Handicrafts

"Knitted articles for all branches of the service"

In successive editions of this pamphlet, it is possible to see changing understandings of what men and women in uniform needed in the way of knitted articles.

Knitting for Victory

This craft book included a long list of women's war charities in Canada, and patterns for every conceivable garment for men and women in uniform, as well as "practical styles for war victims."

View PDF: Monarch.pdf

Clothes for the fashionable soldier ...

Knitting was an enormously popular activity for volunteers, with books such as this one providing patterns for everything from steel helmet caps to amputation covers.

Knitting socks for soldiers

One only has to read their letters and diaries to see how important socks were to soldiers, and it was just as important to Canadians to be able to supply them. The fact that this knitting instruction sheet, preserved by Charlotte Halls of Winnipeg, Manitoba, is so well worn suggests that it was used frequently, and perhaps passed through many hands during the Second World War.

Crafts from the front

Silk postcards were very popular souvenirs for soldiers during the First World War, and provided an important source of income for French and Belgian handicraft workers.

Knitting socks for soldiers

The label confirmed that "There is sufficient yarn in this ball to knit one pair of service socks."

Knitting for style and thrift

Monarch Knitting Company was one of Canada's largest textile firms. Their pattern magazines afforded wartime families the opportunity to sew their own clothing from scratch or recycled fabric, while still staying trendy.