Feelin’ Like a “Cool Kid”

Filed in Industry Insight by on September 24, 2014 0 Comments

If you have ever been invited to the cool kids’ table in high school, you know how I felt when I was invited to participate in the make. wear. love. retreat hosted by Amy Herzog.

Make. Wear. Love. retreat brochure

Amy is definitely one of the cool kids.  She is cool because she is fun, is newish to the industry, and has great energy; but she is also cool because she has great knowledge and fabulous designs.

A Bit of History

Amy and I actually met well over a year ago now when we were both recording our new (at the time) Craftsy classes.  She was recording in one studio, I was recording in the one next door, and so we had the opportunity to chat on our way back and forth to the studio each day as well as having the pleasure of sharing a dinner a couple of times.

Since then, Amy has launched a product I tried to create years ago, but was unsuccessful at the time. It is an application that actually creates custom-fit sweater patterns.  If you have not checked it out, you should definitely go look at this new software.  It is available through some local yarn shops, as well as online, and it is a fabulous concept.  I think my idea was just a little bit ahead of its time, and Amy has definitely implemented it in a spectacular, user-friendly way.

The Retreat

The make. wear. love. retreat is an extension of Amy’s book, Knit to Flatter and her Craftsy class of the same name.  But for the second-annual retreat, they were expanding to some additional teachers, and I was honored to be included as one of them.  But what surprised me was the topic that they picked for me to teach.

The topic? Finishing. I was suprised because I am not known that well for finishing; however, I am known as a technician.  And, as a technician, I understand all of the ins and outs about finishing, and of course, do have several finishing classes in my portfolio.

So, when she said, “Come teach,”  I said, “Absolutely!  I would love to be a part of this!” And when they said, “Teach finishing,” I said, “Absolutely!  I would love to be a part of this!”

The Surprise

Later, when I got some more details, I discovered that I also was going to be doing a presentation. It could be on anything I wanted in the arena of sweater knitting, but it seemed appropriate that I also make it on finishing.  So, what I have been working on for the last several weeks has been putting together the presentation slides and supporting information that I will be using this weekend for the make. wear. love. retreat.  My presentation is called Hacks for Finishing Sweaters: Make the process faster, easier, and neater.  As a bonus for readers, you can get a download of my free knitting hacks presentation (including my voice-over) right here, just by clicking this link.

What I am excited to see is how the presentation is received (both in-person and online).  It was really fun to work on because I asked myself the question, “Why does finishing not bother me?”  It is not my favorite thing by any means, but it never bothers me. I realized it is because I have several “hacks” that I use.  And so, some of these hacks you have been seeing in previous blog posts. Previously I have talked about short rowing shoulders, and I have talked about counting rows.  But this free knitting hacks presentation also discusses the cast on and how you can make it do some double duty.

My Favorite Trick

Last but not least, I also cover pick-ups.  Pick-ups are an easy thing for me because when I work in entrelac, every unit requires me to pick up stitches, so I get lots of practice. However, I had struggled with making entrelac reversible.

But then one day it came to me…..

I had been teaching a class called Reversible Fabrics and was actually talking about reversible pick-ups toward the end of one class. I suddenly had this giant “duh” moment and realized that the reversible pick-up was the solution to reversible entrelac.  So I  also cover reversible pick-ups because not only are they neater, they are actually faster to create, too.

So if you are interested in getting a screen cast of the presentation, I encourage you to click this link and download a copy for yourself.  In addition, you will receive several other emails when you confirm your subscription. These will include longer video clips of the clips that are included in the screen cast, as well as a bunch of other really useful information.

So that’s what I have been working on for the last week or so.  What have you been working on?


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