Monday, 30 March 2015

FO: Var

My obsession with all thing Icelandic continues.  While I won't be stocking deliciously fragrant Hakarl any time soon, I am loving lopapeysa sweaters.  Casual, functional, warm colorwork pullovers and cardigans were my go-to this winter.  Now that it is springtime, I still wanted to wear one, so I decided to fight my fear of zippers once again and make a jacket that is still warm and weatherproof without being too swampy-pits on.

The great thing about Icelandic sweater patterns is they all follow a very basic formula for men and women alike- a tube for the body, two tubes for the sleeves, then you join the whole mess when it hits the yoke and decrease down to the neck.  They are perfectly unisex, and while you can add waste shaping for a more flattering fit, I opted not to.  I found a yoke pattern that I loved but it didn't match my gauge (Var), so I mashed it up with another sweater that did (Frost) and added a steek in the front so I could install a zipper.  Both patterns are found in the Istex Lopi 29 book, which is full of patterns that you can just adapt and run with your own creation.

I wanted a longer sweater, a bit oversized, so I know this isn't the most flattering length on someone with curves.  I wanted function over fashion this time around though, and having something that reaches you hip makes for a really warm jumper.  I also added a hood.  It just felt right to be able to have a built-in hat on something that I would wear in such changeable spring weather.  Plus, I've never made anything with a hood before and was long overdue.

I am also getting so much better at installing zippers.  This one I got right on only the second try!  It's practically bulge-free, and the whole process went so smoothly that I have conquered my fear and I'm zipper-ready for anything.

The pattern for the hood also said that you should roll the edge of the hood under and seem it in place, but it does that naturally without any help from me, so I left the edge unfinished.  If you were really inspired, you could do an i-cord edging on it, or extend the button band up and around it, but I think it was fine as it is.

I used up almost all of the Rowan British Sheep Breeds that I had in my stash.  The colors:
White= BFL
Black-Brown= Black Welsh
Brown-Grey= Jacob
I also used small amounts of Grey Suffolk and Moorit Shetland, as I was just down to scraps with those and still wanted to put them to use.  

It's just fascinating to feel the different wool characteristics in this way.  The BFL is by far the softest and silkiest and I want to buy all of it in the world and live in a house made of it.  

I am quite pleased with it.  It's just suck a simple design and only took a few weeks to whip up with no real intense effort needed.  I'm quite sad to see it done, as this is the very last of the instant gratification projects for a while.  On to sock-yarn pullovers!


  1. As I can't say're AMAZING! Looks SO cozy and comfy...perfect!

    1. Thank you Miss Jewel! Although, someone else in the house has decided that it fits him as well. It's getting some use!

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