Test knitters make life much easier for me – in the case of BSM there was no way I could have done a second sample to illustrate the simpler border after all the time I spent on the first one.
Here are the two test knits of the unfringed version, both quite different from mine:
The first is from Alex (Winterstitch on Ravelry) who has done lots of excellent test knitting for me, including Blackbird and Europa. It’s made with Colourmart 100% Extrafine Merino Laceweight which is possibly finer than the Titan Wool Merinos Extra that I used for the original version. The yarn choice seems to have added a shimmering ethereality to this one.
The second, beautifully knit and modelled by Lyn (ladyinlotus on Ravelry), is made with DyeForYarn Tussah Silk Lace, which looks like a slightly heavier yarn, as the garter stitch texture of the border is more apparent. Lyn added extra beads to the border – nine on each point instead of one. (Lyn is notable as one of the few knitters to have completed a Gilded Shoulderette.)
I’ve had a couple of enquiries about the Estonian linen – it’s from a shop called Pronski Longapood in Tallinn (that’s a Ravelry link, it doesn’t seem to have a website). It’s a big department store with a basement full of crafts and a big selection of yarn – the linen was available in a wide range of colours. There were also a couple of smaller shops in Tallinn specialising in linen and flax products which had cones of linen yarn in natural colours. There was a little wooden church on one of the Estonian islands which was insulated with wads of matted flax fibres.
Kerry asked about the Bart and Francis yarns – unfortunately I didn’t actually get to see them that time in London, so I remain intrigued, and hope to see them some day.