Virtual Yarns - Home of Alice Starmore Yarns and Designs

Dear Knitter,

Jade and I have been enjoying expending our creative energies on our St Kilda Project for some time now, and so it is a great pleasure to finally begin to introduce you to one of the characters we have created to represent the women who lived extraordinary lives in this unique Hebridean archipelago.

The Queen of the Waves represents the spirit of a young woman of St Kilda who grows up around the stone cleits and spends her teenage years climbing the huge, precipitous cliffs of Hiort and Boreray to harvest seabirds eggs. This tiny archipelago in the Atlantic Ocean is her whole world, but one day she must leave along with the rest of her community, knowing she will never return. Her last sighting of her home would have come as she passed the towering pinnacles of Boreray and the Stacs with the air filled with thousands of gannets, puffins and fulmar; a stunning vision which seems to come from another, far more ancient world. The Queen of the Waves collection comprises the imaginary contents of her travelling kist; garments she would have made to incorporate treasured aspects and memories of her old world as she embarked on her new life. This collection will arrive piece by piece from her kist over the coming months. It's designed so that each piece can be worn separately or layered together. If you choose to make her entire collection you will find that there are challenges and new things to learn, encompassing knitting, weaving, embroidery and felting.

The Queen of the Waves Hand Knitwear Design Collection by Alice Starmore
The Queen of the Waves Hand Knitwear Design Collection by Alice Starmore
The Queen of the Waves Hand Knitwear Design Collection by Alice Starmore
The Queen of the Waves Hand Knitwear Design Collection by Alice Starmore

The first item from the kist is the Sulaire Spencer patterncard kit: a sharp and elegant fitted design inspired by the sleek wing of a Solan Goose. This striking peplum top is a challenging design aimed at intermediate knitters. The ridged peplum is angled  from front to back like a pair of wings, and the body is accentuated by an openwork panel at the centre front and a buttoned opening at the centre back. The instructions include both long and short sleeved versions and this design can be made in any available colour of our Hebridean 2 Ply. You can see the Sulaire Spencer with short sleeves made in Whin Hebridean 2 Ply here along with a dress made from specially screen printed fabric designed by Jade. Click here for the Sulaire Spencer patterncard kit with Short Sleeves.

The long sleeved Sulaire Spencer is shown here in Mara worn by Iona beside the Atlantic Ocean; she wears it over some of the other pieces from the Queen of the Waves collection. The long sleeved version also has an openwork centre panel worked from wrist to shoulder. Click here for the long sleeved Sulaire Spencer patterncard kit.

You can have another look at the Sulaire Spencer with both short and long sleeves here, this time worn over full, loose gathered dresses, modelled by Amber and Rebecca on the East Coast of Scotland.

The Queen of the Waves Hand Knitwear Design Collection by Alice Starmore

The Queen of the Waves Collection is at its core about intricate and intriguing detail, and I look forward to sharing that with you over 2023. These details are not just in the knitting but also in the styling, with garments designed and custom made by Jade and the incredible footwear of Deniz at Otherscapes. You can see more of the Otherscapes pieces here.

The Queen of the Waves Hand Knitwear Design Collection by Alice Starmore
The Queen of the Waves Hand Knitwear Design Collection by Alice Starmore
The Queen of the Waves Hand Knitwear Design Collection by Alice Starmore
The Queen of the Waves Hand Knitwear Design Collection by Alice Starmore
The Queen of the Waves Hand Knitwear Design Collection by Alice Starmore

My very first Queen of the Waves design was the Sulaire Shawl, which is shown here worn by Emma in our very special limited edition Hiort colour. We saved a small amount of the Hiort colour for the introduction of the Queen of the Waves collection, so the Sulaire Shawl will be available again in Hiort until we run out. The Hiort colour is limited edition and only available in one dyelot, and will not be repeated in the future. Click here for the Sulaire Shawl.

Alice Starmore Hebridean 2 Ply hand knitting yarn in special edition Hiort colour

It is drawing near to Xmas so I wanted to give a quick reminder that we will be closing for our annual Xmas holiday between the 17th of December and the 10th of January. During that time the website checkout will be closed and no orders can be placed. Emails related to orders will be answered on a weekly basis but general enquires will be left until after the holiday. All orders placed by the 17th of December will be sent out by the 22nd of December. During the holiday Creative Courses can still be purchased and purchased classes and courses can be accessed online.

We will be back next month to round up the year,

Happy Knitting,

Alice