This workshop is based on my love for Bohus Stickning; the cottage industry turned couture business venture I learned of from Wendy Keele at a Stitches West workshop in 1995. Wendy, who lovingly authored the definitive English text on this topic, Poems of Color, taught a workshop and I fell utterly and completely in love.
There is nothing inherently Swedish about Bohus Stickning. Emma Jacobsson, who lead the organization for all of its 30 years, was a Jewish glove makerís daughter from Vienna whose father was a personal friend of Sigmund Freud. Emma Stiasny fell in love with Malte Jacobsson and moved to Sweden in 1912 so her strong eye for color, design and quality was really grounded in a central European tradition.
Perhaps because of her training as a scientist (she had a Ph.D. in Botany), Emma kept immaculate records of the business side of the Bohus organization and her skills brought Bohus Stickning to the forefront of Swedish design ventures, both domestically and internationally. Bohus garments became the gifts for kings and dictators both, under her reign! The story of Bohus is a story of couture knitting, sociology, womenís history and a cultural legacy all in one!
The workshop includes a slide presentation and discussion of the Bohus Stickning industry; its origins, development, and eventual demise thirty years after it began. Participants will have an opportunity to see the many genuine, museum quality Bohus garments and accessories that I have collected over the past 11 years. All Bohus garments on this website are from my personal collection and with one exception, they are all genuine. Can you spot the fake?
For the hands-on portion of the workshop, we will be using fine yarn and small needles to create wristlets in the Blue Shimmer pattern (thank you Carrie for the photo on the left), so patience is required as well! Bohus patterns present particular challenges to knitters, even experienced ones, and part of the time will be spent discussing and comparing the Bohus knitting techniques to other, better-known, multi-color techniques.
Note: You can view the garment pictures on this page at a much higher resolution by clicking on them. Each can be blown up to the point where you could probably use the garments as knitting charts if you wanted to. The detail is amazing! In fact, their 1,600 x 1,200 resolution makes them great for desktop backgrounds on even the biggest monitors! All you need to do is right click the high resolution version and select "Set as Background" in Explorer or "Set as Wallpaper" in Netscape/Mozilla.