Course Descriptions

6 Hour Workshops

NEW! Haapsalu Rätik - a Square Scarf from Estonia
Many of the historic scarves that were made in Haapsalu were square. These wonders of knitted lace were popular during the 1920’s to 1940’s and have now seen a rebirth in this mecca of lace knitting. Learn about the architecture of the square scarves, how the patterns are placed in relation to each other, which lace patterns were used traditionally and how a square scarf is constructed. Each student will make a miniature square scarf with all the parts, including the traditional seperately knitted and sewn-on edge. Upon completion of this class, you will have the skills to create your own square shawl in the Haapsalu style.

This course works best over 7 hours or 2 3 hour morning sessions.

Making a true Haapsalu Sall; a traditional shawl from Estonia
The tradition of knitting lace shawls began in Haapsalu, a town on the west coast of Estonia in the early 1800’s. In this class we will study the history and the techniques involved in making shawls as they have been made in Haapsalu for almost 200 years. We will make a miniature rectangular shawl, easily translated to a human size, that incorporates unique stitch patterns and special ways of finishing.

This course works best over 7 hours or 2 3 hour morning sessions.

An Overture to Estonian Lace
Estonia has a lace tradition spanning nearly 200 years. We will learn about their unique stitch patterns, special edging and corner treatments for modern lace, and some very different ways of creating texture in lace. For the intermediate to advanced knitter.

Making an Estonian Lace Sampler
In Estonian lace knitting tradition, patterns were recorded by knitting them into a long sampler or by a collection of small sample pieces. In this class we will study this tradition and make our own sampler of Estonian lace patterns.

Estonian Kolmnurk Rätik – Estonian Triangular Shawl
Estonian lace knitters have several ways of shaping triangular shawls. In this class, we will discuss the variations and study, in depth, one interesting way to create a triangular shape, where decreases rule. We will make a miniature triangular shawl, easily translated to a human size, with unique patterns and special details.

NEW! Three Sided Scarf from Haapsalu
In the 1930’s, the knitters in Haapsalu, Estonia developed a style of triangular scarf that showed to full advantage their beautiful knitted lace patterns. In this class, learn how these special scarves were made: starting with the decorative lace edge at the top, the open-work center pattern (including the Estonian technique of nupps) which decreases to the 'point' of the triangle and how to attach the separate outer edge in the traditional method of sewing it to the center. When you complete our miniature scarf, you will have the skills to make not only this lovely version of a full size triangular scarf, but also the skills necessary to make a true Haapsalu shawl.

Gloves, The Elegance of Warm Hands
In Estonian lace knitting tradition, patterns were recorded by knitting them into a long sampler or by a collection of small sample pieces. In this class we will study this tradition and make our own sampler of Estonian lace patterns.

Muhu Knitting Traditions - Color and Texture from a Small Estonian Island
The knitting from Muhu Island, off the west coast of Estonia, has gone through many changes since knitting was first practiced there several centuries ago. We will study the evolution of knitting on Muhu and learn about the colorful, intricate braided and patterned cuffs of Muhu mittens and gloves, popular in the 19th and early 20th centuries, all while making a sample glove, mitten or mitt using unique techniques.

Baltic Braids and Bobbles
This is a new class created from parts of 'Discovering Estonian Knitting' which has been discontinued. Many interesting embellishments have been created by Estonian knitters to decorate their knitting. In this workshop we will create a small 'pocket' beginning with a braided cast on and advancing on to different ways to make lateral braids, adding in a unique 'button' or bobble-like technique as we go. This class is packed with interesting techniques and traditions! For the intermediate to advanced knitter.

Estonian Cuffs
Estonian Mittens have VERY interesting and unique cuffs! The class will look at several different cuff treatments and learn how to use the techniques to create edges on more than mittens! We will practice some new ways of casting on and working textured stitches. The techniques learned in this exciting class can be applied to mittens, gloves, socks, and even sweaters! For the intermediate knitter.

Traditional Estonian Mittens
Learn about Estonian knitting traditions through their mittens. Students will make a mitten, learning some interesting Estonian techniques: a special cast on, unique cuff treatment and knitted braids. Students should be able to use double point needles and have some experience with 2 color knitting for this class.

Traditional Estonian Socks
Learn about Estonian knitting traditions through their socks. Students will make a sock, learning some interesting Estonian techniques: a special cast on, unique cuff treatment and knitted braids. Students should be able to use double point needles and have some experience with 2 color knitting for this class.

Tvåändsstickning/Twined Knitting
Travel to Sweden in this workshop! We will study the traditional technique of two end, or twined knitting, a special way to make mittens, gloves, socks and other warm and sturdy projects. Learn how to carry the two yarns, how to make interesting textures and how to add in colors - all while making a wonderful pair of mittens! Students would be familiar with using double point needles for this class. There will be a materials fee for special Z plied yarn. For the intermediate to advanced knitter.

Vintage Socks—Old Tricks for New Socks
This workshop will begin with a discussion of the patterns that were written for sock and stocking knitting in the 19th century, drawing extensively from the Weldon’s Practical Needlework journals. We will look at styles that were popular and how they translate into modern times.We will also discuss the patterns, how they were written and how best to translate them into 21st century knitting language.

Students will make a sampler in this class, using techniques adapted from Nancy’s new book, Knitting Vintage Socks (Interweave Press. 2005), including a very interesting heel and toe shaping not commonly used today. Students should have intermediate knitting skills and be familiar with using double point needles.

As The Heel Turns
Focus on those darn heels! This class will cover four different heel shapings and their uses in various sock patterns. Look at the logic behind each, when it is best (or easiest) used, and some tricks involved in achieving successful heels. Then we'll delve into the transition from heel to foot (the gussets) and some toe lore. Students should have made a sock before taking this class.

3 hour Workshops

NEW All About the Scalloped Edge — Finishing a Traditional Haapsalu Shawl or Scarf
In this lecture and demonstration class, learn the details of how to plan and attach, by sewing, the knitted edge on a traditional Haapsalu shawl or scarf. We will cover the necessary math for planning to knit one of these lovely edges and then discuss and demonstrate how to attach an edge to a completed center. Upon completion, the student should have a good working knowledge of how to finish one of the lovely traditional Haapsalu lace shawls.

NEW Nupp Secrets; How to Make and Enjoy Them
There is a fascination surrounding the Estonian lace technique of the nupp (bud or button in Estonian). In this class, you will learn how to make the perfect nupp, how to correct problems with them, how to troubleshoot when making them, and some very unique ways to use them. You will have a whole new appreciation of the nupp upon completion of this class!

Estonian Traveling Stitches
The Estonian's have a unique way of creating texture! In this class, we will take a look at the traveling and textured stitches used in both traditional and modern knitted garments. We will learn how Estonian knitters make their stitches move and how the stitches combine to form enticing patterns. We will discuss the many applications of these techniques.

Knitting Estonian Lace
Estonia has a lace tradition spanning nearly 200 years. Learn about the stitch patterns and some of the history of these lovely garments. In this workshop, students will learn several of the unique ways Estonian knitters use to create texture in lace. For the intermediate to advanced knitter.

Nordic Color—the Roositud Inlay Technique from Estonia
This is a new class created from parts of 'Discovering Estonian Knitting' which has been discontinued. Estonians use a special inlay technique for decorating gloves and socks similar to embroidery but worked right into the knitting. By knitting a sample, students will learn how to read the charts and work this unique and colorful embellishment. This class is for the intermediate knitter.

Estonian Cast Ons
The Estonians have some interesting ways to cast on - each giving a unique effect. Students will learn three different ways to cast on, when to use each technique and what makes each one special. This class is different from Clues for Casting On, in that it focuses on Estonian cast ons only.

Clues for Casting On
There are many ways to cast on - some for special uses, others for certain effects. Students will learn a number of different ways to cast on, when to use each technique and what makes each one special.

Heel to Toe
This 3 hour seminar will focus on heels and toes in sock construction. We will look at several examples of shapes of heels and toes, how they differ and when to use them successfully. Each student will be able to try the techniques offered. We will also cover some lock lore and tips formaking successful socks. Experience with doublepointedneedles is useful for this class.

Longer Workshops

Nancy offers a selection of 3 day classes for longer retreats. They cover Estonian Lace Knitting, Estonian Mitten Traditions and Knitting Socks. Please contact Nancy for more information about these longer courses.

She also offers a series of 2 or 3 day classes with master spinner Judith MacKenzie McCuin. The subjects we offer are:
• Spinning and Knitting Estonian Lace
• Spinning and Knitting Extraordinary Socks and
• Handcoverings; The Art of Spinning and Knitting Mitts and Gloves.

Please contact Nancy or Judith for more information about these courses.