wool&gathering

Knitting, design, wool and other gatherings….


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Headband…

This started out as a hat, and ended up as a headband…

Skiing in the spring always reminds me that I need a headband …or two… same procedure every year. Yet, I never seem to get around to knit headbands. So I decided the hat on the needles were not a hat, but a headband – much quicker! In fact I finished this so fast that I just had to add some time-consuming finishing at the end. The inside looks almost as good as the outside …IMG_6152IMG_6155IMG_6156It´s knitted in Telespinn´s Mari (mohair) in Gray/blue with Turquoise pattern – and lined with Du Store Alpakka´s Tynn Alpakka (alpaca) in orange and pink on needles 3mm / US 2,5.

I´m ready for more spring skiing!


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Don’t give up…

No, I´m not referring to the Peter Gabriel / Kate Bush song from IMG_6073´86. It´s not that serious, it´s just (ehrm!) yarn-related…

I´ve made an effort to remove some of the color from my overdyed “Mari” mohair yarn from this post. I managed to remove some of the yellow, it´s now a shade of purple…, so I´m sort of (…and hopefully) back to scratch.

I´m aiming to overdye the yarn to make it look close to the color in the last picture … a very dark, warm gray. I´ll give this yarn one more go, -and if anyone would give me some good advise…?

And when I say “one more go”, that´s exactly what I mean… I realize this yarn is an “impossible project”, but I´m not ready to give it up just yet!

I have a plan…


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An impossible project….

Many years ago I ordered some yarn from Telespinn. I´ve mentioned this yarn producer before. They were until recently the only private-owned wool-spinning mill in Norway, and their own Mohair goats provide most of the wool for their great range of yarn.

IMG_3208I was looking to develop this project from 2010, including a new top-down  shoulder-saddle / contiguous -method, without the turtle-neck. I called the new project: “SkiingJumper II”, but had to rename it: “SkiingJumper II meets an obstacle…”. But in my head I always refer to this sweater as: “The Madonna-sweater”. The reason for this is that I´ve “stolen” the stranded pattern from a cut-out magazine page from 1986, showing the artist Madonna in a Norwegian-inspired sweater – what we would call a “kofte”.

The magazine tempted it´s readers with a chance to win a copy of this sweater, and as you can see I´ve meticulously cut out, and sent in my ticket to heaven! This magazine (which I don´t remember the name of…) even provided the knitting-pattern for this sweater, so you could knit your own – should you not18-2_medium2 win – which I didn´t! So I had to knit it myself – the sweater is long gone, but wearing it did not make me look anything like Madonna …maybe because I had not mastered the art of biting my lip / gazing sensually… still haven´t by the way. The pattern was provided by Garnstudio and knitted in the yarn Karisma (no pun intended), both still alive and kicking today, -but the pattern isn´t. I´ve checked Ravelry´s pattern pages, searching through Garnstudio´s patterns (they are all free…). But the pattern for “Madonnas genser” was not to be found. The closest I found was this: “40-18 Sweater with ethnic borders” – a name which really just shows a lack of history – knitting wise… This is a knitting pattern with long roots in Norwegian history. It´s origin is probably Eastern European / Russian – but it´s been used and developed in Norway for at least the past 100 years…

On the back of the pattern-page I found the reason why I did not win my copy of the sweater – here you see the Horoscope for February / March 1986, and reading through my star sign, it says nothing about being lucky… Quite the opposite in fact, but “interrests and family-life will be smooth” – so I guess I sat there knitting my “Madonna-sweater” in front of the TV – together with my father – (we only had one (1) TV-channel in Norway in those days, and you watched what the Norwegian Broadcasting Company would serve you) – probably watching some obscure Finnish “TV-theatre”, including a lot of saunas and “birch-branch-whipping”. And if when the “birch-branch-whipping” would become too intense (as it sometimes would – involving a bunch of naked Finnish men) …I can vividly remember refining the art of “loosing-stitches-and-being-very-busy-picking-them-up-whilst-keeping-a-secret-eye-on-the-TV” – in hope of my father not catching it…

But back to my impossible project…

I started knitting using my old Telespinn “Mari” yarn – knowing I would have to order more. And also knowing the color would probably be a bit different. But I thought the difference in color would not be too noticeable keeping it separated by a block of stranded pattern.

As you can see from the middle picture, it did! So I did not even try to continue my knitting-project. Instead I tried to over-dye the new yarn. As you can see from the last picture, I did not succeed. By far! Instead I think I´ve ruined the yarn by adding too much yellow… Mohair takes color better than most other wool. I´ll give it another go, by trying to remove some color and add more blue / black to it. But as I told Telespinn in an e-mail conversation: “I won´t even try to pretend to know anything about the art of yarn-dyeing…” But it´s still worth trying …and I might even learn some more about yarn-dyeing, though this knitting-project probably won’t be finished with this yarn. I hate to have to rip what I´ve already knitted. In my mind, the sweater is almost done when the upper-body is done in the top-down technique (maybe you have the same experience?), and all that remains is finishing…

Note: I sent Telespinn an e-mail to let them know about the difference in color. Knowing the years between my orders it was not formulated as a complaint, but just to let them know. I got a nice answer – to let me know they are aware of the difference, and why the dyeing-process does not allow them to continue the “old” color.

I have to admit I like the “old” gray better…


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Eureka!

IMG_4064I´ve long wondered what to transform this yarn into…

It´s been brewing on my shelves for several years, and just like that, the perfect project popped up! Love it when that happens! The timing could have been better though, considering my current project(s)….

mslogoThe yarn is «Pan» from Telespinn. Telespinn is a Norwegian spinnery, placed in Flatdal in Telemark. They spinn their own mohair wool, from their own Mohair goats. They provide a lot of nice reading on their web page. Check it out for yourself (in english). I can also recommend their «Mari» yarn.

The great pattern «Tyrolean Stockings» by Ann Budd was published in 2007. www.interweaveknits.com-buddfront300_mediumThese socks will be perfect in «Pan». Can´t wait to cast on.


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Incredibly thick…

dsc_0893_medium2I´ve just spent half a day of beautiful sunny spring Saturday working up a swatch to get the right gauge for Modern Garden Cardigan by Veera Välimäki.

I do have, in my stash, the right yarn for this beautiful, though special, cardigan that I have been wanting to make for a long time. It´s not Drops Eskimo, but a very similar 100% wool yarn. But I have decided against that yarn. It think it´s too hard, and I guess too itchy… This yarn, like Eskimo, would be perfect for felting or accessories, not for wearing. So I set out to «create» my own yarn by combining different yarns from my stash.

The base would have to be Viking Eco Alpaca, for the reasons that I have enough of this yarn, it´s one of the thickest yarns in my stash, and it had the right color, light grey. I just love this yarn, and it is my favourite yarn from Viking of Norway’s line of yarns. They also have a similar bulky Eco Wool which I like, and they have Bjørk (90% cotton 10% merino) which would be my current choice, if I had to buy a cotton yarn… The rest of their line is less interesting, in my opinion.

The Eco Alpaca has 125 meters to 100 grams, and would have to be paired with one or several other yarns to get the gauge of 8 st(s) = 10 cm (4 inches) on 10 mm needles (US #15).

IMG_3842Sample 1: Eco Alpaca + Drops Baby Merino, col 22 + Design.Club.Dk Duo, col 502. The colors works beautiful together. The baby merino adds body and the lambswool adds texture. Together these adds up to measure 79 m /100g.

I use der Lauflängen-Rechner to add up the yarn and measure the new length.

Sample 2: Eco Alpaca + Drops Alpaca Lace 70% alpaca 30% silk (grey) + Duo. The gauge seems a bit «looser» and the color is visibly «greyer». Together these adds up to measure 90 m /100g.

Sample 3: Eco Alpaca + Garnudsalg.dk´s Blackhill SilkeMohair col. kit + Du Store Alpakka´s Tynn Alpakka col. 142. The same «loose» gauge and a bit more fluffy. Together these adds up to measure 83 m /100g.

Sample 4: Eco Alpaca + Abuelita 3 ply (merino) col. light grey + Duo. Together these adds up to measure 80 m /100g.

Sample 5: Eco Alpaca + Drops Loves You III col. natural + Abuelita 3 ply. Together these adds up to measure 71 m /100g.

Sample 6: Eco Alpaca + Drops Loves You III col. natural + Abuelita 3 ply + Duo. Together these adds up to measure 63 m /100g.

IMG_3845IMG_3847My goal was to get under 100m/100 grams. All my samples are way within my goal, but none of them apply me with the right gauge. Sample 6 comes closest with 9,5 st(s) = 10 cm. These four yarns knitted together makes for an incredible thick yarn. Too bulky, and not what the designer intended, I think. This is a negative ease cardigan, and sample 1 – 4 is more suitable for «Modern Garden Cardigan». In addition the total content of alpaca should not be too high. I would go for sample one, if I didn´t have to buy more merino…, so sample 2 it is! I feel incredible thick for spending too much time indoors on a sunny day. Better cast on to make it worth while! I´m looking forward to this quick knit, I need that right now. I´ve already found the perfect buttons. The forecast for tomorrow is rain. Yeah!