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Topic: An Orange Swan Schiaparelli Bowknot Sweater  (Read 2690 times)
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Orange Swan
« on: June 26, 2011 06:42:22 PM »

In 1927 the famous designer Elsa Schiaparelli designed a sweater that may be one of the most iconic sweater designs in history. Prior to the 1920s, and even after that time, collars and cuffs were generally items that were separate from the garments they were worn with. Men pinned collars and cuffs on their shirts and women pinned collars and cuffs on to their blouses, sweaters, dresses etc. The rationale seems to have been that collars and cuffs got soiled more quickly and if they could be laundered by themselves it would save laundering on the whole (and laundry was a heavy chore back then). When Schiaparelli designed a black sweater with an ivory bow and collar and cuffs knitted into the design, it was something completely original and witty and daring. But then this was the designer who got other women to wear a shoe on their heads and think of it as a "smart hat".

Today that sweater still looks sharp. You can get the (free!) original pattern here if you want to make it yourself:


I'd been wanting to knit one for myself for years. But I adapted the pattern considerably. I look terrible in black, and when I visited the yarn store and looked at all the colours available in the right weight, I ended up going with a burnt orange. The yarn I used has a tweedy texture that gave the sweater the speckled look of the stranded original, so I didn't use the stranded technique to knit this sweater, but instead used intarsia. Then the sweater's twenties' style shaping wouldn't work on my figure (too long and too narrow), so I sized and shaped it the way I knit all my sweaters, with waist shaping and a slightly lower, more open neckline. I did use the chart, of course, just slightly adapted to accommodate the changed neckline, and I think the result is still very recognizably a Schiaparelli Bowknot sweater.... done Orange Swan style.
« Last Edit: June 30, 2011 05:33:37 AM by Orange Swan » THIS ROCKS   Logged
« Reply #1 on: June 26, 2011 06:50:24 PM »

I like the color!
Good job, it's a beauty.

I love nonsense - it wakes up the brain cells!

   Prewitt Woods
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« Reply #2 on: June 27, 2011 03:32:52 AM »

Oh wow, that's lovely! I need to find a way to get one of these. I don't knit (I crochet) but my Granny does... Smiley Well done!

Emmett McCarty Cullen; better than Superman
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Mostly Harmless
« Reply #3 on: June 28, 2011 10:34:32 AM »

Didn't realise that was intarsia/colour work until after clicking on the thumbnail to look at the photo.  Cheesy
« Reply #4 on: June 29, 2011 09:39:27 PM »

That is absolutely AWESOME. I would wear it in a heartbeat Cheesy

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