my new pullover and a review of Michiyo’s Knitting Workshop (book)

日本語は英文の後に続きます。Japanese text will follow after the English.

Hello! I hope everyone had an enjoyable Christmas holiday if you celebrated it. I spent my Christmas at home with family, good food and a knitting project – bliss!

I did not get any sewing-related presents this year, but I am so excited about a book order I made which arrived after Christmas,  a copy of “Burda Vintage“:-)  I am so glad I read about it on Rike’s blog Draped in Cloudlets (must check out her beautiful blog if you have not already done so, the pictures are beautiful and her fashion sense is very inspiring!), and ordered a copy right away. Do you know this magazine? It is a Burdastyle magazine special edition, featuring only vintage patterns from the 50s!

I like almost all of the patterns but my favourites are the Balloon Jacket (Rosa), the Job Suit (Lola) and the Little Black Dress (Coco). I think the Balloon Jacket and the Job Suit are definitely going in the express lane in my long to-sew queue:-) What I especially like about this magazine is that they show the rendering (from the actual vintage pattern from those days), a picture of a model wearing the garment made up today, and some stories about the style, pictures of how it was worn in the 50s as well as how it can be styled today! I have been basically entranced with this magazine since it arrived at my house- I love vintage patterns and buy them on Etsy but a lot of them never get made because I am not sure from the rendering on the envelope if the style is something I would actually wear in real life – so the format of this magazine (showing the garments made up, worn by a model and styled in a modern way) is very helpful for me.

It’s the last day of the year and I want to squeeze this into my this year’s makes. It is from pattern #9 of Japanese knitwear designer Michiyo’s latest book, Michiyo’s Knitting Workshop. More on the book later in the post but first of all let me tell you about this make… it is a cape? pullover? basically two rectangle pieced together, but I love the effect!


The front looks like this.


And a beautiful thick cable runs across the back.


The balloon effect when viewed from the side is what I like the most.


I made it with 3.5 skeins of RainCityKnits Bulky in Navy Blue. The yarn is super soft and springy!! Every time I buy hand-dyed yarns I think about picking more unique/brighter colors but I am happy with the navy and the way the finished item turned out!


Not much more to say about the garment, really… It is not the most practical but definitely special! and did I say I love it already?


The back view:


The colour of the actual cape is closer to the previous pictures (dark navy) but I just put these pictures to show the texture created by the yarn.


The front view:


And here is the book! It has got to be the best newly released knitting book I have came across this season!


There are pullovers, turtlenecks, cardigans, socks, gloves, cap and even leggings and a skirt! Pretty much all one would need for a warm, knitted wardrobe. Most of the patterns are for knitting though there are also some crochet projects.


Here are some pictures of my favourites!

At first I was not sure I liked the length of this sweater (though I love the neck detailing) but now looking at it again I think it would look great as a tunic or even a short dress.


A poncho.  Not only are the patterns very much up my alley, I love the styling of the outfits as well!


I really like this shape! Wish me luck that I get through my current project in time to make this before it gets warm!


This cardigan also looks very chic, I think.



Aren’t these socks so cool? I never thought about making socks since I want to spend time to make clothes, but these cute socks are tempting me to make them…


This cardigan is what I am currently working on. It is definitely an interesting knitting experience with all the different textures!


My pullover:D One can also wear it the other side around too!


I really like the bolero/shrug in grey!


Don’t these leggings look so cool? It is one of the things I wanted to make the most when I bought the book, and I started to make them as I thought they would be a perfect addition to my me-made wardrobe which is missing pants/leggings. However, after completing half of it during the Christmas holidays, I realise I would probably not wear them out as often as I like, so I switched over to make the cardigan above instead.


This turtleneck is simple but is beautiful I think. It is also on my looooong (thanks to this book) to-knit list.


Okay, I am off to more knitting and perhaps finishing my sewing project (jacket) before opening the champagne to ring in the new year. I hope you enjoyed this review:-)  Thank you for your support of Tomatoes and Jasmine in 2014 and I wish you a wonderful 2015!

Michiyo’s Knitting Workshop is available at Sew Tokyo.


ご無沙汰しています。皆さんはお元気でお過ごしでしょうか。今年の最後の日なので、今年の最後のブログ更新をしたいですが、皆さんはBurda Vintageという雑誌をご存知ですか。洋裁雑誌のBurdastyleの特別版で、私がとてもの好きな海外ブログ Draped in Cloudlets のRikeさんがブログで紹介されているのをみて早速ネットで注文したが、ヴィンテージスタイルにご興味がある人にはたまわない一冊だと思います。素敵な50年代のデザインのパターンがいくつかついているだけではなく、その年代にまつわる話や写真、そのデザインを今風に着こなすアドバイスなども載っているので、雑誌が届いてから手放せなく何度も読み返しています(^_^;)。付属の12パターンの中に、バルーンジャケット*Balloon Jacket (Rosa)*とスカートスーツ*Job Suit (Lola)*、リットルブラックドレス*Little Black Dress (Coco)*が特に素敵で、限られている時間でいろいろ作りたいものがある中、いまはこのパターンたち(特にバルーンジャケットとスーツ)を一番先に作りたくなった!

今年の最後のme-made完成品を紹介します。[Michiyoの編み物ワークショップ]という本に載ってるパターンから作りました。編み物の本を本屋でみたりオンラインでみたりしていますが、その中に今シーズン一番気に入ったのはこの本でした。楽な形だけど素敵な模様のセーターやプルオーバーがすべて私の好みで、本のスタイリングもとても好きです。早速9番のプルオーバーを作りました。2枚の長方形を縫い合わせるというシンプルな作りですが、出来あがったプルオーバーの形がとてもおしゃれだと思います。使った毛糸はバンクーバーに行ったときに購入したRainCityKnitsのBulky (色はNavy Blue)です。ブロッキングしたときは若干の色落ちがあったのが少し気になったが、手触りがとてもやわらかいです!


にほんブログ村 ハンドメイドブログ 編み物(Ravelryパターン)へ


12 thoughts on “my new pullover and a review of Michiyo’s Knitting Workshop (book)

  1. I absolutely love the navy jumper you have made (and hope you make the leggings too). What a great book, showcasing the amazing approach of Japanese designers.

    1. Thank you:-) The jumper will definitely get a lot of wear on the weekends! I hope you will one day make something from the vintage Burda magazine, I would love to see:D Wish you a wonderful new year!

  2. That sweater, and the rest of the photos from the book, is amazing! In your opinion, how difficult would it be for a non Japanese-speaker to figure out the patterns? You’ve got me dreaming of making a few of them. Happy New Year!

    1. Happy New Year, Andrea! Thanks for reading!

      I admit the instructions in a Japanese knitting book may look daunting in the beginning, since the instructions consist of mainly a graphical knitting chart, some numbers (how many rows, how many stitches, or how long/wide it is supposed to be measured). However, the format of the patterns is pretty much universal across Japanese knitting books so once you “decipher” one, you will be able the crack the next one much more easily.

      The format is usually as follows:
      1) Materials (type of yarn, needles) and Gauge
      2) Summary (this is a short paragraph about how to cast off, and how to knit, and how to piece together. The info given here is all in the charts you will see but it just serves as an “executive summary” for all that is coming up in the charts/diagrams
      3) Chart(s) for how to knit the pattern (stitches)
      4) Diagram(s) on the construction of the garment

      The instructions for stitches (ie. knit, purl, y.o. etc.) appear in symbol form instead (ie. a circle means y.o.) but this is universal and there is an illustrated glossary in the back of the book for the stitches used in the book or online in English (

      There are many very helpful resources out there, my favourite being the Tata and Tatao website (, and I thought this PDF ( also looks helpful.

      I think if already skilled in knitting like you are, you would have few problems after learning to decipher your first pattern, since there is few “reading” of text involved. If it serves as any reference, my mother does not read Japanese but she has already made the same jumper from this book, and is now working on the vest! I helped her by translating the instructions for the jumper, but she interpreted and is knitting the pattern for the vest all by herself after that.

      Sorry this is so long and rambling… If you decide to give it a try (I hope you will, it opens the door to more knitting possibilities! :-), do let me know if you need any help to get started ie. translate a pattern for your first project. I would be more than happy to help!

  3. Your new jumper is so pretty! The cable ornament looks so intricate and beautiful. I am just about to learn knitting and hope that I will be able to make such nice garments too in the future. Thank you for your very kind words about my dress, also! Happy that I was able to draw your attention to this Burda special. I think it was published first in Germany, at least I had some difficulties to find information in english about it when I researched this for my post, but glad that you were able to get a copy. Happy new year to you!

    1. Happy New Year to you, too:-) I hope you will enjoy knitting when you learn it. It’s quite a fun hobby especially in this cold season! Thank you for drawing my attention to the Burda Vintage with your Christmas dress post with helpful link – I had never heard of it until then, and probably would have missed the opportunity to buy a copy on e-bay if I hadn’t read your post!

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