Spinning a Yarn: My Organic Cotton Hand-Knitted Twin Set for Style Imitates Art

Hi Everyone,

This is a spontaneous and unplanned post. I participate in a newly discovered challenge (on my part) that is spearheaded Daenel of Living Outside the Stacks, Kim of Fierce Fashion, and Salazar of 14 Shades of Grey. Twice a month they they take turns picking a work of art or a piece of historical clothing and challenge us to style an outfit that is inspired by the work. Until this week, I’ve always found something in my previous posts published throughout the years. But this time around, I couldn’t find anything that I thought expressed what I saw in the piece below.

The Challenge by -An Early 19th Century Cap From The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute. This week’s curator is Daenel from Living Outside the Stacks.
Date: early 19th century
Culture: European
Medium: cotton, silk, glass beads
Credit Line: Gift of Mrs. Julian Street Jr., 1975
Accession Number: 1975.213.4
My take on this piece.


Why did I decide on this outfit?

When I looked at this cap, the biggest thing that stands out to me was that it was hand knitted in a natural colored fiber (cotton). It is a hand knitted item. I’m pretty sure about this because the only knitting machines that I know that existed in the 19th century were only for socks. In the early 19th century, all clothing (with the exception of socks), was created by hand; hand stitch by hand stitch (no commercial sewing machines until about 1860).

The cotton and silk fibers used would have had to be organic (pretty sure insecticides were around then). Also, I noticed the green silk ribbon and all those glorious beads that contrast against the natural color of the cap.

I’m a hand knitter so I decided to use a twin set that I knitted a few years ago from natural colored organic cotton. I’ve forgotten who made the yarn because I’ve had it for such a long time. The cardigan, named “Sanpoku” is from Berocco’s Yin & Yang #262 pattern booklet and I adapted the mock turtleneck from some pattern probably from Vogue Knitting. But, really I can’t remember where I got it.

I decided to further carry out the hand made attributes of this bonnet. This includes, a pin made from a piece of dried squash (yes, the veggie) that I picked up from a art museum gift shop (I’ve forgotten the artist) and a hand made silver ring by Cheryl Eve Acosta, a Kansas City jewelry artist. Finally I chose a green (not the gorgeous hunter green of the ribbon, but a green nerveless) Anthony Luciano bag.

Anthony Luciano makes all his bags in his workshop in New York City. Needless to say they are very expensive and I only can get them if I find them 2nd hand here and there (mainly eBay and Poshmark).

I loved the glass beads used but just didn’t didn’t have anything that worked with the outfit.

And since it was a head covering, I tried one of my hats with the look.



If you want to have some fun, check this challenge out. Every Monday, there is a post on the ladies’ websites announcing what art work is going to be used. You don’t have to have a blog or even an Instagram account to participate-just send your photo (if its from your blog or IG, that will be published too). Include a statement of how that work of art influenced your decisions in styling your look. There are no wrong answers and all submissions will be published the next Wednesday by the curator for that round. Check it and them out!

Daenel of Living Outside the Stacks (this weeks curator)

Kim of Fierce Fashion

Salazar of 14 Shades of Grey

Have fun.

Be creative,

Oh, and back to yarn…..

And a big update. Do you like this Asian style cardigan and do you knit? I found the pattern for FREE, yes free on the Berroco Site.


29 thoughts on “Spinning a Yarn: My Organic Cotton Hand-Knitted Twin Set for Style Imitates Art

    1. Hi, Kim-Yep, I’ve knitted since the middle 80’s and started spinning yarn in the late 90’s. However, all that took a toll on my hands and I had to cut down, which is why you don’t see to many knitting posts. Sewing is much easier on the joints. But, I do have two knitting projects going right now.

      For the first time, I didn’t have anything in my archives and had to actually think a little harder, but it was all fun.


    2. If I write a post new post again, however, I’m not going to publish until Monday evening. That’s getting my entry in late, but I don’t like doing it before Monday-doesn’t feel right. I always publish on Sunday, and I guess it was a habit but now thinking about it, don’t think I feel comfortable. But, for this time, what is done is done.


    1. Hi, Michelle Thanks, it was the only thing I could think of. I went through all my posts and couldn’t find anything. I don’t post my knitting much but with the lockdown, I’ve started a few new pieces and finished a bigger project, so probably will be doing more “making” posts featuring knitting.


    1. Oh, yes-we live in the country and have never had less than 5 cats-they found us-we never have gone out and gotten a cat-thank goodness our daughter is a veterinarian. And that’s Jacque but his nick name is Jay-Jay


    1. Thanks Shelbee and this challenge is so much fun. It makes you really think about a couple of pieces of art a month and I really have fun doing it. Usually, I have been able to use an older post. This time around was a little harder.


  1. What a lovely take on the pretty vintage piece! you’re so talented to have knitted that twinset! I like the hat too 🙂

    Thanks so much for joining the #WeekdayWearLinkup! Hope that you had a wonderful weekend 🙂


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