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Hand Spun and Hand Knit Cowichan Sweaters

Traditional Craft and Modern Day Style

The sweater design for Canada'a Olympic Team has caused quite a furor. This page will explain how a Cowichan Sweater is made. To order a Cowichan Sweater, please contact us.

Colours

Cowichan Sweaters are made from wool, the colour of which comes from the natural colour of the wool on the sheep. The wool is not dyed. The colours are white and dark brown or black and grays are achieved by mixing the two. No two Cowichan Sweaters can ever be alike for this and for other reasons as you will see.

Styles

Each knitter has a different style of knitting. Some knit loosely, others knit tightly. Measurements are made with the fingers, not with a ruler. Sweaters are knit as one piece. They are not, like the Mary Maxim sweaters, made in pieces and sewn together. The Olympic Sweater is based on the Mary Maxim model.

Cowichan Sweaters

Designs

Cowichan Sweaters originally had designs which were just geometric shapes lines and zig-zags. very much like the designs woven into the baskets. Certain of these designs were used by specific families. It was only much later that the knitters begain to incorporate animals, fish, birds and even Mickey Mouse!

Cowichan Sweaters are impossible to mass produce because of all of these things. But that is the beauty and the delight of these garments. Every sweater is an individual work of art, never to be duplicated.