Our Middle Earth Collection wouldn’t be complete without a design dedicated to the great miners and craftsmen of the world of Tolkien: the Dwarves. Practical, skilled & proud warriors, the Dwarves immense architectural feats and forging skills, which were said to rival those of the Elves, are legendary.
This strong, new pattern is named Oakenshield, after the heirs to the title “King Under the Mountain” – a hereditary title conveyed on the Dwarf ruler who resides in the Lonely Mountain.
Thorin Oakenshield, in The HobbitTM, is the sole heir to this title. His grandfather Thrór was the ruler who lost the mountain dwelling, and the wealth within it, to Smaug in TA2770. Defeated, Thrór passed the title & the last of the Seven Dwarven Rings to his son: Thráin II, father of Thorin. Living a life of exile with his father, Thorin cultivated an unwavering sense of purpose which would eventually drive his quest to retake his family seat from the ferocious dragon, bringing Bilbo Baggins (and all of us) along with him for the adventure.
When considering a Rohan design, we wished to depict the culture and iconography of the Rohirrim, as described in The Lord of the Rings – A proud people with a strong monarchy, known for their skilled cavalry and horse training.
“I have been among them,” [said] Aragorn. “They are proud and wilful, but they are true-hearted, generous in thought and deed.”
The design took inspiration from tapestries, depicting historical tales, which were said to line the halls of Meduseld (the Hall of the King of Rohan), as well as descriptions of the banner of Rohan and Théoden’s shield:
This month we focus on wool in our ongoing series of yarn blogs. We’ll join Vicki as she chases the sheep out of her garden, whilst paying homage to these amazing animals and investigating the wonderful baby wrapping properties of wool.
I’m having a wee bit of a problem with wild life in my garden; for a change it’s not rabbits eating my petunias, nor crows dive bombing the windows – the sheep have broken through from the neighbouring field and they think my shrubs are delicious. To be honest it’s surprising we haven’t had a visit sooner, for apparently Scotland has more sheep than people living upon our fair land.
The Elemental Collection has taken inspiration from traditional Scottish textiles for a series of new & unique patterns, continuing with this theme is our newest addition: Sonsie. Based on the rich tradition of knitting in the northern isles, this pattern harnesses comforting motifs to create a pattern which evokes memories of cosy, woollen jumpers and windswept Sunday walks in the Scottish countryside.
The ‘Fair Isle’ style is now synonymous with a myriad of knitting styles found around the world, but the Scottish island communities from which this style originates have been knitting with this specific set of motifs for generations. Read more about our Fair Isle inspiration here.