Stavanger Strikkefestival 2021

Yay, Stavanger Knitting Festival is happening this year in Stavanger (on the west coast of Norway), from Thursday 21st of October to Sunday 24th, and I am holding both workshops & a presentation at the Clarion Hotel Stavanger. Just as previous years it is organised by “Strikk og Drikk”/Knit and Drink and has a very impressive program which will happen live this year and not digitally – like last year. Most of the events and workshops are in Norwegian but there are a few workshops in English held by Mona NicLeòid Wagner. Below you see a number of the contributors this year.

In addition there are knitting cafés, fashion show, knitting bingo, knitting clinic, speed knitting competition, last knitter standing competition and a market hall. Below is the list of workshops and the talk I am holding. For a full program and details on how to book, check out their website: Stavanger Strikkefestival. I have lost count of the number of times I have taken part in this knitting festival but I am delighted not to have to miss another one! I hope to see some of you there!


Strikkehelgen in Stavanger 2018

Last weekend I was back in Stavanger for the Knitting Weekend, organised by Strikk og Drikk/Knit and Drink! The autumn weather could not have been any better, crisp with hardly a cloud on the sky. Just as last year I had asked if I could stay with my friend Mary-Ann Astrup so that we could catch up. Her house in the city centre is also better than any of the hotels, in my opinion. Two of my four workshops were overbooked, but I was given the best conference room at the Clarion Hotel Stavanger, the Board Room on the 14th floor with a magnificent view, and comfortable leather chairs. During the weekend I met knitters I knew but also new knitters.

One of my test knitters Tone Cecilie, who was teaching Cable Knitting for Beginners, while I was teaching Cable Knitting Masterclass, had her workshop in between my Finishing and Masterclass. In the dark photo above you see her clearing the table, and you get an idea of the view we had with the table seating 20 people.

Here is a view from one of the many windows towards the harbour.

Here is the next in the series.

I am sure you want to see more from the Knitting Weekend, so here is the small knitting café area, next to the Market Hall at the basement of the hotel. On Saturday, between my workshops I held a one hour knitting clinic. I answered questions on my own designs but also on general knitting issues, like how to count the number of decreases you have made.

Inside the Market Hall there were another knitting café area and on the stage, there are some of Sidsel Høivik’s designs exhibited. I briefly spoke to Sidsel and also to Nancy Marchant on Friday evening, after my first workshop before I headed back to Mary-Ann’s house.

I was intrigued to see these hand-dyed yarn with a tweed effect from Spøtegarn and check out the cutest assistant ever, below. After the second workshop and the knitting clinic I had two hours before the next workshop, so I had time for a quick look as well as lunch.

There were so many temptations and so much lovely yarn on offer. I only bought and issue of the Laine magazine and was very pleased with myself. As usual there was a knitting party on Saturday night, but I knew I would need charging after my hectic day and in preparation for my last workshop followed by a talk.

My first workshop was on Friday night, on Tucks. I covered how I make them with two circular needles held together and how you can make different variations (see my video – and start at around 7 minutes, 45 seconds in on YouTube). Here is Gry Knudsen wearing her Yellow Gold Pullover. It is in three colours, because she did not have enough of one for the whole pullover in her stash. I love this trendy stripy version of it. The program for the knitting weekend was filled to the brim and on offer were these activities: Beer tasting for knitters, trip to Sandnes Garn (yarn producer), late night knitting, knitting bingo, living audio book – knit & listen and knitting cinema. Here is a link to the program: It was impossible as a knitter to get bored here! I had a fabulous time in Stavanger.


Strikkehelgen/Knitting Weekend in Stavanger

By AnjaI had a marvelous weekend in Stavanger, and was way too busy enjoying myself to take lots of photos, thanks to organizers Stavanger Strikk og Drikk/Knit and Drink who have done a splendid job. A  large number of the city landmarks were marked by the knitting event; at the airport was a large armchair with yarn & needles provided ready to use, the library was invaded by knitters, and had prepared by exhibiting all their knitting books; exhibitions; as well as providing yarn for charity knitting and presentations by all participating designers, the ferry terminal had first declined the offer from Strikk og Drikk but did not take long to regret their decision… A small trade hall was located at Bekkefaret Bydelshus/Community House with offerings of tempting yarns, patterns, buttons and books together with a coffee shop plus workshop premises, with more located at Eiganes Kolonihagehus/Allotment Community House; where the Saturday party was held. My weekend workshop in Knitting Design was at Gosen Skole, see above. The knitting community in Stavanger was starstruck by the famous Danish designers that participated: Lene Holme Samsøe, Bente Geil aka Geilsk and Charlotte Kaae. Taking part with their respective fans were also acknowledged Swedish designer Anita Grahn, Tove Fevang and Ann Myhre aka Pinneguri/The Needle Lady (read about her workshop here: aftenbladet). I met Bente, Charlotte and Anita at Strik Bornholm but was delighted to finally meet Lene in person as well as some of my Ravelry friends. Read in Norwegian: Se opp for strikk i rogalandsavis, Hele byen strikker i aftenbladet.

DSCN2073We were 3 Norwegian designer present at the weekend who all gave a talk on Friday evening at the Library; Tove Fevang, myself and Ann Myhre who you can see in action above. While Tove was talking about her inspiration and work, I presented my design experience and book, and Ann defended top-down knitting as well as the fact that women should celebrate the fact that we do have shapely figures. The 3 Danish designers and Anita held talks on Saturday to even larger crowds. See the complete program here: strikkehelgstavanger. After the talk both Tove and I were told to come with initiative taker Monica Haga for safe keeping until we would be collected by our hostesses who were both taking part in Charlotte’s workshop: Krydret Strik/Spicy Knitting (read: this relates to Charlotte’s bold use of vivid colors). We were duly collected a few hours later, after a delicious dinner in Bente’s & Monica’s company.

DSCN2077My friend Anja Præsttun Smith and I had to chat a bit even after we arrived at her house by the fjord in Sandnes so well into the night I crashed into bed. Do take a look at her family’s exciting Iceland expedition plans here – yes, Anja’s husband Neil is English – see: Anja was one of the many volunteers that had helped by baking cakes for the coffee shop, Tone Cecilie Nystrøm was another volunteer in charge of the premises for my weekend workshop and hence moved it to the school were she teaches; Gosen Skole, while Monica’s husband was the dedicated driver who brought us lunch, to our pleasure, with plenty of fruit, chocolate, fizzy drinks and raffle tickets. Excellent service in other words. I had an overbooked workshop but still managed to lead everyone through the planned agenda. It is ever so exciting to see what inspires others, and the abundance of creativity that exists all around us! Numerous swatches later and after the workshop on Saturday, Anja and I had a quick look in the Trade Hall before closing time. I can reveal that Anja bought several skeins of yarn, while I collected business cards, cuddled hand-dyed luxurious Lotus Yarns from Ullrommet and yarns from Nøstebarn before we headed home to change for the party at Eiganes Kolonihage. Above is a photo from the party with the Danish Designers at the front table accompanied by Monica in a sleeveless white dress.

DSCN2080Tone Cecilie dazzled in her orange skirt plus matching tie and recently finished test knitting her bright turquoise Lattice Back Jacket which is much brighter in real life than in the poor quality photo above.  Anyway, I so wanted to show you her fabulous outfit! Instead of the planned zip, Tone Cecilie’s jacket had three small coin buttons attached with snap fasteners. You can read more about her difficult zip search in the test knit thread in my group on Ravelry. We had delicious food, music, cakes & coffee and chatted while we all knitted. The sound level, as you can imagine, was out of this world. I flew back to Oslo on Sunday evening after my workshop and managed a quick goodbye to Charlotte and Lene Holme at the airport before my departure. It was wonderful to meet so many knitters and designers at Strikkehelgen in Stavanger, a big thank you to all volunteers and Strikk og Drikk for a magnificent event!


Autumn Symphony Knitted by Tone Cecilie Nystrøm

2014-04-22_19.21.45_medium2Tone Cecilie Nystrøm, aka ToneCecilie on Ravelry, test knitted this gorgeous version of my Autumn Symphony Jacket with the wrap, and a self composed hat in March. These fabulous photos are taken by her daughter, Sara aged 12. I was taken back by her bold combination of colors; Melange clear apple green and melange purple in the stunning Ask-Hifa 2. Tone Cecilie chose size M, and did not do any alterations to it. She is a great test knitter since she can easily spot any mathematical errors straight away, and improved the pattern together, with the other test knitters. The lace pattern, called Chinese Lace, is one of those that are hard to learn by heart even for knitters who usually memorize patterns instantly, just as Tone Cecilie does. I was so fortunate to meet her in person last month when she attended two of my workshops for Strikk og Drikk/Knit and Drink in Stavanger, on the South-West coast of Norway, and study her jacket in detail. Thank you, Tone Cecilie!

2014-04-22_21.21.08_medium2Above is the back view of the a-line jacket. The Norwegian pattern with sizes from S to 3XL, bust measurements from 92 cm/36.25″ to 137 cm/54″ was published in the magazine Familien issue 20/2014, while the English pattern is available as a downloadable pdf from Ravelry.


Strikk og Drikk/Knit and Drink in Stavanger

10264385_689151927786538_7555932351586898028_nThis is a large group of knitters that have a monthly knit night at a pub in Stavanger. It started with a knitter wanting some company and suggested meeting at a pub, and it did not take long before the room was packet. I have met a few of the knitters online on both Facebook and Ravelry, and has been invited to hold two workshops in September and a weekend one in November; when they are organizing their knitting weekend. The dates and information for the knit nights are on their group on Facebook, while the Knitting Weekend has its own website: StrikkehelgStavanger. A knit party, knit night, shop stands, knit exercises especially for knitters – made by Bettany Shaw; a personal trainer – and workshops, are all part of this exciting program for the weekend. The term Strikketrim/Knitting exercises needs a bit of clarification: “Encompasses a ‘sports specific’ workout to make you the strongest, most dynamic knitter you can be. All  important areas include mobility and function of the shoulders, a strong core and of course movement of the major muscle groups to prevent back pain and kick start that metabolism!”, according to Shaw herself. That sounds ever so essential to me, but I am holding a 2 day workshop in Knitting Design in Norwegian, more details in this blogpost: knitting-design-workshop.

I am very excited to visit this busy group of knitters, and wonder whether the workshop will fill as quickly as Montering/Finishing on Saturday 27. September did. In my opinion there is a lot of pleasure in finishing a garment to its uttermost perfection. There are still a few places left on Japanske Mønstre/Japanese Patterns on Sunday 28. September; where I will teach how to read patterns in schematic form and how to work complicated charts from my Japanese Book library. I cannot wait to meet my test knitters and friends I only know digitally, in real life.