Returning light

Friday Mar 25, 2022

View across the long grass of a Shetland coastal meadow to the sea at Hoswick. Looking south at twilight, the headland is visible at Levenwick.

Twilight is back. In Shetland, at this time of year, the days quickly begin to lengthen.

During the day the light is also changing. We've had beautiful, diffused light in Hoswick this week; the haziness that can come with spring.

View across a raised beach and pool and Hoswick, Shetland. Village houses and the sea are visible behind.

As the light does the knitwear we reach for.

With spring arriving, our thoughts have turned to a particularly useful throw-on layer: capes. These simple and easy-to-wear pieces have become a Nielanell classic, a sort of signature, and the garment we sell most of.

A model wears a contemporary Scottish knitwear - a cape in charcoal grey and stone white with an abstract pattern derived from work by Scottish artist Karlyn Sutherland

Our Byre capelet is a smaller cape in extra-fine merino.

In our online boutique, we have ten styles of cape to choose from—some in a large selection of interesting colours. Within the capes you'll also find shorter, neat pieces and longer garments too.

Please do drop us a line if you'd like any advice on the best style for you.


PS In the last few years, customers have told us that capes are very useful for Zoom meetings!

Model wears a lightweight contemporary poncho made in Scotland. It has lightly ridged texture knitted in cherry and navy.

Rigg cape

The rigg cape is nielanell’s bestseller—it comes in a myriad of colourways and suits everyone, worn poncho or cape-style.

7 colours in stock online

Browse Rigg cape

Designer, edgy knitwear - a cape with abstract and photographic patterning by Nielanell, Shetland made in Scotland.

Rani short cape

This cape is shorter over the arms, so that you can easily wear it under a coat.

The design of the textile is a Nielanell play on tradition: deconstructed Fair Isle, mixed with photographic imagery for a collection inspired by the idea of home.

Inky blue & antique white

Browse Rani short cape

Layering knitwear - an irregular dot pattern in turquoise and marl grey in a knitted cape, made in Shetland. Shown on a vintage mannequin.

Ebb-stanes cape

The pattern of this useful but elegant cape is partly inspired by pebbles revealed by a receding tide—'Ebb-stanes' in Shetlandic.

The fabric is luxurious merino, in reverse jacquard, which drapes beautifully. Wear it poncho-style, or straight—or how you like.

6 colours in stock online

Browse Ebb-stanes cape

Detail of neckline on designer Scottish knitwear. A finely knitted cape with abstract grey and stone white patterning.

Made in the Shetland Islands

Like all our knitwear, Nielanell capes are made here in Shetland. Skilled craftspeople work with the attention to detail and quality for which Shetland knitwear is world-renowned. 

Rural sustainability is an important part of our mission at Nielanell, and support of our local Shetland manufacturers is a key part of our ethos. 

An edgy designer knitwear cape, made in Scotland. Abstract patterning in orange and blue, knitted in extra-fine merino

Hoswick Paint cape

Elegant and comfortable, like all Nielanell capes, the Hoswick Paint cape can be worn in several ways. The familiar rooflines of the village become a motif worked in orange over a background of seascape blues.

Sea blues and orange / sea greys and yellow

Browse Hoswick Paint cape

Tagged with: making musings

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