used zippers for .25 cents apiece. Can you believe that I found the exact same zipper... with one important difference.  Ah, you are so quick! Yes, this one opened at the bottom.  I wasn't positive about the length but for a quarter I brought it home and it was... perfect.  It has a bend to it in the center where it had been folded but I'll work on that or it will just work itself out.  Yea!  




Since I'm still reading the same books as last week I thought I'd share the other little something that came home with me.  Look at how our fore-mothers re-purposed knits in 1945.  This actually gave me the confidence to try some things I've been afraid to try before.  There are hints on keeping the seams from being too bulky and encouragements to reinforce with grosgrain... fun, fun stuff! 
Blessings, Debbie

30 comments:

  1. Your sweater turned out great, so glad you lucked out and found the other zipper! How fun to see and older book on repurposing:@)

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  2. Your work is wonderful...and that book, what a treasure!
    Oh thanks for the comment on the eggs and becoming a chef. My husband was laughing last night while he was making instant banana pudding, you know "all things are possible". So many of us wouldn't have made it had we given up after egg explosions.

    Thanks! I am putting on my working shoes this morning...hubby still trying to find a job...such an upside down world we both are living in right now, doesn't make much sense, but God is in the midst of all of it.

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  3. Your little sweater is so sweet. You were at the right place at the right time regarding the zipper. I really like old books, too. You can gain so much knowledge from those who have done it all before.

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  4. That looks great, Debbie! And I'm glad you found that cache of zippers with the right one among them.:)

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  5. Knitting and zippers...you inspire me Debbie. I love how things work out and am so happy you found just the right zipper for your jacket, and for a quarter too.

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  6. beautiful! Love the contrasting colors and it's a timeless piece :)

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  7. Can I join you at the thrift store next time you go? :) Great finds, Debbie! Lovely work as always, ~Lisa

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  8. Your little sweater is so cute and the zipper is barely visible. You did such a great job. I used to keep all my used zippers way back when I used to sew all my kid's clothes years ago.
    I'm glad that you found the right zipper to finish your sweater.

    Hugs,
    JB

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  9. So cute!

    I love when those kinds of things happen, like the zipper at the thrift store!

    Deanna

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  10. Wow - that came out amazing! I wouldn't be brave enough to try the zipper. A huge round of applause for you!

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  11. The sweater turned out great, nice that you were able to find that zipper at the thrift store. I have have often found things I have needed at the thrift store...often times after I have bought the needed item retail...note to self check out thrift store first. Those books are a real treasure...have fun going through them

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  12. Your Tomten's fabulous, zippers can be a bit of a pain but this little knit was definitely worth all the effort and confusing zipper nightmares..............absolutely love old knitting patterns, the instructions are always so precise.
    Happy knitting!

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  13. The sweater is fantastic! I've been watching my EZ video. She's so awesome.

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  14. Such a darling project! How perfect that you found exactly what you needed...for a quarter!! Don't you love little God-given surprises like that?

    So...how many more baby-waiting weeks now? Exciting!

    Love, Cheryl

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  15. What an adorable sweater! I have yet to knit an Elizabeth Zimmerman. One of these days :)

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  16. This was a sweet little post, and that is a sweet little sweater!

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  17. what a beautiful sweater debbie, it is just gorgeous. well done on the zipper too. i really love that knit wear makeover book, what a find!

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  18. Adorable sweater! Finding the right zipper at the thrift shop must have made you beyond excited!

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  19. What a great, GREAT sweater! I absolutely love the natural colors you chose and it so works with the simple garter stitch. I love it!

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  20. Congrats on your good zipper fortune. The Maile is very pretty!

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  21. Thanks for the link to the zipper tutorial. As I mentioned in my post, I originally set out to create a knit zipper pouch, and I still want to make that happen! The video will help me immensely!

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  22. Yay for finding the perfect treasure! Don't you love it when things like that happen? 25 cents is a great price! :D And what a wonderful little book. I bet it has been very fun to look through.

    P.S. Your comment about being caught with the camera made me laugh. Thank you. :)

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  23. What an interesting sweater, the construction looks really unique to me. I love the colors you chose! And I'm glad the zipper debacle worked out okay!

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  24. I am in love with your 1945 book. I had have dreams of knitting E. Zimmerman's Tomten for years...wonder what I am waiting for...yours is superbly wonderful!

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  25. I love the sweater! And the wearer of this sweater will look adorable in it! :)

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  26. You are such a gifted knitter! That turned out adorable.

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  27. I recognized the shape of your cardigan as being the invention of E.Z. Sorry about your ripping and zipping issues. I see I'm not the only who rips - but I haven't zipped yet and I admire your bravery to attempt something new. Your Tomten looks handsome, indeed.
    Seeing the old black and white pictures reminds me of my mother's knitting books. Sewing and knitting are her crafts. Her sister is crafty but she told me recently that she never wished to "fiddle" with anything but sewing and knitting because these were the crafts that kept her children clothed. She learned to knit by making squares in Brownies for the war effort in the 1940s. She is in her 70s and hasn't stopped knitting.
    Your projects are so interesting.
    Karen A.

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  28. I've got some books of that vintage, too. Brought them home from Mom's when Dad had us clean out the cupboards. Not that mom ever knitted anything really - but she had the lit. And now I do. It's so funny, handling the graphics that look so old to us now, and thinking about what our slick modern stuff will look like to a couple of generations down the road. But a good, solid pattern is all anybody ever needs to follow in order to live well - and the wisdom that tells us how to keep our seams from bulking up? Yeah. That's the good stuff.

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  29. That is one gorgeous jacket! You did really well with the zipper, I have always had trouble with putting them in too.

    xx

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