Saturday, 29 January 2011

Felting Workshops

We've set the dates for Felting Workshops with Lois Paul:

17th February

15th March

13th April

To book:

See what we did last time here

Places are booking up fast so get your name down...


Friday, 28 January 2011

Old Shell

One of our lovely customers came in last week to show us the hap she's just finished. The hap is in natural colours, and features the Old Shell motif (one of my favourite Shetland Lace motifs). It's in Jamieson & Smith 2 ply jumper weight, which makes it lovely and thick, and it knits extra quick (ooh, that rhymes) in comparison to the 2ply lace weight.


Tuesday, 25 January 2011

Up Helly Aa

It's Lerwick Up Helly Aa today. Love it, or think it's pure madness, it's just not possible to ignore the excitement in the town today!

It started when we couldn't get to work behind the Jarl Squad pulling the galley around the town this morning (or get to the bar last night when all the guizers finished having their photos taken).

The galley this morning.

It's impossible not to get the jitters. It's only about 8 hours until the street lights go out, the blast sounds, the sky turns red and the air is thick with the smell of burning. Then no more galley, poor thing.

Oliver's taken the whole week off to get ready (he's in a squad), and then probably recover! If you're not here, join the party with the webcam after 4pm tonight.

Fiery 2ply Jumper Weight. From top left: 9097, FC38, 1403, 122, 9103. 91, 23, 125, 93, 42, 1A, 77.


Thursday, 20 January 2011


The first Chunky Yoke Cardigan came in to visit us today. 
It made us think of sweeties and Raspberry Ripple ice-cream! Mmmm! 
Kate Davies called our yarns tasty last week. We're starting to see what she means!

Shades: Main  = Haar, Contrast  = Fuschia, Kirn Mylk


Monday, 17 January 2011

Frankie Morello


This really made me smile. Let's all stop casting off, and just leave the wires in! Good plan?

On a more serious note, the exaggerated chunkiness and depth of colour in this scarf by Frankie Morello is the perfect example of how simple hand-knits can really hold their own. This piece demands attention, without shouting. 

(I'm thinking... heavy but drapey oversize jumper achieved through multiple (three, maybe four) strands of Shetland Supreme Jumper Weight in Shetland Black.)

Hmmm, nice.

Frankie Morello A/W 2011. Source: Dazed Digital 

Friday, 14 January 2011

The Middle

Yesterday Oliver and Derek made the first move into the aptly named 'Middle store', which is tucked between our Wool Store, where the raw wool is dropped off by our suppliers, and the yarn store, where we sell yarn and post out woolly parcels. They'll now start the mammoth task of individually hand sorting all of the coloured Shetland wool. They will go through every single fleece (all 7,000 of them or thereabouts) and separate the finer grades (for example the wool that comes from the sheep's neck) used in hand-knit yarns, knitwear and blankets from the coarser wool (for example from the back legs) which we put in our 100% Shetland Wool carpets so that nothing is wasted, and our suppliers get the very most for their wool.

The contents of our middle store is really quite precious. Of the 250,000kilos of Shetland Wool that we deal with each year (which represents over 80% of Shetland's total wool clip), only about 10,000kilos of this is coloured wool. We give our suppliers a premium for their coloured wool to encourage the breeding of coloured sheep. I was talking with one of our suppliers just the other day and he was delighted that he'd managed to get a coloured ram, and is looking forward to coloured lambs this spring. So, first hand evidence that this work is paying off! Fingers crossed for a very colourful wool season in 2011...

1 The wall
2 The middle store
3 The inroad
4 The man (6' 4" Oliver)

Thursday, 13 January 2011


Angela Irvine popped into Jamieson & Smith HQ today to discuss a very exciting project that will be revealed shortly.

Seeing her reminded me of two things: what an incredibly talented designer she is, and that the Shetland Museum and Archives recently launched their online shop where you can buy, among other things:

pieces by Angela...

and the scarves from the Shetland Fine Lace Project (see my post here) in their beautiful bespoke boxes. The scarves come with a 10 minute DVD and a beautiful little book giving a historical and cultural background to Shetland Fine Lace and Shetland Wool, as well as information on the inspiration of the knitters who made the scarves.

1 Shetland Snood by Angela Irvine 2 Shetland Fine Lace Scarf by Hazel Laurenson

Monday, 10 January 2011


Chunkeanie by Woolly Wormhead. A brand new design in the new Shetland Chunky. Yay!

Get your pattern from Woolly Wormhead, and choose one of the 7 shades of Shetland Chunky to knit it with. Gorgeous. 


Friday, 7 January 2011

Friday feeling


Hey lovely woolly people. Have a good weekend. 
1 Fair Isle Tea Cosy kit in Shetland 2ply Jumper Weight yarn. 
2 The scene of a recent photo shoot - just because. 

Thursday, 6 January 2011

Free pattern at The

Wahey, a free pattern! This cosy cardigan is knitted in the Shetland Chunky that I keep banging on about. The yarn is worsted spun from beautiful Jamieson & Smith combed tops and is really truly gorgeous!

The cardigan is a lovely weight to see out the rest of the winter, and to throw on through the spring and summer as a light jacket. Perfect. It was designed by Sandra Manson, who doubles as knitting whizz and store/mailroom miracle worker at the Jamieson & Smith store in the North Road in Lerwick. Oliver thinks she might be an angel, and I think he might be right. 

Anyhoo, bit of a tangent.  Get the pattern here at (brilliant website) and the yarn here at

Oh, and enjoy (it's impossible not to with this one).


Monday, 3 January 2011

progress in two zero one one

1. Shetland Sheep, Trondra
2. Fine place for a bath, Trondra
Taken on the morning of the 1st. 

Let's make sure it's a good year for the Shetland Sheep. Even better than the last.