About Weldon's Practical Needlework

From Interweave Press:

About 1885, Weldon’s began publishing a series of fourteen-page monthly newsletters, available by subscription, each title featuring patterns and instructions for projects using a single technique.

About 1888, the company began to publish Weldon’s Practical Needlework, each volume of which consisted of twelve issues (one year) of several newsletters bound together with a cloth cover.

Each volume contains hundreds of projects, illustrations, information on little-known techniques, glimpses of fashion as it was at the turn of the twentieth century, and brief histories of needlework. Other techniques treated include making objects from crinkled paper, tatting, netting, beading, patchwork, crewelwork, appliqué, cross-stitch, canvaswork, ivory embroidery, torchon lace, and much more.

From 1999 through 2005, Interweave published facsimiles of the first twelve volumes of Weldon’s Practical Needlework.

Monday, July 2, 2012

Project 19: Baby's Pilch or First Drawers

Pattern was published in Weldon's Practical Knitter Twenty-Eighth Series (1895), and republished in Volume 10 of Piecework's Series.

I'm going to be working from Volume 10 for the next couple of weeks, as it's the only Weldon's book I haven't packed in preparation for moving.

"The little garment represented in our engraving is excellent for a baby or young child, and will prevent many a chill.  It may be knitted with soft fingering wool, Beehive, or Saxony wool, and a pair of No. 9 or No. 10 bone knitting needles.  The length from the waist to the bottom of the leg is 9 1/4 inches"

Here in the US, these are more commonly called soakers, and they've made a comeback among moms who prefer cloth diapers over disposables.

I'll use DK weight yarn; 9 or 10 is equivalent to US 4 or 5 needles.  Looks like the pants are knit flat in one piece with some clever shaping at the crotch.


  1. Yep, soaker! I must say, that is an interesting project!


    1. I've never knit one before (or even considered it), and kind of shudder to think of having to contend with a soggy wool diaper cover :-)

      I'll post a picture of my progress shortly. ORANGE soakers :-)