Icelandic Alafoss lopi wool yarn and free knitting pattern
What is Icelandic Alafosslopi?
Alafoss lopi is a bulky lightweight single-ply wool yarn spun from 100% Icelandic sheep wool. The yarn is a chunky to bulky weight. There is no other yarn quite like it except the lighter-weight version of the same blend, Lettlopi wool yarn which is approximately half the thickness of Alafoss lopi. The name Álafosslopi comes from the old mill in Iceland called Álafoss (replaced by Ístex in 1991). Álafoss is the name of the waterfall (foss) that alimented the spinning mill at the end of the 19th century. This classic yarn is the oldest wool yarn still in production in Iceland.
Length and weight: approx 100m (109 yd) | 100g (3.5 oz)
Gauge 10x10 cm: 13 stitches and 18 rows
Needles: Size 6 and 6½ mm (UK 4-5) (US 10-10,5)
Yarn Weight; Bulky, chunky
Fiber Care; Hand wash and lay flat to dry.
The yarn comes in 100g / 100m balls.
What weight and size is Alafoss Lopi yarn?
Alafoss wool yarn is a bulky weight yarn, which means it is generally thicker and heavier than standard yarns. Each ball of Alafoss-Lopi yarn is 100g (3.5 ounces) and contains approximately 100 meters (109 yards) of yarn. The wool makes up to chunky weight knit patterns on a 6mm - 6.5mm needles (US size 10 - 10.5). Ideal for winter accessories and garments and comes in gorgeously muted colors as well as a variety of undyed shades.
How many colors are for Alafoss lopi yarn?
Álafoss lopi yarn comes in a wide range of colors, from natural earthy tones to bright, vibrant hues, making it suitable for a variety of different projects. Alafoss Lopi yarn is typically available in a range of 37 to 48 solid colors, including natural shades like white, cream, gray, and brown, as well as a variety of bright and bold hues such as pink, blue, and green. These colorways can add depth and visual interest to knit and crochet projects.
The color selection chart of Alafoss lopi contains a sample of all current colors of the Icelandic wool yarn, so you can touch and feel the wool at home. The color chart give you a good overview of the different colors and shades and how best to match them together.
Alafoss lopi color card. You can buy it here
What can you make of lopi wool yarn?
Álafoss Lopi wool yarn is a versatile and popular choice for a wide variety of knitting and fiber arts projects, especially those that require warmth and durability.
Álafoss wool yarn is most commonly used to knit warm and cozy traditional Icelandic-style sweaters, known as lopapeysa. These sweaters typically feature a circular yoke design and are knit in the round from the bottom up. Clothes knitted from Álafoss Lopi are cosy and lightweight. The bulky weight of the yarn makes these sweaters thick and warm and the yarn containing long fibers that aid in water resistance. Knitwear made with Alafosslopi are ideal for outdoors use rather than indoors.
In addition to sweaters, Álafoss Lopi yarn can be used to knit a variety of other cold-weather garments and accessories, such as hats, scarves, shawls, mittens, and socks. The yarn's bulky texture also makes it well-suited to knitting home decor items, such as blankets and throw and beautiful pillows.
Because of its unique texture and rustic appearance, Álafoss Lopi yarn is also sometimes used in fiber arts projects that emphasize texture, such as weaving and macrame.
What can I substitute for Alafosslopi?
There are several alternatives to use instead of Álafoss Lopi yarn and mix other wool yarn with Álafosslopi.
Lettlopi yarn is the lightweight product of the Icelandic sheep and it is half the weight of the Álafoss lopi and is made of two strands of unspun lopi slightly twisted together. Like Álafoss Lopi, it is made from 100% Icelandic wool and comes in a range of natural colors. Léttlopi is ideal for creating garments and accessories that are warm but not too bulky. Lettlopi has been one of the best-selling yarns for Icelandic sweaters. You can mix Léttlopi and Alafosslopi when knitting garments and these sweaters, Ranga in black and brown and Saga are f.ex. made with both Alafoss lopi and Lettlopi.
Einband is one ply lace yarn and is more like a light fingering and is the finest Icelandic wool yarn. This lace-weight yarn is also made from Icelandic wool and has a delicate, fine texture that is perfect for creating shawls, wraps, and other lightweight accessories. It comes in a variety of colors, including some striking jewel tones. Two strands of Einband together knit about like the Léttlopi and it can be used with a strand of unspun Plötulopi to make it stronger. You can mix Einband and Alafosslopi when knitting garments as this beautiful neck warmer Skjóla.
The unspun yarn, Plötulopi, is made from Icelandic wool can be used alone or held together with other yarns to create warm, cozy garments and accessories. When knitting with 2-3 strands of Plötulopi is similar as using Álafoss lopi and the garment will be a super light and super airy. It is not exactly an alternative as it makes a bit different fabric but it works fine. You can mix Plötulopi and Alafosslopi when knitting garments and these sweaters, Nightfall and June are f.ex. made with both Alafoss lopi and Plötulopi.
All of these yarns are great alternatives to Álafoss Lopi and can be used to create a variety of warm, cozy, and stylish projects.
How to soften and care for Icelandic Alafosslopi?
When you first wear an Icelandic Lopapeysa, you might notice its rustic texture. However, after the first wash, the garment will become noticeably softer and feel pleasant to the touch. Additionally, as you continue to wear it, the wool will gradually soften further, so it's worth giving it a bit of time to break in.
To properly wash your garment, we suggest using lukewarm water with Lopi Wool Soap at a temperature of 30°C / 86°F. Allow the garment to soak in the water for approximately 10 minutes. Then, gently wash the garment in your hands and rinse it thoroughly in the warm water until the water runs clear. Be careful not to rub or wring the garment, but instead, gently squeeze the liquid through it. Once washed, lay the garment flat to dry and smooth it out while gently pulling it into the correct shape.
For the best results, we recommend purchasing our special Icelandic wool soap from our store and following the instructions.
Knitting Lopapeysa sweaters with Álafoss lopi
Knitting the authentic Icelandic Lopapeysa, pullovers and cardigans are fast and relatively easy projects. The Icelandic Lopapeysa is a traditional handknitted wool sweater and is known for its distinctive design, a patterns of stranded colorwork and the use of natural and undyed Icelandic wool. The lopapeysa is made of a warm Icelandic sheep wool and is often considered to be a symbol of Icelandic culture and heritage.
The word "lopapeysa" is a combination of the words "lopi" and "peysa," with "lopi" referring to the wool yarn used in the sweater and "peysa" meaning sweater, pullover, or jumper in Icelandic. Literally meaning yarn sweater or sweater made from unspun wool yarn. So, you can only call it Lopapeysa if it is made with Icelandic wool.
Alafoss lopi yarn is the perfect choice for warm, heavy-weight garments that breathe. This bulky yarn is a classic choice for knitting the authentic Icelandic Lopapeysa sweaters.
Alafoss lopi is easy to knit and super strong, so it will last for decades with proper care. Like all Icelandic wool, alafoss lopi is naturally water-repellant and insulating with soft breathability.
Knitwear from Icelandic wool yarn is breathable, water-repellent and durable and will last for decades.
If you want to replace Álafosslopi by Plötulopi, 2-3 strands will be enough to obtain the correct gauge.
Where Can I Buy alafosslopi Online?
There is a high demand for the álafoss lopi and other wool yarn from Iceland and it is not easy to get a hold of. Certain colors have run out from the manufacturer, but we monitor the availability of the Icelandic wool yarn and we normally stock large quantities. And can let you know as soon it is stock by sending you our newsletter. If you are interested you should subscribe to the newsletter.
Our online store: The Icelandic store, has plenty in stock. Look at the beautiful colors we have in the store.
Free Alafoss lopi knitting patterns
For centuries, Icelanders have been knitting with Álafoss wool yarn and it has deep roots in Icelandic history. Icelandic wool is lighter, warmer, and more water-resistant than that found elsewhere. Alafosslopi is perfect for contemporary and traditional designs and certainly lends itself to felting projects.
There is a high demand for the Icelandic Lopi yarns and certain colors have run out from the wool manufacturer in Iceland. Unfortunately, we do not always have all the colors of Álafoss lopi wool yarn available in stock. We monitor the situation daily and we deliver the yarns we can get our hands on.
So many beautiful colors and there is a reason why the Icelandic wool Alafoss Lopi is the best-selling wool in the world! But for now, we do have plenty of these popular colors. Hopefully these are your favorites. If you need help selecting alternate colors, we'd be happy to help you with that. We have professional Icelandic knitters that love to assist you.
Here are some popular free knitting patterns.
Here are knitting kits for Icelandic wool yarn.
Here are some beautiful knitting kits with Álafoss lopi wool yarn:
Men´s sweater knitting kits
Haust - Autumn sweater for men
Progress - sweater for men
Freyr - Traditional Icelandic wool sweater
Women's sweater knitting kits
Hvammur - Earth colored sweater
Benefit - Icelandic wool sweater
Vestur - Colorful wool sweater