- Level of Instruction
- See each class description.
Join us for this fantastic weekend of knitting fun! This track includes four classes taught by three wonderful instructors. See class descriptions below.
Introduction to Sámi Knitting with Laura Ricketts
The Sámi, the indigenous people of Scandinavia recognized by the United Nations, have a culture rich with fiber traditions. In this class, you will be introduced to traditional Sámi knitting, which was almost exclusively used to produce hand garments. You will view many images of mittens from Laura’s trips to northern Scandinavia and learn about the four characteristics that set Sámi mittens apart: cuffs, thumbs, decreases, and braids (with and without tassels). You will create a sample swatch by practicing each of these elements and leave with the knowledge to translate the skills to a full-sized pair of mittens. There is a $3 materials fee, payable to the instructor. Level of instruction: Students should be able to cast on, knit, purl, knit in the round and do colorwork.
Norwegian Hat with Maree Hampton
Knit a hat with multi-colored Norwegian pattern and pom pom! The presentation will focus on color work and tips specific to knitting Norwegian hats. Level of instruction: Students should be able to knit, purl, decrease, and have some experience with knitting in the round with double-pointed needles.
Singlade Balls—A Simple Sewn Looping Project with Kate Martinson
Looping is one of the earliest of fiber techniques. Making a singlade ball actually uses the simplest of stitches, the blanket stitch. This stitch has been used as a structural technique (instead of simple decoration) since before the needle was even invented! In Scandinavia and the Baltic region, one application of this sewn looping has been the construction of decorative balls to be used as toys. Using thrums and leftovers, lively balls are constructed for play or decorative enjoyment. We will make our own singlade balls during the workshop and start you out on a new yarn adventure, just in time for the holidays and cozy winter needlework projects. Level of instruction: All levels.
Faroese Footlets with Laura Ricketts
Skóleistar are the woolen soft shoe liners from the Faroe Islands, traditionally worn inside wooden clogs or rain shoes, but they also double as a cozy house slipper. In this class, you will explore some of the knitting traditions of the Faroe Islands and choose among a handful of traditional designs to make your own pair of skóleistar. Level of instruction: Intermediate to advanced.
Registration for this class has closed.
About the Instructors
Kate Martinson is Professor Emerita of Art at Luther College in Decorah, Iowa. She received her B.A. from St. Lawrence University, followed by a M.F.A. at University of Alabama. She began her teaching career at Luther in 1977 and taught classes in weaving, bookmaking, and art education. Kate is an enthusiastic supporter of Vesterheim. She has served on the Vesterheim Board of Trustees and has been a Board officer. She has taught spinning and other textile-related classes throughout the United States and in Norway at Rauland Academy. Kate is known for introducing nålbinding to many American fiber artists.
Maree Hampton has been knitting for over 20 years, ever since her Norwegian cousin, Åshild, taught her in Norway. (Maree was working on a fruit farm in Hardanger one summer during college.) She has learned a lot from other knitters, knitting classes, various knitting books, magazines, and online tutorials. She is obsessed with Norwegian knitting—hats, mittens, sweaters, and accessories—and she enjoys wearing her Norwegian woolen items all winter long!
Laura Ricketts is a knit and crochet instructor from Indiana, specializing in the knitwear of the Sámi peoples. After participating in a Nordic knitting conference, she began researching the contributions that the Sámi have made to the knitting community. She has toured the Sámi lands, visited museums and groups, and studied and written about many beautiful examples of Sámi knitting. As a former history teacher, Laura enjoys opening this world to others and has spoken or taught classes at Finnfest, Ingebretsen’s, North House Folk School, the National Nordic Museum’s Nordic Knitting Conference, American Swedish Institute, and numerous knit shops.
Learn more: Watch this video, Collections Connection: Sámi Mittens, where Laura and Vesterheim Chief Curator Laurann Gilbertson highlight Sámi mittens from Vesterheim’s collection, inspiring creativity and enhancing understanding of Sámi contributions to the knitting world.