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Knitting on the Threshold

This has been an exciting time for new knitting patterns from some of my favourite designers. There have the Tin Can Knits gems Handmade in the UK (which I plan to review in a later blog), the Raindrops sweater and the teaser of their Simple Collection. The Wool People Vol 5 has also been recently released with gorgeous pretties from Keiran Foley, Gudrun Johnston, Veera Vallimaki, et al.

Since Karie Westermann began pre-sales of her first collection I had been drumming my fingers excitedly. On Monday it dropped into my Ravelry library.

The ideas behind Doggerland: Knits from a Lost Landscape are a mixture of  inspirations from Mesolithic archaeological finds and ideas of landscapes – both real and personal. The title of the book refers to the landmass that once connected Britain to mainland Europe – an area that once bridged Karie’s homeland of Denmark, to her home now in the UK.

The patterns which make up the book are going to be released every couple of weeks (which delights me and makes me impatient in equal measure!) and the first of these is Ronaes…

 

I have cast on in Jamieson and Smith Shetland Supreme in Yuglet, which is slightly heavier than the recommended yarn so I have swatched to get the right needle size & gauge.

Karie is using wools local to the North Sea regions  – another reason to love the heck out of the collection (love your local wool!) – and wanted to keep the wool pretty organic and largely undyed. The yarn used in Karie’s version is Garthenor Shetland 1 ply – I like the rustic look of the wool and you can bet I will be frequenting their stall at Woolfest in a couple of weeks.

I am only on the short rows, but love the look of the piece already – I really like the texture of garter stitch in Shetland wool.

What excites me about this collection is the connection to landscape and the past, and also a sense of otherness – something I often feel keenly in my own landscape.

Copyright Clint Watt. All rights reserved

I look forward to seeing more of the collection and how landscape, time, past and otherness all come together and are created & interpreted into knitted garments.

I wanted to explore what are known as “liminal places” – places in the landscape that function as thresholds. I wanted a pattern that could be both a shawl and a scarf. I also wanted to design something reminiscent of the Ronaes site as I imagined it looking some 6,000 years ago. The shape and textures of the shawl mimic a crescent-shaped beach or shallow coastal area with the garter stitch reminiscent of tidal marks left on a beach.

– Karie Westermann, from Doggerland

I love that idea of liminality – it makes the ethnologist in me curl my toes (in the good way!) – the idea of a threshold between times and also a threshold between artefact and the inspired garment totally resonates with me.

I cannot wait to experience the rest of the collection and you should definitely check it out too! You can buy the collection on Ravelry, you can join in with the Doggerland chat and  Ronaes KAL and you can wait impatiently with the rest of us for the next pattern!

 

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