1970s Yellow Mohair Sweater
Description: Hand knitted Yellow Mohair Sweater, 1978, with V-neck, ties, cap sleeves.
Construction Details: knitted in flat pieces (back and front), seamed at sides and shoulders, with sleeve edges and neckband picked up after seaming to finish. Allover texture pattern consists of vertical panels of stockinette stitch framed by columns openwork lace. Knit 2, purl 2 ribbing at hem, garter stitch sleeve edges, neck edge, and toes. Gauge 27 stitches and 29 rows = 4".
My mother, Paige Negus, made this yellow summer sweater for me in 1978. I never wore it much -- the color was not very flattering, and the yarn was not comfortable to wear next to the skin -- but I've kept it year after year because it is so beautifully made, and because I recall my mother re-knitted it several times to make it come out just right.
Recently we found the orginal pattern for this sweater among the craft magazines my mother has saved. Published in the Spring/Summer 1978 Issue of American Home Crafts Magazine (shown), it is identified as "Cap Sleeve Blouse", pp. 83 and 100. The pattern recommended using Plymouth Indiecita Alpaca yarn, but I am sure my mother substituted Mohair because it was less expensive. The Magazine offers an interesting glimpse into 1970s crafting -- with knitted, crocheted, and sewn garments, quilts and shirred rugs made from recycled and scrap fabrics, sand painting in bottles, stenciled floors, embroidered peasant blouses, and much more.
Now my mother spends her crafting time on needlepoint and cross stitch, but then she made a lot of our clothing to save money. She loved to knit and she was absolutely passionate about sewing. This sweater reminds me of her love of making, the beautiful things she created for all of us -- me, my sister, my father, and herself -- and the many hours we spent during those years sewing, knitting and crafting together.