Sunday, February 12, 2012

Knitting Communities

Once upon a time there were no knitting communities. I was a lonely knitter. Yarn shops were few and far between and offered only yarn. Books and patterns were my resources and connection to other knitters. Slowly, gradually local yarn shops increased and offered classes and help with projects and techniques. Yarn companies developed more and more interesting yarns and designers multiplied in magazines and books. Then there was the Knitting Guild of America. Knitters were encouraged to start local groups.Thankfully and for inspiration, education and connection now knitting communities are everywhere. Here are just a few in Tucson:

Knit Night at Kiwi Knitting every Monday 7-9 pm. (Small fee for non-Kiwi Klub members:. Also there is Sock Group that meets from 1-3 pm on the first Saturday of the month. Most of the other shops in town also offer similar get togethers. Check those out too.

The Yarnivores meet at the Murphy-Wilmot Library every Thursday evening from 6-7, though participants are allowed to stay & work/knit/crochet longer if they'd like. It's all ages and everyone is welcome.

Old Pueblo Knitters offer casual knitting groups and all are welcome. See the website for more information.

Tucson Handweavers and Spinners Guild has a Knitting Study Group. See for information on this group.

And don't forget Ravelry, Knitter's Review, Knitty - great online communities for knitters.

Book Review: Knit One, Purl a Prayer: A Spirituality of Knitting by Peggy Rosenthal. This book offers gentle stories about knitting, spirituality and community. There are a some patterns here also. Two patterns are designed by Kiwi owner, Lynn Davis; one in collaboration with Marilyn Schubert, the Kiwi manager. The author's preface resonates with me and my sense of connection from knitting: "When I decided to learn to knit a few years ago, I thought I was learning so I could teach the craft to my granddaughter... Little did I know what an enrichment knitting would become for my own life; how it would help me in sickness and in health, in times of traquility and times of stress- how knitting would become a means of prayer."

And Another Knitting Community: Combat Knitters Patch People
In the Winter 2011/12 issue of Vogue Knitting, Daryl Brower profiles the Combat Knitters. Sparked by a transcontinental Ravelry connection between Lt. Cmdr. Jennifer Almy, a family physician at the NATO Role 3 Multinational Medical Unit in Kandahar, Afghanistan, and Kathleen Marra in Arlington,Virginia, the group bonds over knitting through challenging times. Carrie McKie, owner of The Yarn Sellar in York, Maine, leads a KAL via Skype and has arranged materials donations. The patch, designed by Almy, tangibly unites the troops and their supporters. To raise funds for sweatpants, socks and pullovers for injured troops sent to Germany, the Yarn Sellar is selling the Combat Knitters patch. McKie works with a local vendor to inexpensively source the clothing—comfort gear, really. Each patch is $10, with $5 going towards the fund. See The Yarn Sellar’s website for details.
Submitted by Carolyn Webb

1 comment:

Peggy Rosenthal said...

Speaking of knitting communities, Kiwi is featured in the chapter on community in KNIT ONE, PURL A PRAYER. And the book is dedicated to Lynn Davis, as a "creator of community."