Knitting Pipeline is sponsored by my Longaberger home businessn and Quince & Co.

Knitting Pipeline is sponsored by Quince & Co. and Knitcircus Yarns

Friday, February 25, 2011

Episode 33 Of Lice and Men

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Quince & Co is a sponsor of Knitting Pipeline.  Visit them to find beautiful, natural fiber yarns from American sheep and responsible non-domestic sources.
Thank you for your prayers and greetings for my mom and her recovery.  Her arm is healing and it looks as if she will not need surgery. 

Imagine!  An entire podcast episode revolving around the lowly and despised louse.  Crazy as it sounds  I will link Traditional Norwegian Knitting, a Scottish Poet, and an American Poet.

I give a short background on the Norwegian Setesdal Sweater, also known as Luskofte, literally "Lice Jacket".  The sweater tradition started about 1860 in Setesdal, a region in southern Norway.  The Luskofte is somewhat of a Norwegian national costume and the hallmark of Norwegian knitting.

To a Louse by Robert Burns is read by Alan Wood, friend of Louise Hunt of the Caithness Craft Collective Podcast.  You can find Louise's delightful podcast on iTunes or Podbean.  Thank you, Louise and Alan.

If you want to read more about the poem, check it out here.
To a Louse Interpretation

Robert Frost (1874-1963) was an American Poet with Scottish and English ancestry.  This is one of his lesser known poems.

A Considerable Speck by Robert Frost

My Book Recommendations for Norwegian Knitting
If you want to knit a Norwegian Drop Shoulder Sweater you can get the design information and charts from Elizabeth's Zimmermann's Knitting Without Tears, Knitting Workshop, or Knitting Around.  All are available from Schoolhouse Press and other booksellers.  Any one of these books will give you all the information you need.

For more background in Scandinavian Knitting I recommend Sheila McGregor's The Complete Book of Scandinavian Knitting.  The reprint by Dover is called Traditional Scandinavian Knitting.

Norwegian Knitting Designs by Annichen Sibbern Bohn is no longer in print.  If you can get your hands  on a copy, it is a little gem of a book.

The newest addition to my Scandinavian knitting book library is, Setesdal Sweaters: The History of the Norwegian Lice Pattern by Annemor Sundbo.  Torridal Tweed.  2001.  Available from Schoolhouse Press.

I found some photos of my first Norwegian Drop Shoulder Sweaters and other Elizabeth Zimmermann designs.

Our Family at home in 1984 with everyone wearing my handknits.  Bob is wearing EZ's Hand to Hand.  I am wearing a Norwegian Luskofte.  Torben is wearing an Aran Vest.  Nils and Peter are wearing raglan sweaters with a texture pattern in the yoke, made using the EPS. (Elizabeth Zimmermann Percentage System.)

In front of our old house where we lived for 25 years.  (Sniff.)

Torben age 9 in his Norwegian Lus Vest. 1987

Torben age 10 in another Norwegian Style Drop Shoulder Sweater. 1988

Stranded Knitting Tutorial

Needle Notes

My finished project turned out lousy (groan).  These are the felted Baby Slippers from Knitting at Home by Leanne Prouse, a book that was reviewed in Episode 29.  Bronwyn helped me with the Bickford method of sewing the pieces together.  They should probably go through the washing machine again but nothing is really going to help that colorwork. Felting is really not my thing but I'm going to attempt the French Press Slippers before throwing in the towel.

After Mom fell my Norwegian Sweater went into hibernation for a week.  I started on a new project (shawl) which I will share next week.  I also picked up a pair of socks that had been in hibernation since June.

In the Piping Circle

Bruce Gandy, World Champion Piper, plays a set from his album My Father's Son.  Order the CD from Bruce's website.  Thank you, Bruce Gandy!

Thank you for listening to the podcast and for visiting the blog!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Next Episode (33) will be delayed

Mom, Dad, my sister, my brother, and me at Thanksgiving 2010.
Well, Mom fell and broke her arm in two places.  She is a bundle of energy and Dad's primary caretaker.  My sister has been taking good care of them and now I'm here to help with kitchen duty and whatever else I can do.  I will probably update on my personal blog A Piper Knits so feel free to visit!

Friday, February 11, 2011

Episode 32 A Technique Betrayed

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Knitting Pipeline is sponsored by Quince & Co. Sign up for their weekly e-newsletter here.

When one tugs at a single thing in nature, he finds it attached to the rest of the world.  --John Muir

Trappings and Trinkets is the Etsy Shop of one of my knitting prodigies.  Free sock pattern!  To receive the free PDF from Nicoles shop click on contact and mention Knitting Pipeline Be sure to put your email address in the body of the email as Etsy does not show this to the shop owner.  Then Nicole will send you an email with the pattern attached.

Counting Sheep is a new podcast by one of our Pipeliners, Ruth.  Ruth is a shepherdess, knitter, and overall fiber person.

Nature Notes

Can you see the eagles in the tree near the red pick up truck?

Bald Eagles along the Illinois River

Red Bellied Woodpecker and Carolina Wren at the feeder in a snowfall.

The Blethering Room in which there is a Betrayal

Bronwyn asked me if I now prefer The Russian Bind off over my beloved EZ Sewn Bind Off.  Traitor Paula lists the reasons that I do favor The Russian Bind Off.
1.  No sewing needle needed.  Don't tell me you have never been caught without one at that casting off moment.
2.  No need to break the working wool.  With the sewn bind off you have to estimate the amount of wool you need and that can be tricky.
3 (Most Important) In the sewn bind off, the wool becomes thin as you continue to bring it through the stitches.  The front of the neck of a sweater is often the first place to wear out.  Could this be because the sewn bind off has weakened the thread?  You decide.

A pair of socks that I knit with the toe up method a few years ago got a little makeover during the Christmas holidays.  The cast off edge was too tight (possibly no sewing needle handy at the moment).  I picked out the woven in end and the cast off edge, unraveled about 1/4" and then cast off with a loose bind off, probably Jenny's Suprisingly Stretchy Bind Off (can't stand that long name.)  Now these socks have ill-repaid me by blowing out the heels simultaneously and with nary a warning.  TipTry to be consistent when weaving in ends.  If you ever need to repair the garment it will be easier to find your end to take it out.

Needles Notes

Norwegian Sweater KAL

Lower portion of Luskofte with lice pattern black on white background.
Swatching Tips
  • Per Meg Swansen (thank you jpeled) knit your swatch flat but still in the round as follows.  Using a circular needle knit one row.  Do not join or turn.  Push work to right end of needle and repeat.  Your wool will be carried VERY loosely at the back of the work.  It looks messy but it works.  Working it is a little like icord only not pulled tight.
  • Tip from Lily Chin via Martha.  When swatching, mark the size of your needle by inserting YO's at the beginning of the work with the number of YOs corresponding to your needle size.  (You could YO k2 tog to keep stitch count even).
More Tips
When choosing color work patterns look for patterns that do not stack a lot of stitches vertically.  These are harder to keep even than those that are spaced.  The upper part of this wrister is an example of what I would steer away from if I were a beginner with color work.

I found this tune to be totally mesmerizing.
Norsk Brudmarsch  (Norwegian Bridal March)
Erik Ask-Upmark on Celtic harp from Himlen's Polska

Friday, February 4, 2011

Episode 31 Knitting in Disguise

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Quince & Co is now a sponsor of Knitting Pipeline.

Nature is not only all that is visible to the eye--it also includes the inner pictures of the soul. -- Edvard Munch

For photos of "Bliz-aster" visit my personal blog, A Piper Knits.

I recommend: Cornell Lab of Ornithology   Birds of My Region  DVD   Their website and all publications are fantastic!  Project Feederwatch is a way to become involved in their research.

Needles Notes

Sofia Cowl by Jessie Dotson from One Skein Wonders: 101 Yarn-Shop Favorites.  Is it knitting or crochet?  You decide.   I knitted this one for Emily in Quince & Co Chickadee in the color Nasturtium.

Alright.  It is knitting, but wouldn't it fool a lot of people?

I used Quince & Co Chickadee (sport weight) in Nasturtium.

Suspended Bind Off that was used in the Sofia Cowl Pattern.  Thank you, Stitch Diva!

My Daybreak with Garter Border by Stephen West with Garter Border.  Daybreak is a pattern by Stephen West of Westknits Designs.
In blocking stage.

Gartery Goodness.

Increases in first section.

Norwegian Sweater Knit Along

The Most Important Thing is keeping your carries loose in the back.  You do not want the floats to pull and distort the pattern.

I used Crow, Glacier, and Storm for the wrister aka Swatch. Gauge is 6 stitches per inch.  In the sweater I am using Crow and Egret. 

I mention the following articles (I got a little carried away):
Two-Ended Knitting: A Living Tradition by Carol Rhoades
Not Just an Instruction Pattern by Ingrid Murnane
The Bestaway Gloves Today by Ann Budd
Practical Insanity: A Giddy whirl through the Pages of Weldon's Practical Needlework by Franklin Habit
The Gordon Highlanders and their Socks by Anne Berk
Classic Highlander's Balmoral Bonnett by Anne Carroll Gilmour
First Lady Grace Coolidge and the Story of the Knitted Counterpane by Kristine Byrnes

In the Piping Circle

My husband's uncle remembers the piper, Bill Millin, playing on the beach at Normandy.  Bill Millin was the personal piper to Simon Fraser, 15th Lord Lovat.
I talked about Bill Millin's death in Episode 9 of Knitting Pipeline.

In Harmony
Dancing Feet, Kalabakan, and Itchy Fingers
Thank you to Dutch Pipes and Drums!

About Me

My photo
I play the Great Highland Pipes, knit, observe nature, and read. My name on Ravelry is PrairiePiper. Find me on Instagram as KnittingPipeline.