May 2021 Meeting Recap: Faith Humphrey Hill of Dartily discusses Mirror Knitting, Member Tips, and Show & Tell
by Melanie Chen
President Kimberly Williams opened the meeting (marking over a year of being virtual!) and noted that despite the challenges of recent times, the Puddletown Knitters Guild is going strong and increasing membership steadily. Kimberly explained that Puddletown is joining others across the US, Canada, Australia and New Zealand to acknowledge the traditional Native inhabitants of the land and honor the truth in our history. Each meeting will now start with an acknowledgement of the diverse array of indigenous tribes and bands who had traditional village sites around the metro Portland region. Kimberly also welcomed Elle Gough to the Board as the new Event Chair and shared that Elle is already working on some fun stuff outdoors for the summer. Hooray, Elle!
Meeting Location--Ideas Needed: Our growing guild needs a new home! We're looking for an affordable event space for future member meetings. Does your office rent a large room? Or perhaps there's a gym or cafeteria at your kid's school available to rent. Send your ideas to firstname.lastname@example.org
2021 Charity Knitting: Puddletown knitters can continue to donate Winter Warmth items (such as machine washable hats, socks, scarves, mittens or even sweaters) for Rose Haven, a day shelter and community center serving women, gender non-conforming folks, and their children experiencing poverty, trauma, and intersecting issues. If you have items to drop off or need yarn, just send PKG an email.
2021 Membership: RENEW ONLINE! We're happy to have guests at our events. After a meeting or two, we ask that you support our programs by becoming a member. Visit PuddletownKnittersGuild.com/Membership to renew or join.
Community News: Brooklyn Tweed is pleased to announce their new pattern collection, Water’s Edge, which sets a course for knitting adventure with five fresh patterns. Also, the merino/cotton blend Dapple is now available in two new gorgeous, saturated hues: black walnut and currant. Yummy!
Member Tips with Anna Lorton: Good news for those who loved last month’s swatching tips--Anna’s swatch form is now available online. For this month’s tips, Anna first shared ideas to hold working yarn while walking, such as attaching a paper clip with super glue to a plastic take-out container. Anna’s main tips were about yarn winding for balls and cakes. The key to success? Don’t wind the yarn too tightly! Densely-wound yarn will lose its elasticity, and won’t have bounce. If you get a skein that is really hard/tight, then immediately take it out because this is not good for the yarn. Anna advised that we aim for yarn that is soft and squishy, but not so loose that it tangles. Anna also demonstrated using an umbrella swift. Anna cautioned against allowing the swift to be powered by the ball winder, because your cake may be wound too tightly. She powers the umbrella swift with her hand so that the cake is loose enough.
Next month’s topic will be things knitters can do with crochet hooks. As ever, Anna welcomes inputs and suggestions from the membership.
FEATURED SPEAKER: Programs Chair Sharon Grayzel introduced May’s guest speaker, fiber artist Faith Humphrey Hill of Dartily. Faith, who has worked in the industry for twenty plus years, is well known for her portraits, and is a champion for Mirror Knitting, a technique that allows the knitter to work stitches from the left hand needle to the right hand needle, then knit them back again from the right hand needle to the left...all without turning the work.
Faith shared her personal history and motivation for incorporating knitting into her portrait work, and also let us know that she is a professional sample knitter for the Bellish App (https://www.bellish.co/) that is available for iPhones. This handy free app allows knitters to specify what they want in a pattern.
Mirror Knitting (aka Backwards or Reverse Knitting) is an efficient technique for short rows, large projects that are heavy to rotate, and colorful yoke cardigans that you don’t need to steek! This technique is interchangeable with other methods within a single project. Faith demonstrated Mirror Knitting technique in both English and Continental styles of knitting and shared the technique’s impact on stitch structure. She also gave us a hand-out to help understand this process.
“Mirror Knitting is so helpful,” said Faith, noting that it is fine to do both regular knitting and mirror knitting in the same garment, with some care taken to avoid twisting stitches.
Show and Tell and Raffle Prizes: Beautiful finished products were shared by several members. Really inspiring! You can watch below. This month’s raffle prizes included the Embody pattern set by Jacqueline Cieslak, an Opposite Coast Dyes drawstring bag and the Starlight Hat Pattern collection, which contains one pattern by our member Emme Von.
June Meeting: Next month’s meeting will feature Jesie Ostermiller of Knitty Jo Designs, who will talk about Mastering Color Choice on Thursday, June 10th at 7 p.m. via Zoom.
Hope to see you there!
Want to watch the full meeting? Click here.
Missives from the fabulous women who got the ball (of yarn) rolling.