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Vintage Baby Knits: More Than 40 Heirloom Patterns from the 1920s to the 1950s [Kindle Edition]

Kristen Rengren , Thayer Allyson Gowdy
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)

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Book Description

While working as a vintage clothing dealer, combing through estate sales and eBay listings, longtime knitter Kristen Rengren amassed hundreds of knitting pattern booklets from 1920 through 1960. Now a knitwear designer, Rengren brings us the result of her combined passions in Vintage Baby Knits, a charming collection of more than 40 contemporary updates of timeless baby patterns.
Projects range from small, quick-to-knit items like hats, booties, and shrugs to larger, more challenging designs for sweaters, onesies, and dresses, including a lace christening gown. Beautiful photographs capture a bevy of adorable babies and toddlers wearing these knitted treasures. Also included are sidebars on baby fashion and knitting culture in this bygone era, and a complete reference section. Destined to be a classic itself, Vintage Baby Knits promises family heirlooms for 21st-century babies.

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Kristen Rengren is a freelance knitwear designer who specializes in vintage styles. Previously she worked as a vintage clothing dealer and as a public relations specialist for independent theater companies and as a development director at DePaul University in Chicago.

Product Details

  • File Size: 8681 KB
  • Print Length: 160 pages
  • Publisher: STC Craft | Melanie Falick Books (October 30, 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B009SG8202
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #203,175 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars
4.1 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
36 of 38 people found the following review helpful
This book is a must for any knitter who likes knitting for babies; vintage-inspired knitting; and/or knitting with lighter-weight yarns. The patterns -- a whopping 40 of them! -- are inspired by vintage patterns of the 1920s through 1950s, with the patterns updated and clarified, and knit in today's yarns. They include sweaters, a diaper cover, blanket, stuffed toys and many more. Each design is beautifully interpreted and shown in fabulous color photos (with extremely adorable babies modelling them). Production quality is very high: hardcover, full color throughout, schematics, lots of technical info presented in inset boxes. The yarns used range from worsted/DK weight to fingering.

A beautiful addition to any knitter's pattern library and must-have for anyone who likes to knit baby items, either for their own family members or for others.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I want to knit everything in it! June 11, 2009
By Lisa H.
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Okay, maybe not the knit soakers LOL, but this book is great! I will definitely be making lots of these items for my daughter and also for gifts. Some of the patterns are a bit more challenging and others are quite simple. I'm an intermediate knitter, so that's nice for me, I like to have some of both in a pattern book. I couldn't wait to get this book when I saw previews of it and I am not disappointed. I can't wait to get started on my first project - the little shrug.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Huge number of adorable patterns July 22, 2009
I bought this book after seeing all the samples on the author's book tour. The garments are even more adorable in person than in the book's lovely photographs. There are a lot of patterns in this book, with many different kinds of garments, making it a very good value for the money. Texture patterns, colorwork, cables, lace patterns, and garments with interesting construction make for a varied knitting experience. The use of lighter weight yarns makes great use of all the unique sock yarns out there. The author is very knowledgeable about vintage knitting and clothing styles, and provides interesting overviews of the styles and trends that influence her work. All in all, a very beautiful, useful, and satisfying book.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars So Adorable!! June 8, 2009
If you're old enough to have any grandchildren, bring a hankie to the knitting store. You're sure to drool when you look through this book. The patterns are just too cute for words. They'll bring you back to the 1940's, 1950's and even the 1960's.

There are little knitted diapies to cover the understuff. There are ribbons and roses and tough guy sweaters for the little man. It's all there, everything vintage and retro that you can think of.

The patterns are easy to read, there are several that will catch your eye and you will use this book as a resource. It's just that adorable.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Please review patterns before publishing. February 2, 2014
Format:Kindle Edition
This book has lots of cute vintage patterns to pick from. However, the patterns are not really clearly written and contain lots of mistakes. Perhaps it is because they are taken directly from old sources, but the instructions are cloudy and open to wide interpretation. If you are more used to using new patterns be forewarned that you will need some extra time to resolve the somewhat confusing instructions.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful Patterns, Mostly Great November 7, 2011
My review for this is mostly positive. The photographs are beautiful, the pictures of the finished products draw me in enough to want to make the items. There is a helpful few pages in the back that discusses measurements and needle conversions and such.

I like that there are a variety of items: sweaters, a shrug, different kids of hats, blankets, a cape, and even a few toys. A few of these patterns are gender specific, but most are not and on some just a color change could make it work for the opposite.

A few drawbacks:
YES - there are some errata in the book you should write in and check before proceeding on a few patterns.

Also, this (like many knitting books) uses beautiful but VERY pricey and specific yarns, in my opinion. A smaller baby item may not take many hanks of a yarn but when it costs as much $8-$25 for just one of really can add up.
It's up to you whether you want to make items from the exact same yarn as the author - but I'm willing to guess that I am part of the majority of people that would like to make their own different selections of yarn to use (based on color, price, preference, whatever).
For that reason, I wish this was a book that just included one of the little universal symbols of a skein of yarn with a number on it to signify which weight to use (ex. picture with a 3 - I know it's sport weight right away). The brands of yarn listed in the projects don't always give away what weight it is just by looking at it and you have to look it up on yarndex. com or somewhere else just to be sure. Not a huge deal I guess - but I'd appreciate it if it was that much easier to decide what I was going to substitute with.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars THE BEST!!! August 1, 2009
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I love this book. The designs are fresh yet classic. As a knitter with over 40 years of knitting experience, I found this book to be quite possibly my all-time favorite for babies. The patterns hold my interest - they have enough complexity that I don't get bored. They're challenging, but not to the point of causing me to break out in a knitting fever. It's a book I'll use again and again, which is more than I can say for most knitting books.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Lots of really cute patterns. I cannot wait to get started!
Published 2 months ago by Linda
5.0 out of 5 stars a good buy
Adorable patterns ! Easy to follow and very thorough. Beautiful and inspiring pictures. Arrived in good condition and on time.
Published 8 months ago by Mandy Cruze
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Wonderful baby knits! This will become my go to book for baby presents.
Published 9 months ago by L. Grimme
5.0 out of 5 stars A Knit and Crochet Artist's Dream!
Purchased as a gift for an avid knitter and crochet artist. She was extremely happy to receive these heirloom patterns to reproduce as gifts, etc. Read more
Published 10 months ago by Cecilia Garland
4.0 out of 5 stars nice book
nice compilation of patterns. Most are only infant sizes. A lot of sweater patterns are for "top down" knitting, which will be a new challenge for me.
Published 13 months ago by susan wehner
3.0 out of 5 stars A bit too old
This book has a lot of really old patterns in it. It is a nice book, but some are just too old to modernize with today's looks.
Published 14 months ago by robin pettini
4.0 out of 5 stars Vintage is Fun
Good basic patterns from the past. Great fun showing my grandmother and talking about the sweaters that her grandmother had knitted for my mother.
Published 20 months ago by Beth
5.0 out of 5 stars beautiful baby clothes
I was asked to knit a christening gown for my newest granddaughter. I found exactly the perfect gown in this book.The instructions are good and the results were gorgeous. Read more
Published on May 23, 2013 by anne branca
5.0 out of 5 stars good it on the kindle
nice book, good patterns, love the convenience of having it on the kindle. looking for other knitting books! this is my favorite way to carry patterns with me.
Published on January 14, 2013 by Lucille Harrington
5.0 out of 5 stars Vintage is great
Love the vintage patterns. Everything old is really new again and we should keep them alive by knitting them and passing them along .
Published on January 1, 2013 by Carol Mandracchia
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More About the Author

Kristen Rengren is a long-time collector of vintage clothing and ephemera and a former vintage clothing dealer. Her work as a knitwear designer and author is inspired and informed by her vast collection of vintage knitting patterns, including thousands of patterns spanning from the 1920s to the 1950s. She has designed for Blue Sky Alpacas and Vermont Organic Fiber Company, among other yarn companies.

Kristen learned to knit in 1994, when a friend taught her to give them both something to do during a long Lithuanian winter. Her first project was a pair of fair isle gloves, but because no one mentioned that they would not be an ideal project for beginners, they weren't finished until the next summer. Previous to her discovering both vintage clothing and designing in 2006, Kristen was variously a development director for a major university and for several experimental theater companies, the director of a major cultural festival bringing together Eastern European artists and their American counterparts, and a professional puppeteer.

Kristen lives in Chicago with her husband, two cats, and more yarn than she cares to admit.

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