Episode 109 - Modular Knitting - Vivian Høxbro

Episode 109 – Modular Knitting – Vivian Høxbro

Episode 109 is heavily focused on Denmark again because we still have lots to show you from our recent September trip to the island of Fanø. Our feature interview is with the Danish designer, teacher and author Vivian Høxbro. Vivian has published lots of books on various knitting techniques, but she is probably best known for her work on domino or modular knitting. We also take you on a little tour around an historical Sea captain’s home from the late 17th century. The house is now a museum and we were very lucky to get our own private tour to share with you.

Andrew has done very little knitting due to his health issues but I have been slowly working on my Paisley jacket and I show you up close exactly how I reinforced all the steeks with my sewing machine. Madeleine has started a new Kim Hargreaves project, so she will also join us to say hi and show you her work.

Vivian Høxbro

Vivian Høxbro is a well-known knitwear designer and teacher both in Scandinavia and in North America. One technique that Vivian particularly loves and has explored extensively is Domino knitting. In this interview we cover Vivian’s 30 year career in the industry and her extensive contribution to Domino knitting (also known as modular knitting).

More recently Vivian published a book on the traditional Danish night shirts which were hand knitted in very fine yarns. These beautiful sweaters have somehow previously been overlooked in historical Scandinavian handknitting. Through Vivian’s research, her efforts to reconstruct these historic garments and provide modern knitters with over 200 charts of traditional Danish motives, knitters all around the world now know about them and can enjoy this historical knitting style.

When I started researching Vivian, I saw that she had material for at least two full feature interviews and luckily, she agreed to do two interviews with us. So in a follow up interview, we can look forward to also learning about the traditional Danish Nightshirts.

Finding Vivian Høxbro

Patron Discount – Vivian Høxbro

Vivian is offering Fruity Knitting Patrons a 25% discount on all her patterns in her online Ravelry store.  The details of the discount can be found here. Enjoy looking through her designs and thank you very much to Vivian!

Fanø Skipperhuset

One of the most enjoyable things we did in Fanø was to walk around the island and look at the amazing houses. The many old houses on Fanø are characterized by two things: firstly, the rough nature by the North Sea, and secondly, the wealth the island accumulated during the maritime era from the mid-18th century to the end of the 19th century.

The houses are generally aligned from East to West, and in the past, the stables were located in the western end of the house to take the worst of the sea winds. They were also made out of leftovers of timber frames from ships which can be used to date the houses.

These dogs are a little tradition that we loved. Two dogs are placed in the window near the entrance to the house. When the sailor of the house is at home, the dogs face inwards. When he’s out at sea, they face outwards, awaiting his return. I think that’s pretty much what our dog Jack does.

Else Marie is a volunteer at the Fanø Museum in Nordby and she gives us a wonderful insight into the hard lifestyle of woman on Fanø in the 18th and 19th century.

I found the sleeping arrangements particularly fascinating. People sat up to sleep. Since many people had bad lungs, this made sleeping and coughing much easier. We have a lot to be grateful for today!

The kitchen was the hub of the house, providing all the warmth. Every household had their own set of sausage makers made from cow horns.

Dried salted fish is a Scandinavian stable to get through the long hard winters.

We hope you enjoy our tour around a 17th century Sea captain’s house with Else-Marie.

Tutorial – Paisley Kofta – Sewing the Steeks

All of my steeks on the Paisley Kofta by Sidsel Høivik have been reinforced on the sewing machine and cut open. I show you how I did this up close and in detail. If it is the first time that you are using a sewing machine to reinforce your steeks, practice first on your original knitted swatch to gain confidence.

Find our interview with Sidsel Høivik in Episode 30.

Inviting – Kim Hargreaves

Madeleine wanted a quick and easy project that would compliment her wardrobe so she picked out a Kim Hargreaves design. Inviting from Covet Capsule Collection No.7 had nearly all the design details that she wanted and we are only doing some simple modifications to make it perfect for her.

We were wearing

Andrew is wearing a modified Firebirds by Jade Starmore.

Andrea is wearing a modified Henry VIII by Alice Starmore

Madeleine is wearing Celyn by Michele Wang

Music Credits