Knitter's Review Forums
  The online community for readers of Knitter's Review.
  This week: Photos and wisdom from the Knitter's Review Retreat
   > Have you subscribed yet?
Knitter's Review Forums
KR Home | My Profile | Register | Active Topics | Private Messages | Search | FAQ | Want to make Betty happy?
Username:
Password:
Save Password
Forgot your username or password?

 All Forums
 Yarn Talk
 Talk about yarns reviewed in Knitter's Review
 philosophers wool video or book
 New Topic  Topic Locked
 Printer Friendly
Author Previous Topic Topic Next Topic  

Barbara Ann
New Pal

44 Posts

Posted - 08/05/2002 :  3:37:04 PM  Show Profile Send Barbara Ann a Private Message
Hi,
Just wondered if any of you have seen the video or read the book that is put out by philosophers wool. In particular I was interested in their method referred to as "two handed fair isle knitting" using circular needles. I don't know about anyone else but I always use two hands when I knit. Ha! If your familiar with it perhaps you can explain a little why this method(according to their promo)is so much easier and faster than the more difficult yarn tangling method that I'm used to.
I hope they've discovered something but I can't help but wonder.
Thanks,
Barbara

kepkake
Chatty Knitter

USA
251 Posts

Posted - 08/06/2002 :  05:32:53 AM  Show Profile Send kepkake a Private Message
Good morning, Barbara. I have the book and video you mentioned. I like them for several reasons. Most importantly, the instructions are easy to understand. Ann Bourgeois explains and demonstrates the technique of knitting with both hands very well. The production quality is good making the close-ups of her hands while she's working very clear. I was a novice knitter when I purchased the video. I was able to make a "Fair Isle" hat right away using her technique. It's basically just knitting Continentally with the left and American with the right hand. She shows you how to weave the stitches so there are not long floats in the back of your work. I recommend this video and book to anyone interested in knitting with more than one color in a row. Also, the sweaters are absolutely gorgeous!
Happy knitting and have a nice day.

Wendy
Go to Top of Page

Barbara Ann
New Pal

44 Posts

Posted - 08/06/2002 :  08:12:37 AM  Show Profile Send Barbara Ann a Private Message
Hi Wendy,
Thanks for the reply. I have one question for you though. I have never knitted continentally. I've tried but the results were so uneven that I went back to my old original way. You indicated you were a novice knitter when you tried this method. Which method were you using originally?
Follow up question. What is your impression of the yarns from philosophers wool? I have read pros and cons from other members of this forum so right now I'm a little confused. If the garment made with this wool ends up feeling scratchy next to your skin no one in my family will wear it.
The patterns look so pretty I would really like to try one.
Thanks again,
Barbara
Go to Top of Page

kepkake
Chatty Knitter

USA
251 Posts

Posted - 08/06/2002 :  11:30:55 AM  Show Profile Send kepkake a Private Message
Hi Barbara Ann,
I usually knit American style. I can knit Continentally but I find my tension is a little better the other way. I'll have to make something exclusively using the Continental method to practice my tension. I think knowing how to crochet helps with Continental knitting. Anyway, I was able to learn the technique straight from the video well enough to make a few hats and mittens. As far as the wool goes, I'd have to say that it's nice yarn...not merino, mind you...but nice. I made a hat and mitten set for my 3 year-old this past winter and she wore it without complaint. I used their chunky weight yarn. I honestly do not think I would make a sweater with that yarn that would be worn against the skin. It would be great for a cardigan, in fact there are several cardigans in the video. I forgot to mention that all of their sweaters are worked in the round on circulars. The cardigans are steeked and cut. As Elizabeth Zimmerman said, I think I'd have to "lie down in a dark room for 15 minutes to recover" after I cut one of those beautiful sweaters. I'm personally glad that I bought the video and book. I'll be getting out of the cabinet to take another look at it today. Hope this helps and happy knitting.

Wendy
Go to Top of Page

kiwi
Chatty Knitter

New Zealand
162 Posts

Posted - 08/06/2002 :  1:14:29 PM  Show Profile Send kiwi a Private Message
Hi Barbara Ann
I had never knitted using the continental method until I bought this book but the instructions were very clear (I've also heard the video is great although I don't have it). I was able to work it out without too much trouble just sitting down for an hour or so (maybe less)with some spare yarn. This is a great way of knitting with two colors as they don't get tangled up and you can keep track of them easily! I also wouldn't have raked up the courage to knit fair isle if I hadn't found their book. Now I want to design my own. I'm also very pro knitting in the round - no purl and no seams! As for the yarn - I think it's great. I'd never wear a wool sweater against the skin anyway.

Totally converted!
Go to Top of Page

Barbara Ann
New Pal

44 Posts

Posted - 08/06/2002 :  2:17:25 PM  Show Profile Send Barbara Ann a Private Message
Thanks to both of you for the info. Perhaps I'll just get the video and see if I can master this method. As to the yarn, I agree with both of you about wearing wool next to the skin. I usually wear a turtleneck jersey in the winter time anyway. However, the rest of my family members like to wear sweaters the same way they would wear a shirt. They complain its too hot if they wear something under a sweater. So maybe I can just use the technique and the patterns using other softer yarns I.E. merino? What do you think??
Barbara
Go to Top of Page

kepkake
Chatty Knitter

USA
251 Posts

Posted - 08/07/2002 :  05:35:05 AM  Show Profile Send kepkake a Private Message
That sounds reasonable, Barbara. There are so many lovely, soft yarns to choose from. There is a great book by Cynthia Wise called "Knit it Your Way" which basically described the method for substituting different yarns using the same pattern. It's very informative. Good luck and keep us posted.

Wendy
Go to Top of Page

Emaruottolo
Gabber Extraordinaire

USA
472 Posts

Posted - 08/07/2002 :  06:39:17 AM  Show Profile Send Emaruottolo a Private Message
Hi,
Can you tell me the exact name of the video?
Thanks,
Elisa

"Happiness is not the destination, but the road traveled."
Go to Top of Page

Barbara Ann
New Pal

44 Posts

Posted - 08/07/2002 :  07:54:33 AM  Show Profile Send Barbara Ann a Private Message
Hi Elisa,
The name of the video is "The original Philosophers two handed fair isle and other stories". It is available at www.philospherswool.com
It may be available elsewhere but I'm only aware of this location.
In fact, I just ordered it last night. I'm very curious to see how this method works.
Barbara
Go to Top of Page

Emaruottolo
Gabber Extraordinaire

USA
472 Posts

Posted - 08/07/2002 :  1:13:23 PM  Show Profile Send Emaruottolo a Private Message
Thanks for the info. I do so want to learn the right way to knit with colors. Right now the backs of my sweaters look horrid. Not that anyone is looking anyway
Elisa

"Happiness is not the destination, but the road traveled."
Go to Top of Page

Patience
Permanent Resident

USA
1080 Posts

Posted - 08/22/2002 :  12:45:28 PM  Show Profile Send Patience a Private Message
Hi Everyone,

Just a note to let you know that I am currently working on a Philosophers Fair Isle cardigan sweater (my first ever). I purchased the book and the video and I would probably never have attempted a Fair Isle without the video to show me step by step.

I started practicing Continental knitting just a short time prior to beginning my cardigan, at the urging of EZ in her Knitting Workshop videos and I'm so glad I learned it. I still prefer the right handed method but it came in mighty handy for this method.

The wool is a bit scratchy with a definite odor to it of pure lanlolin and there are some bits of hay here and there but the more I knit with it the softer it gets. Also, I've been told that once it's washed it just keeps getting softer and softer, which I can imagine it does.

It does make a VERY warm sweater though because with the weaving, it's like a "sweater lining" so to speak, woven in as you knit. I do love Ann's teaching delivery on the video and she explains the method very well with excellent camera work.

Let us know how it goes when you begin, and if I can help you in any way with questions, don't hesitate to ask.

Regards, Patience
Go to Top of Page

Barbara Ann
New Pal

44 Posts

Posted - 08/23/2002 :  09:30:50 AM  Show Profile Send Barbara Ann a Private Message
Hi Patience
Well, here I am. Still waiting for the video that I ordered back the beginning of August. First I was told they were on vacation and it would be shipped on the 12th. When it didn't arrive I queried them and was told they had been swamped with orders and it would be sent on the 15th. As of today, the 23rd, still no signs of this video.
So---now I'm wondering if I'm really interested in trying their yarn.
Would I experience the same kinds of shipping problems.
Did you have any difficulties when you ordered from them or did you get your yarn from another source?

Barbara

Go to Top of Page

kiwi
Chatty Knitter

New Zealand
162 Posts

Posted - 08/23/2002 :  12:13:27 PM  Show Profile Send kiwi a Private Message
Barbara Ann,
If you ordered via the web site then you will have ordered from Camilla Valley Farm who stock all the Philosopher's Wool products. I did see that they were on vacation so it doesn't surprise me they are behind with their orders. When I ordered wool for a Philosopher's sweater they sent me the wrong kit (well, set of colors - an easy thing as there were 2 sets of colors almost identical.) After some deliberation over the colors I got and a chat on the phone with the woman Camilla Valley (who was very apologetic) I decided just to replace one color. They were very helpful, allowed me to keep the wool I'm not using and sent me the new color at no cost so I'm a big fan (and no I'm not getting anything for this). Patience's description of the wool is very accurate and I love the colors. I'm knitting the 'Tradition' pattern with dark red, forest green, purple heather & dark brown (I can't remember the actual shades.) I also have a preference for more 'natural' and less refined yarn anyway!
Give them a chance - I don't think they're a very large outfit and as I said they were very pleasant.
(I also think that in this modern world we're all too used to getting everything 'yesterday' )
I'm sure it will arrive soon.
Penny
Go to Top of Page

Patience
Permanent Resident

USA
1080 Posts

Posted - 08/23/2002 :  5:38:14 PM  Show Profile Send Patience a Private Message
Barbara Ann,

I did get the yarn, the book, and the video from Camilla Valley Farm which is where you ordered from on Philosophers site. The girl that runs Camilla Valley is a lovely person and very helpful. They did close for vacation for 2 weeks or so and I can honestly believe that when they got back they had a TON of orders, kits, wool, etc. ordered.

I know how it feels though to be anxiously waiting for that special delivery and when it doesn't come, no excuse seems sufficient. However, don't give up the ship because you will be truly delighted by your entire experience once you begin.

In closing, I've ordered many things from Camilla and I haven't been disappointed yet. At first I did forget that things were being shipped from Canada which took a tad longer, but SO worth the wait. Hang in there, sweetie and let me know when it arrives.

Warm Regards, Patience

P.S. Penny, you are so right about all of us wanting everything yesterday. I'm waiting for something as we speak and I look for the mailman everyday, LOL. I need to practice a serious dose of the same virtue as my name. :<)


Go to Top of Page

Barbara Ann
New Pal

44 Posts

Posted - 08/23/2002 :  7:26:48 PM  Show Profile Send Barbara Ann a Private Message
Okay Penny and Patience you've convinced me to give them a chance and I will do that. While I'm waiting perhaps you could tell me which of the patterns you tried first. At their website it suggests that one should start with either 'garden patch, tradition, colour your own or fractured diamonds". Of those patterns I prefer the tradition or the colour your own. Did either of you start with any of these four mentioned patterns or did you feel confident enough to try some of the more complicated ones?
Barbara

Go to Top of Page

Patience
Permanent Resident

USA
1080 Posts

Posted - 08/24/2002 :  09:30:46 AM  Show Profile Send Patience a Private Message
Barbara Ann,

I am currently knitting the Garden Patch in pastels. I was very hesitant to try the color your own because for my first ever fair isle, I wanted to have a specific graph to follow and have everything clear cut until I could knit along and figure things out, plus get into a good flow with the weaving techniques.

I purchased another kit at last years Stitches East (which Ann and Eugene attend each year, if you're near enough to possibly attend). This year it's on Oct. 11,12,13th in King of Prussia, PA. Anyway, I purchased the Kool Aid colors "Squares Around" kit and I can hardly wait to begin that one, but I know that won't be for awhile, since I MUST finish my Garden Patch first.

Patience
Go to Top of Page

mokey
Permanent Resident

15375 Posts

Posted - 08/24/2002 :  9:53:21 PM  Show Profile Send mokey a Private Message
I have the Philosopher's book and video and they are brilliant! I ordered from Camilla Valley Farms and Nina Manners who runs the place was most helpful. Please keep in mind that if you are ordering from the US that this is a Canadian company and it does take a bit longer to ship depending on where you are! I have always been a Continental knitter so the hard part for me is knitting English method with yarn in my right hand! If you ever have the chance to meet Ann and Eugene Bourgeois at a show they will help you with the two handed method on the spot! I have never had qualms about cutting my knitting because it is after all, just another form of fabric. Once I had twisted a Lopi sweater and had to snip and pick up stitches, without a sewing machine. The steek method is how the Scandinavians made all those sweaters in the round, long before the sewing machine. Don't fear the scissors!
As for the yarn itself, I grew up in a European family so we almost always used wool. The Philosopher's product(I used 2 ply/worsted weight) is great and I have no problem wearing it next to my skin, and I'm a sensitive person. Remember that the reason most wool on the market was itchy is because the lanolin and all the natural wonder was lost in processing. My sister raises sheep so I also know that the breed and cleanliness of the fleece is paramount to great wool yarn. A 500g(+1 lb)skein of wool reatiling for $5.00 is not going to use the finest fleece! Luckily there is a lot of great wool available in Ontario where I live!


Go to Top of Page

kiwi
Chatty Knitter

New Zealand
162 Posts

Posted - 08/26/2002 :  05:03:34 AM  Show Profile Send kiwi a Private Message
Hi Barbara Ann,
I started with the Tradition sweater. Partly because I like the traditional fair isle patterns anyway. It grows fast too which is very satisfying. I'd like to make a color your own or garden patch next and maybe be brave and make a cardigan! Then maybe I'll try something more complicated! (As you can probably tell from the posts, we're all hooked!)
Enjoy your video when it arrives,
Penny
Go to Top of Page

Barbara Ann
New Pal

44 Posts

Posted - 08/28/2002 :  1:29:23 PM  Show Profile Send Barbara Ann a Private Message
Hi Everyone,
Well, I finally did get the video. It did take quite awhile.
However, it was so good that I decided to give it a try. Because everyone speaks so well of Nina Manners I thought I'd call to order instead of ordering online. Your right. She's very nice.
I ended up with the 'garden patch'pattern, she said it was the easiest,in deep sea color. My son loves blues and greens.
The colors are so pretty.
I also ordered the book for a friend who doesn't have a VCR. Can you believe that? If I really like this method it may be good to have. All the sweater patterns are included in it.
Another interesting thing I found out from Nina. I always use Inox needles when I can find them but she tells me they are no longer being made. Too bad, nice needles.
For those of you who have the video did you notice the comment about the sweater growing when washed. Has anyone gotten that far and if so how great was the grow?
Thanks everyone for all your comments. It encouraged me to give this a try.
Barbara


Go to Top of Page

Patience
Permanent Resident

USA
1080 Posts

Posted - 08/28/2002 :  3:06:45 PM  Show Profile Send Patience a Private Message
Barb,

I'm still working on my Garden Patch cardigan, but from what I remember Ann saying, you can damp it and block it to get about 2 to 4 extra inches either in circumference or in length if needed. If not, then no stretching necessary when you're finished and ready to block. I don't think you'll have any problem with it stretching of its own accord.

Your Garden Patch done in the sea blues will be lovely, and as I said before, don't hesitate to ask any questions you may have as you go along.....I will be only too happy to help in any way that I can.

Regards, Patience


Go to Top of Page
  Previous Topic Topic Next Topic  
 New Topic  Topic Locked
 Printer Friendly
Jump To:
Knitter's Review Forums © 2001-2014 Knitter's Review Go To Top Of Page
This page was generated in 0.81 seconds. Snitz Forums 2000
line This week's bandwidth
kindly brought to you by


and by knitters like you.
How can I sponsor?


line subscribe to Knitter's Reviwe