Saturday, November 20, 2010

Some lace and a Spoke

It's already been a week ago, but only now have I got some time to blog about the Estonian lace workshop I took last weekend. In the meantime we've been working hard at removing wallpaper... and then sticking new wallpaper on the walls. It does look a lot better now, and we hope it will make the house a bit more sellable!
Back to the workshop! On invitation of Wereldwol, the two Dutch Knitters came to Leeuwarden to tell and teach us all there is to know about Estonian lace knitting (in a day!). The morning started off with a cup of coffee and Madeira cake, while Hilly and Carla told us more about the history of the shawls and showed us some beautiful examples they knit themselves or bought in Estonia.
The tools, the explanation and the business card... Ready, set, go!
Hilly and Carla, our teachers, who (I suspect) know more about Estonian lace than the Estonians themselves...
Our knitting table, in the lovely airy and light upstairs room of Pitch 'n Putt in Zuiderburen (Leeuwarden).  A keeper for workshops, according to Marieke (Wereldwol, bottomright)

We got to work knitting several stitches which are often used in Estonian laces, including nupps of different kinds. After a sumptuous lunch we had a look at the spreadsheet with formulas to calculate sizes, stitches and borders (yes, some IT comes in handy!) and then started knitting the lace border. When the light started to fade outside, we finally got to the point where that border was sewn on to the shawl. The result was only a small sample, but it did teach us the basic technique.
More piccies of the day (with me in them too ;) on Breimiek's blog.

Standing around the laptop, looking with amazement at the spreadsheet (developed by Carla, a former IT expert) 
Nupps and crosses... It's great to learn some new techniques!
The lace middle and border, before sewing them together...
... and after. It's actually a lot more complicated than it looks!
Some of the samples knit during the workshop

And it tastes of more! Several of us ordered the Haapsalu shawl book and I can't wait until it arrives. In the meantime, I will be starting a little pattern from the Nancy Bush book on Estonian lace knitting with the Manos Lace (left over from my Haruni).
As knit by AlliKnit (Ravelry)

Coming home, having all this inspiration and desire to start knitting something new, gave me the final push to finish my Spoke. I finished the sleeves over the weekend and then sewed up the entire sweater on Tuesday and Wednesday, having it finished just in time for SnB night. It's a lovely tight fit, but the sleeves are mighty short. I thought they would be fine, as I have quite short extremities (although a bit wide). But they're more 3/4 sleeves at the moment... I have enough yarn left to actuall make them long enough, so now I'm deciding whether the sleeves are fine like this or whether I will cut the yarn just above the cast-on edge and then just knit them longer until they are as long as I'd really want them. In the meantime, I'll just keep wearing it, so we'll see what my decision will be...
My Spoke, in lovely Drops Alpaca and Drops Delight
A great addition to my wardrobe!

10 comments:

Archangel said...

The Spoke looks amazing on you! Glad to see you had a nice day, those ladies really know what they are talking about and they are so well prepared! Can't wait to see your Summer Shawl

Jolanda said...

Ziet er zeer gezellig uit!
Wat een prachtige spoke heb jij gemaakt.

Rees said...

You had very good teachers! And your nupps are good :-)) Nice work!

Greetings from Estonia!

Homesteadgirl said...

What a great sweater style! I need to pick your brain on patterns for curvy girls...I don't want some baggy sack sweater but always lean towards them because I don't know what else to knit. This Spoke looks amazing...just my style. Is the pattern on rav?
Lace does not look uncomplicated! Lovely stuff!

MoniqueB. said...

OH, I lóve the Spoke. It becomes you very well.
About the workshop: been there, done that! hahahaha.

Siem said...

Prachtig je Spoke mooi garen ook. Ziet er goed uit de workshop en wat je geleerd hebt!

marieke said...

ooh de Spoke ziet er prachtig uit! staat je goed!

Knit and Purl Mama said...

I agree, the Spoke looks great!

Looks like you had a good time with good friends! I'm taking a workshop this weekend (well, providing my water doesn't break!)

Lida said...

Wat een prachtige werkstukken. De workshop ziet er geweldig uit. Leuk hoor.

froukje said...

Wat een leuke blog! Prachtig verslag van de workshop!