Saturday, January 5, 2008


Hello dears. So while you've all been sleeping a-snug in your beds, the Hooker has been hard at work pulling in some interesting bits of history for your perusal. Ever hear of a Manchette? Me, neither. Sounds like something that helps you chew. But it is, in fact, a lovely precursor to everyone's favorite fingerless gloves or wristwarmers. Oh sure, you're all so cool with your mitts on, aren't you? But so was the fashionable crocheter of 1848. That's right. The hipsters swirling around in outfits like this were madly hooking their exceptionally beautiful and delicate manchettes--13 years before the Civil War. My gut is that, despite the technical explanation from Wikipedia, these lovelies were probably less about being a wrist cozy and more about dressing up a plain blouse or jacket, but I am charmed by the notion that our foremothers were crocheting these simply because they are so cool.

So I am thinking that the fingerless glove can do with some fancifying, don't you think? For this and more inspiration, take a look at the Antique Pattern Library, which has thousands of pages of gorgeous old crochet patterns to pore over.

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