Later this week I’ll be releasing Nash Island …. I wanted to call it Nash Island Lice, because it features the tiny repetitive motif frequently called “lice” in Scandinavian countries. Think of the Lusekofte of Norway. When I nonchalantly refer to my sweater I’ve started to notice a kind of recoil in some folks…the word lice just makes them start itching.
Nash Island is an old school knitting project, much like the first sweater knitting I did when I moved to Maine. Knit FLAT. I know. Really. But hear me out. I was teaching at The Black Sheep Needle Arts Retreat last year along with a bunch of other teachers and the subject of flat vs. circular came up, with lots of pros and cons in each camp. Melissa Leapman was surprisingly vehement on the subject and quite convincing with her unwavering arguments in favor of knitting EVERYTHING flat.
So I thought – fine – let’s give it a go. The colorwork is all on the right side of the work, so you don’t have to purl in pattern. The shaping is what I call “Maine Wool Sweater” which is a modified drop shoulder and boxy, so you throw it on like a sweatshirt. I added the lace up placket, which reminds me of an old Candid pattern I never actually knit, but always wanted to, the Portuguese Fisherman’s Sweater.
So…you know by now I’m impulsive, and I often design things when I’m just about to leave for the event I want to wear it to, and it’s the same for this sweater. I was on my way to Nash Island for the annual sheep round up and shearing…I didn’t get it done in time, but I knit some of it there, as captured by Gale Zucker if you go through her instagram feed.. I’ll say it was really convenient knitting on pieces, instead of lugging around an entire unruly sweater. I also like not having to steek the placket.
Like Melissa said, sensible, and in my opinion, liberating in a way.
Check back this week, or on Ravelry for Nash Island’s debut.
I’ll tell you more about the yarn then. Hint: made by my friend Jani with the wool of Nash Island sheep you see above.
PS I’m teaching at the same retreat this year, April 1-3 if you’re in the neighborhood.
PPS I talk about my very first sweater today on Fringe Association!