The last thing you may expect a Florida gal to do is order wool from Iceland to knit a sweater! But that is just what I did a couple of weeks ago. I have now fallen in love with this wonderful Lopi wool.
While living here in the jungle heat, I dream of being in a normal climate where seasons change and people wear sweaters, hats and mittens. My cold weather wardrobe is being knit with the hope that one day I will live in New Hampshire again.
I’ve come to love beautiful wool and appreciate knowing where my yarn comes from. Unlike many knitters, I never get to sit in front of a winter fireplace, happily knitting something I know I will need to stay warm. My knitting is mostly done in air-conditioned rooms with ceiling fans running. Fall doesn’t mean anything really to Floridians. Days do get cooler, but compared to the heat of summer, that means little really. Winter means some cold, damp mornings – we even get ice in the birdbaths occasionally – but snow never falls and temps usually warm up by mid-day.
It’s a boring place unless we get out on the water.
Instagram For Knitters
I became interested in the Lopi yarns after seeing photos posted by knitters on Instagram. If you knit, you should set up an Instagram account (this link goes to my Insta account) and follow other people who knit. I’ve discovered new knitting patterns and sales on yarn (and patterns) from the site as well. I don’t do much on Instagram myself, except share a photo now and then, but I love to see what designers and yarn sellers have to offer.
Buying My Lettlopi Yarn
Someone shared a photo, on Instagram, of a new sweater design using Lettlopi wool, and it was beautiful. I looked into the yarn further and ended up ordering from the Icelandic Store. I’d chosen a sweater pattern by Jennifer Steingass which used this yarn. The pattern, called Treelight, ended up being a pain in the neck to get started because of gauge. I gave up on it and found one in my new book, which I had ordered along with the yarn. The book, Lopi 40, is full of beautiful patterns and I have begun knitting “Farfuglar” meaning “Migrating birds”. (I finished this sweater in November and love it.)
A lot of Lopi yarn colors are out of stock, but I wanted light blue and white which were both available. I bought ten skeins of Air Blue and five skeins of white. I had to pay shipping, but the yarn itself was so cheap, compared to US stores, that I believe I got a good deal. The shipping process took over a week, but I was in no hurry.
Another wool yarn that gets good reviews is Plotulopi. It is described as “unspun plates of Icelandic wool”. It is equal to a worsted weight and comes in lengths of 328 yards. At the Icelandic store each plate is about $5.. .which is a deal compared to ordering from US stores!
So my yarn plates have arrived, along with more Lettlopi, even though color selection in the Lettlopi was slim. The Icelandic Store is on the ball, and this shipment arrived very fast.
I have begun knitting a pair of mittens using the Wine Red Plotulopi. This yarn is unspun and that means it will pull apart very easily. I wondered how it would work while knitting colorwork! I did okay, except when I had to tug on an end that was hanging, and the red yarn came apart! I used a crochet hook to catch the short end piece and wove it in. It means being careful when knitting with this yarn.
So this yarn is a little weird, but it’s cheap, and I love the colors! They make up for all the missing Lettlopi shades that are out of stock.
Alafosslopi is The Bulky Yarn
By looking through the book, I discovered the heavier weight Alafosslopi yarn. It is a bulky yarn and is used to knit some wonderful sweaters that would be very warm. I have a pattern chosen to use this new bulky yarn, but many of those colors are also out of stock at this time. Since I had limited colors to choose from, I settled for Ecru Heather and ordered a box full of yarn.
This time the yarn was delivered much quicker, but I had to pay more for shipping. There was no choice and this may have to do with the size of the shipment, but I got the order very fast. AND… they kindly included a chocolate candy bar with my order! I have begun knitting the Carbeth Cardigan using this pretty yarn.
Buying Lopi Yarn Online
Some places have the yarn to order in the US but the cost is about $5 more each skein! I’ll need about 13 skeins for the sweater I want to make. Webs yarn offers big discounts for bulk orders but at the present time, colors are scarce. For this reason I ordered directly from Iceland. The skeins are cheaper, much cheaper, but there is shipping to pay. Still, for me, it was worth it.
The Icelandic Store has very quick shipping. I also have ordered from the Nordic Store but haven’t had the best luck. They had a big sale going on and I placed an order only to find out a few days later that many of the yarn colors I ordered were out of stock. I was a little ticked off that nothing that showed as available was really available. So my preference is to order from the Icelandic Store.
I hope that more yarn is being created and we’ll have more color selections soon. Until then, I have plenty of nice yarn to play with.