Voe Show 2017

hello everyone, happy Monday! We have had a busy time of Shows this past week or so, I thought I’d begin with the first one we went to last Saturday which was Voe! it dawned a bit damp but we are pretty used to that around here..

The main reason I (Ella) headed us was to judge the Colourbox Competition we now host every year with the Voe, Cunningsburgh and Waas Agricultural Shows. Each year we choose a selection of 8 colours which must be used to make something using at least 5 of the 8 colours. This this then broken down into categories within that. Voe has the most entries and they have lots of categories for the Colourbox, this years shades were selected from the Heritage yarn so it was really interesting to see what people made with the more traditional colours.

You have to choose an overall trophy for the Colourbox and the cardigan below was the winner, it was beautifully made and I thought the colours were expertly put together..

The Voe Show has lots of other lovely knitwear on display, from Lace to Fair Isle with everything in between. I always love to see all the skills we have in Shetland and its so inspiring to see it all together.

After I had done my judging I went around and looked at everything else, they’re is so much to see from animals to flowers and you can spend hours wandering around.. quite happily I add!

I hope you enjoyed this peerie peek into this years Voe Show, I’ll be back in a couple of days with the round up from the Cunningsburgh Show, happy knitting!

Bousta Beanie KAL – choosing colours

Its been a bit of a dreich and damp day in Lerwick today so the thought of a nice new knitted hat is ideal! Our Bousta Beanie KAL kicks off on Monday and there is already a lot of good chat in the Ravelry thread. I thought I’d do a quick post about choosing colours – that is probably my favourite but also sometimes the hardest part of knitting Fair Isle.

The good thing about the Bousta Beanie is there are only three shades needed so that makes it a bit easier – One fail safe way I think is to either choose a nice light main colour.. like these.. (all hats are taken from here )

Or dark like these..

You can see on the lighter background ones that the contrasts are either dark or quite bright shades so they will always stand out well, this is the same with the darker main coloured ones above with the lighter/brighter contrasts. It can take a bit of trial and error but if you follow this general idea you will get a hat with enough contrast.

If you take a photo on your phone and put it into black and white you will also get a good idea as to whether there is enough or even too much contrast. You can see above 81 is a perfect dark MC and 202 and FC61 are tonally similar but different enough to make a good pair of contrast colours.

If you want to take inspiration from a photo there are a couple of good apps which you can download for Iphone (i’m sure similar ones are available for android) They do much the same thing, which is you add a photo and the programme chooses the main colours in the picture. The one on the left is Adobe Colour and the right is Pantone studio, there doesn’t seem to be a way to get less than 5 colours but it still gives you some good ideas and put together pleasing combinations that you wouldn’t have thought of!  I took those photos in the Flower Park here in Lerwick but you could use any picture to give you ideas, I think this works well if you want to go for a more subtle colour scheme which also looks lovely in this pattern.

Another thing you can do of course is swatch! As you will be knitting the hat in the round its best to swatch in the round too and you can follow this tutorial for swatching circularly flat (it is for plain knitting but you can use it for Fair Isle too) You will be able to finalise your colours and also check your gauge!

I hope this has given you some ideas and you are ready to start the Bousta Beanie from Monday! feel free to chat in the thread on Ravelry and use the #boustabeaniekal on instagram. We’ve had a busy week with the Voe Show last week, Cunnigsburgh Show on Wednesday and Waas Show tomorrow so I’ll be back next week with some photos from the shows.

Happy Knitting!Save

Bousta Beanie KAL

Hello everyone, I cant believe we are now into August! For us that means one thing – next month is Shetland Wool Week! So we thought this is the perfect time to think about a KAL for this years hat – the Bousta Beanie..

This pattern is a great introduction to Fair Isle but also an interesting knit for those wint with it as we would say in Shetland. It is a simple motif which moves in an even repeat as you go up the hat so it makes a great knit.

The most exciting thing of course about knitting Fair Isle is choosing colours!! I love looking on Ravelry and seeing what colours people have put together – you can see all the hats knit using 2ply Jumper Weight here. You only need three shades (two balls of your main colour and one each of your contrast colours) so the possibilities are endless and of course with this kind of repeat you can use multiple colours for your contrast shades.

So the KAL will begin on the 14th of August, I have made ravelry thread so until the KAL kicks off I thought we could use it to chat about colour choices, to enter our KAL you will need to use J&S yarns and it will run until the 20th of September, just before Wool Week starts on the 22nd. We will also use the hashtag #boustabeaniekal on instagram, ill be back next week with some ideas about choosing colours so until then.. happy knitting!

PS this next week we have the Voe Show, Cunningsburgh Show and the Waas Show which all have our Colourbox Competition so keep and eye out for posts about that!

 

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Wool Season

Hello everybody, sorry it has been quite quiet on the blog this summer, we have been so busy which of course is a great problem to have. We are now in the heart of the Shetland Wool season and thanks to a pretty good summer so far the clipping has been happening in earnest so the woolstore is filling up as fast as they can empty it! Even with roadworks happening outside our door (we can still be reached from the bottom of North Road) we are averaging 2-3 tonnes through the doors everyday.

I took the chance on Saturday after the woolstore ones had gone home to take a few photos of the organised chaos, I find the Woolstore extremly photogenic and the sheer volume of wool in there never ceases to amaze me. We have shipped two loads so far and they are well into load 3 so you can see we are bursting (at the seams you can see above!)

These pictures sum up just a fraction of the wool we see from over 80% of Shetlands Crofters and Farmers in a year, but I hope you’ve enjoyed this peerie peek. One more thing thats happened this summer is Oliver has reach 50 years at J&S! I posted a few photos through the years on Instagram which you can see here but I took this one last week which just about sums it up…

Happy Knitting!

Sletts Shawl L252 Re-imagined

As our yarn range grows and changes sometimes its fun to take a look back at one of our older patterns and try it in a newer range. This is what Sandra did recently with the catchily named ‘My Weekly Baby Knits Shawl L252’ – originally released in the 1980’s and designed by Gladys Amedro.

Originally knit in the Woollen Spun 2ply Lace Sandra remade this version in the undyed White shade of Shetland Supreme 2ply Lace – worsted spun and somewhat finer this has resulted in a very soft and drapey shawl.

I was surprised how modern and wearable it seemed when we were rephotographing it, it would still make a perfect Hap for a baby or a christening but wrapped around your neck and shoulders its lovely and quite stylish! The Shetland Supreme 2ply is quite lightweight but also substantial due to the two plys, the worsted yarn of course is fine for next to skin and I can imagine it would look lovely in all the natural 2ply Shades.

Construction wise the shawl is made as indicated by my quick drawing above – you initially knit the edging first, the stitches are all picked up and the four borders worked at the same time in the round. The centre is then knitted from one of these borders and knit whilst attaching to the other two sides and grafted onto the last border.

We decided to rename this pattern the Sletts Shawl, which is where we took the photographs, its a bay in the town and made the perfect backdrop for the shawl. We have also updated the pattern with charts and updated all the abbreviations to the modern ones, so you can see on the product page there are now two choices for the kit – one is the original patttern and knit in L1 Woollen Spun Lace and the new pattern which is both written and charted in the Shetland Supreme. We hope this means there is something for everyone depending on how you like your lace patterns!

We hope your enjoying your summer, we have been been having some nice summery weather in Shetland so long may it continue, Happy Knitting!

J&S at Woolfest

Hello everyone! We are back from Woolfest, and had a great time. We really enjoyed seeing everyone who came to the J&S stall and sold lots of lovely Shetland Wool!

sheep at Lockerbie – one of our stops on the long drive!

We left Shetland a week ago yesterday and went on the boat to Aberdeen then drove down to Cockermouth, we stopped off a few places on the way to break up the drive including Lockerbie which had some great Sheep statues as you can see above.

We stayed not far at all from the Mitchell’s Marts which is where Woolfest is held, and once we had our stall set up (which took a few hours!) we were really pleased with how it looked. We took some of everything including every colour of Jumper weight and that was a great seller, people loved to see all the colours and choose the shades for their project. If you have ever been in the J&S shop in Lerwick you will know we have big cubbyholes for every colour and this was the impact we were trying to make – i think it worked great!! we also took a lots of things specific to Shetland knitting like Jumper Boards, Glove boards and Knitting Belts which was good as people could have a right look at them.

We were so busy that we we didn’t get many chances to look around or take a lot of pictures but we had a great weekend and the show was organised so well, there were lots of livestock too which was possible because we were in a marts so it worked great!

So thank you to everyone who visited our stand, me (Ella) and Kharis had a great time, I made a video of our trip, I posted it to instagram but it can only be a minute long so I had to cut it down – but here’s the extended version for you – Shetland to Cockermouth and back in 2 and a half minutes!

Happy Knitting!

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Woolfest 2017

Hello everyone, happy Friday! So we are getting organised and packing together what we will be bringing down to Woolfest next week!

We are taking a wide range of our yarns – including every shade of 2ply Jumper Weight and a selection of books, kits and we will also be able to take orders for anything else people would like that we dont have with us – any orders placed at the show we have free postage, So on Tuesday night me (Ella) and Kharis will be heading on the boat and making the drive down!  Woolfest is an award winning event which takes place in a auction mart in Cockermouth in Cumbria, its a big celebration of Wool and the event also includes animals and fleece sales so we are looking forward to seeing that.

Its is open Friday 23rd (10am – 6pm) Saturday 24th (10am – 5pm) and the tickets are £10 each day or £15 for a two day ticket, you can find us on stand J197 and 242. So if you are coming we look forward to seeing you and we will do a blog once we are back all about our trip.

Happy Knitting!