I’ve spent the last week or so back in Iceland. For the first few days I joined one of my friend Ragga’s knitting tours.We visited some of the best fibre related places and I taught them about sweater fitting – they were such a lovely, small group that it hardly felt like work at all. I’m so happy I could join them for the whole trip too, I’d visited some of the places that we went to before, but not all of them.
We started with breakfast at Kex hostel before heading out of Reykjavík.
Our first stop was the Alafossoutlet store, which is in a former mill building. The knitters did an excellent job of stocking up on Lopi, while I was drawn to the old knitting machines and other machinery dotted around the shop.
One of my favourite yarn dyers is based in Iceland, Gudrun Bjarnadottir is a botanist who became interest in natural dyeing while studying etnobotany. We visited her studio where she showed us some of the plants she uses to create her beautiful colours. I’m feeling inspired to go home and make something with the stash of her yarn that I’ve already collected.
Not far from Gudrun’s studio is Ullarselið á Hvanneyri where local spinners, dyers, knitters and other artisans sell their wares. If you’re not as allergic to angora as I am the handspun yarns that blend just the tog fibres (the finer undercoat of the Icelandic sheep) with angora. Too soft and beautiful to resist but a-choo!
Our final stop on this first day was the goat farm, dedicated to preserving the primitive Icelandic goats. They also have a small number of sheep and we timed our visit perfectly, a lamb was born right as we arrived. Within a few minutes it was making its first steps and trying to escape the pen.
Baby goats are the sweetest creatures, they love attention and will happily fall asleep in your arms.
We ended the day driving out on the Snaefelsness peninsula, which was a beautiful drive even in the rain.
Congratulations to our Glenmore KAL prize winners! If you're still working on your Glenmore this blog series will stay up, so you can refer back to the tutorial for any section as you knit at your own pace. For inspiration and motivation check out all the lovely Glenmore projects here.