my excuse to talk about knitting, cats and life in general

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

More Stitches

Well, I've fallen head over heels for Bohus. I've ordered 5 kits, with one more to come when it's finished. Susanna Hansson, teacher of the Bohus class at Stitches, suggested that we order kits directly from Solveig Gustafsson, the woman who dyes the yarn, since that will give her a larger share of the income from the kits and may encourage her to do more kits. Since Solveig is 70 and isn't training a replacement, maybe she'll start doing that. It would be criminal if the art were to die now.

I ordered the Large Collar, an amazing design in black, browns and white that looks like lace, Forest Darkness, dark green or black (which I chose) with greens and blues, and Blue Shimmer, palest blue with more blues and beiges. All these have the design in a round yoke. With a gauge of about 9 stitches per inch. and up to 5 colors per row. I also ordered 2 kits with the Blue Shimmer hat and scarf. I'll need them to get my knitting to a decent state. I'm not going to do both kits for hat and scarf, of course. I told Sabetta what I was ordering and she said she'd do the scarf. So the second set of those is for her. Naturally, she'll speed through and be done before I've finished winding the wool, but that is the way it should be. I was a lot faster when I was her age. Damn hand tremor. It has really cut into what I can do and how long it takes.

When I ordered the kits, I telephoned Sweden again. I was quite blasé, as if I do that all the time. I figured it was costing about .10 per minute. Used to be that long distance within the US cost that and *much* more. Giving away my age a bit there.

I really loved the Bohus class at Stitches. Susanna had about 10 real Bohus sweaters and one fake. She bought that one knowing what it was, to use it as an example. She had them out on a table for us to look at, touch, photograph, whatever. It was marvelous. I took a lot of pictures, but I think I could have taken more. They are so detailed, amazing color gradations. If I do manage to make one or more of those kits, I'll be aiming very high, even for me and my perfectionist tendencies.

We had a sample of Bohus knitting to work on in class - a swatch of the pattern called Scilla ("skilla"). We were given Shetland yarns to do it in, yarns from Jamieson. It's my first experience with real Shetland and I don't like it *at all*. It has all the charm of knitting with spun steel wool - very scratchy. The strands stick together, all right, almost like watching felting in real life. I wish she'd chosen yarns from Solveig, but so be it. I've kept working on the sample since the class ended and I'm about 2/3 done. I wonder if I'd be farther along if the yarn were more pleasing in a tactile sense. And the colors are only rough approximations of the originals. There's a photo of the original design in the Swedish Bohus Stickning book I just got. I'm going to try to do a second sample in another type of yarn with better colors and hand.

I've GOT to learn how to include photos in this blog. I feel like I'm describing the subtle differences in 40 close shades of blue to blind people. It just isn't the same without pictures!!!