I do research on and recreate garments and objects from the past. My sources range from original items to photographs in books, periodicals, art works, literary references and period patterns. My research also involves the history of knitting needles and related implements.
The portrait in the corner is by Elisabeth Louise Vigée Le Brun (1755-1842) of Elisabeth Alexeyevna (?), location and ownership unknown.
This nightcap appears in Weldon's Practical Knitter, Twenty-Sixth series. I found it in Knitting / 19th Century Sources edited by Jules and Kaethe Kliot, Lacis Publications (no publication date.) The pattern also appears in Interweave Press's facsimile series, Weldon's Practical Needlework, Volume 9. It is being knit on 3.25 mm needles, dpns for the back circular piece and spns for the rest of the cap. I am using J&P Coats Royale Classic Crochet Thread, Size 10.
The back piece and the main part that will go around the head are shown. I am currently about halfway through the Double Rose-Leaf pattern. Still to come is the frill around the bottom and then the ruched frill around the front.
Here is TA, the miniature giant tortoise wearing Stephen Maturin's comforter, knit for him by Louisa Wogan [Desolation Island], and knit by me in Appleton’s crewel wool Red 203 on 2.25mm needles. At the lower left is William Mowett's Guernsey "shirt" [Master and Commander] in Morehouse lace weight wool, blue and natural, on 1.50 needles. This did not turn out to my satisfaction as both the stripes and neck are too broad. I modeled the neck on a woven wool under shirt of Nelson's (more about that in the future), and it should be flatter and narrower. I plan to make another one with adjustments.
Stephen's Garment [Post Captain], in brown Dritz Sports Yarn (wool) on 1.25mm needles, is being knit in two pieces, a front and back, and they are pinned out over each other on a cushion like one of his dissecting projects. I was comparing the waistlines so as to know where to end the fall which can be seen folding backwards with the knitting needle still in it. The two pieces will be sewn together and I will then knit the arms from the shoulders down.
Still on the needles is a Monmouth cap, another Guernsey shirt, Desolation Island mittens, Stephen's blue stockings and Jack's comforter knit by Sophie [The Far Side of the World.]