an open letter to Shetland Islands Council

Dear Shetland Islands Council, I write to express my dismay at the decision of the council not to renew the Promote Shetland contract, thereby discontinuing the important work of this organisation, and removing three people from their jobs. The minutes of your decision — effectively arrived at during the brief adjournment in which councillors were… Read More

Houlland

Today’s hap is a rather special one. It is the work of Shetland designer, Donna Smith, who you may know as the patron of Shetland Wool Week, 2015, and the creator of the famous Baa-ble hat. Donna’s hap was inspired by her great auntie Emma Isbister, a wonderful knitter, who has been making Shetland haps… Read More

The Buachaille song by Felicity Ford

At the end of last September, I travelled to Shetland for Wool Week. I’d spent several previous months exploring a new-to-me world of yarn development, and the result – Buachaille – was about to be launched with the Seven Skeins Club. At home, so many boxes of yarn had arrived that the bathroom floor had… Read More

Shetland days

It is Wool Week in Shetland, and I began it in this cottage out at Vementry. What a spot! It was lovely to take some time out to visit my friend Hazel Tindall. I just love the part of Shetland where Hazel lives, and it was a real privilege to potter about her garden, and… Read More

A conversation with Gudrun Johnston

Gudrun I recently had a chat with one of my favourite designers, Gudrun Johnston, and thought I’d bring this to you today. I just love Gudrun’s work. She has this knack of producing designs that are are always classic, timeless and wearable, often using stitch patterns (particularly those originating from Shetland) in really innovative and… Read More

Chris’ croft

The Spring edition of 60 North is out! And its a great issue. Those of you who have my Colours of Shetland book may recall mention of my archeologist friend, Chris Dyer, whose knowledge and inspiration helped me to develop my ideas for my Scatness designs. Well, Chris recently started to raise his own Shetland… Read More

Shetland Wool Week in Pictures: part 3

where we stayed (I would heartily recommend it). And the view from our window. Shetland Times Bookshop, ready for Wool Week. Delicious Fair Isle Cake, at the Heritage Yarn launch Wonderful new yarn from Shetland Organics Projection of Jo Jack’s work at the Bonhoga Gallery Luminous Yarns Jane Outram’s prize-winning tablet weaving at the Shetland… Read More

Shetland Wool Week in pictures, part 2

Mel at Aithsetter Mel and Hazel McKenzie, our Wool-Week landlady. Sandra and Ella at J&S (if you are wondering about their cardigans, there’s a free pattern here) Eric Stewart, showing us around the impressive textile facilitation unit at Shetland College Knitters from six nations enjoying a trip to Unst (yoohoo ladies! It was lovely to… Read More

The Sixareen Kep

Hello from Shetland, everybody! Wool Week is in full swing, and it has got off to a great start. I thought you’d like to see the pattern we produced yesterday at the Shetland Museum — named and photographed by the workshop participants, and modeled here by the lovely Tania — the Sixareen Kep. In the… Read More

36 hours in wool world

I appear to have spent the past thirty-six hours in the place Tom refers to as Wool World. This is not actually a world full of wool (just imagine!) but is rather a particularly intense state of being, characterised by a vacant stare, furious knitting, and the inability to talk about anything but knitting. Conversations… Read More