Familien Trend Photoshoot: Gyda

20141023 MbM LM 0444 cropHere are the fantastic photos taken by Eivind Røhne of gorgeous model Alexandria Eissinger at Pholk, with beautiful hair and make-up by Sissel Fylling, stunning faux suede dress by Judith Bech, wearing my design Gyda, a fitted jacket. The divine Elena black shoes designed by Monica Stålvang are not seen in these photos but photographed separately, see those on Ravelry together with more details of the pattern: Gyda. The Norwegian pattern is part of the Nordic Vintage series recently published in Familien Trend.

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Here is my introduction to the pattern: Cables that create diamond shapes adorn this fitted jacket on all its parts. A deep v-neck and a button band with three bespoke buttons by Siri Berrefjord make it suitable to wear on top of any treasured outfit. The fronts and back are knitted flat, while the sleeves are knitted in the round, all in the bouncy pure wool melange Ask – Hifa 2.

20141023 MbM LM 0472The English pattern in all sizes from XS to 2XL is currently being test knitted in my Ravelry group with 12 knitters making the jacket, in addition to a some just making the accompanying tweed belt or cowl. Gyda Cowl has details for the cowl plus the belt, while Gyda is only the jacket. You can follow the thread if you are a member of Ravelry. The pattern will be released after the test knit is finished. I chose to end the cables before last bind off or short rows on the shoulder and gather them to avoid flat cables then continue the last few rows in stockinette stitch. Take a look at the triangle created by the short row shaping on the shoulder. Some of my test knitters have instead chosen to continue the cables all the way to the last row.

20141023 MbM LM 0529We have also been talking about preferences in the different hem techniques; I recommend to sew it by hand at the end to make it stay flat while others decided to use a temporary cast-on. Occasionally I also use two circular needles, where one is used as a holder until it is closed with a row of knitting two together with one stitch from each needle. This tends to make a hem that is more rounded and which tends to turn upwards so that the lower part of the WS is visible.

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Butterflies adorn this generous cowl, in the shape of a lace pattern divided by a rib. A rich melange brown color has been created by combining the pure wool of Huldra Kamgarn by Hifa with the tonal alpaca mixture of Dreamline Soul by Du Store Alpakka. A tweed belt made for the Gyda jacket introduces the brown shade together with farmblue Ask – Hifa 2. The belt, just like the jacket, has bespoke buttons by Siri Berrefjord. The statement ring in silver is designed by Kaja Gjedebo. If you have been following my blog closely you will have noticed that the last photo has not been shown previously, and is not included in the magazine. It was another of my favourite photos that I just had to have.


Familien Trend Photoshoot: Hillevi

20141023 MbM LM 0814I am delighted to show you how elegantly my scarf Hillevi can be worn. Gorgeous model Alexandria Eissinger at Pholk, with beautiful hair and make-up by  Sissel Fylling, is wearing a divine pleated deep olive silk dress with a blue reflection by Judith Bech, with the scarf elegantly on top, brilliantly captured by Eivind Røhne who suggested the bar at Hvalstrand Bad as the backdrop. The statement bracelet is Monies, and unfortunately you can not see the stunning shoes by Monica Stålvang in these photos. Hillevi is part of my Nordic Vintage series recently published in Norwegian in the new magazine Familien Trend.

20141023 MbM LM 0847My introduction to Hillevi: A reversible scarf with a large shawl collar in a self-made tweed mixture of Rowan Lima and Rowan Fine Tweed. Two staghorn cables form the stitch pattern combined with garter stitch edges and shawl collar. Wear it as a scarf with the collar tight around your neck, or as a shawl with the collar around your shoulders. You can even wear it upside down with the collar as a shaped curve, or as a top around your bust pinned together with a shawl pin. We had only time for these two different wearing options at the photoshoot, but you can see me wearing it with all the options in this blogpost: New Design: Hillevi. The English pattern will be released on Ravelry after it has been test knitted in my group.


Familien Trend Photoshoot: Freja

20141023 MbM LM 0872 cropMy design Freja, worn by model Alexandria Eissinger at Pholk looking like a goddess, with a stunning fringe skirt with a train by Judith Bech, beautiful hair and make-up by Sissel Fylling, and captured by Eivind Røhne. No wonder it was chosen as the introduction to our Nordic Vintage series in the recent Norwegian magazine Familien Trend. Freja, named after the goddess of love with the added meaning of like a lady, is knitted with a longer back shaped at the bottom. Three Lace panels adorn the sleeveless top with garter stitch bands and vents in the side. A fine tweed yarn is held together with an alpaca lace yarn, with a chain construction, to create a fabric with beautiful stitch definition and a slight halo.

20141023 MbM LM 0883I was enchanted with the result of combining Dreamline Soul, a fine lace weight alpaca mix in tonal colors from Du Store Alpakka with Merino Tweed, a fingering/4-ply yarn from Pickles in the same range of shades of light turquoise. Using a 4 mm/US 6, I got a gauge similar to a thick DK with 20 sts and 30 rows in stockinette stitch measuring 10 cm/4″ square. The top is knitted flat in two pieces, while the armhole and neck band are worked in the round. The bottom of the back is shaped by short rows in garter stitch before the decreases are worked in between the lace panels. Both parts have edge stitches in garter stitch at the bottom for the vents.

20141023 MbM LM 0894I made a chocker to go with the top using one lace panel with garter stitch all around. 3 snap fasteners where sewed onto the chocker for closure. The chocker is one size but can easily be adjusted by adding or removing garter stitch rows as well as pattern repeats. The top is made in size XS to 2XL with a finished bust circumference of 84 to 126 cm/33 to 49.5″.

20141023 MbM LM 0859 cropAbove is another gorgeous photo Eivind took, I could not resist! Why? Because, here you see the train on the skirt, and how the back of the top mimics it, at least it does in my imagination. I would like to have the English pattern test knitted before it is released in my Ravelry store. In the meantime I will show you some more of the fantastic photos Eivind took.


Familien Trend Photoshoot: Jacket in Cross

20141023 MbM LM 0310Jacket in Cross is one of my favorite patterns from my Norwegian knitting book: “To rett en vrang. Designstrikk“, and I do wear it for special occasions during the summer such as the meeting with former editor Mary-Ann Astrup of Made by Me and the two designers I had selected to work with; dress designer Judith Bech and shoe designer Monica Stålvang, last July at Egmont Publishing. Hence the jacket became picked to be included in the Nordic Vintage series, published in February in the Norwegian magazine Familien Trend which took over from Made by Me. We choose a cream thai silk dress designed by Judith to be worn under it. Gorgeous model Alexandria Eissinger at Pholk was beautiful hair and make-up by Sissel Fylling and brilliantly captured by photographer Eivind Røhne who suggested the yellow column as the background.

20141023 MbM LM 0382The statement necklace dates back to my first photoshoot for my book, and has been worn regularly ever since. Yes, I could not bare to deliver it back after loaning it for the photoshoot and had to buy it. The design is by the Danish company Monies who specializes in statement jewelry made by natural materials. The cream color suits the taupe colored Tencel 8/2, a new form of viscose, yarn from the American company Valley Yarns and owners of WEBS, one of the largest online stores in the USA. I discovered the tencel yarn at Handweavers Studio in London and love the silky feel as well as its sheen. The jacket is knitted using 3 mm/US 2.5 and 2.5 mm/US 1.5 with the yarn held double. The sleeves are knitted in the round, while the body is worked in parts and sewn together at the end. I have revised the pattern and added sizes XS (Alexandria is wearing size S with the long sleeves,  which can be adjusted if preferred) and XL, to fit bust from 82 to 114 cm/32.25″ to 45″. The English pattern will be released soon with a detailed schematic on Ravelry. Watch this space.


On a Sofa at the Archive

DSCN0062To rette en vrang“/Knit two, purl one, is not only my Norwegian book title but also the name given to a talk I went to at Riksarkivet/The National Archives last Tuesday. Why has knitting become so popular in Norway was the question asked and how did it start? “The knitting wave is washing across the country. People are taking out their knitting everywhere, they blog about it and exchange knitting tips across the continents. But how much do we actually know about our own knitting history? Norwegian textile- and clothing history is in focus this evening.” Journalist and passionate knitter Kristian Elster lead the talk with Curator at KODE – The Art Museums in Bergen – Anne Britt Ylvisåker and Ethnologist Ingun Grimstad Klepp. The simple answer from Ylvisåker is that we know very little about our own Norwegian knitting history because the definition of the term “knitting” is so wide; it include numerous other handicraft techniques and in addition the fragments that are found are not necessarily made by Norwegians. Above is the well filled entrance hall of the impressive building at Sognsvann in Oslo, see the facade here: www.statsbygg.no. It came as no surprise, to me, that this was a new attendance record in their series of talks.

DSCN0061I did not even sit on the first row as you can see from above. Riksarkivet have their own You Tube Channel where you can watch all their “I en sofa på Arkivet” talks in Norwegian, including this one: www.youtube.com. What we do know is that knitting in Norway was done in the 1500 century, and began with poor people knitting socks out of necessity. It was not until the early 1900 century that it became more popular and that the gentry began knitting, but this time in fine cotton and delicate items to prove that this was not because it was an essential item but merely for pure pleasure. Just as knitting is today, and the popularity of all the different Facebook groups like “Koftegruppa” was mentioned due to its large number of members, with more than 36 000 members. Klepp does not believe it is only a wave but something much more permanent and sustainable. Knitters will also become even more aware of the origin plus material of their yarn in the future, predicted Klepp, and compared it to recent food discussions. Ylvisåker believes the rise of the knitting popularity began in the post war years with the nation building. At a time when the enjoyment of the outdoors flourished and dexterity was in demand. Knitting was no exception hence the knitting patterns became public.


Above, is one of Riksarkivet’s photos of Ingun Grimstad Klepp wearing a Fanakofte with crocheted sleeves, Anne Britt Ylvisåker and Kristian Elster wearing a Marius Genser. Klepp told us how she rescues UFO’s found at flea markets, imagines what the knitter’s intention originally was before it was abandoned, and then decides how to re-design it, all on a much smaller scale than artist Kari Steihaug did for her book, see my review here: Archive: The Unfinished Ones. After the talk had finished questions from the audience were answered, but not all were equally easy to answer like when did our tradition with using a sewing machine before steeking – cutting open a colorwork body to make a cardigan begin? Read more about Klepp and her book Ren Ull/Pure Wool here: Ulluka Campaign for Wool Week. It was an enjoyable evening spent knitting in the company of many others.


New Design: Hennika

DSC_2270A lace pattern with Gotic shapes adorn this bolero, which has a scarf collar where the pointed arches reigns. Hennika is a name with Gothic origin and means master of the house. The bolero is tapered and worked in pieces, while the sleeves are worked in the round. Wear the collar lying flat or folded in half lengthwise to add volume and close it with a shawl pin or a beautiful brooch. Hennika is knitted in the bouncy Hifa Ask in a lovely Melange Farmblue color using 3.5 mm/US 4. Hennika was designed cropped to fit with Judith Bech’s long light blue halter neck tulle gown in our series Nordic Vintage in Familien Trend.

DSC_2279I chose to knit the sleeves in the round while the body parts are worked in pieces from the bottom and up. On both fronts and back I added columns of lace as found inside the main lace pattern, I named Girlander to avoid solid stockinette stitch parts. On the sleeves on the other hand I worked the inside in stockinette stitch. The collar is knitted in two parts, joined using a 3-needle bind-off or grafting, then sewn in place.

DSC_2283The collar looks even better when it is folded as above, I think. As you can see I did not use a mirror when I put it on, hence the fronts are not level, and the bolero is not pulled down as it should be.  The body and the sleeves have hems while the scarf collar has only a few rows of garter stitch to keep it flat. To make the bolero appear longer I decided to photograph it together with Gyda Cowl, initially called Butterfly Cowl based on its butterfly lace panels. The cowl is straight and one size but can easily be adjusted by adding or removing lace panels as well as reverse stockinette stitches in between those to make it fit you.

DSC_2290The bolero appears very cropped on my long back, and looks better worn with a wider skirt or dress, in my opinion. The photos are, as usual taken by my husband in our garden, in early September last year. I will release the English pattern after test knitting in my Ravelry group, date is not yet set but it will be after Honeysuckle Shawl and Saga Jacket which are the next test knits to begin. Now that you have seen all the new designs as they look on me, I am ready to show you each one gorgeously worn by model Alexandria Eissinger, brilliantly captured by photographer Eivind Røhne.


Bespoke Buttons by Siri Berrefjord

_SBB4878Part 2: Yes, I cannot stop ordering bespoke buttons. Just like knitting, it becomes an addiction to have small bespoke pieces of jewelry sewn onto a knitted jacket – see my design Icelandic Jacket. The progress is easy, I merely bring my swatch to Jewelry Designer Siri Berrefjord, ask for small, medium or large buttons and how many I need. In addition I usually beg Siri, who also is a brilliant photographer, to take some pictures of the buttons placed on my swatch. If you where wondering why the photos are so good, it is because she is a trained photographer. I ordered 3 buttons for the Gyda Jacket, and 6 for the accompanying belt, all medium size: 13 mm/0.5”. Siri captured the color of the jacket and the belt, knitted in Hifa Ask magnetically as usual. All are remakes of traditional historic national costume silver in plastic. A number of ready made buttons and jewelry are for sale on Epla under the name Siri’s Skattkammer/Siri’s Treasure Trove.

_SBB4889The photos also capture the yarn texture and show off both the cables and the tweed in all their beauty. The brown chestnut color chosen for the cowl is made of one strand of Hifa Huldra Kamgarn intended for machine knitting combined with Du Store Alpakka, Dreamline Soul.


The test knitting of the Gyda Jacket and Gyda Cowl has recently started in my group on Ravelry. Do join us or follow if you are interested. The English patterns will be released when the test knit is complete. The Norwegian pattern is part of the Nordic Vintage series in Familien Trend that came out on Monday 23. February.


New Design: Honeysuckle Shawl

DSC_2315I love the lush and fairly thick cotton with its cable twist from Rowan Yarns, aptly called Softknit Cotton. Available in lovely bright colors but also several beautiful neutrals like Silver, a grayish white in my opinion, with 105 m/115 yds on a 50 g skein made of 92% cotton and 8% polyamide. I picked a lovely lace pattern which is equally beautiful on both sides and decided to make a rectangular shawl that can be buttoned into a shrug with a matching cowl and stylish belt made up of a hem in stockinette stitch: Honeysuckle Shawl.  All perfect accessories to a stunning dress by Judith Bech and wonderful shoes by Monica Stålvang, to be part of the Nordic Vintage series recently published in the Norwegian magazine Familien Trend.


I named the design Honeysuckle, inspired by its climbing, and its similarities to the lace pattern itself. Above it is worn without the cowl. Both the shawl and the belt is knitted flat, while the cowl is worked in the round. The shawl and the cowl with their lace patterns are worked using a 4.5 mm/US 7 while the belt is firmly knitted using a 4 mm/US 6 to avoid stretching out of shape. I was fortunate to have help knitting the shawl and the cowl by skilled knitter Airin Hansen, aka Teodor on Ravelry.

DSC_2307You can easily adjust the width of the shawl and the circumference of the cowl by removing or adding pattern repeats of 16-sts. Eyelets in the lace pattern is used as buttonholes. The belt is designed to wrap twice around the waist and then be tied. It is worked like a hem in stockinette stitch and cast on using two circular needles held parallel. Adjust the length of the belt by measuring your waist and add prefered tying length. The belt can also be pinned together with a stunning brooch if preferred. All the photos here of me wearing it, were taken in our garden last August by my husband.

DSC_2301Here you can see the buttons I chose, and how the lace patterns works as buttonholes. I plan to have the shawl test knitted in my group on Ravelry before I release it in English as a downloadable pdf. The test knit will start shortly. I look forward to showing you the brilliant photos Eivind Røhne took of gorgeous model Alexandria Eissinger from Pholk wearing the Honeysuckle Shawl with the intended dress by Judith Bech and shoes by Monica Stålvang.