Bohus Love

How exciting! The much anticipated Opening Weekend of the American Swedish Institute’s Radiant Knits exhibit finally arrived! I didn’t go to the opening reception/presentation (read about it here, and here), the Knit Out on Saturday (Twin Set Ellen has a post about it), and Mary Jo Burke of Stagecoach Yarn’s presentation on Sunday (again Twin Set Ellen blogged about it with photos of people wearing their Bohus sweaters!).

There were a couple of minor missteps during the weekend, but I enjoyed the events and workshop I attended. On Saturday, I brought Mom with me on the Guided Tour of the exhibit led by Susanna Hansson and Kerstin Olsson. I thought I had registered for the 11:30 slot but apparently marked my form for the 9:30 slot, oops. Fortunately, they were able to spare a bit of room for my Mom and I to go along with the group.

The exhibit is fairly small, 2 rooms plus a display case full of Bohus garments, but full of incredibly beautiful sweaters. With 30 or 40 people in the room at the same time, we couldn’t really move around, so after the Tour, Mom and I went through the rooms again for a closer look. Many of the garments were loaned by Kerstin or Susanna, and most of the displays were in the open and we could stand close enough to see lots of detail. Photography was forbidden, but the ASI does have a brochure for the exhibit with pictures of all the items (edited to add: this booklet is now available at the ASI online shop). Kerstin worked as a designer for Bohus Stickning, so it was interesting to get her perspective on the garments. There were also a few items that had never been on public display before, like the Mosaik jacket.

Bohus Books

(I bought Poems of Color and the exhibit brochure.)

In the afternoon, I sat in at a presentation by Solveig Gustafsson (from SOLsilke). She talked about her background and how she came to be dyeing yarn. There were lots of pictures during the presentation, both of the silk yarn she dyes, and of her recreated Bohus designs. After the presentation, we were able to examine a few recreated garments. It was great to be able to see all the different designs close-up. I was able to pick out a group of designs as my favorites, but it was very difficult to choose one from amongst them! The Rime Frost cardigan kit (Grace Kelly wore one) was introduced especially to celebrate the ASI exhibit (I would link to it, but it looks like the ASI online shop is sold out!). Also Solveig mentioned that she has recreated 32 Bohus designs and that there is still 1,000 left!

Blue Shimmer Cuff Progress

On Sunday, I took the Bohus Stickning workshop with Susanna. She was very nice and clearly passionate about the topic. Included in our handouts were a timeline of Bohus Stickning and an annotated bibliography. We worked on Blue Shimmer Cuffs during class (the above picture shows my progress at the end of class). I found that I really liked the yarn, so soft and ethereal. (Edited to Add: I forgot something cool! People brought several sweaters or cardigans, hats, and mittens to show during class.) Susanna had a display of several swatches (most of which she knit) at the back of the room that included two colorways of Green Meadow (one shown at left), Swan (center), Dean (behind Swan) and four colorways of Scilla.

Swatch Display

It was a full and fulfilling weekend! It was also my first time inside the ASI. A lot of the original or restored features were present on the gallery halls and I admit I was distracted quite often by the pretty motifs and decorations on the walls and ceilings. I also loved the two kakelugnar or Swedish porcelain tile stoves I saw; they were huge with elaborate decorative tile. Definitely stop by this exhibit if you are anywhere close to the area! It ends March 29.

7 Responses to “Bohus Love”

  1. Chris Says:
    January 26th, 2009 at 2:43 pm

    Very cool to take classes and get to actually meet the “players”!

  2. opal Says:
    January 26th, 2009 at 3:58 pm

    what a wonderful experience you had! it’s all so fascinating!

  3. kmkat Says:
    January 26th, 2009 at 6:19 pm

    I lived in Minneapolis for 32 years (most of it in south Minneapolis and some right on Park Avenue!) and never made it to the Swedish Institute. But I shall remedy that during this exhibition. Thanks for the photos — they have whetted my interest even more than it already was.

  4. twinsetellen Says:
    January 26th, 2009 at 9:08 pm

    Wasn’t it great?! One of the best things was connecting with other knitters like you. I was glad that it worked out for you to be in the later tour.

  5. Sydney Says:
    January 26th, 2009 at 9:19 pm

    What a fun and interesting weekend! It’s cool that you were able to go to the workshop and presentation.

  6. mrspao Says:
    January 27th, 2009 at 2:31 pm

    What a great opportunity :)

  7. Deb Says:
    January 27th, 2009 at 7:25 pm

    It was awesome, wasn’t it? :) Sorry that I missed you.

    Susanna’s class is excellent. I was lucky enough to take it about 9 months ago. On Ravelry you might want to check out WoolyJoolie’s mod. She turned her Blue Shimmer wristlets into mittens.

    I wear my wristlets all the time. They feel great!

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Sock Count (Pairs)

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