I am blessed with the many friends I have met along the way on my fiber arts journey. Today I want to showcase Hon (Alice) Scherp, a native of Alaska and all-around expert spinner and lace knitter. I first “met” Alice on the “Successful Lace Knitting” book collaboration to celebrate the work of Dorothy Reade.
We’ve kept in touch since then, especially as Alice fell in love with making my Flared Lace Smoke Ring pattern in her hand-spun qiviut yarn, lending her own creative touches which I can’t wait to show you.
Imagine my surprise, though, when she wanted to give me one. Now, the smoke rings Alice makes are not just from any-ol’ yarn. They are from Alaskan qiviut that she hand dehairs, hand spins, and hand knits with beads. I’d always admired the photos she would send me. Then when she asked if she could send me one, I almost flipped. She was even concerned that I would like it. How could I not? She simply wanted in “barter” an autographed photo of me wearing the smoke ring and another copy of the Flared Lace Smoke Ring pattern because hers was in tatters after all the times she had used it!
I commissioned John to take photos. I figured if I broke the camera, at least it would be his rather than mine, lol. I hope what you see here does justice to Alice’s smoke ring. I wish you could feel how lusciously soft and lightweight it is — something I just can’t get across in photos.
i like the plain knit stitch panels because they show up the pattern so nicely. also the plain knit shows off my spinning too. now….i added the beads by stringing them on the yarn (size 8 beads) and adding them at the back, over, over back… on the first back. then on the next row be sure to keep the bead to the front to lock it into being always visible. so it also means the first row of the pattern has no bead, so 7 beads for each full patterns. also i do 2 together through the back loop at the end which lets the single bead on the left always stays right on the seam and i add the bead every other row.
Whew! So if you want to knit a variation of the Flared Lace Smoke Ring pattern like Alice’s here, that will give you an idea of how to do the beading that Alice used. The picture also shows you how the smoke ring looks with the alternating panels of plain stockinette in case you want an idea of another variation to make with your Flared Lace Smoke Ring pattern.
You can see more of Alice Scherp’s hand-spun qiviut yarn and exquisite hand-knitted lace on Etsy at the Fiber ‘N Ice Alaska store run by Denise Morrison. You are in for a treat!