Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Nordic Knitting Conference

It is Sunday night, October 7, 2012, and I am sitting in the Seattle-Tacoma airport waiting for a flight home. The fourth biennial Nordic Knitting Conference has just ended, and my brain is mush.

It all started Thursday morning, at 4am, when I got up and slipped out to the Indi airport. I checked in and boarded with multiple double pointed needles (thank goodness they made it through!), a project in progress, and fun knitted goods to wear, as well as other goodies.

I flew through Houston and made it on time to Seattle where my friend Karin picked me up, as well as knitting/spinning teacher Carol Rhoades. We boogie to downtown to Carol's hotel, went to the nearby Weaving Works shop, where we ran into some of the other teachers, then went back to the hotel for dinner. What a delight! I got to meet Mary Scott Huff, Evelyn Clark, Pat Brunner, Mary Germain, Sandy DeMaster, and Annemor Sundbø! And, the food wasn't bad, either. For the conference the next day, local teacher Susana Hansson joined the others as well.

The Nordic Museum in Ballard, WA

Classes began Friday morning, early, immediately after the yarn went for sale from two vendors on the main floor and the gift shop with their newly imported yarn from a scrumptious Swedish mill.  Let's just say I was distracted there little while...

After I collected myself, and my new yarn, I boogied over to the Sunset Community Center for my first class, Latvian Mittens á la Irma, taught by Mary Germain and Sandy De Master.  What a delightful class!  These two ladies are knitters and spinners extraordinaire from Wisconsin.  They spoke of their history of knitting, and especially their friendship with an older Latvian mitten knitter in Milwaukee. Their handouts were excellent, and we went on to make a miniature pair of Latvian mittens.

That night, we had a lovely wine and cheese in the main lobby of the museum, and had fun talking with teachers and students and lots of freebies were given away.  

Saturday was Danish Traveling Stitches taught by Carol Rhoades, an excellent teacher, knitter, and spinner.  She is known for her work and editorial work for Spin-Off Magazine, and her multiple translations of books from Swedish and Norwegian to English.  I ended up with a nice wrist warmer, and plans for bigger things.

I also had a lovely surprise of seeing a dear high school friend, Anne, whom I had gotten out of touch with.  She lived in walking distance from the museum!  She came and collected me, and we walked to her house where she regaled me with stories and filled me up with warm potato soup and brownies!  Good stuff!

Saturday night was the banquet where Annemor spoke.  What an incredible story!  I think I will have to comment on it in another post, just so I can get this one published, but she is such a lovely women, so humorous and knowledgable, and just saved thousands of knitted goods in Norway from being shredded, then studied and wrote about what she learned.

Sunday was an all-day Norwegian Design class with Annemor.  Tickled the tired brain.  She really was a hoot as she shared the basics of a Norwegian mitten, insights on the symbols and designs, and a lot of funny stories.  

Lastly, what trip to Seattle is ever complete without a visit to Archie McPhee's?  You know how a picture is worth a thousand words?  I think this one counts.

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