Long time! It´s been a busy summer, and the summer without knitting. And I mean NO knitting, whatsoever…
I´m currently teaching myself to “knit again”, and can proudly present a couple of pairs of mittens. They´re both from traditional Norwegian patterns I´ve found on “Eg sa strikk”´s blog.
The wool in both pairs are 100% Norwegian wool.
My least favorite part of the knitting process is searching for the right buttons… I admit to being picky, and I quite often spend a lot of time and energy finding just the right buttons. These two projects have been finished for a time now, -just lacking the last important finish; buttons!
I bought the Butterfly-buttons for my Lipstick Cardigan a long time ago. The color is just perfect for this cardigan. I´m not really the Butterfly kind of person, but it was the best I could find. I visited some yarn shops on my resent mini-holiday, and bought a set of new buttons, but they were not really right either… So it was back to the Butterflies. They really work from a distance, but close up I just want to re-state that I´m not the Butterfly kind of person, and that these buttons are in support of the alarmingly decreasing population of certain types of Butterflies! (who´s going to pollinate our crops when there´s no bees, humble-bees or butterflies left…?)
I bought the metal-striped buttons (on the left in the picture) for my Gerda´s Cardigan IV, but found them to be a bit on the shiny side. I liked the fact that they were striped, -to go with the stripes in the cardigan, but upon searching through my extensive old stash of buttons from -not 3 decades, -but 3 centuries!! (see this post), I found these “worn-out” metal´ish buttons. They add just the right “look” to the cardigan, and they also pick up some of the blue color in the project. The fact that I could only find 6 of them when I was in need of 7, and had to complete with a different button in the same material, just adds to the “worn-out” look! Satisfied!
On my before mention mini-holiday I found this yarn: Norsk Pelsull from Hifa, one of the few yarn-producers in Norway that still uses Norwegian wool in their production. I´ve only seen this yarn online before, and finally got to see the different colors “live”. I bought 5 skeins, in the colors 1115 natural gray, 1112 coral and 1108 oker (yellow). With it I also bought these buttons. These are traditional “kofte”-buttons, used for generations. I remember having these buttons on one of my childhood´s “kofte”. I´m really looking forward to sew these buttons on a kofte made from Norsk Pelsull. The image on the button is from the famous Norwegian author Henrik Ibsen´s play “Peer Gynt” act 1, scene: “the Buckride”. The last picture shows some of the traditional buttons /buckles I found in my stash. The top ones are silver, and would traditionally be used for “Bunad“, but there´s no laws against using it for knitted pieces… if you can be bothered polishing the buttons on a regular basis:)
My Fog&Whisper is finished (for a while now…), and I´m quite satisfied with the result! The pattern is Veera Välimäki´s Fog and Whisper. A versatile short cardigan with front panels in garter stitch. This project involves a lot of purling, apart from the front panels and the sleeves, -but still a lot of purling for my taste. But I found that purling can in fact make an otherwise quite tedious stretch of knit stitches a bit more interesting… You know that purling takes more time and therefore you settle with that, where as knit stitches in the round grows very slowly because in your mind you´re almost done… before you even start… The yarn: WalkCollection´s Cozy Silk Fingering / col. Stone was great for this project, and a delight to knit with!
I´ve done some alterations to the pattern instructions: I cast on for size 38”, and did the raglan increases only every 4th row for the last 4 increasing rows before dividing for the body/sleeves, to make the upper body a bit longer. Then I made 8 new st(s) under each arm. I knit the remaining close to size 42”
The pattern instructions says to knit in reversed stockinette, with the increases on the purl side. This to make the raglan increases less visible I think… I´m wearing this purl side out, and knit this in stockinette, and did the increases on the knit side. I made the body 5 cm shorter, and picked up 118 sts for each front band + 92 for the collar. Gauge: 24,5 st = 10 cm.
Just to settle the fact that I´ve cured myself of any purling-phobia, I´ve cast on for another sweater: V-neck Stripes. (yes I know, -it needs a new name…) It´s knit using the same method as with my Cashmere Summer Top: Magic cast on on the shoulders. A few short rows to shape the shoulder part, and the fronts- and back part knitted from the shoulder stitches, and then all the stitches gathered on a circular needle for the boxy shaped body. I´ll pick up stitches around the arm holes for the sleeves. Love this soft alpaca, light fingering yarn from Malabrigo! I have to admit the fun part of the knitting is over. Only the upper-body involves purling, the rest is just plain knit stitches in the round, which in my mind is already finished …which it´s not! By far:)
To end this post; a few pictures from my trip to the wonderful world of hiking and kayaking in the heart of the Norwegian Fjords & Mountains: the county of Sogn og Fjordane on the west-coast of Norway. We had snow-storm on 1100 meters just to find 25 degrees celsius by the fjord the same afternoon… when you reach the top of the mountains it feels like you´re on the roof of the world with view of glaciers, 2000 meter tops and small villages scattered in the valleys between the steep mountain sides. Wild and fabulous!
Vertices Unite translated into Norwegian becomes something like Toppsamling. I´ve just finished my second one, and I think I´m going to leave it with that, though I find myself dreaming of even more great Vertices Unite shawls in hundreds of different color-variations… Enough shawls for a while…
I dug into my “precious-stash” for this one, -you know, the stash you often think of using and then decide against it for no obvious reason other than that it is a bit precious… And so the years passes…
I finally got to spend some of my Mari from Telespinn, got to throw in some left-over alpaca/silk (in Bitter Bug and Moody) from Old Maiden Aunt and even squeezed in a bit of Shilasdair Luxury 4 ply in Tansy Gold / yellow. I love yellow, but it´s a difficult color to be used with care… this shawl was perfect for it.
Mari from Telespinn ( see my last post) is a wonderful rustic mohair/merino grown and spun in Telemark/Norway. It´s listed in Ravelry as a light fingering yarn, but in my opinion it´s more like a fingering/sport weight… I have to add that my Mari has been in my stash for years, and the yarn may have been changed since I purchased it…
The Vertices Unite pattern comes in two sizes: Small and Large. I´ve adapted the pattern to a Medium. See my Toppsamling II ravelry project page for the details. My shawl measures 190 x 60 cm, and weighs 248 grams.
My fog & whisper cardigan is almost finished, and I aim to finish it by this weekend, and then I can go back to my last purling project; the raglan baseball sweater…