Well, zoom is hard work but it was worth getting up at 3.15am to prepare and be able to join the Knit & Natter at my 4am Friday morning. 7pm Thursday for Scotland. It was so interesting and informative.
The Ganseys have followed the fishermen. Elizabeth Lovick ventured (in one of her amazing books) that wherever the Vikings went, there is knitting. These Ganseys, Guernseys or Jerseys followed the herring fishermen and the herring girls and like all crafts, were taken on by surrounding locals and developed into unique but connected variants. Just gorgeous. There is an old and strong tradition in Holland too.
This morning I started following up my notes, scribbled while others talked of their experiences and groups or books etc. I have already pre-purchased ‘The Gansey Knitting Sourcebook’, and nearly ordered a few others! But I do already have some of the best oldies, so have pored over them again. In fact, I’ve quite a few drawings in my various mole skins already, lots, and will cogitate further and come up with a jumper or two at some point. I think one for my honey and a more girly one. Plus a cardigan... hmmm...
It seems that Frangipani wool is the way to go. Apparently it wears amazingly, has brilliant stitch definition and washes beautifully etc. It turns out there is a big take up in the fishing communities of Cordova in Alaska and they favour this wool. Why? Because wool is WARM! And lovely.
As for me, for now I’m really, really, really busy with my really, really, really big project of interpreting the knitwear in a favourite movie for hopefully a book (under my hat), and I shan’t be seen for some time! However, I did pull out my old Vintage Aran and have a play with the pattern in anticipation of the chat. It’s considered a Gansey, though the Aran versions incorporated a lot of the Celtic style cabling and may be a bit chunkier. I’m no expert though so don’t quote me! I made the poncho (and turned it into a bag) years ago and have a cardigan started. The cardigan is being pulled out and I’ll redesign it after the really, really, really busy period goes back to just really busy.