Sara's Icelandic wool sweater Riddari – Sara's Kitchen Garden
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Sara's Icelandic wool sweater Riddari

Knitting has been one of my favorite hobbies for many years now. It's so fun to make your own clothes! My friend Ninnie helped me make this Icelandic wool sweater with raspberry red yarn from Léttlopi.

Sara Bäckmo i snön med en vackert mönstrad tröja i rosa grundfärg.

My beautiful raspberry red sweater was made with the pattern Riddari. It's one of my favorites! Photo: Maria Fors Östberg.


I have always loved working with fabric, ever since I was a child. For example sewing, knitting, crocheting and spinning. The women in my family taught me and I'm so happy to keep the tradition alive and teach my children too. They love finger crochet and my oldest is really good at regular crocheting too.


Knitted baby clothes

Knitting has been a part of my life for a long time. I got really creative shortly after turning 20, and was actually thinking about selling my creations and patterns.

I knitted like crazy when I was pregnant with my first child. I made so many beautiful clothes for my baby! I used to say that they were fit for a prince, since I made a lot of frivolous design choices. Ruffles were a must! The clothes were of course small so it didn't take me long to finish them. My drawers are still full of these garments: little sweaters, trousers, dressers and plenty of tiny hats.

Later, I had more children and less time. Especially with the garden. So I put my knitting needles to rest in a basket, and they stayed there for several years. I remember spending many hours in front of the sewing machine too. I actually miss it a lot, but I try to remember that I still know how and that I can start sewing again as soon as I have the time.


A knitting friend

I was expecting my fourth child Loa in the winter of 2016. And then something amazing happened. The Hector family moved to our village! Two amazing adults and three children who were almost the same age as ours. And they had another one on the way too, who was due just two weeks after our fourth. There aren't exactly plenty of families with four children out there so we were just thrilled to get to know them. All of us meet up for playdates now. It's great! Friederike and Sven also enjoy growing vegetables, and Friederike is a huge fan of knitting. She is insanely fast too! A colorful Icelandic wool sweater is her favorite. I got so inspired that I had to try making one too.


Sara står med färgranna betor i en vacker hemstickad tröja.

This is my first Riddari. I love clothes with a lot of colors. This one is no exception. Photo: Philip Bäckmo.

My first Riddari sweater

My first sweater was purple and made with the pattern Riddari. It's very wintry and so large that I can wear several garments underneath. I was so happy that I was able to finish it. It might look difficult to make, but it was actually surprisingly easy. I used yarn from the brand Léttlopi, which is really easy to work with.

I decided to get another one as soon as I finished the first sweater. My main motivation was a gorgeous raspberry colored yarn that I really wanted to work with. I was nervous that I wouldn't have enough of it though, since it was almost completely sold out. Ninne offered to find yarn and helped me knit it too!

It all worked out just fine. It was as if the sweater was done just a few days after we got the yarn. And the timing was perfect, right before we took the pictures for my fourth book. I wore my Icelandic wool sweater on the cover together with a hat that my friend Ninnie had made. The sweater is such a splash of color against the white snow and makes my face look so rosy. Thank you for helping me knit it Ninnie!

The pattern for Riddari can be found here at: Ravelry knitting community, it's free of charge to register and then you can download some patterns for free or buy patterns that you like.


Sara Bäckmo står i en snöig trädgård med en korg ed grönsaker.

The wool keeps me warm in winter. The perfect sweater for cold days! Photo: Maria Fors Östberg

Knitting again

Since I regained my love for knitting, I suddenly have a lot of large and small projects going on. Knitting is such a great way to be creative! I love finding nice patterns that I can change up a bit and make them my own. And I also make my own patterns for everything from hats to scarves, wrist warmers and simple sweaters.

I would love to share some of my other knitting projects with you! Hopefully, it might inspire you to start crafting too. I will tell you more about my long cardigan in 25 different colors, and I have also decided to share instructions on how to make my favorite hat.

My husband Philip told me that the sentence "Sara Bäckmo's sweater" is a common search term on Google. So that's why I wanted to tell you more about my Icelandic wool sweater. I have noticed that people get very interested whenever I share something about knitting on my Instagram. So I think I share this hobby with many others. Do you love knitting too?


Knitting a Riddari sweater

I can definitely recommend the pattern Riddari and yarn from Léttlopi if you are interested in knitting your own Icelandic wool sweater. The pattern is very popular in Iceland and you can find it everywhere in knitting magazines at the library, or buy and download it online. The yarn is reasonably priced, the pattern is simple and you can knit it quite quickly. My pink sweater is in size XS and the purple one is size S if I remember it correctly.

It's really easy to buy your yarn online. As you can see, the Icelandic wool sweater is made with several different colors. Try getting a color map if you don't quite know which colors look nice together. Good luck!
/Sara Bäckmo

27. December 2018