For the past 8 years, my wife, Hilary, has been knitting. She originally picked this up as something that she thought would be fun. Since then, she has been experimenting with some historic knitting. She has made a variety of items including various caps, stockings, mittens, and etc. for reenactors all over the United States, Canada, and Europe.
For more information on Hilary’s knitting, feel free to contact me.
Above are 18th and 19th century images of a type of French-Canadian knitted cap called a tuque as well as the middle image is one of two tuques that were taken from the wreckage of the Machault, a 1760 French frigate that sunk. These were extremely common caps and were worn by almost everyone. Notice the basic shape and how it fits the head/looks. Very different than the tuques we commonly see at reenactments.
Below are a few historic quotes on tuques as well as some images of ones that Hilary has made.
“All Canadiens speak the same French we do. Except for some typical words,… They have forged some such as tuque or fourole to name a cap of red wool.” –d’Aleyrac
“These toques were single or double night caps: the double night caps were knitted wool tubes closing gradually towards each end, and then one end of the knitted tube was stuffed into the other.” -Peter Kalm, Canada, 1749
Besides the simple tuques seen above, Hiary has now created a portfolio of caps of many other shapes, colors, and designs. In addition to this, she can knit mittens, stockings, and pretty much anything she wants. Below are a number of images of historic and modern knitting that she has done, some being worn and used by her happy customers. Hilary is quite happy to accept orders for any type of knitting, modern or historic. If you have questions, just contact us.