Highland Hand Spun

Almost every summer my daughter and I attend local Scottish Highland Games. I’m not sure how I first found out about the events, but once I quickly learned the  Pacific Northwest had a pretty big Scottish community.

49Each year at the games we watch the dancing, pipes and athletic events. However, one of my favorite things to see are all the booths of clans, and Scottish shops. Six or seven years ago there was a booth of spinners! They were so enjoyable to watch as they sat in their clan tartans with spinning wheels whizzing.

I don’t intend to start spinning anytime soon, but hand spun yarn is beautiful and artistic. The ladies at the spinning booth sold their extra yarn were selling off, so I “helped” them to get rid of it.

It took me a while to figure out what I wanted to make with the beautiful stash I bought. Mostly because I didn’t know how to tell the weight of the yarn and I wanted it to be a special project. Well, I was able to make three beautiful items!

I found the Shalom Cardigan on Ravelry and it turned out beautifully. The only problem I ran into was the size being too small. The yarn gauge was very thin, so I stranded two skeins together. I think it would have been bigger if I had used larger needles and one more strand. It was too small for the person I originally made it for, but it was still pretty.

IMG_3283The next pattern that caught my eye was the Mary Maxim All That Glitters Shawl. It was very easy and looked like something I could keep on my shoulders. The pattern called for mohair so I thought the size of the hand spun yarn’s gauge would fit just fine. The link I found doesn’t show the pattern any more. But, LaLa’s Simple Shawl would have been my second choice and would have worked just fine.

My last project was a slouchy hat for my daughter. I used the same Easy Going hat pattern that I mentioned in my Cozy Hat, Cozy Mountain post. I added my own twist just to make it a little different by adding yarn overs and knit two togethers. Simple idea that made it look fancy.

IMG_3281Even though I ended up with some great items all these projects taught me that it takes an expert eye when dealing with hand spun yarn to get the most out of it.





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