Lost Arts studio

A lot of the fiber arts I enjoy are things like tatting, netmaking, chair caning, and even weaving, where people will come up to me when I demonstrate and solemnly tell me, "That's a lost art."

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Location: SW Outer Nowhere, Michigan, United States

On the Internet, nobody knows you're a chicken. (With apologies to Peter Steiner.)



08 August 2007

Where to Get 'em

Ammerins said, "How cool! I want that *book too, but can't find it... Can you post the link? Greatly appreciated!"

Certainly. I'll shoulder the blame when the internet crashes under the weight of everybody in the world downloading old knitting books!

I downloaded this book from Google Book Search, one of the internet's treasures.

My search was sparked by Julie's post about the Charleston Museum, showing an 1839 copy of The Ladies' Knitting and Netting Book.

Google Book Search has two completely different books under almost identical titles.

This one is Miss Watts' *"The Ladies' Knitting & Netting Book," First Series, Fifth Edition with Additions, 1840.

My copy isn't going to win any bookbinding prizes, but I can turn the pages, so I'm happy. I realized after I started printing pages that the signatures (small groups of pages meant to be printed and sewn together) were marked in the text with letters, a, B, C and so on, oh too late! Thus the drill to go through 37 sheets of paper. (155 pages in the PDF file, 2 pages on each side of a sheet.)

The second one, also by Miss Watts, is "The Ladies' Knitting & Netting Book," Second Series, Second Edition, 1840, a completely different book with different patterns. The publisher of both was John Miland.

Another online source of old books is Project Gutenberg. (Don't leave the "www" out or it takes you to one of those fake-y webpages that's all full of ads.)

For example, here is Cornelia Mee's 1846 "Exercises in Knitting", available either as text, or in HTML replica. Not so convenient for printing out as a PDF, but still.

Project Gutenberg also has Isabella Beeton's "Beeton's Book of Needlework" and many other treasures.

Between Google Book Search and Project Gutenberg, I'll have patterns to puzzle over for a long time.

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2 Comments:

Blogger Bells said...

oh what treasures!!

5:11 PM  
Blogger historicstitcher said...

Very nice - thank you for sharing!

I've been having great fun, too, in finding these old treasures, and noticed that some were scanned at a library not too far from me. I wonder what else they might have hiding in the stacks?

3:26 PM  

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