Lava Landscape

Last week, my friend Fu and I returned from an amazing holiday to Iceland. We had a fantastic fortnight despite the cold and rather wet weather. The first week involved an Hélène Magnússon hiking and knitting tour of the Tröllaskagi mountains, north of Akureyri. Under Hélène’s knowledgeable guidance, we walked along beautiful trails, admired numerous Icelandic plants and knitted our way to a pair of lace weight mittens!

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After a stopover in Reykjavík, we headed for the Volcano Trails in the Þórsmörk valley. The scenery was stunning: dark volcanic river beds; basaltic slopes; and ancient lava flows. And the plants: pink and purple alpine flowers; white lichens; and green mosses of every hue.

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Inspired by the colours and shapes that surrounded us, I started thinking about a new design which encompassed: the volcanic sand and rocks; the mosses; the lichens; and the flowering plants.

I first designed the background of black igneous rocks encircling moss mounds, which I machine knit in Spindrift Shetland wool from Jamieson’s of Shetland. Flowers and lichens were added by hand using Swedish linen embroidery thread from Linladan, and French Knot or Seed stitches. Finally, I sewed the bag together with a contrasting pink linen/cotton lining fabric from Scottish Linen in Kirkcaldy, Fife.

A small number of these limited edition bags will be available to purchase on Saturday 28th July 2018 at the Indie Burgh Craft Crawl evening party at Akva in Edinburgh. I’ll also be available to talk about machine knitting and the design process.

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