Vintage Knitting Needles and Antique Bottles

Vintage Knitting Needles and Antique Bottles

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Knitting Icelandic Sweaters, Fiber Camp 2014

Yoke of an Icelandic Sweater
Icelandic sweaters hold magical powers, at least in my estimation. They are colorful, cozy and so warm. A traditional Icelandic sweater is knit in the round with a circular yoke of stranded colorwork. The yarn used is known as lopi and comes from Icelandic sheep. There are two types of wool in this yarn, wind hairs and fleece. The wind hairs help repel water and the fleece is very effective insulation because it contains more air as it is not spun. If you'd like to read more and view many delicious sweaters, check out "The Iconic Icelandic: Past and Present" by Pam Peterson.

I love the colors in this sweater.
Intro to Icelandic sweaters, taught by Louise Harrison-Lepera, was one of the classes I took at Fiber Camp. I love these sweaters and so long to go to Iceland one day. The class was definitely tempting in the casting on of sweaters and saving up the dollars to eventually go to this magical place. The sweater above is one that Louise made for her husband after the family visited Iceland last August. This yarn is soft and lightweight but it has insulating qualities worthy of the cold Iceland temperatures.

Louise informed us that the Lopi yarn is very affordable and can be ordered from the Alafoss Wool store or Webs. The colors range from many shades of natural colors, to brightly dyed hues. Or if you aren't a knitter, you can order a sweater online or check out eBay. My daughter brought back Lopi yarn in shades of ice blue and deep burgundy when she went to Iceland two years ago. I haven't used it yet, I need to find the right project or order more to make a sweater.

Girl's sweater
Another sample Louise passed around was this colorful sweater she made for her daughter. It looks like a bowl of jelly beans! I confess I dropped the ball and did not get Louise's Ravelry name, but as soon as I do I will add links to her project pages so you can see which patterns she used.

Details of the colorwork
The other sweater shown in this class was made for her son and he has worn it throughout this cold long winter, forgoing a jacket as he swears the sweater is warmer. The skull and cross bones and the warmth of the wool are a cool balance between tough and cuddly. (I have been searching Ravelry for this pattern and so I must ask you to trust I will add it as soon as I find it. Unfortunately, my SD card maxed out during class and I did not get a photo. Forgive me?)

Later this week I will post about another Fiber Camp class taught by Julia Farwell-Clay, the Terrors of Intarsia.

1 comment:

Stitched Together said...

This is perfect timing. Yesterday I received a packet of LettLopi from Iceland to make the Maren cardigan that is part of the Craftsy class on Icelandic Top Down Sweaters. I've started watching the class and it's really interesting. I've also bought a colour card to make it easier to buy more yarn in future, as I have a feeling this won't be my last Icelandic sweater. The yarn came really quickly by the way. I ordered it last Thursday and it arrived the following Tuesday. That's pretty quick in my eyes.