I have very slowly been preparing a ‘proper knitting’ episode for you, so I’m thrilled that Episode 111 is finally ready to share with you. Madeleine has come down to visit Andrew here at the clinic for a couple of days and she will help me with the post production as well as being a pretty face on the camera. We have some great guests in this episode. The feature interview is with Flora Collingwood-Norris, who is a very talented young UK designer and in our Makers segment we visit the local craft brewery on the island of Fanø in Denmark. Here they have designed the perfect Fruity Knitting beer made from Columbus Hops, raspberries, blueberries and blackberries called Knitwit.
Our feature interview is with Flora Collingwood-Norris, a very talented UK designer who’s making knitwear for her own label. We first met Flora at the Edinburgh Yarn Festival and apart from creating stunning designs, she also has a very impressive CV. After studying Design for Textiles at the Heriot Watt University, she worked as a knitwear designer for different fashion houses and also as a part time knitwear lecturer before moving back to the Scottish Borders to start her own company.
Andrew actually drew my attention to her. He was following her Instagram feed and was really impressed with her colours. He said he’d happy wear any of her colour combinations. Andrew was also really impressed with how she has pushed to find a path that combines her need to make a living in the textile world while still maintaining her own ideals and integrity.
One of the ways she has managed to keep her business going especially during this really challenging covid lockdown period is to develop tutorials on design lead mending or visible mending.
Flora has a real depth and breadth of knowledge as a craftsperson. She has a lot of formal study behind her and she has combined her highly trained design skills with her repairing skills to develop the most beautiful and creative ways of mending garments. Flora has a series of online tutorials available so that we as amateur knitters, can learn how to creatively mend and repair as well.
Finding Flora Collingwood-Norris
Patron Discount – Collingwood-Norris
You can see below some of the amazing weaving patterns that Flora uses to repair holes in garments. If you would like to learn how to do fantastic, inspiring mends on your woolens, then you definitely need to check out Flora’s tutorials. Flora is kindly offering Fruity Knitting Patrons a 25% discount off her digital mending workshop. The full details for the discount can be found here.
Patron Discount – StevenBe
Steven has a two-story reclaimed firehouse in Minneapolis which he has turned into a fantastic yarn shop. Steven is very kindly offering Fruity Knitting Patrons a 15% discount off all products from their online store. He stocks a really interesting and diverse selection of designer yarn brands from Freia’s hand painted magic balls, the Fibre co., Hedgehog fibres, Juniper Moon Farm to bigger brands like Rowan and Berroco and also some Australian hand dyers. So there’s a lot to enjoy looking through. Steven is also offering a 50% discount off all StevenBe digital designs. Thank you very much Steven! The full details of the discount can be found here.
While we were on the island of Fanø in Denmark we visited the local craft brewery, Fanø Bryghus and Andrew interviewed the head brewer Steve Rold. I am not normally a beer drinker but I got so excited tasting the different craft beers and learning about the skill that’s involved.
It is so interesting to see the depth of all the things you can work with to make a craft beer e.g. different fruits, hops, grains, even coffee, chocolate and flowers. The complexity of all the combinations is similar to how we create beautiful handknitted garments using yarns that have different regional influences and different techniques.
You can also compare all the trial and error and failing and reworking that goes on in both creative processes. In our Makers segments we love to showcase the skill and creativity of other artisan crafters because it’s always pleasurable to see highly skilled people who are passionate about their work.
If you ever do decide to visit the Fanø Knitting festival, you must visit the local brewery and if you see Steve there, say hello to him. The beers really are amazing. My favorite was the Red Wedding with the coffee and red wine flavouring (pictured above in the middle). Steve also designed a special beer just for the Fanø knitting festival call Knitwit (on the right). It’s made with a mixture of different berries and as Andrew said it’s the perfect Fruity Knitting beer!
Finding Fanø Bryghus
Bring and Brag – Madeleine’s Jumpers
With everything going on including Germany going into another strong lockdown and Andrew’s condition rapidly becoming very critical, it was hard for me to get a jumper’s worth of wool. As you know, I don’t really have a stash. I am accumulating a lot of leftovers, but I don’t have a stash of jumper quantities of yarn, and jumpers are really what I love most to knit. I just needed to do some basic knitting in order not to go crazy, so I ended up hijacking both of Madeleine’s projects pictured above.
Madeleine looks gorgeous in both jumpers and although she didn’t really want me to take over her projects, she loves having two new jumpers in her wardrobe. Now she gets to pick out new projects to knit (at our expense of course). Pictured above is Bressay by Marie Wallin and below is Inviting by Kim Hargreaves.
We were wearing
Madeleine was wearing Bressay by Marie Wallin
- J. S. Bach, The Well Tempered Klavier, Prelude No. 3 in C-sharp major, BWV 848, performed by Kimiko Ishizaka, Creative Commons Attribution 3.0
- Jæ’ Sweevers, Æ Lam, from the album, On-line. Copyright Fanømusik 2001, used with permission.
- Claude Debussy, Arabesque no. 1, L. 66, performer Simone Renzi, Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0