Happy Birthday Bonnie. May your special birthday be the beginning of a happy new year. March 24th is the day!
When Bonnie was preschool age, her mother gave her fabric and a needle to work alongside her while she sewed. Various aunts and relatives taught her to crochet and then later to knit. being a crocheter first, she knits Continental, holding the yarn in her left hand. Her skill is exemplary.
Last week I photographed Bonnie and many of her lovely knitted things- I met Bonnie a couple of years ago at an in-person Sunday Afternoon Stitch Group held at McWalker Yarns store in Millvale Pennsylvania. This past year during the Pandemic we have “met” online a couple times a week on the Zoom Sit and Stitch groups sponsored by McWalker. Some of you from the Pittsburgh area may have shopped for yarn more than a decade ago in her former store – Bonnie Knits in Monroeville. She has a vast knowledge and experience and is always willing to answer questions or help another knitter decipher pattern directions. Need a little math assistance to figure out gauge? Ask Bonnie.
I haven’t been inside anyone’s home for a long time. We spent a couple of happy hours together and she gave me a peek into her knitting life and home. There are drawers, bins and closets filled with beautifully hand knitted sweaters, skirts, dresses,socks shawls, mittens , gloves and hats Handmade rugs from her mother and a gorgeous quilt made by her great grandmother were heirlooms to admire.
Most people who follow the blog know I like to knit. A lot!
I joined Woolswap in 2018. Gayle Stone, of Australia, created the international program in 2016. I have “met” the loveliest woolswappers in many different counties by participating in the program. Gayle does a great job matching up fellow knitters with similar interests.
Here’s a quick pic of Gayle in Brisbane and me in Millvale at the yarn store. Thanks Amy and Gayle.
My sister saw this sign outside the West Village Knit & Needle and sent me these photos.
Friday night McWalker Yarns hosts a Sip and Stitch Zoom meeting. A great way to connect during the Pandemic. While we were knitting and chatting, we started talking Halloween. One of our participants lives in Australia, so our evening meeting is her morning coffee time. Gayle was saying it will already be Halloween for her at next Friday Night’s Sip and Stitch Zoom meeting. I thought, wait I will don the mask that is on my dining room table. I sewed this costume for my son Mark in the early 80s.
So here I am sporting the ET mask and Gayle in Australia photographed me and sent it. With her gracious permission I am sharing her photo of me.
I “met” Gayle through the Woolswap program she runs, as well as many other knitters around the world, sharing fiber, creativity and inspiration with one another.
It’s me. You can see my knitted shawl peeking.
Monday afternoon I popped over to McWalker Yarns store in Millvale. Robin was working and helped me get a pattern and some Rowan Felted Tweed yarn to make a sweater for the NaKniSweMo Challenge -to knit a sweater in the month of November. I’ve seen Robin on Zoom Stitch meetings for several months but it was great to see her in person. AND lucky for me she had the Star Wars socks with her, the ones we’ve been watching the progress on as she knit them during our virtual meetings.
All I can say is WOW. They are something to see. She is an advanced knitter, clearly.
Meet Robin, attorney by day, knitter extraordinaire on her days off. Here she is showing her pair of hand knit Star Wars socks. Amazing work. She says they are a true labor of love and the recipient is a real SW fan so they are going to be thrilled when they unwrap them at Christmas. Don’t think the recipient will be seeing the blogpost but want to keep the details vague. Look at her expert knitting letters with tiny stitches May the Force Be With You. Alas, she created the designs herself by finding a multitude of charts on the internet and adapting them for the scale of socks but perhaps they will inspire you to design your own Star Wars socks.
I heard from a friend a couple of weeks ago that her daughter’s doll was having some wild hair and could I possibly knit a doll hat? Of course. They came to the front porch, masked, the other morning and brought the dolls so I got to take a before and after photo. We even had an impromptu knitting lesson with some worsted and those kid needles, where one needle is red and one blue. I am sure a followup lesson in is our future.
Our favorite hairstylist Lauren suggested a good Dawn Liquid shampoo and a drop of conditioner MIGHT help revive the doll hair.
Wednesday afternoon, Amy at McWalker Yarns in Millvale PA, unboxed several Pittsburgh designs and also Rainbow Sock Blanks created exclusively for McWalker Yarns by Yarn over New York.
“What is a sock blank?”
“A sock blank is a long, rectangular piece of knitted fabric created by a knitting machine and then dyed or stamped with color. The edge of the sock blank isn’t bound off — it’s loose so that you can knit from it, pulling the stitches out as you go. The basic idea behind the sock blank is that you’ll get an amazing yet unpredictable colorway when you knit with it. “
As I folded the pairs, I realized all the hand knit socks I’d made (plus one spring green pair knit my Sabine Bornemann at Die Wollnerin in Berlin) were clean at the same time. It’s the second time I’ve washed all of them since shelter in place started. I read that Sabine’s hand dyed yarn store in Berlin has now reopened, allowing two customers at a time
Lots of places and friends represented by the different yarns from Alaska, Germany, Norway, Arizona, New Zealand, Florida. Can you find the yarn I received for my July 4th birthday? (thanks Joanne). The sock monkey pair? There’s the desert plant dyed yarn and gifts from woolswappers halfway across the globe.
My new method is the hand wash setting on the machine and hung out to air dry in my bathroom. I used to hand wash them and roll in a towel.