Posted by Emma on April 8, 2014 / Leave a Comment
We bid Gudrun Johnston adieu last night after a delightfully challenging evening of learning Shetland lace. Our classroom was brimming with students and Gudrun kept us all on our toes with her class on “true lace”–that is, garter stitch lace on both sides of a project.
She taught us a nifty cast on/increase method for shawls using yarn overs–this trick adds lace edging to your work right at the beginning of the project. Last night’s class was one of the quietest we’ve witnessed in our four-plus-years of business–true lace requires so much focus that usual class banter was forgone for concentration. Maybe the most charming element of the class was Gudrun’s firsthand knowledge of the Shetland Islands (the geographic origin of Shetland lace)–her historical and cultural anecdotes of the region broadened our perspective of this particular knitting style.
Gudrun (left) teaches HK regular, Mary, a cast on technique
The name Gudrun Johnston is synonymous with traditional yet chic lace patterns, from intricate shawls to must-knit sweaters. Now a resident of western Massachusetts, Gudrun was born in Shetland in the ’70s, and many years later, she took over her mother’s knitwear design company, The Shetland Trader. Gudrun travels the globe teaching classes and workshops, publishes her patterns in several prominent magazines online, including Knitty.com and Twist Collective, and writes The Shetland Trader blog. Happy Knits was so lucky to be able to host Gudrun in her whirlwind West Coast tour, and we look forward to hosting her again in the future! Thanks Gudrun, and we’ll see you next time!