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Friday, 13 January 2017

Handspun Llevant

The end of October saw the arrival of a large (1kg) bag of Botany Lap Waste from World of Wool.  I treat myself to one of these every so often and in October it was on special offer.  When I opened the package I have to admit I was rather disappointed in the colours I received.  There's no choice - you get what you get!  About 60% of this package was made up of various browns.  I don't do brown, it drains all the colour from my face and makes me look as though I'm ready to snuff it any minute.

Not to be beaten, I thought I might be able to alter the colour of the fibres if I blended them with other shades.  I mixed all the browns on my drum carder and then blended the lot with various white and cream fibres I already had.  I managed to tame it to a colour that I thought I might be able to wear, but just to be sure, I then took a third of it and blended again with more whites/creams.  I ended up with 2 shades of brown, one of which was more of a grey/beige.

I spun these separately and finished up with 2 skeins of the paler colour, and 2 skeins of lightish brown, 410g, 1134 yds, all 14 wpi (4 ply, or fingering weight).

I chose a pattern, Isabell Kraemer's Llevant, but chose to knit it in graded stripes, starting with the lighter colour which would be next to my face.

I really like this pattern - fairly simple, but with a nice bit of detail at the neck, and 2 little buttons at the back.

Detail at the front of the neck
Little button band at the back
This is a top-down sweater, and I made quite good progress until I got to about waist level and realised it was just too big (yes, I did swatch before I started, but with handspun there's always a bit of variation in the yarn, and also, the sweater is an A-line and I need to have something a bit more fitted at the waist).  The bust area was OK, so I ripped back to there and then added some waist shaping.  The only other alteration I made was the hems of the sleeves and body which were rolling up more than I liked.  I changed to 5 rows of seed stitch which solved the problem nicely.

I finally finished just before Christmas, on 22nd December, so it's taken me a really long time to photograph and blog about it.  Still, better late than never.  Here's the finished item :-

I don't think this is ever going to be my favourite sweater in the world, mainly because of the colour, but it's warm and I needed a new warm sweater for winter.  Just in time too - apparently we've got snow forecast for tomorrow, first time in 2 years!


  1. I like your stripe design, and it's a great fit too! I'm also not a beige/brown person, it just look wrong with my skin.

    1. Thank you. Actually, I must confess to stealing the stripe design from another pattern!

  2. Really nice! I am not a fan of brown myself--but love the brownish-gray tones of your sweater.

    1. Thanks Monica. I really like the idea of these two colours, but I'm not sure it really suits me.