Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Interview with Gudrun Johnston + A Shetland Trader Giveaway!

Meet Gudrun Johnston.....

 Gudrun is the author of "The Shetland Trader," a self-published book of ten knitting designs, many featuring lace. I met Gudrun through the world wide web. I got an e-mail from her a couple of years ago when I was sharing photos of a litter of Lily Pons' kittens. She and her family were moving back to western Massachusetts, not far from where I live. They wanted to adopt one of the kittens on the occasion of her daughter's 9th birthday. I love being able to place our kittens with knitters. On the appointed day, Gudrun, her two beautiful children Maya and Sage, and her novelist husband David Anthony Durham, arrived to pick up Persy. Julia wasn't home but she knew one of the kitties was leaving that day to go to live with a family whose Mom was a knitwear designer. She was okay with this. I watched Persy grow into a full-grown beautiful cat on Gudrun's blog. How nice to see one of our kittens all grown up as an adult. 

I check in on Gudrun's blog every once in a while. I marvel that she is able to homeschool her children and be a prolific knitwear designer, much less self-publish her first book. Gudrun and her family are packing up to move to Scotland where she grew up. And Persy is going with them. Who would have thought that one of Lily Pons' kittens would be moving to Scotland. Lucky Cat! Lily Pons would be proud of him.

I thought it would be fun to interview this up and coming talented knitwear designer here on my blog before she moves across the pond to her home country. By the way, all of the photos were shot on Shetland by Jared Flood. They are extremely gorgeous - lovely light and colors. Gudrun and I are also hosting a Giveaway of "The Shetland Trader." At the end of the interview, I'll tell you how to enter. Enjoy!



KN: I love the introduction you wrote.            
From the Foreword ... The Shetland Trader, Book One
            “I was born in a wee cottage beside the beach in Levenwick, Shetland in 1974. As was the case with generations of Shetland infants before me, I was wrapped in a traditional hap shawl moments after inhaling my first breath. Wool and lace, family and home, peat fires and a silly red setter....”

It goes on beautifully from there - lovely descriptions of your family’s story. I know your husband is the novelist David Anthony Durham. It seems his love of words has rubbed off on you. Do you find that there is any connection between writing and knitting?
GJ: David and I often find ourselves comparing our respective crafts. Both knitting and writing require a creative mind, one that is inspired by the daily goings on in life and one that needs to be flexible to the changes that will take place during the design process. He admits to stealing from the things he sees on a daily basis and using them in his writing. He has his ear out for inspiration; I have my eye out.
    I also think there are similarities when it comes to the nuts and bolts. We both have to deal with getting on with our work when resistance strikes, and we both have to keep an open mind about the success/failure of any of our pieces. 

KN: This book is a lovely collection of lace designs - from small (some fabulous hats and leg warmers) to a gorgeous skirt and some sweaters. Do you work exclusively in lace?
GJ: I don’t work exclusively in lace. I would say that the majority of my designs so far have made use of it. I have particularly enjoyed exploring the lace designs that come from Shetland and seeing how they can work in a more contemporary context.

KN: What do you find so appealing about knitting lace?
GJ: Sometimes it’s just the challenge of working the lace itself, keeping track of all those symbols in a chart and making sure they all line up as they are supposed to. Seeing the shapes appearing, especially after blocking, is also very satisfying. I’m not all that attracted to knitting very complex lace designs on a large scale but I’m certainly very impressed with those who do. I’m definitely more intrigued by seeing how lace can be used in non-traditional ways.

KN: Did you knit as a child? Tell me about the first thing you knit?
GJ: I didn’t knit as a very young child. I think I first learned around the age of 10 or so. The memory I have of my first piece of knitting is a rather nasty pale green vest, which thankfully I didn’t keep! I do however own some beautiful Fair Isle sweaters that my mother designed and which my siblings and I wore over 30 years ago. Those sweaters were passed on to me by my mother and worn by my own children. I’m very glad to have those and not the vest!

KN: I have met your beautiful family. I’m wondering if either your son or daughter are interested in taking up knitting?
GJ: Maya and Sage both know how to knit. I taught Maya a few years ago and she takes sporadic (but intense) interest. Sage learned when we spent some time in Shetland a few years ago. The kids went to school there for about 12 weeks and had their very own knitting teacher. I believe Sage completed a little knitted worm during that time which he still treasures!

KN: The colors in the photos are so blooming gorgeous. Do you think growing up on the island of Shetland has influenced the colors that you use in your work?
GJ: I do think the colors in a Scottish landscape have influenced my personal palette. I find I’m usually drawn to more natural or muted shades. Getting the right colour for a design is almost as important to me as the design itself. Often I’ll see a particular shade of yarn and know it needs to come home with me and make it’s way into my designing!

KN: The index of the book has a beautiful photo of sheep amongst the fields of the island. Are the sheep an important part of the commerce of Shetland? Do farmers (I think you may call them crofters) still earn part of their income from sheep farming or is a world that has disappeared?
GJ: Although there are still many more sheep than people in Shetland they don’t really provide much of an income for crofters anymore. Crofter’s are heavily subsidized by the government and owning a croft is really more about keeping a way of life going.

KN: There are many photos of heather blooming in the book. Do the sheep eat the heather? Are there any traditional uses for the heather?
GJ: Yes, the sheep do eat the heather! As they are out on the hillsides all winter long it’s their main winter fodder.  I’m not aware of any other uses for heather in Shetland though. I’m told by my father, who is a naturalist, that heather in Shetland is living at it’s climatic extreme!!

KN: I know that you and your family are moving back to Scotland. Do you foresee that the culture and knitting landscape will change your work?
GJ: I actually don’t think it will change my work. I’m already so heavily influenced by it that being back in Scotland is… well, it’s going home.

KN: You write that your mother had a knitwear business called The Shetland Trader back when you were a child. Now that you have revived that business, do you have any future plans that you would like to let us in on? More books? More patterns?
GJ: Hopefully, I’ll always be adding more patterns to my design portfolio. They won’t always exclusively have a Scottish/Shetland connection, but that will continue to play a big part I’m sure. I’m giving serious thought to another collection, but I’m not certain yet what form it will take. I know I want to add more books to the Shetland Trader series but I’m also interested in doing something on a larger scale.

KN: I have been on many photo shoots over the years and I know they are grueling but fun and creative. Can you let us in on a funny story of the behind the scenes on your trip to Shetland?
GJ: I have to say that nothing about that day was grueling for me! I had so much help and things went very smoothly. Jared did get us up very early so he could shoot in the morning light; we had plenty of sheep poo to avoid; there was a little weather to contend with later in the day; we nearly lost a light deflector over a cliff; and models were at chilly at times! However the day ended with a delicious meal of Cullen Skink made by my dad and David, whiskeys all around and a slide show of some of the images captured. It’s a day I will always have very fond memories of. I hope all my photo shoots go that well!


KN: Well, that does sound like a fabulous end to a busy day. I think my favorite project in the book is the scarf design called “Shoormal.” I like the chunkiness of the yarn mixed with the lace stitch. Do you have a favorite design from the book?
GJ: I was very pleased with the results of all of the designs but I’m definitely partial to the cover design, Laar. It was one of those designs that really held true to the initial sketch I had for it. I love the lace-weight yarn worked on larger needles. It produces such a beautiful fabric that almost feels like a second skin. I like too how the delicate details of this design, the lace, picots and scoop neck, are subtle in their beauty. It’s a garment that looks equally good with jeans as it would over a summer dress. As someone who doesn’t dress up much this versatility appeals to me! However, the sample doesn’t fit me so I need to re-knit it sometime.

Thanks so much to Gudrun for taking the time out of her extremely busy life to answer my questions. You can buy The Shetland Trader directly from Gudrun via her website where you can see all of the beautiful designs. Gudrun also has many single patterns which are available for PDF download.

To enter to win Gudrun's printed book, answer the following question in the Comments section. And please, as always, leave an easy way to get a hold of you.
Q? What is your favorite knitting technique? Lace? Cables? Colorwork? Stockinette? And why do you enjoy knitting it?

Contest closes Friday at midnight. I will post the winner's name and contact them by Monday morning.
Contest is closed! The winner is Connie who wrote: I usually love whatever I'm knitting at the time. Most of the time a new project involves something I haven't done before, but lace has been a favorite from the beginning! Congratulations Connie. 

113 comments:

andrea said...

My favorite type of knitting is Lace. I love the vesatility of being able to knit it with different weights of yarn for surprisingly different looks. I marvel at them each and everytime I complete the same shawl, scarf, etc. in different weights. It lets me enjoy using favorite, fun patterns again and again. I love the scarf that you have pictured knit in bulky. Perfect example of why I love lace.
Andrea W.

Kris said...

my favorite technique is colorwork - simply because I love color so much.

Helen said...

I like cables but I've never really tried lace so this would be the perfect opportunity.

Susan said...

I find that the more I knit, the more I love all things in garter stitch. It requires its own kind of creativity, but it's especially good for little stuff.

larsonrh said...

Love plain 'ol stockinette- I can just knit and knit and not think too hard! But I sure do love the look of lace. Have to try to do more.

Thanks! Rhonda

Taloferia said...

I have been falling in love with lace lately. But honestly it would be impossible for me to pick a favourite knitting technique. Part of the reason I fell in love with knitting is its endless variety!

Issy said...

Lace. I love the way the patterns grow into a beautiful finished article.

Margo said...

I am having a difficult time picking a favorite. Love the look of stockinette and garter st. Recently made my first lace project and find I like that too.

Abbie said...

My favorite technique (at the moment!) is lace. Aside from being beautiful and surprising, I appreciate the fact that I can usually get a project out of just one or two skeins of yarn.

mkg said...

I love colorwork because I love the challenge of it. It keeps me knitting to see what's going to happen next.

Martha O said...

I like cables and love knitting lace but I currently have a crush on plain old vanilla garter stitch. It is so versatile and full of surprises. It never fails to make me smile during the process and upon seeing the finished product.

I don't know how to list an easy way to let me know if I win, perhaps Kristin will post because I regularly read her blog.

Jen B said...

I like everything, but I seem to come back to cables more often than anything else.

Bonney said...

I enjoy knitting just about anything and I love learning something new. I'm so happy to discover yet another talented designer with some very neat designs. Knitting is relaxing to me and after all the relaxing there's a finished object!

The D said...

Lace, though I am new to it! I recently finished a simple lace infinity scarf, and I love it! I'm starting a new lacy project, we'll see how it goes.

My email is whyeatcrayons03 *at* yahoo *dot* com

Claudine said...

For the past five years I have been obsessed with lace. It has taught me how to be an attentive, stronger knitter. For whatever reason, since Christmas I have been completely taken with color work though and leaped off into designing. The blending of color has helped me to look more closely, not only at my knitting, but the world. I see more beauty in it everywhere as I look for color inspiration.

International Knitter of Mystery said...

Oh, I love cables with a passion! I love to watch them form and rise out of the background, and I can always keep going to the next crossing.

Susan said...

At this time in my knitting I love working with double knitting. The warmth of the mittens and hats is incredible.
susanknits@earthlink.net

Beth said...

Right now I am in a garter stitch state of mind. I need something soothing and rhythmic to balance my crazy work days. Knit knit knit does the trick.
Thanks for an interesting interview.

Fibercrafter said...

My current love is cables -- just can't get enough texture.

Sally

Julia (mb at diegesis dot net) said...

The technique I come back to over and over is definitely lace, because it is so varied and because I love creating a large area of visual texture (like a stole or blanket). That said, I also find three-dimensional forms really interesting and I love the techniques that produce them (short rows, structures of increasing and decreasing, joining edges together, and so forth).

Suzanne said...

I love lace. It's just so interesting to watch it bloom when it is blocked. Cables are a close second, they are just fun to do.

Jennifer King said...

Lace is my favorite, but I also love color work and cable :-) Stockinette just doesn't hold my interest I'm afraid. Thanks for the chance to win, I'd love this book!

Craig & Juliana said...

I love to see just how flexible I can make my fingers be, throwing a cable needle into the mix with DPNS! So I've definitely done cables the most, but lace and stranded color work--with one color in each hand, are likewise calling me to new challenges.

Jo Morgan said...

Oh, I can't choose. Sometimes I love simple, straightforward knitting; I love lace and color work, and cables are intriguing to me. Jo Morgan

Jmorgan762@comcast.net

Priscilla said...

I love knitting lace. I think I have been addicted to lace since I used to sit next to my grandmother while she crocheted doilies and pillow case edgings. When I was 5 she taught me to crochet with a size 1 crochet hook and white baby yarn. Knitting came later.

denise said...

I love so many knitting techniques it just depends on my mood. I love color and often find myself buying yarn just for the color and then have fun creating from there. Thanks for all your inspiration! Denise
Dpluta2001@yahoo.com

Charlotte said...

I have recently become very enamored of mostly simple sweaters (lots of straight stockinette and mindless knitting from the bottom up) with an elaborate yoke -- maybe lace, maybe cables, maybe colorwork. I find that since I've had kids, I just don't have enough "me" time to be able to complete a really challenging, difficult project, but I still love learning something new amidst all the more zen like straightforward knitting!

Also, I have recently discovered Gudrun's patterns and I'm in love! It was so nice to see her here!

Nora said...

I'm currently addicted to cables. I avoided them for so long as I was too intimidated. Now I'm making up for lost time!

ny email address: nmconnor1@msn.com

Lori said...

I like knitting...sometimes that means cables, other times lace - a personal favorite is cables with some lace detail. I love the way stockinette stitch looks, but I get bored knitting it. I love the look of Gudrun's book. Would love to win it! :)

Skye said...

I love cables - they are the coolest. I also love this book and will probably buy it if i don't win

dawn said...

i love to work in lace, i enjoy how it makes me concentrate, and the results are beautiful

Jani said...

I haven't met a type of knitting yet that I don't love, but cables, to me are the most fun - and so impressive!

Kate said...

I like lots of different types, but there's something about plain garter stitch that just soothes and calms me when I need it.

Anne from MN said...

I have to say that my favorite technique at the end of the day is good old stockinette stich in worsted weight wool - however I love a somewhat tricky, well written new pattern to follow, one I maybe don't quite understand at first - for me it's like going on a journey... seeing the piece evolve. I'll try anything once though! Anne Paulson(annegp on ravelry)

shelley said...

My first memory of a handknit sweater is an Aran one for my dad from my mum. My sister and I took turns wearing it over the years. I love cabling. Just a little manipulation of stitches and you can have the most intricate intertwining. And for some reason my cable knitting has always been spot on, not the case when I was learning colourwork.

caroline said...

My favorite is colorwork in stockinette. Only touches of cables or lace. I get fidgety if there are too much of the latter. These days I'm lazy and let beautiful hand-dyed or variegated yarns do the work for me.

Sally said...

My favorite jumps all over the place, depending on what I've not done enough of recently. Currently: garter stitch anything. It's just so soothing, and I'm just not a fancy girl, generally. Having said that, I would love to knit Laar. So beautiful. Looking forward to more of this celebration with you, Kristin!
(master[dot}sally[at]gmail[dot]com)

Siew said...

Lace, lace, lace. I love the challenge of knitting it, twisting my brain into the pattern and then finally getting it and getting into the rhythm. The only problem? I don't really wear it. As a result, many friends have many great gifts of lace.

Lynn said...

I am a fairly beginner knitter...I have just fallen in love with faire isle knitting through your book Color, Kristin. Why do I love it? Maybe because it turned out to be easier to do than I thought it would be and I love learning new things. Thank you for taking me there.

Destiknit said...

My favorite is certainly lace? Lace is gorgeous, ethereal, feminine... what's not to love about lace! I especially love to see lace in unexpected places (i.e. not just shawls). Great interview!

april said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
tjf said...

I can't say that I really have a favorite knitting technique. I've always loved cables - they look so neat. Over the last year, I've learned fair isle colorwork and it is very fun. I enjoy stokinette and garter stitch, too. I am just now trying more lace and I really like the way it looks.

Tricia
thefankells@mesanetworks.net

teresa said...

My favorite technique is lace - because I love the way the patterns grow into a beautiful project.

Vermont Designs said...

Love to try everything. Only technique I have met (in 66 yrs of knitting) that I am not enamoured with is Intarsia!

Dendiane said...

I really like cables but have been doing a few lace projects lately and loving it! I think I like knitting lace so much because of the challenge it can present and seeing it come to shape after every row accomplished.

Ullhärvan said...

My favorite is lace and colorwork, because of the challenge and that it looks so nice when finished.

JackieLemon said...

Lace is my current favorite knitting technique. But I certainly don't limit myself to just one thing when there is such a variety in knitting. I also love cables and colorwork and garter stitch blankets.
pjlemon@roadrunner.com

mary lewis said...

I love cables! i love the way the twist before your eyes! it seems like magic when they start to appear.

Lemmesb said...

LACE has been my cup of tea lately, but I can't seem to start one of the many projects I have chosen. I do love the airy look of the lace garments. I have a stash of lace weight calling for me but It is on the back burners because I am knitting for many baby showers and for Grace Babies, babies from the poorest parts of India. I am doing a collection on Ravelry.com

thanks for such a great giveaway!
I also know the model!

Jackie said...

My favorite type of knitting changes all the time. I enjoy learning new techniques and then again I enjoy going back to the basics (garter & stockinette) at times. I haven't tried much in lace, but after looking at Gudrun's examples, may have to be my next learning experience.

cdeck21@sbcglobal.net said...

I love knitting in the round, sox, sox, sox. Especially the varigated colors. Every pair is different.

Carol

Beth said...

Well, I'm still at that early stage in my exploration of knitting techniques, but one of the favorite things I've knitted was a linen shawl in feather 'n fan. I'm eager learn more about color and this is the year for socks! Thanks for such a wonderful giveaway.

Elaine said...

Slip stitch color change tends to be my favorite. I can use multiple colors but only one color for 2 rows and end up with Fair Isle looks. Lace is coming in second with shawlettes at the top of that list!!
Thank you.
Elaine
eblim01@yahoo.com

Anonymous said...

Colorwork knitting is my very favorite. I can just take yarn my knitting needles and just let my imagination go wild. I can just start with a number of stitches no pattern and just create my own works of art
vst@virginia.edu

mjknits said...

I really enjoy simple lace repeats. I can watch TV, talk and not get caught up in a chart. But the end result is just so pretty and feminine...

Jodi said...

I have just started knitting again after many years of doing other things so I have not tried lace yet, but after reading this interview I am eager to get started. Right now my favorite thing is knitting cables, I love the design it makes and it is not complicated for a new old knitter.

Diane said...

I like all of the techniques at different times. Right now colorwork is what I'm knitting but also have a lace project going and a simple stockinette piece.

Anonymous said...

I usually love whatever I'm knitting at the time. Most of the time a new project involves something I haven't done before, but lace has been a favorite from the beginning!

Connie
tcrpm@sonic.net

Karen said...

I turn to cables mostly because I love the way it creates dimension. I'll be stitching along in stockinette and come to a cable section and think wow, texture, is so pretty. They just make me smile.

Laura said...

My favorite knitting techniques are lace and cables. I love the challenge they present, and I am always amazed by the design the appears by following the directions!

Mary said...

I don't have a favorite. I just like to knit and try new techniques.

Natalie Servant said...

I'm addicted to lace, mainly for the way it looks. Of course I'm not 100% faithful & will try anything that I like the look of.

Gina Power said...

I love cables - they seem to break up what could become monotonous knitting, especially on the second sock :)
Gina

cynthia said...

I guess right now my favorite is cables. Just because that's what I'm knitting now. tomorrow it will be lace!
Cynthia.landers@ocps.net

bookagent said...

I would have to say lace is my favorite technique. I find it challenging and fun to knit and I always love the finished product!
Pam H

Susanne said...

I have a hard time choosing a favourite as I love the challenge of a complex lace design and absolutely love cables. I am embarking on a major colourwork piece now too. The book sounds fab and I hope I win.
scheusieATshawDOTca

Martha said...

I love fair isle knitting. It's stimple stranding with amazing color results.

Denise said...

I'm a new knitter with one scarf to my credit. I have just learned to do cables for a pullover made with denim yarn. Cables make me look like an accomplished knitter!

flgirl1987 AT yahoo DOT com

Karey said...

I have just learned how knit lace so it is currently my favorite. Thanks for the giveaway.

karclockATgmailDOTcom

Julie said...

Oh how I would love to win this book. I love lace knitting and the sweet cardigan on the cover would be right at the top of my to-do list.
Thanks!

Marissa said...

Hi, My name is Marissa, and I am a knitting junkie (sigh). My latest, well, obsession is lace. It speaks to my inner control freak to have all those lovely yarn overs line up to create a pattern! Gudrun is one of my favorite knit designers, and I'm so happy to hear that she and her family will have the experience of returning to her hometown (but only if we can continue to have access to her designs from this side of the pond!). I wish her much success and good fortune, and an easy move.

Leslie said...

My favorite knitting technique is making a short row heel. It always amazes me that something so simple can make a heel that fits so well. Plus I love wearing handmade socks, so elarning the short row heel has made my life so much easier!
bagatelle@comcast.net

Anonymous said...

I love lace work. I encorpate it in nearly all my socks as well as anything else I knit.

p2jwhatley@cybermesa.com

Spudknit said...

My favorite thing lately has been colorwork. I love the pattern developing under my fingers. I'm still working on my tension and I am learning how to read my work so I can memorize the patterns faster but I am having a blast!

Bonnie said...

I love cables. Big cables, small cables, simple or complicated.

kew said...

I think my favorite technique is cables (cabling? making cables?). I love the geometric "rightness" of a cable pattern, the way it seems logical. A close second is lace. When I knit lace, I always am amazed at myself - it's like a surprise that I can actually do this and it looks good.

Anonymous said...

My current favorite is stranded colorwork, because a few years ago I finally got the knack of working with a strand in each hand, and I love the dance and balance of it (not to mention the beauty of the colors, of course). But my original and still much-loved style is cabling for the beauty of an intricate texture. In any case, an intricate design is the most fun for me!
-- Gretchen

gfgreene at msn dot com

technikat said...

I enjoy knitting lace the most. I like the concentration required when knitting complex lace. I particularly enjoy the "wow" moment when the lace is blocked and its beauty shines. I like that lace can be worked in fine yarns and in heavier weights. I also enjoy non-knitters' disbelief that the lace object was actual hand-knitted by me!

Katie said...

I love knitting lace. It looks beautiful on the needles but seeing it transform after blocking is magical.

Lisa said...

Lace socks were my addiction of choice but colorwork is my very new favorite right now. My husband gifted me with your two colorwork books at Christmas and I 've recently ordered your Julia yarn and started learning. Your books are lovely and most inspiring. (Christmas evening curled up on the couch with your two books topped off a truly beautiful Holiday Season.) vivianos3@aol.com

Anonymous said...

I love cables. It seems almost magical to me. Thanks for a wonderful interview and such a nice giveaway. karenlambert@cox.net

Carol said...

I love colorwork. I think it is great that there are so many beautiful hand dyed yarns available and I have worked with KN's Julia several times and love the rich colors that are available.

laurie said...

If you are going to make me pick I guess I'd have to pick the easy one-stockinette, then lace, cables and colorwork.

Dianne@sheepdreams said...

I'm very much into texture, so cables would be right up there on my list of favorites. I also love plain old garter stitch (Elizabeth Zimmermann loved it, so that's good enough for me!)

lisa said...

i love knitting socks! I have recently learned to cable and I'm loving how it makes my socks looks.

lrpostlethwait@embarqmail.com

Susan said...

My favorite thing to knit is something that I understand and that feels good in my hands. Right now it is anything in sock weight but a few months ago it was worsted.

Anonymous said...

I love cables. I admire colorwork, but don't have a gift for it. It also tends to pull a bit more than I'd like. I haven't given up on it, but it doesn't come easily for me.

knittergirl@hadeler.net

Deb said...

I'm not sure that I could pick a favorite, I love the texture of cables, colorwork seems to move fast for me because it's so excitng to see what comes off the needles next, I love how a blob of yarn can turn into something so beautiful when it's blocked out into lace, and sometimes I just want to zone out on the smoothness of stockinette. Just depends on my mood I guess!


dlmca@stny.rr.com

fracksmom said...

i like to add design with the yarn, i love both cables and lace and enjoy patterns that have both. I feel a sweater with that little something extra makes it stand out. I have just started doing lace shawls with lace wt yarn and it is very different from what I have been doing for the last 50 yrs.

Fracksmom on Ravelry

debra said...

I love lace. I always have a lace project going waiting for when I can sit and pay attention. Then there is also 1 or 2 pairs of socks and a sweater on the needles.......
Can't wait to pickup this book.

brooksdebraj@gmail.com

Kathleen C. said...

I think... cables first and lace a close second. I don't know if I can say why though.
I love the three dimensionality of cables... the way they criss and cross and meander about. The lineal solidity of them.
Conversely I love lace because of its lack of solidity. I love the way the yarn opens and lets the air sigh through it. It needn't even be pictorial lace... I love a stockinette on large needle type lace just because of it's insubstantiality.
coneryka at jmu dot edu

Debbie said...

I think it's a tie between Fair Isle and lace. I love both. Thanks for the giveaway. Debbie in alaska gussek on ravelry

Cathy said...

Lace, because it is challenging and I can actually wear it! I live in Southeast Florida.

Dianna said...

I like to manipulate stitches most - cables, lace - one color of yarn and a million ways to make it pretty! My second favorite would be color-work - fair isle not intarsia.

much2knit@hotmail.com

Laura said...

Hi--

I enjoy knitting immensely...since I am deaf.. when I knit.. I have a 100% knitting focus-I do not listen to radios or TV or to anyone's chatterings because I am unable to hear. Knitting provides solitude that I need from my busy job at the hospital.. and the rhythm of knitting leaves me very satisfied. The non-knitters do not know what they are missing!

laurabal25@gmail.com

mommalou said...

My favorite is the garter stitch. It is so relaxing. While my sister, Sally, continually challenges me to learn more,there is nothing more relaxing than to sit and knit.
Jane26.yates@gmail.com

Janelle said...

My favorite stitch patterns are mostly knit and purl - but not plain stockinette or ribbing. Something a little fancier. I also enjoy throwing in a cable every now and then!

John & Judy said...

I am just planning on starting to learn to knit. In crochet lace is my favorite and I think it will be in knitting too.

Judy M.

crazyspinner said...
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crazyspinner said...

Patti T. knit1bit@yahoo.com I love lace knitting.There are so many beautiful yarns available to use. I enjoy using different weights of yarn also. My husband recently spun, dyed, and knit a lace shawel with beads. It is a beautiful fushia. I wear it proudly. I would love to win!

Nanny Jean said...

I always liked lace but when I got the Victorian lace book that did it. I can't get enought of it now.I have Three patterns on the needles now and started to work with beads.
NannyJean

Karen said...

I would have a hard time picking my favorite. I love lace, it can take on so many different looks depending on the weight of the yarn. Colorwork is great, who doesn't love a bright, cheery sweater? Stockinette gives you a great base to play with, but my favorite would have to be cables. I'm all about the texture.

Kathy said...

I love lace. It always looks more complicated than it actually is.

FW said...

I love knitting plain vanilla socks. Something about stockinette in the round is really soothing and meditative to me.

woollings on Ravelry

deidre said...

Right now I would say lace,but my favorite changes depending on life or stress. Sometimes garter or stockinette is the only thing that will sooth. Thanks for the chance.

MicheleinMaine said...

I like lace. It makes me feel like I'm working my mind muscles yet it is also very rhythmic and methodical and soothing.

Claudia Horner said...

Good morning -- I am learning that I love knitting lace the best. It was a surprise to me, because at first the charts looked so frightfully complicated. Then there is the mystery of knitting all those stitches and watching a lovely pattern emerge, because I can't look at a chart and really envision the end result. Lastly, there is just enough challenge to keep my mind occupied as I knit, which is always a wonderful creative release from all the other thoughts of the day, like how can we pay all our bills this month, and what to make for supper, and is there really a skunk digging up the grass??? So I am really grateful for creative visionaries like Gudrun, who make lace-knitting a joy for the rest of us! If you pick me, you can reach me at claudiahorner@yahoo.com. Thanks!

Anonymous said...

~ Its very difficult to choose one favorite technique since I tend to mix many together often. Those I'm most drawn to are colorwork with cables & bobbles, garter stitch for toy animals, that I add embroidery to. I've begun more lace in the past three years and would welcome learning more about it with Gudrun's book. ~ What an exciting move to Scotland ~ happy travels to all, especially Persy. How about a little story of the adventure through Persy's view ?
Thank you,
Shell ~
YarnSoup@yahoo.com

Robin C said...

I have to say that cables are my favorite since I just learned how to do them about 2 months ago. I have never gotten the courage to try lace yet so it would be exciting to win this book.

as for why do I enjoy knitting? it calms my soul, I can do it anywhere and the feel of the fibers in my hands just sing to me.

E said...

Right now, it's replacing plain vanilla stockinette with a textured stitch (but ask me tomorrow, and I may answer any of the above with a different reason!)

eclecticreader said...

It's hard to choose, but I think lace is my favorite. It's usually portable, no matter what you're making, it's beautiful, lightweight as well as warm which is no mean feat, and the patterns are like magic to me - created by simple yarnovers and decreases, but incredibly complex.

Linda said...

I most enjoy lace but lately I've made two hats in twisted stitch that was enjoyable.

Melissa said...

Whatever I'm making at the moment is my favorite. (Unless it's intarsia.)I do lace, colorwork, cables and other texture, and also plain old vanilla garter stitch or stockinette. Whatever it is, I enjoy the process.