Anniken Allis will be teaching at The Knit Tea Retreat!
We are absolutely thrilled to announce that Anniken will be joining us to teach workshops on Shetland Lace, Fair Isle, and Steeking at our retreat!
Anniken is a super-popular designer with a truly impressive design output, both in magazines and on-line. We got in touch with her by email, and asked her some questions…
What’s your name and where do you come from / are you now?
Anniken Allis – I grew up in Norway and moved to the UK when I was 20 years old to work as a horseriding instructor for a year. I met a local guy and stayed.
Could you give us a brief outline of how you started knitting, and your yarny career to date?
I learnt to knit at a young age growing up in Norway. My Mum was a keen knitter and my grandmothers both did other handicrafts so crafts were always a big part of our life. Knitting was very popular as I was growing up and it was always something I did. When I moved to the UK I gradually gave up knitting for a few years but then got back into it about 12 years ago.
I quickly started dabbling in design and my first pattern was published in magazine in 2007. Around the same time I started teaching knitting workshops at a local yarn shop. Since then I’ve been published in most of the British knitting and crochet magazines as well as the Debbie Bliss Magazine, Vogue Knitting, Interweave Knits, Interweave Crochet as well as several other US magazines.
I’ve written one book – Beaded Lace Knitting – and my second book is due to be released in spring 2018. I’ve also designed for several yarn companies.
I also teach knitting workshops around the UK. My favourite knitting techniques are lace knitting and fair isle knitting. As a teenager and young adult, I knitted several traditional fair isle ski sweaters. About 10-11 years ago, I tried my hand at lace knitting and fell in love and lace knitting is the focus of my design work now but I do sprinkle in the odd fair isle pattern for a bit of variety.
(image copyright Knitting Magazine, Let’s Knit Magazine)
Which design are you most proud of and why?
That’s a hard question. Probably Midnight Stole because when I designed it I was still fairly new to designing lace patterns and it was my most complicated pattern to date. It was a challenge to design it and even more special because I knitted the first sample in my own hand-dyed cobweb lace yarn. Unfortunately the original shawl got damaged.
(image copyright Anniken Allis)
I’m also very proud of two shawls I designed for the cover of the Debbie Bliss Magazine and Vogue Knitting.
(image copyright Soho Publishing and Debbie Bliss)
What is your favourite drink to accompany your knitting?
Diet Coke/Pepsi or Diet Dr Pepper. In the winter I love the odd hot chocolate.
What will you be teaching at The Knit Tea Retreat?
Shetland Lace Knitting (1/2 day): Shetland is known for delicate lace shawls knitted in very fine yarn. In this workshop, we’ll look briefly at the history of Shetland lace shawls and you’ll practice working Shetland lace stitches, reading lace charts, and construction methods of traditional Shetland lace shawls. This class is suitable for confident knitters. Experience in lace knitting is not essential as there will be a choice of lace patterns to suit various experience levels. All materials will be supplied.
FairIsle (1/2 day): Stranded colour work includes both traditional fair isle and traditional Scandinavian colour work. You will learn how to work with two colours at a time, how to hold two colours, how to strand the yarn, how to knit in the round using the magic loop technique and how to read a fair isle/stranded colour work chart.
Steeking (1/2 day): So that a garment can be knitted in the round, the traditional method of steeking is commonly used in Norwegian and fair isle patterns to cut the holes needed for armholes or down the front of cardigans. This workshop will include how to reinforce a steek before cutting, the ‘steek sandwich’, how to cut and how to pick up for edgings. We’ll also cover topics such as why steeks are used, how they are used in various designs, and the benefits of being able to knit items in the round without worrying about armholes or knitting fronts of cardigans separately. This workshop will require you to knit a fair isle swatch in the round (pattern will be provided) in advance of the workshop. Suitable for intermediate knitters.
We hope you are all as excited as we are to meet Anniken, and to learn some techniques from such a talented designer! We will be adding Diet Coke to our refreshments list! Anniken has a fantastic website, www.yarnaddict.co.uk where you can buy lovely yarns, kits and shawl pins, and sign up to her newsletter too. Here is a link to her designer page on Ravelry, and you can find her on Instagram as yarnaddictanni.