Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Traditionalish Ullared Sweater

Before Emma Jacobsson became the knitting heroine of Sweden with her Bohus Stickning co-op, the Grand Dame of Swedish knitting was the 17th century Dane, Magna Brita Cracau. The techniques she brought to Halland created a legacy of knitwear that would directly influence those of Norway and the British Isles.

Halland sweaters became stranded in the 19th century as documented in the fantastic "Swedish Sweaters, New Designs from Historical Examples" by Britt-Marie Christoffersson. I used this book as well as Knitting in the Old Way, Designs & Techniques from Ethnic Sweaters", Roberts & Robson to experiment with all of the area's signature techniques.

My sweater is primarily in the Ullared style. I used traditional diamond patterns with a typically placed record of the year and my initials. These sweaters bore the wearers rather than the makers initials, in this case they are one in the same. I also followed the oldest tradition of finishing using crochet to work the neck and cuff edges.
Using assorted geometric patterns from "Swedish Sweaters" I inserted 'false seam lines' using colour to line up the circular knitting with the point at which the front and back began to be worked flat. I also made half gussets following Plan 1 for the Danish Blouse in Knitting in the Old Way and patterned them separately.
The main adjustments I made were to change the shape of the sweater to the Danish cropped style, or the Swedish Spedetroja look. I also started with a split welt hem. I don't suit a big boxy sweater.
Using worsted weight wool is a major modernization along with the use of red yarn. Traditionally, these (and most Swedish) sweaters would have been knit in black and white and then dyed red.
You see, I had to post this before it was too late!

1 comment:

Helia said...

I love this sweater. Good Job

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