Posted on | April 7, 2013 | 9 Comments
A few weeks ago, I headed up to Knitty City for a book signing with Védís Jónsdóttir, an Icelandic knitwear designer. I’ve been seeing Icelandic type yoked sweaters popping up on a few of the runways lately and I wanted to learn a little more about traditional Lopi sweaters. One thing that surprised me was the yoke patterned sweater isn’t quite as old as I thought it was, it’s only been around since the 1950s or 60s.
I brought along a printed copy of Afmæli, an Icelandic sweater pattern by Védís that I fell in love with and wanted to pick up some yarn for. I hadn’t knit for about a month (so very unlike me!), so to be excited about knitting again was, well, exciting. I left that night with about 1/2 the yarn I needed and had to wait patiently for the rest to be ordered. Part of me almost wished I hadn’t chosen the most colorful version of the pattern.
Once the yarn arrived, I cast-on right away. Then I realized my Lopi nemesis was just around the corner, Spring. I was determined to be able to wear my sweater at least once or twice before the weather turned sunny and warm.
When I decide I’m going to finish something by a certain day, I make it happen! I managed to finish my sweater in 9 days, just in time for a bit of a cold snap. I was thankful for the warm, insulating sweater as I walked down the windy streets of NYC. I have the feeling it will make frequent appearances next Winter.
According to some knitters, Lopi has a reputation as being a bit scratchy and harsh, but it didn’t really bother me much while knitting or when wearing the sweater. I’ve also found that after washing, it does soften up a bit. I probably won’t be wearing it without a long sleeve under layer, but it’s the sort of sweater that is meant to be layered anyway. I’ve seen other knitters substitute other yarns for the Lopi, but I’m a stickler for tradition. To me, it just isn’t an Icelandic sweater without the Lopi.
I love my sweater so much, that I’m already planning what my next Lopi sweater project will be. It’s so cozy, comfortable, and the fit is fantastic. I’m officially obsessed.