Wednesday, March 4, 2009

I Learned A Lot , But Not How to Pronounce the Danish Word Skra-Troje

But before we get to that I wanted to thank ItSheKnits, Grape, and socalknitgirl for their VERY generous birthday presents. They are remarkable, talented, and passionate women who showered me in so many birthday presents I had to bust out the second empty bag just to get it all home. Thank you all it was one of the best birthdays ever.


This year at Stitches ItSheKnits and I took only one class, granted it was a 12 hours class, but it was a great class. The class was the Danish Skra-Troje, yes that's right the Skra-Troje. Oh you don't know what a Skra-Troje is don't worry I didn't either. Basically it is a stranded color worked sweater that has a special gusset where the under side of your arm would rest if you held your arm down at your side. The class covers several techniques such as working with two different colors of yarn which are also two different weights of yarn. Making a half-gusset, a seam stitch pattern, working in the round and flat stranded knitting, two-end knitted braid, sew in sleeves, neck slit facing, and crochet ending. We tried our hands at some of the techniques while making a mini-version of the sweater.

The class was taught by the lovely and patient Beth Brown-Reinsel from Putney, VT. IF you ever have a chance to take a class from her I highly suggest it. Her handouts are wonderful and she has a great grasp on the historical context of what you are attempting to learn. She also did a huge amount of research on the original garment that was made and why she thought the original crafter made the decisions she did.

I had never done any color knitting and I really wanted to learn the technique for a while now. I have taught myself many different techniques before but I really wanted to learn from a highly qualified person and Beth was just that person. I have tried stranded knitting but could never really grasp it, I knew I wasn't doing it right, and it was really really ugly.

I would like to say that I did learn a lot and I think that I didn't do a half bad job considering it was my first project with two color knitting. Now before I show you a picture of my mini-sweater in progress (no I didn't finish it) I know that it is not perfect somewhere I got off in my chart reading. For this I blame the elderly ladies behind me who was counting and talking themselves through all the techniques out loud, very loudly right behind me (ask ItShe). But I'm proud of my little sweater in progress none the less.

Here is a picture of the back of the sweater:

Here is the picture of the gusset (which is the side view, the back of the sweater is on the left):

And the picture I'm most proud of is the inside of the sweater:

I know it seem ridiculous to be proud of the inside but trust me anyone that knows anything about knitting always flips it inside out, they might not do it in front of you but when you turn away they look. You can learn a lot about a knitter by the "private" side of a garment.

I really want to finish this sweater and hopefully I can get back to it before the information gets pushed out of my head. But now that I have all these techniques I can knit many more things, like this which I want to make, this which I have always had my eye on, and this which just come out in the latest issue of Twist Collective which I want to make into a rug for the side of my bed.

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