Roland-designs , Virginie's blog.

"Never lose an opportunity of seeing anything beautiful, for beauty is God's handwriting." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

Tuesday, 7 November 2017

Pretty flowers - Antique cross stitch pattern

Here is the latest addition to our collection of antique pattern replicas – Pretty flowers.

This pattern would have been a supplement to the 1800’s French magazine La brodeuse (The embroideress). Quality ladies or household periodicals of the time would often have a hand painted fashion or embroidery plate. 

The original painted sheet had a very interesting detail, some of the printed pattern was not painted over. Maybe it was a mistake? I can’t really say, as it is very rare to find a pattern that is un-finished.

While charting the picture I did notice that the person who had painted over the printed design had not followed the lines, nor symbols correctly. I always try to chart antique patterns as accurately as possible, but in such a case I take artistic liberty and do my best to make the pattern work. 

Pretty Flowers - Antique hand painted embroidery pattern

Bouquet for furnitures and borders

Details of the printed chart, and painted area

The pattern is available here:

Saturday, 4 November 2017

Christmas ornament 2017 - Free pattern

After spending a lot of time this year perfecting my tatting skills (perfecting is still a wish, more than a statement), I felt it was only natural to add a little tatting detail to my traditional free Christmas ornament.

For those who want to try their hands at tatting, this is a perfect first-time project. The simple, but effective cross stitch frame is also lovely just on its own, or with a simple embellishment in the centre such as a charm, or cute button. 

This design is a perfect stash buster ! Use up all those leftover bits and pieces you have saved up from other projects, or why not try out that lovely over-dyed embroidery thread you bought at that craft fair this summer, and saved up for just the right project ?

The pattern is designed for 28 ct linen/aida, and the tatting done with DMC Cordonnet special # 30. But if you are a little adventurous, then why not stitch it on finer linen and use a smaller tatting thread?

The pattern is available as a free instant download here, along with all the other free Christmas designs from Roland-designs: Free Christmas patterns

Working on the Christmas ornament

The finished ornament


Saturday, 28 October 2017

Ramona cardigan by Elizabeth Smith. Part 3

Finished with the body !

Yeah ! I’m finished with the body, it didn’t take too long and I’m pretty pleased with it. The original pattern is a little short for my taste so I added some extra rows at the end to add a little length to the cardigan.

A top-down raglan pattern is great for those of us who want to have control over the length of a sweater/cardigan (adding, or removing rows to change the length), the only drawback is that the hem to my taste is not so pretty with a simple CO (cast off). When you begin with the ribbing you have a nice ribbed edge, when you end with a ribbing the CO row is a little off, no matter how nicely you do it, leaving the bottom edge a little stiff, and not as elastic as one would like. 

Maybe there is technique to it ?

So far I’ve enjoyed knitting with the chunky woollen yarn, apart for the – knot ! The last two sweaters I knitted were with finer wool and the change of thread was not too much of an issue, but now I fear that the big, chunky knot will feel like the proverbial pea under the mattress. Maybe I will undo the knots delicately, and weave in the ends ? 

Any tips from experienced chunky wool knitters ?

Ramona sweater, only the sleeves and edges left.

Details of the hem

"What to do with those chunky knots ? "

Part 1:
Part 2:

Tuesday, 10 October 2017

93 - Victor Hugo

A little earlier last month my husband, oldest son and I took a short trip to France for a  family reunion. 

We had only a couple days, and had not planned on doing much more than spending time with my family. But we did pass the old town center in Strasbourg on a saturday, and the display of a street book seller  caught my eyes.

I really can't resist taking a look at books, especially vintage or antique ones. One quick glance, and this one volume stood out to me, an early edition of Victor Hugo's last novel titled "93" (after the 1793 revolt in the Vendée).
The story centers around three small children, and their widowed peasant mother. Caught between two fighting forces, they are innocent victims of their time.

It's a story of revolutionaries, versus royalist. Of the conflict between duty, and moral duty.

I actually had just read the book, and while it is a sad story it is also a nobel one..... 

This volume is beautiful illustrated with  many illustrations, and while I could not find a printing date I believe it is a late 1800's edition....  Maybe one of my readers can help me date it better ? 

Quatrevingt-treize. Victor Hugo

Sunday, 1 October 2017

Ramona cardigan by Elizabeth Smith. Part 2

A little sweater progression update.

So now I am well on the way, and haven’t made any serious mistakes since the miscounts at the beginning. I did forget to knit instead of purl at one point on the false hem, but that was easily fixed by going back and removing the couple stitches involved, then fixing the mistake with the aid of an hair pin – I know, you should use a crochet hook. But once again it happened while watching the TV, and I did not want to get up and get a crochet so my always handy hair pin was put to good use. It’s amazing how useful those little pins are, made of metal and easy to bend I’ve used them for so many things… maybe they should be added to the swiss knives. 

The pattern has a small decrease/increase along the waist, but I wonder it is really necessary ? Maybe  knitting it straight wouldn’t  be too bad ? I also wonder about the false hem, I’ve seen other bloggers who said they had knitted this sweater without the false hem and thought it was much nicer that way ? Anyways, I’ll follow the pattern as stated, but it is such an easy and pleasant knitting project that I might do it again. Thought a next time around I would probably skip the false hem, and the increase/decrease and instead add a little fair isle style strip into it for contrast ? Or pockets ?

Ramona cardigan. Here you can see the lovely top-down raglan construction lines