Nordic Living Fair at Lillestrøm January 2019

Oslo Design Fair is now only once a year in August, while the fair in January is re-named “Nordic Living” with more focus on Interiors, but both are taking place at Norway Trade Fairs at Lillestrøm (outside of Oslo). Hence Hillesvåg Ullvarefabrikk did not have a stand at this trade fair. Michael and I went on Wednesday, the opening and press day. As you can see in these photos there were less people than usual visiting the fair.

This is the main exhibition in Hall C, presenting the topic of this fair: Embracing Change. One of the quotes on the wall read: “Embracing change in all aspects of life, gives room to humanly development.” The fair’s website reveals that: “Nordic Living is directed towards lifestyle and retail. First and foremost it is a buyers’ fair with exhibitors in focus, but it will also offer a program and inspiration”.

I was intrigued by the new Swedish designer who is taking over after Solveig Hisdal, who is retiring, at Oleana (and do notice where they photographed their Autumn/Winter 2018 collection). She has a very different style to Hisdal but the knitwear and the fabrics are still all made in Norway. The black dress in the background is woven in a Wool and Linen mixture, resulting in a jeans like fabric.

Now, in Hall B there were still a number of yarn producers: Rauma, House of Yarn, Sandnes, Permin (Danish), Cewec (Danish) and Viking Garn among others. I spoke to some of the exhibitors and find it useful to hear their take on the latest trends and their best sellers. Mohair yarn and especially thick mohair yarn knitted up into straight sweater with a bit of lace or cable and wide sleeves seemed to be The trend. To me this is a return to the 80’s and best suited for teenagers or skinny women (or in the past…).

Above are some of the new designs made for House of Yarn. As usual I met up with designer and author Tove Fevang, handicraft editor for the magazine “Familien” Åse Myhrvold Egeland and designer Bente Presterud Røvik. For the first time I also met Trine Lise Høyseth, another freelance designer working a lot for House of Yarn. We all had lunch and talked about designing and the social media pressure.

Even the product exhibition in the street with the entrance to all the halls was smaller than usual and only in one part and on one side of it. Michael and I also had a second coffee with Åse later in the afternoon before we headed off to the train station to meet friends visiting from London. I must admit that I enjoyed the fair and the opportunity to meet people I work with.


Photoshoot at Vigeland Museum: White Mountain Ruana

Next out is the White Mountain Ruana, worn by the gorgeous model Emma Ross, with Hair & Make up by Sissel Fylling and jewellery by Kaja Gjedebo Design, brilliantly captured by Eivind Røhne at the Vigeland Museum. The Ruana was an accepted design submission to Interweave Knits Winter 2018, knitted in the divine Shibui Knits Maai; a chainette yarn made of 70% superbaby alpaca, 30% fine merino, with 160 meters/175 yards on each 50 gram skein. I chose to style it with black pencil trousers, a black top and black sculptural shoes by Amanda Skovgaard so the lovely brick colour would stand out.

Voluptuous, luxurious, and enveloping, the White Mountain Ruana is a chic layer perfect for winter wanderings. The overlapping fronts can be worn loose or closed with snap fasteners and an I-cord tie. An easy-to-knit allover ripple rib pattern gives this ruana an elegant texture; garter stitch on the collar offers contrast to the body. I love the contrast in texture and colour to the plaster sculptures in the Monolith Hall. You can see Em in front of the finished granite Monolith sculpture in the Vigeland Park in this blogpost: Behind the Scenes: Photoshoot at Vigeland Museum.

The Ruana is worked back and forth in pieces and seamed. A provisional cast on is replaced by an I-cord bind off, at the end. Stitches are cast-on for the width of the sleeve parts. The sleeve parts are identical for all sizes but the larger sizes end in a shorter rib that are picked up and knitted at the end. Two I-cords are made for a tie; one part is attached to the collar and the other to the inside seam. Three snap fasteners are sewed on along seam under arm on Right Front with the corresponding parts on the inside of the collar.

I chose this second side photo since it shows the ruana closed and the first one since you can see the snap fasteners. The White Mountain Ruana is knitted with a 25 stitch and 32 rows in Ripple Rib gauge measuring 10 cm/4” square using a 4 mm/US 6 needle. It was the first time I tried a Shibui Knits yarn and definitely not the last, since they have an impressive selection of luxurious yarns.

Em is wearing size Extra Small/Small, but the pattern is also available in sizes M/L and XL/2XL with a bust measurement (including sleeveparts) of 217 (234, 250) cm/85.5 (92.25, 98.5)” and a lower circumference: 151 (167.5, 184) cm/59.5 (66, 72.5)”. The English pattern is available on Ravelry and on Loveknitting. The Norwegian pattern will be printed in the magazine Familien at a later date. These photos convey the casual stylish look I was aiming for! So thank you to my fabulous team!


Book Launch at Cappelen Damm: Inspirerende norske strikkemønstre

Last week I went to a book launch at Cappelen Damm together with designer Eline Oftedal. The new book is by Wenche Roald, while her inspiration and the first Norwegian stitch pattern book, included inside, is by Annichen Sibbern Bøhn. The turnout was astonishing, I cannot remember last time there were so many people there. The number of designers present was equally impressive and I had the chance to meet some designers who I have worked with or know on Facebook, but not met in real life: Kristin Holte, Tori Seierstad and Lene Tøsti. In addition Annemor Sundbø together with stylist Kristin Elise Halkjelsvik came. And Annichen Sibbern Bøhn was presented by researcher and author, Ingun Grimstad Klepp and co-author and journalist Tone Skårdal Tobiasson, see below. An evening highlight for me was to meet Marianne Skatten again, after first meeting her at the knitting festival in Fredrikstad, this time she was wearing her Prescott dress version, modified from my  Prescott Pullover. Everywhere I turned, there were familiar faces, of knitters I have met previously. It was definitely the place to be for knitters on Thursday evening in Oslo.

All Norwegian knitters with an interest in our knitting history know the name Annichen Sibbern Bøhn, since she made the first stitch pattern book in Norwegian, published in 1929. The book has been reprinted several times, the last one in 1947 and yet it has been out of print for several decades. Wenche discovered a tired looking issue at her local library and has used it as a starting point for her book. In addition Font Forlag – an imprint of Cappelen Damm – decided to make another reprint of Sibbern Bøhn’s book in its original edition which is a booklet size and included in Wenche’s book. Now, I am sure you understand the huge turnout. Eline and I was sitting on the back row as you can see part of in the photo below. Wenche used yarn from Hillesvåg Ullvarefabrikk and they had a stand selling yarn kits, that was very popular. Here is link to my favourite design from Wenche’s book: Favorittgenseren for dame.

Wenche has re-worked some of Sibbern Bøhn’s patterns but also designed new garments with the stitch patterns in the book and talked us through her process. There are a total of 34 patterns in Wenche’s book, garments, accessories for women, men and children. Just as Sibbern Bøhn did, Wenche wants to inspire us to use her patterns or play with the stitch patterns. After the presentations, there was a prize draw for yarn kits, then Wenche took her chair in the book shop and started signing books. I congratulated her on my way out, after this inspirational evening! The Norwegian book can be ordered from Cappelen Damm, you can see inside it here at Follow Wenche for update on an English translation and other news on her blog: knitnetty, Ravelry and on Instagram.


Photoshoot at Vigeland Museum: Rørbye Cardigan

The Rørbye Cardigan looks stunning on model Emma Ross, thanks to Hair & Makeup Stylist Sissel Fylling and Photographer Eivind Røhne who captured these brilliant photos at the Vigeland Museum last November. The jewellery that match the stitch patterns in the jacket was on loan from Kaja Gjedebo Design. The cardigan was made for knit.wear Fall/Winter 2017 and knitted in the lovely Dale Eco Wool using 4 mm/US 6 needles. Hence this is the second set of photographs taken of it. The colour fitted into the grey plinths to the plaster sculptures in the Monolith Hall. You can see Em in front of the finished granite Monolith sculpture in the Vigeland Park in this blogpost: Behind the Scenes: Photoshoot at Vigeland Museum. “The Monolith (Monolitten), implying the totem to be fabricated from one (mono) solid piece of stone (lith)”, see Wikimedia link.

A classy and sophisticated knitted cardigan in a contemporary style. The waterfall bottom is created by knitting a sideways cable panel. To offset the cables, the body is all in stockinette stitch, with the exception of the cuff. Each sleeve begins in a sideways knitted cable panel. Leave it open, or pin the cardigan together at the front or in the side, if you prefer to wrap it all around you.

Em is wearing size Small, but the pattern is available in sizes XS to 2XL with a bust circumference of 87.5 to 129.5 cm/34.5 to 51″ closed. I choose to style the cardigan with some black pencil pants and sky high sculptural shoes by Camilla Skovgaard. I wanted to show you how you can pin the cardigan together in the side and also how the interfacing on the collar looks like. To pin it I used one of Kaja Gjedebo’s divine brooches.

I wanted to show you how you can pin the cardigan together in the side and also how the interfacing on the collar looks like. To pin it I used one of Kaja Gjedebo’s divine brooches.

The contract I had signed for photographing at the museum, listed a number of conditions, such as have a security clearance of 0.5 meter/5.4 yards to any of the sculptures or their plinths. We did our best to comply with all the conditions. The last but certainly not least condition stated that any eventual damages to the sculptures, the plinths or of any constructional type must be compensated by responsible Marveng-Puckett. Eivind joked that all he had to do was to forget to secure his huge flash light (read: it did however have three legs) so it would fall over and cause havoc, since he would not need to pay for that. We all laughed and I told him that he would need to pay too.

The English pattern is now available on Ravelry and on Loveknitting in addition to inside the knit.wear Fall/Winter 2017 digital magazine, while the Norwegian pattern will be printed in Familien at a later date. Thank you to my fantastic team for these fantastic photos!


Photoshoot at Vigeland Museum: Eira Pullover

I have been looking forward to showing you more of the photos Eivind Røhne took at the Vigeland Museum in November last year. Out next is Eira Pullover, made for knit.wear Fall/Winter 2017, knitted in the divine The Fibre Co. Cumbria. Just like Nemetona, due to its light colour, I wanted to photograph this in Hall 9 with the huge plaster sculptures for the bridge in the Vigeland Park made by Gustav Vigeland in the background. Here is the gorgeous model Emma Ross, with hair & makeup by Sissel Fylling and jewellery by Kaja Gjedebo Design wearing the Eira Pullover. You can see the full sculpture in Michael’s photo in the Behind the Scenes: Photoshoot at Vigeland Museum blogpost.

Here is my introduction to the Eira Pullover: A visually striking center cable named Kanik – Eskimo for snowflake – adorns the center front and back of this straight pullover. Kanik is framed by a staghorn cable on each side, while Moss stitch fills the background in the sides to allow the cables to shine. A saddle shoulder allows the staghorn sleeve cable to continue all the way to the neck.

Em is wearing size XS, but the sweater is available in sizes XS to 2XL with a bust circumference of 81 to 123 cm/32 to 48.5″. I chose to style it with tan wide silk trouser after consulting with Sissel, whether to choose cream coloured ones or Judith Bech’s cream coloured skirt.

Eira Pullover is knitted in pieces in the divine The Fibre Co. Cumbria using 4 mm/US 6 needles with a gauge of 20 stitches and 28 rows in stockinette stitch measures 10 cm/4″ square. The Cumbria yarn is made of 60% merino wool, 30% brown masham wool, 10% mohair, on each 100 gram skein and has 218 meters/238 yards. I knitted the sample is in Scafell Pike and it takes 6 skeins of 100 grams to make size XS or about 1107 meters/1210 yards in a worsted or heavy DK weight yarn. I love how Em is studying the sculpture as well as how well you can see the cable on the sleeve in the photo above. Eivind and I also found this particular sculpture with the scales of the dragon such a fitting contrast to the cables.

Last of the Eira Pullover photos is this one of the back. The English pattern is now available on Ravelry and on Loveknitting, as well as in the knit.wear magazine. This was the last one we photographed in Hall 9 at the Vigeland Museum, the remaining eight we photographed in the popular Monolith Hall. But I am sure we would have photographed some of those in the Fountain Hall, had it not been for the current exhibition of a contemporary artist showing an art piece we were not allowed to include in our photos, according to our contract. However, there were plenty of fantastic angles to use in the Monolith Hall. In my next blogpost from the Vigeland Museum Photoshoot I will tell you about another clause in our contract that Eivind liked to joke about. Thank you to my fantastic team! Next out is the Rørbye Cardigan.


New Design: Devona

I am delighted to show you my last of the four designs for Hillesvåg Ullvarefabrikk in the Spring 2019 Collection. The yarn kit with Norwegian pattern will be launched at Fagstrikk trade fair in April in Oslo, while the English pattern will be test knitted in my Ravelry group, beginning 20th of May, before its release. Here is my introduction to Devona: Named after the Goddess of the Rivers of Devon is this vest with textures running into each other at the center. One half is in a twisted rib while the other is honeycomb. They are divided by a spine of rib and ends in garter stitch bands with a soft I-cord bind off to finish them off. Devona is knitted in the bouncy Sølje Pelt wool from Hillesvåg Ullvarefabrikk.

I wanted to design a vest that you could wear either over a shirt or a pullover or next to your skin and with two contrasting patterns meeting in the center of each part. I decided to work the vest in pieces and seam it together at the end. Then work both the neck band and the armhole band in the round at the end. In these photos that Michael took on our front terrace in November, I am wearing a black turtle neck pullover under because of the cold weather in Ørje. When we photographed it at the Vigeland Museum in Oslo, I decided that Em should wear it with bare arms. Hence you can see the two options.

The colour I chose is an old favourite, Light Jeansblue which I used in the first collection for Halli. The vest only took 805 meter/880 yards to knit in size Small, that is 2.3 skeins of a 100 gram. So it feels as light as a feather. I have graded Devona in sizes XS to 2XL with a finished bust circumference of 86 to 125 cm/17 to 26″. The vest is knitted using 3 mm/US 2.5 needle with a gauge of 24 stitches and 32 rows in stockinette stitch measures 10 cm/4″ square. This is the last new design for awhile, so next I will show you more of the fantastic photos we took at the Vigeland Museum.


Lofn Pattern Released

The test knit of Lofn was completed in December and the English pattern, in addition to the Norwegian one, is now available from both Loveknitting and Ravelry. The sweater is knitted in the divine Hillesvåg Ullvarefabrikk, Sølje using 3 mm/US 3 needles and part of my Fall 2018 Collection for Hillesvåg. Gorgeous model Emma Ross, with hair & makeup by Sissel Fylling and jewellery by Kaja Gjedebo Design, is wearing size Small and brilliantly captured by Eivind Røhne at Villa Malla in late May, last year.

Lofn is Norse for praise. This pullover is praising texture with its sideways voluptous cables and welt pattern that works like a rib. The upper part is picked up and knitted in Fisherman’s Rib and increased into top part of sleeve, while the bottom part of sleeve is knitted separately.

Sizes: S (M, L, XL, 2XL)

Finished measurements:
Bottom width: 92 (102, 112, 122, 132) cm/36.25 (40.25, 44, 48, 52)“
Wingspan (without lower sleeve): 71 (76, 81, 86, 91) cm/28 (30, 32, 33.75, 35.75)”
Lower sleeve length: 24.5 (22, 19.5, 17, 14.5) cm/9.75 (8.75, 7.75, 6.75, 5.75)“
Length: 53 (53, 54, 54, 55) cm/20.75 (20.75, 21.25, 21.25, 21.75)”
Note: Sample is knitted in size S but with a bottom width of 80 cm/31.5” and height of 25 cm/9.75” due to a tight gauge.

Yarn: Hillesvåg Ullvarefabrikk, Sølje Pelsull (100% pelt wool, 350 m/383 yds, 100 g). The sample is knitted in Red 2132; 4 (5, 5, 6, 7) skeins; 1330 (1540, 1750, 1960, 2170) m/1454 (1684, 1913, 2143, 2373) yds.

Yarn alternatives: Cascade 220 Sport (100% wool, 50 g, 150 m/164 yds).
Tosh Sock (100% wool, 100 g, 361 m/394 yds).
Berroco Cosma (60% alpaca, 30% wool, 10% silk, 50 g, 150 m/164 yds).
Or another Sport/5 ply or Fingering 4/ply yarn.

Needles: 3 mm/US 2.5 straight circular needle (80 cm/32”).
3 mm/US 2.5 DPNs for sleeves.
Adjust needle size as needed to match gauge.

Notions: Stitch markers (removable), 3.25 mm/US D/3 crochet hook (for preliminary cast-on), cable needle and yarn needle.

Gauge: 24 sts and 32 rows in st st measures 10 cm/4” square.
24 sts and 40 rows in Fisherman’s rib measures 10 cm/4” square.
30-sts Cable measures 8 cm/3.25” wide.

Notes: The body is knitted in four parts with cables and welt pattern on the bottom part and Fisherman’s rib on the upper part. Increases are made in each side of the upper part for top of sleeve part. Bottom sleeves are worked flat separately. If you want to lengthen the sweater, work extra rows on the upper back and front before the shape of top sleeves and allow more yarn.


Photoshoot at Vigeland Museum: Nemetona

I  have been looking forward to sharing the amazing photos Eivind Røhne took of gorgeous model Emma Ross, with hair & makeup by Sissel Fylling and jewellery by Kaja Gjedebo Design at the Vigeland Museum, next to the Vigeland Park in Oslo in November last year. The brick building in Norwegian Neo Classical style from the 1920’s does not look especially impressive from the outside, but I can promise you that the inside will blow you away. Not only because of all the sculptures but also because of the majestic ceiling height. “The museum is the result of a unique contract between Gustav Vigeland and the city of Oslo signed in 1921: The Municipality agreed to build a studio, residence and future museum for the artist and his work, and in return Vigeland donated nearly all his works, previous and future, to the city”. This year the Vigeland Museum celebrates that it is 150 years since the artist was born. What better occasion to start presenting these photos. First out is my new design Nemetona, since the test knit begins on Monday on Ravelry.

Nemetona is Celtic for goddess of all sacred places. Like a magical cable grove is each part of this pullover: Staghorn, Roman; and double cables are framed by Honeycomb pattern. The flowing longer back with its curved hem, creates a stylish contrast to the straight front. Nemetona is knitted in pieces in the divine The Fibre Co. Cumbria using 4 mm/US 6 needles and 3.5 mm/US 4 needles with a gauge of 20 stitches and 28 rows in stockinette stitch measures 10 cm/4″ square.

Em is wearing size small, while the pullover is graded from size XS to 2XL with a bust circumference of 84 to 126 cm/33 to 49.5″. I chose to style it with some tan coloured silk trousers, after asking for Sissel’s advice. In additon I had also brought the same trousers in cream and one of dress designer Judith Bech’s cream coloured long skirts with a train, because I had not made up my mind before we left for Oslo and the museum.

The sweater is knitted back and forth in pieces and then seamed. The neckband is worked in the round, double and folded down. The longer back has decreases in the double cable at the bottom. The vent edges are made with slipped stitches.

When the test knit of the English pattern is completed it will be released in my Ravelry store, while the Norwegian pattern will be published in the magazine Familien at a later date.

Nemetona was the second design (the other one was Eira Pullover) we photographed in Hall 9, with plaster models for the sculptures decorating the bridge in the Vigeland Park. You can see more of the sculptures in Michael’s photos in the Behind the Scenes: Photoshoot at Vigeland Museum blogpost. Both Eivind and I loved the massive, tall sculptures in this hall and the terracotta walls which we knew would suit Em’s hair colour.  Above you see the results, thanks to my fantastic team!


Autumn Symphony Accessories in På Pinnen 4/2018

Happy New Year, I hope it will be a healthy, prosperous and creative year for all of you! 2018 ended with a bang, at least that is what it felt like to me, since one; I again – for the second time – had a design on the cover of the Norwegian Knitting Association’s digital magazine “På Pinnen”/On the Needle and two; I hit number one of Interweave’s Top 5 most knitted patterns of 2018 with my Prescott Pullover. On the cover of “På Pinnen” is the accessories to my Autumn Symphony design. The brilliant photo is taken by Eivind Røhne showing Emma Ross with hair & makeup by Sissel Fylling, photographed at Bøler Church last autumn. The initial plan was to have a design by Norwegian designer Sigrun Gilje Hindal on the cover and include the pattern. I know this, because I am the editorial team (read: all of it), assisting editor Tove Fevang. This time I also had the job of interviewing Sigrun, who is Design Manager at the webshop Garnius – that specialise in yarn kits – and acknowledged for her brilliant use of bright colours, see Malou. All the rights to her patterns are with Garnius, hence Tove asked if I had an accessory pattern we could use and my design ended on the cover. I loved the idea and Tove picked this one from a small selection I sent her. Both the accessories (cowl and tweed belt) and the jacket is knitted in the lovely Ask from Hillesvåg Ullvarefabrikk using 3.5 mm/US 4 and 3 mm/US 2 for the bands on the Tweed Cowl. My Autumn Symphony pattern is available in English and Norwegian on Ravelry and Loveknitting.