Lilla Ull Huset

Hello!

Sit down and enjoy the moment, the wooden sign at the top says in German. It was placed behind a stone bench along a hiking trail in Das Bergische Land, an area about 45 km east of Köln/Cologne. We’ve just spent a week there, and I have so much to show and tell, especially for the knitters among you. I hope you have some time to sit down and enjoy this moment at your computer, or in a lazy chair with your tablet or mobile.

The people we rented our apartment from had the most amazing garden. It was private…

… but we were allowed to spend as much time in it as we liked. This is a view of the garden from the veranda at the top:

There was a woodland walk, a vegetable and herb garden, fruit trees, roses, herbaceous borders and several photogenic summerhouses and sheds.

So romantic! We didn’t spend the entire week in that beautiful garden, though. Part of our week was spent visiting friends and relatives, chatting and sampling some utterly delicious cakes.

And to burn all those calories off, we also spent several days hiking. Compared to our flat Dutch country, it’s quite a mountainous area, although it doesn’t show much in this picture.

One of our walks was a themed one around Fachwerkhäuser. How I love those beautiful timber-framed buildings. I could fill an entire post with the pictures I’ve taken of them alone and have had a hard time choosing just one.

The first couple of days were warm and sunny, but then the weather changed (sneaking in one more Fachwerkhaus here).

And on a very, very wet day, we decided to go shopping in the town of Gummersbach.

I’d googled a bit beforehand and discovered a yarn shop there called Lilla Ull Huset, specializing in Scandinavian knitting yarns.

It is a veritable Valhalla for knitters, with yarns from Danish Isager, Holst and Geilsk, Norwegian Sandnes, Swedish Ullcentrum Öland, Islandic Istex Lopi and more. I’m adding as many links as I can, so that anyone who wants to can spend even more time drooling over lovely yarns and patterns.

This is a close-up of the Isager section:

And this simple yet stylish striped scarf was knit from a combination of their yarns.

There were quite a few knitted sweaters, scarves and shawls to inspire visitors. This is a soft and cosy Sandnes one – isn’t it fun how they styled it with those over-the-top pearl necklaces?

Below right is Christel Seyfarth’s Mongolia Shawl. And left Isager’s sweater Clouds of Sils Maria.

The sweater is a wonderful Scandinavian amalgam, designed by Danish Marianne Isager, with an Icelandic yoke, and knit for the most part in Geilsk Tweed. I’d love to knit it, especially in this tweedy yarn.

There was also a great selection of books. The entire series of those beautiful Norwegian Kofteboken, many Isager books and also books by designers I’d never heard of, like Susie Haumann, Ditte Larsen and Annette Danielsen.

So, did we drive home with a boot filled with enough yarn to cover all my loved ones in knitting from head to toe? It was tempting, but I’ve been prudent and ‘only’ came home with 3 skeins of yarn, matching buttons and two books. The books are by Annette Danielsen:

Wintertage (left) is a thinnish booklet in German, containing several easy-to-make recipes as well as 7 sweater patterns. And Fynsk Forår (right) is in Danish and contains patterns for many beautiful pullovers and cardigans, as well as fabulous photographs of Danish landscapes, buildings and art.

The designs all look very wearable and have interesting design details, like this horizontal cable along the top of vertical ones on the back of a cardigan.

And last but not least, I found a pattern, yarn and the cutest buttons for a jacket for our grandson.

More about that when I get to it.

Perhaps I should create a map with all the yarn shops I’ve blogged about – that might be useful. Until I find out how and can find the time for that, Lilla Ull Huset and all of the other ones I’ve visited can be found by clicking on ‘shopping’ in the list of tags in the right-hand column on your computer screen (below the ‘Search’ window) or via this link. The only ‘problem’ is that you’ll also need to scroll past a quilt shop, book shop and farmers’ market here and there.

Hope to see you again next week! (I’ll try to behave and keep things shorter then.) xxx

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