Sunday, July 11, 2010

lisa lloyd, texture maven

A Fine Fleece is quite a book. I want to make the sweater from my fleece from one of the designs in it but I am not sure which one yet. Tons of beautiful aran patterns that are not for the faint of heart with all kinds of cables, stitch patterns and interesting shaped garments. Can you say "saddle sleeve"?

I have to say it is what we fiber obsessed folks call "Yarn Porn". Lovely pictures of his and her models, textured cardigans, pullovers, socks, buttoned vests, scarves and a cap. A simple, homey yet seductive picture of a drop spindle with some perfectly spun lace weight on it.

I am in awe of Lisa Lloyd, the author of this book. Apparently each of the patterns has not only been knit by her in hand spun and commercial yarns, but she also spun all the yarn as well. You can learn quite a lot about the properties of the different sheep fleeces from the book.

Others have written detailed reviews of the book and I won't do that here, but one of the things that made me want to knit my fleece up from this book was the fact that everyone seems to talk about how the patterns are "sized large" and that is a good thing for zaftig gals like me.

Lisa Lloyd is a knitting superwoman, for sure. I think of myself, taking a year to spin to the wool for one of her sweaters and cannot understand how she could spin enough wool for the following:

7 ladies' cardigans

6 unisex pullovers

3 ladies' pullovers

2 ladies' cardigans/jackets

2 ladies' buttoned vests

3 lace scarves

2 textured scarves

3 socks

1 cap

I am going to write her and ask her, I think. A total of 29 garments. If she did nothing else but knit and spin, then maybe this would be a five year project. Maybe like some great artists, she has spinning assistants. Does she use test knitters?  I sure hope so.

The reason that I wonder is that it took me a year to make her Town and Country cardigan and I am still not finished it, as apparent in the above picture of it being blocked. I have to go to buy some buttons and put the thing together. Not sure about doing mattress stitch on seed stitch so I will have to ask a knitting store owner such as the lovely Meko at the Purple Purl in Toronto. I told her I was knitting an aran cardigan and she said to bring it in so I could pick out some buttons. Nothing screams knitter like aran cardigan.


  1. Eighteen months total production time (including all that writing). Not to mention I did much of the custom dyeing and blending myself too. ALL the spinning myself but I did have some amazing test knitters...I would need to go through the book page by page to remember which ones I knit was nearly five years ago now. Unfortunately, it caused me to give up spinning altogether!

  2. Wow, Lisa, that is quite amazing. Thanks for sharing the information with me.

    I am going to do your Rhinebeck sweater with my fleece, I have decided. Hope to get it knitted up for the Festival in October!

    1. Cathy, I would like to knit the Amanda on page 80 of "A Fine. ." and am having trouble finding someone to spin the 50% alpaca and 50% Blue-Faced Leicester- any suggestions?