Published: 29 September 2019
Ollaberry - 2019
Colourful Fair Isle On day one of Shetland Wool Week 2019 I spent the afternoon at the Ollaberry hall, looking at the knitwear display, as well as enjoying speaking to the demonstrators and visitors. So good to catch up with fellow Shetlanders as well as visitors who have come back for this special time in Shetland. I met new folk too; it's always interesting to hear what brought them to Shetland, and how far they have travelled. Yesterday I spoke to people from Norway, Canada, USA, Belgium and Netherlands as well as different parts of England and Scotland. Tea and delicious snacks were enjoyed too.
For the past few years the Ollaberry hall has been open for a few days during each Shetland Wool Week and it is always a joy to see what's there. Volunteers lend their treasured knitwear, set up the display, demonstrate for visitors, donate raffle prizes, work in the kitchen and supply the home baking - savoury and sweet. It is a real community effort.
A small section was devoted to display the work of the pupils at Ollaberry Primary school who attend ShetlandPeerieMakkers. Over the past 30-40 years many folk missed acquiring the skills which makes it even more important that the traditional skills are passed on to the young people before they are lost. As I grew up there was a knitter in every house so learning was easy but that's no longer the case. It is good to know that there are a number of groups of knitters (and other crafters) throughout the isles where people can discuss and develop their hobbies.
I had seen photos of Lauren's lace shawl earlier this year so was pleased to see it for real. She is a very talented young knitter, aged about 20; more of her work can be seen on Instagram, @laurenclaireart.
I have a busy week ahead - I suspect I won't manage a blog about every day but I wanted to share some photos from yesterday.
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Shetland is the most northerly group of Scottish islands. Apart from mainland Scotland, the other near neighbours are Norway to the east and the Faroe Islands to the north west.