Saturday, October 20, 2007


Spear's Games Vintage Knitting Nancy

Francis Spear, a family member of the Spear's Games empire, and myself have been corresponding over the past few months.
Francis has been wonderful in assisting me with my enquiries regarding how the Knitting Nancy came to be.
I was in particular, interested to find out about the painting of the Knitting Nancy.
The following is what Francis has told me, ... quote ...
"J. W. Spear & Sons was originally a German company and all items were manufactured in Nuremberg. In 1932, a factory was established in England which made and assembled English language boxes but obtained most of the components from Germany.
After the war, both branches were independent as far as product selection and design was concerned, but did not compete in each other's territory."
"... the English branch in particular sometimes took liberties with the designs, the important thing being - in the case of a handicraft item - that it worked, had good instructions, and was easy for the child to do.
As a secondary consideration, production cost was also important and often designs were changed to reduce this. Knitting Nancy figures were an example.
Originally, they were mostly hand-painted but some time in the 1970's or 80's, the process was mechanised, the solid colours being applied by dipping and for the face and hair, we used a special printing machine."
Thanks so much again Francis, your friendship is invaluable!

Because I love the Spear's vintage Knitting Nancy so much, I decided to paint my third blank spool knitter as a "Knitting Nancy", (see previous post), even though it is a little larger and slightly different in shape, I am rather pleased with the results. I would really love to find more (blanks) so that I can paint them in other colours, too! Do you like it?

Here it is with a vintage "Knitting Nancy" for comparison.

And here are the group of the rest of the "Knitting Nancies". The first one is
a very much loved Knitting Nancy!

For further reading about Spear's Games Knitting Nancy please see my other posts
on August 6, 2007 - Spool Knitter Evolution!
and September 21, 2007 - A Little More About Spear's Games Knitting Nancy ..........



catsmum said...

now aren't you glad I nagged you into blogging? Look at all these contacts and info that're coming your way.

clara said...

I don't speak very well english, but I can say something is beautiful : you are so talented ! clara

crazyhaberdasher said...

Thankyou Clara! I appreciate your comment very much!