Armchair Travel Knit Kit 3: The Far Fields Shawl or Poncho
An ode to our grazing fiber friends… and a deep winter, after-the-holidays-are-over knitting treat for you. Our Armchair Travel Knit Kit #3 provides you with a glimpse into the colors, textures and flavors of our Knitting in the Northern Borders tour. It includes a lovely new pattern that will transport you to northern England and southern Scotland and a chance to work with yarn from one of our favorite fiber farms in Northumberland, Whistlebare. PLUS, we’ve included two of Whistlebare proprietor Alice Elsworth’s recipes for scrummy classic British bakes. Even when she has her hands full taking care of fiber animals, running a yarn business, caring for a family and hosting us when we’re in the area, Alice never fails to provide us with coffee, tea and fantastic cakes when we visit. We love them. We love her. Now you can have a taste of her fantastic bakes at home while we await a green light for travel.
Rowan Tree Travel is hosting an online, Zoom-based KAL through February, for a winter boost of camaraderie, laughter and help with the pattern and will include an invite with your e-pattern if you order in time. We look forward to knitting up this lovely garment together!
- 5 skeins of aran weight of Whistlebare’s Yeavering Bell
- Electronic Pattern (pdf - delivered by email)
- An RTT Project Bag
- Alice’s Fantastic British Bakes (recipes)
- Kit Cards
About the Design:
The Far Fields is reminiscent of the vibrant green, sheep-dotted pastures all around us as we travel through the UK visiting fiber artisans, historic villages, castles, cathedrals and coastlines. The garment’s body is a meadow of lace grass. It’s then bounded by cables on both sides, representing fence, hedge and stone wall enclosures. We offer up two different weights of yarn. Work yours up at the size you prefer and in response to your local climate. Once completed, wrap yourself in the stole, shawl or afghan version of The Far Fields. Close your eyes. Picture yourself immersed in the stunning landscapes of the Scottish Borders, England’s Northumberland, Yorkshire and Durham counties, and the ever-enchanting Lake District. Aaaah… feel the stress melt away. What a treat!
The Far Fields can be knit in a variety of weights and sizes, but this kit allows for a midweight shawl or poncho (approx size 30” x 60”), with 5 skeins aran weight Yeavering Bell. (Please note: Though this yarn is called “aran”, it’s a very lightweight version and will not be as heavy or thick as you might think.)
About the yarn:
There’s something very, very special about fiber farms that care for animals and land, gather the resultant wool and produce yarn from their own flocks. They are shepherds in the fullest sense of the word. Located in Northumberland, the northernmost county of England, Whistlebare is a perfect example of this type of enterprise. We are inspired by the attentiveness, integrity and high standards exhibited in every step of their process. The family-run farm keeps pedigreed flocks of Angora goats for a harvest of fine quality mohair. They also keep Wensleydale sheep - a magnificent old British breed that produces long-stapled, lustrous wool. By combining the two, Whistlebare has created a yarn with fantastic hand, drape and color saturation. It’s called Yeavering Bell. If you’ve tried knitting, weaving or crocheting with and/or wearing mohair and have not been very successful (or even very enthusiastic about your experience), you are in for a big surprise. Just 20% wool added to the mohair makes a huge difference in the characteristics of the yarn. Yeavering Bell is truly unique. And in our opinion, a showstopper of a yarn. We are pleased to collaborate with Whistlebare on this kit. To learn more about their farm, flocks and folks, you can visit them online (for now!): click here.
About the designer:
Suzie Briddsang is a guide and tour manager for Rowan Tree Travel. She designed this shawl while picturing herself wrapped in it at home, in front of the fireplace, and also with it draped across her as she tries to sleep during long, international flights. As a designer, Suzie is adamant that wearables incorporate craftsmanship, utility and joy – in their making and then in the wearing. In the words of William Morris, “Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful.” Suzie would say that sentiment is appropriate for our closets as well. Clothes that work hard, suit many situations and are a joy to make and wear – well, that’s where the magic lies. The Far Fields is her second pattern offering in collaboration with Rowan Tree Travel. Suzie is also an avid travel writer and loves visiting fiber animals at every destination. Travel along by visiting her blog (link).
May we suggest…
Enhance The Far Fields with any of our newest shop offerings. We’ve added a few items to our shop for use on or in making this kit!
Get one (or several!) of our Felicita Pins for holding your garment in place. We have a special price on two pins: $24 (regularly $28).
What could be more fun than a row of sheep at the edge of your “meadow”? We’ve got some fun, Most Fuzzy Sheep Buttons available for a limited time.
Rare Sheep Breed Stitch Markers! Because we love sheep. We figure you do too. They can provide more than just fiber. They can help you keep track of your place as you knit your way along The Far Fields.
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