Archive for September, 2011

goodbye, old friend

you were born at midwinter 1995.

fritz keeping me company

you used to sleep on my pillow. when you were younger you draped yourself around my head lika a halo, when you got older you had your own pillow next to mine.

"never a moments peace"
fritz on one of his favourite spots

you always loved food and ate almost anything. the thing you loved best was smoked ham. but you did also like tuna, olives, avocado, kale and dry spaghetti.


when you were younger i always had to carry you around for ten minutes whenever arrived home.

fritz & laban
two very good friends

you hated being by yourself and when you were five, laban moved in with us, and you two became really good friends.

my cuties
fritz and laban

apart from eating, you loved to sleep.

fritz sleeping
fritz sleeps in mysterious ways

you could be quite a hunter, though, once you caught a sparrow that had accidentally flewn into the apartment.

keeping lookout

you always kept us company, and liked to follow us around the apartment.

friend or foe?
fritz met totoro and the cat bus in the living room

you were an expert at sneaking onto my lap without me noticing, you were just there all of a sudden.

fritz resting on my knitting
this is the last photo i have of fritz

in the end, your kidneys gave up.

fritz on the living room table

you died on september 23 2011.

fritz on the kitchen table

we will always miss you, old friend.

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my knitting bag

i carry this around with me almost everyday. right now i’m working on the hampton cardigan from new england knits. i hope to finish it this weekend.

my knitting bag

the yarn i’m using is this lovely grey wool that i bought at saratoga needle arts in saratoga springs, ny, in 2009

grey wool from saratoga needle arts
romney cross wool

happy knitting!

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back to school

and not just any school: hv-skola! or handarbetets vänners skola, in english the school of the association of the friends of textile art. a truly wonderful place! a few years ago i took their basic knitting class, seven weekends during the course of almost one year. this time, i’m submerging myself in swedish knitting traditions with stickresan genom sverige, the knitting journey through sweden, where we explore different knitting traditions, techniques and materials in a geographical context (during seven weekends). the journey begins in the south with the traditional women’s jumpers, spedetröjor, from the southernmost province in sweden, skåne. the jumpers are knitted with very fine wool to a tight gauge, often 5 stitches/cm. they are decorated around the cuffs and at the neck with rich fabrics, such as velvet or silk, or patterned ribbons. take a look at the collection from nordiska museet (link to digitalt museum).

one of our tasks this first weekend was to knit swatches with needles ranging from 1,25 mm to 2 mm in order to obtain a similar gauge. one of the swatches i made with 1,25 mm needles yielded a gauge of 5 stitches/cm.

the gauge on this swatch is 4 stitches/cm using 1,5 mm needles

the other task was to decorate a piece of knitted fabric in the spede-manner. our excellent teacher, karin kahnlund, provided us with large machine knitted swatches which we first had to cut…

cut without any kind of measuring or seaming of stitches

…and then decorate. i found some black velvet in my old fabric stash…

pinning fabric to the raw edge

…and some ribbons.

the ribbon is actually green, even though it looks silvery

and a second ribbon…

and a third!

our homework for next time is to finish the swatch. mine is almost finished.

hv-skolan is very closely located to skansen, one of my favourite places in stockholm. the theme that weekend at skansen was flax, wool and linen and visitors were invited to explore the preparation of flax into linen and its different uses in history. we received a special invitation to the delsbo farmstead for a close encounter with traditional jumpers from delsbo.

delsbotröja skansen
this was knitted, as you can see on the front, in 1884

delsbotröja skansen
knitted in 1865

delsbogården skansen
delsbo farmstead at skansen

next time the journey will continue east, into the middle of the baltic sea…

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