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Re: Lithuanian knitting

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  • Donna
    Hi Karen, thanks. I will write soon. I just came back from the doctor and I might have a kidney stone so needless to say I am not feeling very well right now.
    Message 1 of 4 , Oct 30, 2008
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      Hi Karen, thanks. I will write soon. I just came back from the doctor and I might have a
      kidney stone so needless to say I am not feeling very well right now. I just took some pain
      meds and am waiting to hear about having tests scheduled.

      Donna

      --- In nordicknitters@yahoogroups.com, "Karin" <loweosborn@...> wrote:
      >
      >
      > Hi Donna,
      >
      > Welcome to the group ! Could you write about the online Lithuanian
      > knitting class you are offering and any other traditions related to this
      > ? That would be great !
      >
      > Check out the pictures on her blog !
      > Sheeptoshawl.com <http://www.sheeptoshawl.com/blog/europe.php>
      >
      >
      > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      >
    • Donna
      Hi Everyone, I just wanted to say hi and give you a little info about the knitting in Lithuania. I spent the summer in Vilnius and traveling around the
      Message 2 of 4 , Nov 10, 2008
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        Hi Everyone,

        I just wanted to say hi and give you a little info about the knitting in Lithuania. I spent the
        summer in Vilnius and traveling around the country, mostly to visit museums and
        collections of knitting. It was amazing. The knitting in Lithuania is mostly -- at least
        historically -- small accessories including socks, mittens, gloves, and wrist warmers. The
        rest of the national costume, that is the outfits that most people wore in the 19th century
        and earlier, was made out of woven fabric and laces made with other techniques. There
        was some crochet as well, including really ugly knitted house shoes. :-)

        In winter, knitted items were made from wool, and for summer wear linen was used. The
        linen was used in its natural color and wool was dyed with plant dyes. The knitting
        techniques used here are similar to what you find in Latvia and Estonia, as are some of the
        colorwork designs. But there are also unique colorwork patterns, particularly of floral
        motifs. The Lithuanian empire once stretched all the way to the Black Sea, so you find
        influences ranging from Scandinavian to Turkish in the knitting designs. In addition to
        colorwork, knitted lace was also popular, especially for summer gloves and stockings.

        I found several old Lithuanian knitting books on my trip and they include some really
        interesting techniques for shaping toes and heels and mitten fingertips, many of which I
        have never seen before. There are several groups around Lithuania that specialize in
        reproducing the national costume garments for singing groups (and whoever wants to
        pay!), including the knitted items. The wrist warmers and lace socks are the most popular
        now, because the outfits are often worn in summer for outdoor concerts, and mittens and
        thick wool socks would just be too much on top of the layers and layers of clothes!

        Today's yarn shops are mostly filled with Italian yarns and patterns from Russia and
        Germany. Linen weaving yarn/thread is available in linen shops, but I only found one shop
        that carried linen (blend) yarn that was heavy enough for knitting. There are a couple of
        knitting mills in Lithuania, but they mostly spin merino imported from New Zealand, even
        though there are two breeds of Lithuanian sheep that are rare and have unusual fleece.
        The farmers just throw that wool away. I see a business opportunity!

        That's it for now. I'd love to share more if you have any questions, and I'll also be writing
        some article and a book about this soon, so much more will be forthcoming. I tried to post
        some photos, but I can't get on my network drive where they are stored right now, so I
        will try again later.

        Donna
      • Karin
        Wow, thanks for all the information. I didn t really know anything about their knitting traditions. Will be great to see your book in the future. ... knitting
        Message 3 of 4 , Nov 10, 2008
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          Wow, thanks for all the information. I didn't really know anything
          about their knitting traditions. Will be great to see your book in
          the future.



          --- In nordicknitters@yahoogroups.com, "Donna" <druchunas@...> wrote:
          >
          > Hi Everyone,
          >
          > I just wanted to say hi and give you a little info about the
          knitting in Lithuania. I spent the
          > summer in Vilnius and traveling around the country, mostly to visit
          museums and
          > collections of knitting. It was amazing. The knitting in Lithuania
          is mostly -- at least
          > historically -- small accessories including socks, mittens, gloves,
          and wrist warmers. The
          > rest of the national costume, that is the outfits that most people
          wore in the 19th century
          > and earlier, was made out of woven fabric and laces made with other
          techniques. There
          > was some crochet as well, including really ugly knitted house
          shoes. :-)
          >
          > In winter, knitted items were made from wool, and for summer wear
          linen was used. The
          > linen was used in its natural color and wool was dyed with plant
          dyes. The knitting
          > techniques used here are similar to what you find in Latvia and
          Estonia, as are some of the
          > colorwork designs. But there are also unique colorwork patterns,
          particularly of floral
          > motifs. The Lithuanian empire once stretched all the way to the
          Black Sea, so you find
          > influences ranging from Scandinavian to Turkish in the knitting
          designs. In addition to
          > colorwork, knitted lace was also popular, especially for summer
          gloves and stockings.
          >
          > I found several old Lithuanian knitting books on my trip and they
          include some really
          > interesting techniques for shaping toes and heels and mitten
          fingertips, many of which I
          > have never seen before. There are several groups around Lithuania
          that specialize in
          > reproducing the national costume garments for singing groups (and
          whoever wants to
          > pay!), including the knitted items. The wrist warmers and lace
          socks are the most popular
          > now, because the outfits are often worn in summer for outdoor
          concerts, and mittens and
          > thick wool socks would just be too much on top of the layers and
          layers of clothes!
          >
          > Today's yarn shops are mostly filled with Italian yarns and
          patterns from Russia and
          > Germany. Linen weaving yarn/thread is available in linen shops, but
          I only found one shop
          > that carried linen (blend) yarn that was heavy enough for knitting.
          There are a couple of
          > knitting mills in Lithuania, but they mostly spin merino imported
          from New Zealand, even
          > though there are two breeds of Lithuanian sheep that are rare and
          have unusual fleece.
          > The farmers just throw that wool away. I see a business opportunity!
          >
          > That's it for now. I'd love to share more if you have any
          questions, and I'll also be writing
          > some article and a book about this soon, so much more will be
          forthcoming. I tried to post
          > some photos, but I can't get on my network drive where they are
          stored right now, so I
          > will try again later.
          >
          > Donna
          >
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