All about Karin

It’s easy to learn from Karin. She has a unique sense of humour which makes you laugh and then anything you are trying to learn becomes easy because you can see the funny side of what is not going right. She has helped many of us achieve her 10 stitch blanket featured in the images above . She has done that with a lot of patience and tolerance peppered with the funny things she says. We become fearless and just do it. Sonya, our roving reporter, is bringing you Karin’s story this week and it’s great to see how much her travels and linguistic skills have played such a big part in her love of yarn:

All About  Karin  (well, nearly all…)

I have to admit, it was hard to prize information from our Karin. Lithe of body, young in looks, and clothed with a mantle of modesty, she had me digging to find out anything about her!

I learnt to knit at school and my Oma, who was actually Italian, in spite of her title, taught me about knitting. I was about eight or nine, as far as I can remember. In fact everyone in my family who showed any signs of getting bored was taught to knit, including my uncle! However, for a long time my knitting got me nowhere because school and studies took over.

When I went to Southern Africa, I worked as a research assistant, dealing with the Namibian Herero tribe, a tall very proud tribe. Although they don’t wear their magnificent clothes for every day life, whenever there is a meeting or occasion of any formality, on go the traditional costumes. And those hats! The women walk so straight and tall, probably as a result of carrying  considerable loads on their heads. They had a phonetic language but not a written one. We worked in consultation with these people to create a written language. They wanted first of all to have the Bible written and translated in their own language.  The African women were knitters! Their mothers and ancestors were no doubt taught to knit by the former German colonists. So these women inspired me to take up knitting again.

Then I went to live in England and New Zealand. But it was only when I came to Australia eight years ago that I started knitting again. I wanted a new challenge. So I took up spinning and revived my interest in knitting. I’ve taught our group here, how to knit shortened rows within a ten stitch pattern achieving a clever triangular corner. I never thought I would be teaching others how to do such things!

With Karin’s skills, creeping out from under her modesty mantle, one can only suspect that this interesting soul has a deal more to teach us. Watch this space…

PS With a great show of courage and skill, Karin has mastered the somewhat terrifying opening and locking of the club room door, with a series of button pressing, coding and sequencing. Not for the faint hearted!

You can find out about the Herero people on Wikipedia.

Herero Women

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Dyeing workshop

Christies Beach 4th February 2019It was a beautiful 22 degrees and a perfect day for dyeing out on the veranda ! We opened the glass wall doors and let the light breeze and sunshine in. We should all like to thank Hilary for being so good at organising another dyeing workshop this year because those of us who participated had a lovely time and achieved what we wanted. Jan1, Hilary and Alexis all helped us with how to get the best colours and results. Rubine was a popular colour but we were just having fun trying to work out how to get the colours we wanted. Some were dyeing carded fleece, others just washed fleece and Cathy tried some rose fibre. We were using Earth Palette cold dyes and so the dyed fibre was going to go home to sit in the sun in a black bag for the day. Dyeing a skein of wool had to be thought out carefully so that it would knit up in an effective pattern. This is where the experienced people could be very helpful to the beginners. We’ll be bringing our dyed fibre back next week for show and tell and so we’ll be able to see how it all turned out. It’s a process which really makes you think and then you have to just do it!

Christmas Lunch

Christmas lunchChristmas lunchAt our last meeting we celebrated the end of our year with a lovely Christmas Lunch. Marjorie and Pam ensured everyone was properly served. John, Christine and Sonya made sure the dishes were done and then people like Wendy and Margaret made sure it was all running smoothly. Peter and Marina took photos. We all pitched in where necessary and it was a truly cheerful, Christmas event. We stopped to gather around the big table to eat lunch together and to chat. Not that we ever stop talking. One of the great things about our group is we are full of ideas and information to share and so it never stops. We were happy to get back to our wheels and creativity afterwards. Our Kris Kringle presents had had to be something we would use to do with our yarn arts and crafts and there were some lovely ideas and people brought along thoughtful presents so everyone was a winner. Nothing like something new to play with. Christine had brought her little electric Eel Wheel to spin on and we still love it. She had also brought along the most interesting folding stool which was easy to carry, easy to put up and then, as she showed us at lunch time, could double as a solid little table as well. How convenient 🙂

We have had a good year. We have run some very successful events to fund raise for charity and we have had some successes with our things going into exhibitions and shows. Our workshops have been inspiring and we have produced some really creative items this year. We had plenty to celebrate and look forward to another good year next year.