wool&gathering

Knitting, design, wool and other gatherings….


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Simplicity at it´s best…

Color-block ´90

Color-block ´90

A Norwegian commercial states: «The simple are often the best!». And though I seldom shop that brand, of convenience reasons, I can relate to the statement!

When I ramble through the many excellent knitting-blogs out there, a question knitters and designers often raise is; – what kind of knitted garments do we actually end up wearing? I guess this question is asked opposed to; – what do we enjoy knitting the most?

As an aspiring designer these questions are on the top of my list whenever a new design idea emerges from the notebook onto the needles…

So, what do I end up wearing?

I end up wearing the simple designs. It does not have to be the easiest knitting-patterns, – but the look of the finished garment needs to be «toned down» and not the “center of attention»… if you get where I´m heading….? I´ve got shelves full of «statement-knits» I never wear. Knitting them was a lot of fun, but when I stand there, monday morning, wondering what to wear, – these knits just takes too much of an effort to put on… which is a shame given the time it took to knit them! What a waste of good wool …or?

feb´91

feb´91

Fashion goes in circles, and this beauty was recently excavated from the bottom of a plastic container in the attic. I knit this in 1990! That is 24 years ago!! Apart from a distinct «old» smell I can easily get rid of, this sweater fits right in to todays «look»! The pattern is my own, – and I know this because I can clearly remember the picture from that German magazine that inspired me. I can´t remember the name of the magazine, but the picture showed a Annie Lennox-like model jumping from the pavement (sidewalk) over a rain puddle, wearing «worn-out» oversized jeans with rolled up legs and black dr Martens shoes, and a sweater resembling this, just in black with brown color-block! I also knit this in black and brown, luckily with picture proof! (knit in Garnsudio´s “Karisma” – and back then this yarn came in 100g skeins… and it was, to my knowledge not superwash…? anyone?…)

This gray / petrol sweater is knit bottom-up in “Rauma Finull”, and if there´s anything I would change about it to make it a bit more wearable for the fourty-something me, it would be to remove the turtle-neck and knit an edge, – not sure just how wide that edging should be, but I just know I would not wear a turtle neck! Not that I don´t like the look of turtle-necks, I just don´t like wearing them…

Which brings me to the conclusion of my Saturday thoughts… – I should, right now, have been on my way to Oslo, – a xmas / birthday gift from a friend, but I ended up back home «ferry-stuck»!, due to strong winds… and when arriving back home after an aimless attempt to cross the fjord, I had to «make the best of it» …so there´s some bread dough brewing on the kitchen counter, some lamb & coriander soup simmering on the stove and these thoughts to keep me from feeling too sorry about the whole situation!

The (still…) early fourty-something me has more or less the same taste in clothes as the twenty-something me had, only I´ve experienced that «liking it» does not always mean «wearing it»!… And my clue is «simplicity made simpler»…

Secret of Change IV

Secret of Change IV

frksnupp´s (fwss - a shameless copy)

frksnupp´s (fwss – a shameless copy)

…which is why I knit this a while ago: “frksnupp´s Angora Hat (fwss – a shameless copy)”. FrkSnupp is a Norwegian blogging knitter, and she has released this free-pattern. I translated the pattern to English, with frksnupp´s thumbs up!, and it can be downloaded through Ravelry here: I have written a post(s) about this pattern before, and you can find it here:

I have also cast on my 4th «Secret of Change» shawl by Veera Välimäki. This time in a dream of cobweb-thin 100% Cashmere… (thread held double).

Both patterns are long-time tested, and found to be really «wearable».

All good! Have a great Saturday!!


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Just brilliant!

Easter turned out to be great! My hand is much better thank you, and due to some pretty extraordinary weather, we did a LOT of this:

and a little less of reading and chocolate eating…..

There might be a lot to be said about Norwegians in general, -but we´re exceptionally good at at least one thing; -when the weather is great (read; sunny….) we drop all other plans in an instant and spend every spare minute outdoors! Go shopping? -nope! Vacuuming? definitely not! Feed the kids? -well, we´ll stop and get something on the way….. We collectively walk around like zombies all winter, excelling in the artform of «gazing-slowly-into-one-of-the-20-lit-candles-in-the-room». Your body seems to be screaming: Give me some light and some energy NOW, please!!!

So, this Easter people have been pouring out of every house, cottage and «hole in the ground»! I did´nt even know Norway contained this many people:) And they´ve all got skiis, sunglasses and the widest grins (except, of course, the city-people! They all had spring-shoes, sunglasses and the widest grins….) Well, this is not all true. This morning, listening to the radio, us listeners were, very accurately, made aware of Norwegian geography by a very offended, but also very positively ironic lady from the Northern-Norway. Norway is a very long, but narrow country, and the weather has been crap up north! And while they have struggled with snow, wind and fatal avalanches, the media has been filled with sun, more sun and happy southern people. This lady hoped to be spared of every talk about spring-shoes and garden-design until…. well, at least July!!!

In honour of this enlightining and entertaining woman, I´ll quickly jump to my next agenda: -knitting! I still can´t knit properly, and not for long at the time, but I´ve managed to finish this:

The pattern is frk. snupp´s Angora Lue (FWSS-a shameless copy). The pattern is free, but as far as I´m aware of, only in Norwegian. But since I´m full of energy, due to the sunny Easter (sorry Northern people) I´ll translate:

Note! (27th of oct. 2013) I´m adding an edited free pdf version of the pattern here: Ms snupp´s Angora Hat (FWSS – a shameless copy)

Ms snupp´s Angora Hat (FWSS – a shameless copy) 

(I´ll explain about the copy thing later…..)

Needles: 3 mm., US 2,5 (alt. 2,5 mm, US 1,5)

Yarn: 2 skeins of Pickles Angora (can be purchased here) I used some old Spanish Angora from my stash (old because it´s from the 80´s): Gala Angora: 50% angora, 40% wool, 10% polyamide, 10g = 50 meters. My hat weighs 32 grams.

Gauge: does not say, -but mine had 22 st(s) to 10 cm.

Measurments: does not say, -but mine: circumference: 48 cm, length: 27,5 cm.

Cast on 110 st(s) on needles 3mm (or alt.; 120 st(s) on needles 2,5mm) and knit in the round in stockinette st(s) until the hat reaches the top of your head when wearing (or as long as you want it before decreasing). (mine measures 22 cm before decreasing….)

Decrease 2 st(s) evenly in the next round = total of 108 st(s). If you cast on alt. 120 st(s), you don´t have to do this decrease….

The next round: *PM, k27* (*PM, k30*), until you have placed 4 markers around the hat.

This instruction applies to every decrease for the rest of the work: *k to 3 st(s) before marker, ssk, k1, sm, k2tog*.

1.th round (of decrease): decrease as instructed by the markers

2.nd – 3.rd round: knit

4.th round: decrease by the markers

5.th – 6.th round: knit

7.nd round and onwards: decrease by the markers in the first round, knit the second round, and repeat, until you have 12 st(s) left on the needles. (Change to double pointed needles when the work becomes too narrow for circular needles.) Break yarn (not too short) and gather all the remaing st(s) on the yarn end. Pull together and weave in the ends.

Voila! One finished piece of copied hat:)

(Any incorrection in this pattern is totally on my behalf, and any questions about it will not be answered…..)

Explanation: This original hat from the norwegian brand FWSS (fall, winter, spring, summer – not very imaginative – but then again…….) turned out to be a hit amongst the «fashionistas» in Norway this season, due to certain celebrities wearing it!

I can recall knitting heaps of theese hats in the early 80´s, ….the easiest hat to knit! I´ve knitted it in baby-pink, blue, moss-green and white. But as my ever so clever grandmother put it; «-if you´ve ever been there, fashion-wise, -you don´t have to go there again!» So I won´t! As of recent, I´m a teenage-mom, and will happily donate this hat to the younger generation in fear of being left on the pavement (with the newcome teenager on the other….. accompanied by an eye-rolling: «Aaaaww gaaad!»)

But some fashions just sticks! And you suddenly find yourself in the «middle of the street – fighting for the right to wear your latest purchase – done in good faith! So please don´t tell my daughter about my new spring-shoes! ….and by all means, don´t ever tell her we all of a sudden wear the same size shoes!!! IMG_3778