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Category Archives: Knitting & Yarn Arts

Did you know there was a textile factory at Sutter’s Fort?

On a mini-vacation to Sacramento last week, I spent a little while at the Sutter’s Fort State Historic Park. For those unfamiliar, the Swiss immigrant named John Sutter founded the fort in the Sacramento Valley after getting a land grant from the Mexican government in 1939.  Sutter then created a flourishing agricultural empire, and a [...]

Fiber in the North State: Fiber Fusion 2013

A few weekends ago I treated myself to a trip to the Silver Dollar Fairgrounds in Chico for  Fiber Fusion 2013, an event put on by the Mount Lassen Fiber Guild. So yes, I mostly went because of my obsession with knitting – but much to my surprise, the spinners and weavers nearly out-numbered the [...]

Upcoming Event: Fiber Fusion on September 28

What is purported to be the largest Fiber and Quilt Show in Northern California will take place on September 28 at the Silver Dollar Fairgrounds in Chico, CA. Fiber Fusion 2013 will include an array of Northern California-based fiber related artists (plant and animal fibers), and vendors, as well as well as quilters. It looks [...]

Knitting on the homefront (WWI)

Knitting played a large part in women’s experience of WWI (1914-1918). That fact is recorded in historical collections across the United States, including rural Northern California, as well as across the world. As historian Susan Strawn notes in her book Knitting America, “By the time America entered the war, knitters around the world were already [...]

Southeastern European Folk Dress: A CSA Event with Dr. Elizabeth Barber

Earlier this month I had the rare pleasure of taking a Costume Society of America (CSA) Western Region tour of  Resplendent Dress from Southeastern Europe: A History in Layers, the current exhibition on at UCLA’s Fowler Museum, with one of the world’s foremost historians on the earliest known clothing. Dr. Elizabeth Barber is an expert [...]

I’m in Knitting Traditions Magazine !

Due to hit shelves on April 9, the next issue of Knitting Traditions not only includes 25 historical knitting patterns (including an article about Knitting and the Brontë sisters), but also has two extra treat: an article I wrote on the 40-year history of Jack Frost Yarn and a pattern I derived from a booklet [...]

Knitting: Fashion, Industry, Craft by Sandy Black

I was so excited when Knitting: Fashion, Industry, Craft by Sandy Black arrived on my doorstep. Black is a well-known clothing and textiles scholar from the London College of Fashion (who also founded the journal Fashion Practice). Sandy Black’s work in this book is not only fascinating, but satisfying to someone (me) who’s been looking [...]

Opulent Textiles from the California Missions

This past weekend I had the distinct pleasure of visiting the de Sassiet Museum at Santa Clara University for a Costume Society of America Western Region program, led by Elise Rousseau,  on the collection of liturgical vestments of the California Mission era. The skill and craftsmanship displayed within these examples are a beautiful sight to [...]

Kaffe Fassett: Dreaming in Colour (An Autobiography)

The new book, Dreaming in Colour, an autobiography by Kaffee Fassett, presents the story of this well-known, eclectic textile designer. Born in Big Sur, California, Fassett designed knitwear for Bill Gibb, the Missonis, and private clients (including Lauren Bacall and Barbara Streisand). Though he trained briefly as a painter, his creative outlets have also included [...]

YSL & Mondrian

In September 2011, I embarked on what would become a very long knitting project – completed this month, July 2012. It was titled “Mondrian Skyline” and can be found in The Ohio Mills Knitting Book. It appealed to me for a number of reasons – I could wear it, simple construction, easy fitting, but most [...]