Knitting With Traditional Lettlopi Yarn

Traditional lettlopi yarn in natural coloursKnitting with lettlopi yarn is a completely different experience! I know I was nervous before ordering my first batch of the traditional Icelandic wool, so as I work on my second lopi sweater, I thought I’d write up a quick review.*

Lopi is made from Icelandic sheep wool. At this point, you’re probably rolling your eyes at me and thinking “Big deal, I knit with wool all the time!”

But lopi really is a little different from other yarns.

Icelandic sheep create unique lopi yarnIn order to survive the harsh Icelandic winters, Iceland’s sheep are a little different to your regular sheep. Their fleece has two layers, the outercoat (or tog), which is long and “hairy” looking. The thel, or undercoat, is short and soft. Basically, the sheep are dressed for winter like the rest of us: a tough outercoat to repel the weather, and a soft, warm layer underneath!

So that’s lopi. We then have the modifiers:

  • Álafoss Lopi. Álafoss looks like a place I would seriously love to visit!. It also refers to a bulky weight of yarn, which is great for outdoor garments.
  • Plötulopi. This is literally unspun “plates” of lopi. Because the fibres aren’t twisted, it can be frustrating to knit with. Here’s an excellent review of Plotulopi.
  • Léttlopi, or light lopi is worsted weight, and knits up into garments that can be worn indoors as well as out.

Whichever lopi you choose, it all comes from Ístex, the only mill in Iceland.

I’ve only worked with Lettlopi (so far…), so that’s all I can speak to.

What’s Lettlopi Like to Knit With?

It’s great! It’s a little “hairy”, but really soft. It can be a bit splitty, so blunt needles are better than sharp.

Here’s what it looks like knit up at13 stitches per 4 inches (on the left) and 20 stitches per 4 inches (on the right).

Knitting with lettlopi yarn at different gauges

You can see even at the looser gauge, the lettlopi has expanded to fill in the gaps, making for a more solid(ish) fabric than we could expect from a smoother yarn at a similar gauge.

Modern Lopapeysa handknit sweaterWhat’s Lettlopi Like to Wear?

It’s warm. Seriously warm. Remember that long outercoat? It repels water, and fills in any gaps in your stitches. The undercoat traps heat, keeping you cozy.

Because it’s kind of hairy, you do want to wear a layer under it. I’m not sensitive to wool or itchiness, so I’m happy wearing my stopover over a short-sleeved shirt, but a garment at a tighter gauge (i.e., more outercoat hairs per square inch) would probably be less comfortable.

It does soften with use and washing though (gentle handwashing of course! Lopi felts.).

How Durable is Knitting with Lettlopi Yarn?

Very! I’ve worn my Stopover pretty much non-stop for a year, with no noticeable pilling or damage. A garment knit to a tighter gauge would be pretty much indestructible – as far as handknit garments go.
Lettlopi yarn colours

Give me Lettlopi’s Details.

  • Lettlopi is pure Icelandic Wool.
  • Each 50g ball contains – 100 metres/109 yards
  • Recommended needle size is 4-5mm
  • Oh and it comes in just about every colour you could wish for.

Where Can I Buy Lettlopi Online?

Luckily, it’s pretty readily available! It’s even worth checking with your local yarn shop, as they might carry it. I’m not associated with any of these stores, but you can buy lopi:

  • Wool Warehouse. I haven’t bought lopi from here, but I have bought a lot of other yarn, and they’ve always been great. (Worldwide shipping. Free shipping in the UK when you spend more than £25)
  • Icelandic Wool Store. This is where I bought my most recent lopi stash. (Free shipping to UK/Europe. Worldwide shipping)

If those options don’t work for you, try:

That’s a lot of words about a little bit of yarn! Tell me in the comments if you’ve knit with lopi, and what you think of it.


*I have in no way been compensated for this post, and all views are my own. Here’s another excellent lopi review you might like to read next.

Leave a Comment

Instagram

Recent Posts: amiguru.me

When Travel Knitting is Everyday Knitting

When Travel Knitting is Everyday Knitting

As crafters, we think a lot about Travel Knitting in capital letters – what to pack for a long plane ride and so on. This is travel knitting. But what about when travel knitting is every day knitting? No soft Mediterranean breezes, no pool, no sangria (well… maybe just a little). Instead, just you on the […]

How to Crochet Amigurumi Raindrops

How to Crochet Amigurumi Raindrops

All week I’ve been humming raindrops keep fallin’ on my head. All because of these adorable crochet amigurumi raindrops! Summer showers aren’t so sweet (especially when you’ve forgotten your umbrella!) but these wee raindrops are. I crocheted these little guys as an illustration of how an amigurumi’s face can change it’s whole appearance. Seriously, it […]

Knitting a Welcome Blanket

Knitting a Welcome Blanket

Ami Blog Why crochet amigurumi? Knitted Amigurumi How to get started with Amigurumi Guru How To Crochet Everything Techniques What is the best yarn for amigurumi? Me – Select -AmiBlogWhy crochet amigurumi?Knitted AmigurumiHow to get started with AmigurumiGuru – How To Crochet EverythingTechniquesWhat is the best yarn for amigurumi?Me Pinterest Instagram RSS Knitting a Welcome […]

Amigurumi Sausage Dog (Just Add Mustard!)

Amigurumi Sausage Dog (Just Add Mustard!)

Stop the presses: this amigurumi sausage dog might be the cutest thing I’ve ever crocheted. “Who me?” “Yes you!” The pattern is from Adorable Amigurumi. A friend picked it up for a couple of francs at a second hand book sale. Look at this cute lil book! So many new creatures to crochet! A post […]

Knit Princess Charlotte’s Sheep Cardigan (Here’s the Pattern!)

Knit Princess Charlotte’s Sheep Cardigan (Here’s the Pattern!)

I’m not a royal watcher, but I get the appeal. Those royals! They’re like a real life BBC drama (I will watch a good BBC drama about the royals. I get it. I do). So when I saw this pop up on my Facebook feed, I knew I had to share it. Little Princess Charlotte, […]