Friday, January 28, 2011

Many mushrooms were harmed in the making of this sweater.

My husband's Christmas present is finally done!  We survived the flaunting of the sweater curse after all.
Stick a fork in it, it's done!  Or maybe you would need
a spoon, as it is not washed yet, so the yarn still
carries a faint aroma of mushroom soup.
Pattern:  Klaus by Julie Weisenberger
Source:  Cocoknits
Materials:  For the body of the sweater I dyed 12 skeins of Queensland Collection Kathmandu Aran with Porcini (Boletus edulis) mushrooms.  The grey stripes are knit from Cascade 220 dyed with Jack O'Lantern (Omphalotus olivascens)  mushrooms.

Those of you who have been following along for awhile already know about my husband's passion for mushroom hunting.  He has been an avid mushroom hunter ever since his grandfather took him out looking for porcini and morels from the time he was 4 or 5 years old.  And even though I credit my friend Tera with teaching me to knit as she is the one who got it to stick,  it was actually my husband's grandmother who first put yarn and needles into my hands.  So I think it is pretty cool that the two passions came together in this sweater.

This book helped me combine the two hobbies:

The Rainbow Beneath My Feet: A Mushroom Dyer's Field Guide
The Rainbow Beneath My Feet:  A Mushroom Dyer's Field Guide is a wealth of information on collecting, preserving and dyeing with mushrooms.

At knitting night I shared with the group that my husband has been wondering if the sweater would be done in time for him to wear it on his next mushroom hunting trip.  As I bound off the last few stitches my friend Karen joked that now he has mushroom camouflage so he will be better able to sneak up on his prey.  Those morels better watch out!

I will get my husband to model his late Christmas gift when it is washed and blocked but I took this quick shot of it as I was done seaming so as not to miss out on FO Friday at Tami's Amis.


  1. Shannon - it is AWESOME! You have inspired me to knit this one next - I'm sure this pattern will go Fungal -er um Viral though our knitting group. Thanks for doing all the leg work! The colors are perfect for R - Hubby is very lucky.

  2. It looks good! I didn't know those colours could come from mushrooms.

  3. It looks great, Shannon!!! I bet your husband LOVES it and can't wait to wear it on his next mushroom hunting trip.

    I can't believe it was dyed with mushrooms. That's amazing.

  4. It's turned out brilliantly. I bet your husband loves it. It looks a sweater a man would live in.

  5. The sweater turned out great! I love grey stripe. My husband would consider the mushroom aroma a bonus :)

  6. What a nifty sweater. I never heard of dying with mushrooms, that's really cool.

    Thanks for stopping by my blog - yes, I make the blankets to donate to a local cat shelter! When we lost our beloved Zorro to advanced kidney disease, I pledged I'd make & donate one blanket for every month we had him - 131 blankets in all. I've made some in the past, but never really set a goal.

  7. A mushroom-dyed sweater for someone who loves mushroom-hunting is such a special and amazing gift idea, and the sweater looks wonderful! The colours are great, and I love the way that rib goes around the v-neck and creates a vertical line down the front of the sweater.

  8. As Angie said, this one is on my list now. You make it look so easy, I think I might have enough courage to try. Very nice and yes, R is indeed a lucky guy to have you. Beautiful work!

    Angie, you are so funny!

  9. It is a gorgeous sweater but the story that goes along with it really makes it a treasure. I am still laughing about it being camo for mushroom hunting.

  10. I love a sweater that has a story or history to it. This one turned out so great! The mushroom dyeing is so intriguing. I will definitely check this book out.