Back to Teacher Details
Most of us knit or crochet to relax. What do you do?
I love to spend hours or most of a day riding my bike in the hills around Portland. It clears my mind out like nothing else.
Whatâ€™s the most unlikely place youâ€™ve ever knitted or crocheted?
I knit pretty much everywhere I go, so thatâ€™s a tough one! Probably the time I brought my knitting with me to kill time between acts at a punk rock show. The bouncer saw what I was doing and had a million questions â€“ heâ€™d just learned to knit as well!
Which knitting and crochet luminaries (living or dead) would you invite to a dream dinner party?
Iâ€™d love to see what would happen if we got Katherine Cobey and Helle Jorgensen in the same room. Or Jim Drain and Kaffe Fasset. And of course Marianne Kinzel and Herbert Niebling. Iâ€™d also love to meet Gertrude Taylor, whose Americaâ€™s Knitting Book got me hooked so many years ago.
Tell us about your most unusual teaching experience.
Once when teaching a method for purling at an intro class at my local shop, I had a student exclaim â€śthis will never work for me!â€ť at the same time that another said â€śthis is the best thing, ever!â€ť I love it that thereâ€™s no wrong way to knit, and that moving our hands in different ways will make the same fabric.
Whatâ€™s your favorite tool in your knitting bag? Why?
You never know whatâ€™ll come out of my knitting bag. Tonight I was searching for my second needle and found a jalapeno pepper from our garden! Who says men donâ€™t carry purses? As far as tools go, I love my nostepinne â€“ you can really get to know the qualities of a yarn before you knit with it by winding it by hand.
Whatâ€™s the latest knitting or crochet technique you learned that rocked your world?
Last summer I learned single-strand double knitting â€“ where you make two fabrics at the same time working back and forth. The people at the retreat with me claimed they could hear the gears whirring inside my head as my designer-mind started racing ahead of my fingers â€“ it totally blew my mind.
When you look at another designerâ€™s work, what makes you say â€śwowâ€ť?
Iâ€™m a dyed-in-the-wool â€śprocess knitter,â€ť and I love seeing people poke at the boundaries of knitting â€“ whether that be a new or unusual construction, color combination, or technique, or just grabbing on tight to a design idea and seeing how far it will go. My favorite designs are both beautiful to look at and really fun to make.
Have you ever seen one of your designs on someone â€śin the wildâ€ť? Whatâ€™s that feeling like?
A few times so far â€“ itâ€™s electric every time.
As a famous knitting (or crochet) teacher, you must travel a lot.
Do you have any secret airport vices youâ€™d like to share?
I keep a jar of excellent coffee and a miniature electric kettle in my carry-on, then fill it with water from the drinking fountain and fire it up after Iâ€™ve passed through security. Thereâ€™s nothing like brewing yourself a cup of the good stuff while waiting for your next connection.
One last thing - what are you most looking forward to about STITCHES?
Everything! This will be my first STITCHES as a teacher and Iâ€™m totally psyched.