Tag Archives: leenane

Woolly book

26 Apr

Over the past few months, I have been working closely with the Sheep and Wool Centre in Leenane, Co Galway. The Centre has recently made many changes, including commissioning three books as part of its new display.

The idea was that the first book would display a range of Aran knitting samples, with information about each type of stitch. The wool samples had originally been part of the old display. They were a range of different sizes, colours and thicknesses, which meant it was a challenge to bind them.

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After some experimenting, I decided to crochet a wide border around each sample, using white wool, in order to create a uniform page size and thickness. I resisted the temptation to mount the samples onto another material, as this would have complicated the look of the book and would have restricted the viewer to only seeing/touching the front of the stitch sample.

There was a concern that the pages might be too floppy and might stretch over time. In order to avoid this, I inserted a thin flexible wire around each of the wool pages. I used a nylon-coated fishing wire as I didn’t want it to rust in the salty sea air – Leenane is on the Atlantic coast. The wire is hidden inside the wool and provides a subtle frame for each page.

Before each woollen page, I designed a transparent sheet, which outlines the stitch and gives its name and some information about it.

The book is covered with a highly durable, waterproof book-cloth. The raised design is a ball of wool running from the front to the back of the book. For the front page and end pages, I decided to use Aran stitch patterns as a motif – I was intrigued by the language of knitting patterns.

The book will be on display in the Sheep and Wool Centre in Leenane, Connemara, Co Galway if you happen to be passing by!

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