I’m having such fun with our Islay club! I’ve been working on these ideas and designs for so long it feels fantastic to finally share them. The first three designs from the collection are a trio inspired by Finlaggan (Islay’s ancient administrative centre), each of which has different celebratory associations.

The first pattern is the Finlaggan cardigan based on the original garment I created to wear at my wedding.


The second pattern from the club is the Lord of the Isles kilt hose, which I knitted for Tom when we were married and which he now wears for special occasions, every time he dons his kilt.


And the final pattern in the trio is the Somerled hap, which I designed for my mum in celebration of her 70th birthday.


This is a “fancy” hap of the kind frequently made in Shetland (and elsewhere in Scotland) for special occasions, and I made my mum’s original in a traditional natural white. Here it is with me at Finlaggan.


But I also think this hap looks amazing in a bold, contemporary shade, such as the rich gold of Buachaille’s furze colourway.


There are four pattern “trios” in the Inspired by Islay collection, and next week I move on to sharing the first of the next set, which involves a rather different style of knitting. . .

If you are a club member, I hope you are having just as much fun as I am, and if you aren’t, and would like to join, you can do so here (you’ll receive all previously issued patterns and newsletters).

Roll on, 2017! See you on the other side.

21 thoughts on “An Islay trio

  1. Kate, Shetland tv series has finally aired here in Portugal, and I am delighted to spot lots of your knitting and to finally get to see – in film – the Shetland landscape. Love that hap! Will it be available as a single pattern? I think it would make a beautiful baby shawl.


  2. Please Kate can you tell me where you bought the shawl pin on your lovely cardigan so I can get one to use on the cardigan I am planning to knit – when the pattern comes through!


  3. Kate, I’m loving being part of this group but do you realise what problems you are causing me? How on earth can I decide what to knit next when you are spoiling us with such lovely designs? The dithering is driving me to drink … and along comes Tom with the perfect suggestions for what to drink!
    Seriously, though, I really am loving the newsletters and the patterns. Thanks to you both and all good wishes for 2017!


  4. Happy new year Kate, Tom and Bruce.

    I enjoy your writing and photographs very much, so I am looking forward to hearing more from you in 2017.

    Kind regards, Sue x


  5. I too love the history behind all of your knitted garments. Thank you and Happy New Year to you, Tom and Bruce. started on my Black Bun early :)


  6. I enjoy reading all your blogs and I love the background stories behind your patterns. It’s so interesting to read. Wish you all a Happy New Year.


  7. Have been contemplating joining the Club for awhile!!
    Your write up today made my decision easy, just joined!!
    Busy reading Shetland Oo, that I received the other day, so,so interesting, thank you!!


  8. Gorgeous, as usual. Have long admired that cardigan, but how did I miss those incredible stockings?! Now I’m wishing that my husband would wear a kilt! I’d love to see a close up of the hap in natural white.


  9. Love the collection and history, so beautiful. Can’t wait to cast on Finlaggan. We just might try one of Tom’s recommendations to toast in the new year ~ May it be a happy one for all!


  10. I want to thank you Kate for your latest design, Somerled. It has triggered more than you can know in my memory. After the war, my parents married, 1947, and couldn’t find a house so they had lodgings with a lovely lady in Glasgow. Sometimes when money was tight, they did some canvassing in lieu for her brother, for something called the Scottish Covenant Association. She was Anna McCormick and her brother was John McCormick, Rector of Glasgow University. He had been in the SNP, but broke away to form the Covenant Association as he and his followers wanted Devolution and not Independence. The Association masterminded the plot to steal the Stone of Destiny from Westminster Abbey and return it to Scone. John even harboured it over night in the Rectory at the university!! Through this my father met a man called Somerled McMillan who amongst other things was a composer. He was named after the great Somerled. As a than you to my father for work he had done, he gave him an autographed volume of his songs called The Peat Reek. As a professional opera singer, I often use them when I am doing recitals as they are beautiful and largely unknown. Songs of the Glen of Weeping (Glencoe), Uist, Skye, Loch Tayside and more. I have been musing on this ever since you issued the pattern on Wednesday and it has made me very happy remembering some lovely people. xx

    Liked by 4 people

  11. Dear Kate, Tom & Bruce
    Wishing you all Happiness and Health in 2017. Your posts are such a joy to read and see.
    You inspire me to knit more and to go out and enjoy my landscape more.
    Good glove hunting Bruce.


  12. I’m having a good time and enjoy reading the story behind your designs as well. May 2017 bring lots of inspiration! And time to do some of all the things that pops around once head…


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