wool&gathering

Knitting, design, wool and other gatherings….


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New pattern: The “iSpy” double hat

Double, reversible hat knit from top-to-top in thin alpaca. Two hats in one – just turn it for another “look”! Go color-wild, or choose a more subtle version – or both…

A part of the hat is knit in the «intarsia»-technique. Some experience in this technique is recommended.

The hat is published on Ravelry. Find it here: iSpy

The pattern is also written in a Norwegian version. After purchasing you will be able to choose the language you prefer.

The pattern includes written instructions for two sizes: womens and mens, a detailed chart for the circle pattern and instructional pictures.

See more details about this hat in this post.

 

Yarn: fingering 100 % alpaca, 160-170 meters (175-185 yards) / 50 g. 1 of each color

Gauge: 28 st = 10 cm on needles. 3mm / US 2,5

Needles: Circular needles 30 cm (optional) + 40 cm + double pointed needles (dpn´s): 3 mm / US 2,5

Tools: 8 stitchmarkers, tapestry needle

Sizes: women (men), fits head circumference 54-58 cm/ 21-23 inch (58-62 cm/ 23-24,5 inch)

Measures (flat): Women: height/widt: 23/25 cm (9/10 inch). Men: height/widt: 24/28 cm (9,5/11 inch)

Special techniques:

intarsia – link to purlbee.com / youtube.com

mattress-stitches – link to purlbee.com / garnstudio.com

Yarn used in this pattern:

Col 1: 50 g. Du Store Alpakka, Tynn Alpakka, 116 Acid Green

or: 50 g. Garnstudio, Drops Alpaca, 9020 Pearl Gray

Col 2: 50 g. Du Store Alpakka, Tynn Alpakka, 167 Purple melange

or: 50 g. Garnstudio, Drops Alpaca, 6506 Charcoal

Col 3: 50 g. Du Store Alpakka, Tynn Alpakka, 113 Dark Gray melange

or: 50 g. Garnstudio, Drops Alpaca, 2923 Yellow

Col 4: 50 g. Du Store Alpakka, Tynn Alpakka, 138 Pink

or: 50 g. Garnstudio, Drops Alpaca, 6736 Purple melange


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A new hat pattern… soon to be published!

10 years ago I knit myself a double reversible hat in thin alpaca. It was knit “top-to-top” and the circle pattern-section was knit in the intarsia-technique. It would have been possible to knit this section in the stranded-technique, but I gathered the fabric would be too thick that way. Also, the fabric would not have been as stretchy because of the long strands. I knit one for my then 5 yr old daughter as well, but that hat has been displaced …or given away …I can´t remember.

The hat is a bit short, -it does´t cover my ears properly, and I really wanted a new one…

So I knit one – and immediately wanted another one in a different color-combination. So I knit another one. I´ve simplified my original pattern a bit, added some length to it and added another element – an “eye”! I´ve used Garnstudio´s Drops Alpaca for the Light Gray / Coal version, and Du Store Alpaca´s Tynn Alpakka for the Purple / Acid Green version. Both yarns are fingering weight with approx. 170 m (180 yd) / 50 g.

The hat is wonderfully soft and warm and stays in shape after extensive wearing. And – you get two hats in one! Just turn it for another look! How great is that!?

I´m having the pattern checked at the moment, and I hope it will be ready for publishing in a few days. I will be back with the “iSpy double hat”!!


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A new blanket, I think…

…a blanket for me this time. I´m thinking garter stitch and the whole blanket in one piece in the “log-cabin” method…

Beiroa

Beiroa

I´ve got 1 kilo of this great 100% Portuguese wool, from the lovely Rosa Pomar´s store: Retrosaria

The yarn is called Beiroa, and this is how Rosa describes the yarn (from the web site):

100% portuguese wool yarn. Manufactured in Portugal for Retrosaria from the wool of Bordaleira Serra da Estrela sheep. Beiroa softens and blooms beautifully after washing.

Weight: Light aran. 
Unit weight: ±100g
Yardage: 273 yards (250 meters)
Needle size: 4 – 5mm
Fibers: 100% wool
Texture: single ply

I actually bought the undyed yarn a few years ago, and started a sweater project from the book: “Natural Knits” (Jane Ellison) / the Mirasol project. Great book with some very nice designs. But my gauge was way off, and the Beiroa has been brewing on my shelves ever since. Finally I know what to make, and that´s always a good feeling! So I had to add some more colors to my Beiroa stash, and ordered 1 skein of each of the colors: 515 yellow, 685 anthracite and 688 ocean

This will be a smaller blanket than my Big Blanket Project, and I know myself well enough not to set a finishing date!


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National Knitting Night

The Norwegian Broadcasting Company (NRK), has, of lately, made a quite puzzling tradition of presenting the Norwegian audience with «minute-for-minute» productions of journeys and themes. This is puzzling in a broad sense! First; -who came up with the idea? -and why did they actually put the idea into action (…thinking; not all ideas are good ideas…)? And most importantly: Why did the public absolutely love this consept?

We´ve been presented with «minute-for-minute» boat journeys. I mean; 24/7 broadcasting of boat-journey along the Norwegian coast – and the crowds along the coast went bananas! -and the viewers suddenly became fanatically interested in Norwegian geography!!? (myself included…)

And what about a 24-hours broadcasting of a train-journey (Bergensbanen), from Bergen on the West-coast, to Oslo in the East, crossing the mountains…

We´ve been glued to the TV following a boat down a water-canal, and another show: fishing for Salmon, you know; the immensly popular sport of Casting!? (being ironic here…)

NRK lost me when they presented «National Wood-burning Night», a 24-hour production of firewood….. and I thought: oh please, what´s next!? Let´s just get on with our lives….!!

555911_10151907704184695_204211806_nThat was until I heard about NRK´s next «minute-for-minute» production: National Knitting Night!

What an absolute thrill!! My secret wish has always been to replace any sort of sports from the TV-screen with knitting! I don´t hate sports, -but I don´t like it either…

A small percentage of my wish has finally come true…

So, on the night of 1st of November 2013 you´ll find me glued to the TV (lost from this world as such:)), watching «minute-for-minute» National Knitting Night.

On this occation, Norway´s longest-running TV-show (over 40 years): «Norge Rundt» (…losely translated: Around Norway…?!) have been appointed the honourable role of opening this show. A part of their focus will be on the famous (in Norwegian terms…) knitting-book «Hønsestrikk» from the 70´s, and they invite the public to show their knitting based on this book. It so happens that I have a piece of knitting based on this book! I´ve actually got more knitting based on this book, -but this piece is the most obvious one:)

I was studying Arts & Crafts in a Teachers College in ´93, and we were given the task of presenting an exhibition on the theme: «Mennestet og Maktene» (The Power of/and Mankind). My friend and I chose to explore the age of «Flower Power». My friend, being the artist, did the drawing, -and me being the crafter did the knitting and  sewing. I sewed up different variations of flares, and I knit this:IMG_4304

I opened this post by stating my puzzlement around the «minute-for-minute» NRK-productions. This garment also puzzles me! Not because of the over-obvious statements in the pattern, but in the fact that I´ve kept the garment for 20 years!  I´ve only wore this garment once, and I received this comment (not kidding…): «Oh, you´re wearing a sweater with inwards and outwards genitals …cool!!»!? I´ve moved 11 times since this was knitted!! …and 11 times I must have looked at this garment and found it worthy of an extended existence… well, the time has come: I´m sharing this garment with the public, and will send «Norge Rundt» an e-mail.


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Intarsia

I´m currently working on a project that includes small sections of intarsia. This made me try to recall the last time I was using this method. Apart from small projects, like a dish cloth and a hat, I don´t have enough fingers on my hands to count the years back….

I think it started in the 80´s….I can´t present you with a picture, but the sweater was blue, grey and pink in Sandnes Kitten Mohair. The front and the back were both alike, and the arms were blue. It was my own design, and I remember being very pleased with it! It looked something like this:Yet still; the height of my intarsia career came in 1993. Kaffe Fassett had some years earlier designed «The Foolish Virgins», and I fell in love! Not that I could really picture myself wearing the jacket, but it was the complexity of the design, and the history behind it …and I´m a sucker for history!.

Fassett based the design on a history of Norwegian tapestries.Luckily I have an aunt who would love to wear this (….or rather; lucky her!), and it was really an adventure in itself just picking out the colors for this jacket. Being a wool-lover, I discarded the designers instruction of using cotton in this design. ( In addition; my grandmother was a weaver, and she would have «killed» me if I chose cotton for this project! In fact she refused to ever mentioning the designers name again (Fassett – that is) for  even considering using cotton in this design!…) I chose Rauma Finull, who have a wide range of colors to choose from. If I were to enter this project again, which I´m definitely not!!, I would have chosen a softer kind of yarn, maybe a fingering weight merino, like the Pickles; Abuelita 3 ply merino…..

My «Foolish Virgins» jacket is now living it´s own life in Western Australia, where I presume it´s main task is to keep my dear aunt warm enough during those long, cold winters ….!

I have actually won a price for my intarsia, and we have to travel back to the year of 1995 to meet the young and promising (?) me, who came second in a knitting competition for a Norwegian weekly womans magazine:Looking back, I remember I would like to have told that stylist a thing…or two. When you enter a competition like this, you don´t own your design anymore, and the way the garment is presented is out of your control. At the same time it´s interresting to observe how other people interpret the design. It´s all about perception.

I remember sending the garment off by post, after months of designing, calculating, casting on, ripping-out, casting on again, and then seeing your work grow…..-and having to rip it all up again…… until you finally get it right! A fair amount of work later, I almost attacked the woman behind the counter at the post-office when she just threw the package into the pile along with the other anonymous post! It´s like sending your «baby» off to University…I guess (haven´t been there yet…).

On the other hand; seeing as how I´ve used the color green in the design, I guess I knew it was never to be «my» sweater anyway…. When I got the sweater back, it stayed in my cabinet for a while, and then I sold it. I don´t know who bought it, but I hope the person in question took pleasure in wearing it, and that the sweater has had a good «life». Maybe it still exists? Maybe it´s still out there somewhere….?