radio shetland wool week programme

I’m just popping in in between my Craft Fair preparations to share with you the link to a Radio programme I was involved with alongside my Auntie who works at Radio Shetland. Its all about Shetland Wool Week and if you were here in Shetland you will hear a lot of familiar voices (Hazel Tindall, Donna Smith, Oliver Henry, Kate Davies, Misa Hay and Selina Miller to name a few!) and if you weren’t here I hope it gives you taste for Shetland Wool Week!

1 week to go til the Craft Fair! ill be back after that….


icelandic jumper


hello!! Thank you all for your thoughtful comments on my last blog, things have been cooling down in Shetland and now the clocks have changed it is dark at 5pm :( so i took the chance to get Amy to take a few photos at work today of my most recent finished object – a new icelandic jumper!


When I was in Iceland in May I went with my friend Lara to the Alafoss Shop and bought the yarn for a Dalur jumper, I love the tweedy yarns so I picked up the light grey tweed and the dark black tweed along with a white. I started a sleeve of my Dalur jumper and there was just not enough contrast between the white and light grey so the 3 colour rows proved to be pointlessly annoying. I’m not going to go through that for nothing! So I frogged it and looked again for another pattern I could use.

collage 2

I had a look on ravelry for projects using Alafoss Lopi, the chunky Icelandic yarn and I saw this project and fell in love with the colour scheme so I decided to give it a go with the similar colours I had, the pattern is a free one available from istex which is also in the Knitting With Icelandic Wool book which I have looked at before but it didnt shout out to me as a cardigan, in fact I actually own it in a cardigan version which I bought from a charity shop in Reykjavik!


I own a very basic chunky knitting machine which is not the most fun to use but I thought I would get it out so I knit the body and sleeves on that and then picked up the yoke on a 60cm circluar needle and went right into the yoke! Usually I go back and do the ribs after but this time I did them while it was in pieces and sewed up the seams. This meant a bit less finishing at the end which is always good. Traditionally these kinds of jumpers are knit completely in the round but on my machine I do it in pieces – the front, back and two sleeves separately and then sew up the seams which with chunky yarn doesn’t take long!


I got the yoke nearly knit in one night then got it pretty much finished last week while waiting for my driving lesson (knitting helps my nerves!!) I am so pleased with how it came out and I love how fast it was to make. From nothing to a new jumper in 4 days! I wore it today and it definitely helped keep me warm without being too hot.

I am now gearing up for the big Craft Fair I take part in in November and I don’t know if it is Wool Week being later in the year or just work being a bit busier I am the least prepared I have been, sigh! So you might not see me for a peerie while but I’ll be back again as soon as I can,

Happy knitting! xx

pattern: Icelandic Zip Cardigan by Vedis Jonsdottir

ravelry project page here


crofthouse vest

I am an avid reader of the Fringe Association blog by Karen Templer and a few weeks ago I saw her post about a knit a long inspired by a Japanese pattern for a Cowichan style vest. As you know, I am interested in all types of traditional knitwear and Cowichan is no different. I have 2 vintage Cowichan cardigans, one I bought in Shetland from a charity shop and another I got off Etsy. I have a Japanese knitting book which I decided to use for pattern inspiration and I now I have a cowichan inspired finished vest!


This pattern on the cover was the one I wanted to try and make but I wasn’t sure about the teepee’s on the pattern. Some of Karens post’s have touched on some of the issues about Cowichan knitters and culture appropriation* when it comes to the knitwear and I wasn’t sure about how comfortable I would have felt when that is not in my culture.. especially since I wasn’t using a traditional pattern (although in all respects it is a good book – even better I’m sure if i could read it..) anyway..I had a think about it and I decided to switch out the teepees for crofthouses!


PicMonkey Collage2

I’m on a strict yarn diet at the moment so I decided to use the old J&S aran, sadly discontinued, held double, this makes a satisfyingly chunky yarn and it knit up nice and fast. And yes..I knit it back and forth so I purled Fair Isle – I KNOW, as a general rule I don’t do that, I’m not much a fan of purling in general and throw fair isle in the mix – bleuch. But actually it wasn’t too bad, the wool was pretty chunky so the horrible purling fair isle rows didn’t last too long

IMG_6875 IMG_6880 IMG_6878

I shared a few pictures of my progress on my instagram, ending with the vest on the board at the weekend:

PicMonkey Collage3

I actually quite enjoyed the construction and although the pattern and all the information is in japanese I just went for it and gave it a go, the hardest bit was incorporating the shaping and fair isle and purling so I make the top motifs a bit simpler so my brain didn’t explode. I ended up purchasing about 5 zips because I initially didnt measure it properly, so that final step was done on sunday, for the edging i just picked up 3 stitches for every 4 then cast off, the original has a crochet edging but I seriously cannot work a crochet hook to save my life so I’m pleased with how it came out.



PicMonkey Collage

My fourite part i think was the shawl collar, I really enjoyed the contruction of that and I understand it totally now so I will add it to more things, the weather is already cooling down a lot in Shetland so I think I will get a lot of wear out of my crofthouse vest!

Speak soon xxx

*as an aside, as a Shetlander I totally get it, there is nothing that annoys me more than seeing a design clearly just directly inspired by Shetland styles of knitting with no real care as to how that reflects on the people who’s actual culture this is. Naming a pattern after a random place in Shetland they’ve clearly never set foot on but merely googled is a sure fire way enrage me also. rant over. :)

shetland wool week

Shetland Wool Week was busy but brilliant, it gets bigger and better every year. Here are some photos from the eyes of me – a Shetlander working throughout the week.

amy working at J&S in a jumper of her own weaving

amy working at J&S in a jumper of her own weaving

fair isle cake at the opening ceremony

fair isle cake at the opening ceremony

sunday teas

sunday teas

Amazing feather and fan jumper in the Guild exhibition

amazing feather and fan jumper in the Guild exhibition

Sunday tea fancys

Sunday tea fancys

wool week bags, designed by felicity

wool week bags, designed by felicity

working gloves

working gloves

Shetland Ram

Shetland Ram

My nephew Magnie looking at sheep at the marts

My nephew Magnie looking at sheep at the marts

Shetland Rams at the Marts

Shetland Rams at the Marts

Oliver doing his talk at J&S

Oliver doing his talk at J&S

Mary Janes amazing samples

Mary Janes amazing samples

Felicity's beautiful samples

Felicity’s beautiful samples

2015 Wool Week Patron Donna Smith cutting the Wool Week cake!

2015 Wool Week Patron Donna Smith cutting the Wool Week cake!


Ill be back soon, til then Happy Knitting xxx

shetland wool week annual


I mentioned in my last post that I had two patterns in the wonderful Shetland Wool Week Annual, now that Wool Week is nearly upon us I thought I would share some pictures of my two patterns.


My first offering is my Rof hat, the motif is inspired by the roof’s on Crofthouses, you might recognise it if you have one of my Crofthouse Cushions, I love the simple but effective repeat of it and I was really pleased with how it came out!


Of course it is topped with a nice pompom (you know I love a good pom pom!!) I knit the sample in Jamieson & Smith Shetland Chunky which is a lovely worsted spun heavyweight aran, I chose the naturally inspired Dumba and Kirn Mylk but it would look equally nice in any of the shades.I also fancy knitting myself a version using Alafoss Lopi, or even Brooklyn Tweed’s brand new yarn Quarry which I treated myself to a few skeins last week.


My other pattern is another piece of headwear, the Muli headband!


I finished this pattern right after I got back from Iceland in May and I was inspired by some of the motif’s I saw at the Textile Museum there, although you find this kind of motif in Shetland knitting I find there to be quite a Scandinavian look about it!


I knit the headband using two strands of J&S 2ply Jumper Weight held double for a light aran/DK weight. I did a subtlety shaded version using 5 colours and also a 3 colour version. I think it came out really nice and I love how the different colour schemes work.


If you cant make it to Shetland for Shetland Wool Week I urge you to order a copy of the Annual, (available here) as well as patterns from Gudrun Johnston, Outi Kater and Donna Smith to name a few there are also brilliant articles from Laurie Goodlad, Kate Davies and Shetland Museum Head of Textiles Carole Christiansen.


As well as working hard during Wool Week I am also doing a talk on Collecting Vintage Knitwear with my friend Kate Davies, I am feeling much more confident about this after going to meet a tour group on Saturday night to show them some of my collection. Its funny how easy it is to speak about the things you love! I cant believe Wool Week starts in just a few days, I started working at Jamieson & Smith at the second Wool Week and its been amazing to watch it grow bigger and bigger every year. I’m sure you can understand I will be a bit busy over the next week or so but I will be back as soon as I can to fill you in on my view of Wool Week as a Shetlander! (I will be blogging over at Jamieson & Smith throughout the week)

Til then, happy knitting! xxxx

stasis wristwarmers


When I made my Stasis jumper I mentioned briefly that I had tried initially to knit the jumper entirely in Loft, the Brooklyn Tweed yarn which the original pattern is made in. Knitting machines are fickle creatures and soft, easily breakable yarn does not a good combination make. So I ended up knitting both sleeves in the Loft yarn but by the end of the second sleeve I knew it was going to be tricky so I decided to start over using Jamieson & Smith Shetland Supreme in 2009 which of course I know works well in my machine.


So I flung my first sleeves away in annoyance, but because I am a hoarder I flung them into a drawer. I find the colourwork pattern on the Stasis jumper really pleasing and its beautifully balanced so I thought I would try and salvage them into something. I have ended up with a nice pair of wristwarmers, all I did was rip them back so far then picked up the stitches, did 5 or 6 rows of rib and cast off and sewed up the sides leaving a gap for my thumb. Life is pretty busy just now with not a lot of time for making so I was glad to have a little finished object to show after only a few hours.


I do have something exciting however to share which I did the work for a few months ago, The Shetland Wool Week Annual!


I have two patterns and a small interview in the annual, you can see from the names on the cover that some of my favourite textile contemporaries are also included, you can pre order a copy here or you will be able to purchase it in Shetland at Wool Week. As you can imagine Wool Week is a crazy time for me at work so I don’t think ill get a chance to post again before it but I will be back as soon as I can!

speak soon x

puffin jumper the third


hello! I’m sorry for the silence here over the past few weeks, thanks for the nice comments on my last post. Things have been very busy and they are set to get more so over the next wee while but today I do have something to show you, my latest finished object.. another Puffin!


My jumper drying on a jumper board in the sun.

This is my third take on the Puffin Jumper by Kate Davies, originally I made a Natural Puffin cardigan, then my Heritage Puffin but finally I have gone back to the original shades and knit myself a true Puffin Jumper. I boarded it on one of my vintage jumper boards and left it to dry outside, it was lovely yesterday and very windy so in about two hours it was dry!


Summer has been poor but in August we have had a few nice nights so tonight I shanghaied Dads walk to the beach into an opportunity to take a few pictures of my new jumper. It was still pretty windy tonight (as you can tell by my hair probably) but actually still quite warm.



The first time I saw the original Puffin jumper I totally fell in love, I don’t know why I didn’t do the colours in the pattern in my first one, but never mind because now I have! It is such a relaxing pattern once you get into it, although it looks quite complicated it really isn’t and you are only using one colour at a time. There is a bit of purling (which I will do anything to avoid) so this time I didn’t purl and just knit back on the wrong side instead, giving me the purl bump on the right side… :) I’m quite proud of that idea..


As is my usual way I knit the body and sleeves on my knitting machine in pieces and then picked all the pieces up for the yoke and hand knit that, each time I do this I am getting a bit better and I nearly have full length sleeves this time.. I used the exact colours in the pattern, its made in 2ply Jumper Weight from my work: Jamieson & Smith. I would have finished this a few weeks ago but I kind of lost my knitting mojo for a bit, resulting in having to knit the neck FIVE times, first too tight, then too loose etc etc. Also I dont think I will knit with black Jumper Weight again for a while, it is very tricky to see.. even with my spec’s on!


As you can see I get my shy and retiring nature from my Dad..


After about five minutes of taking my picture I was asked ‘is it my turn now?.. you can put me on your blog if you want..’ Haha, so there you go Dad.

Of course one can’t model a Puffin jumper without a Puffin impersonation…

9Hopefully it wont be too long til I am back, happy knitting xx