Welcome to JMU UNWIND - a group of JMU employees interested in knitting, crocheting and other needle arts. JMU UNWIND was introduced as an Affinity Group in June 2018 and welcomes all to participate, regardless of skill level.
Spring 2019 - Knit and "Purrl" for Cat's Cradle
Knit and "Purrl" for Cat's Cradle workshops will be offered in the spring 2019 semester. All workshops are held in the Rose Library Maker Space. Check for class availability
The first Knit and "Purrl" for Cat's Cradle learn-to-knit workshop took place on January 25, 2019. Beginning knitters learned a simple cast on, the knit stitch and the bind off. Advanced beginners learned the long-tail cast on, the purl stitch and the basics of blocking. All students created an 8-inch square out of colorful chunky yarn. The squares will be woven into "cat mats" for donation to Cat's Cradle, a local nonprofit cat rescue organization.
Fall 2018 - Happiness is a Warm Blanket Project
The Happiness is a Warm Blanket (Learn-to-Knit) workshops have been a big success! Kristin and Kathleen led two workshops in October and November 2018. The workshops took place in the Rose Library Makery, and students learned to cast on, knit, and bind off to make a square out of chunky yarn. The squares were then put together to create blankets that were donated to New Bridges Immigrant Resource Center in Harrisonburg. The New Bridges staff has a number of families who need cold weather items, and they were very thankful for this donation. Stay tuned - Kristin and Kathleen plan to offer more workshops in the spring semester.
Our first meeting took place on June 15, 2018 at Black Sheep Coffee. We had a wonderful time getting to know each other and trading ideas for future gatherings. Thank you, Kathleen, for showing a few beginners the basics of knitting!
Resources Suggested by Members
Yarn and Patterns
Ravelry - a place for knitters, crocheters, designers, spinners, weavers and dyers to keep track of their yarn, tools, project and pattern information, and look to others for ideas and inspiration. https://www.ravelry.com/
A Guide to Knitting Yarn: Types, Weights, and How to Choose it:
KnitPicks - a great place to buy yarn online: https://www.knitpicks.com/https://www.knitpicks.com/
Other Groups in the Area
Shenandoah Valley Textile Guild - meets the third Saturday of every month from 10:15 to 1:45 at the North River Library Branch in Bridgewater. All skill types and levels are welcome. The Guild meets to socialize, but also offers casual classes and instructions in various fiber techniques. Their Facebook page is found under "Shenandoah Valley Textile Guild." https://www.facebook.com/Shenandoah-Valley-Textile-Guild-1009158052472448/
Needlepoint Guild - BA-09 Shenandoah Valley Chapter meets the 2nd Thursday of the month at 10:00 a.m. in the Virginia Quilt Museum, 301 S. Main St. in Harrisonburg. For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Knitting and Crocheting for the Greater Good
Here are some great ideas for using your skills to benefit others: https://spark.adobe.com/page/Dteqba7x25SZ2/
Knit Om - Knitting for wellness & conscious living (blog, newsletter, Facebook group): https://knitom.com/
10 Things I Wish I Knew Before I Started Knitting (blog post): https://yarnandthyme.wordpress.com/2017/02/26/10-things-i-wish-someone-had-told-me-before-i-started-knitting/#more-258
Skill level: Intermediate - 2-1/2 years experience
Current project or interest: I recently completed a "Tree of Life" square to donate to The Tree of Life Synagogue afghan project in response to the horrific shootings in Pittsburgh. It was a challenge - lots of different cable stitches. I also love to knit hats and plan to give them away at a local food pantry in January. I've found that hats are a great way to practice different types of knitting stitches and try different types of yarn.
Skill level: Advanced - 30 years
Current project or interest: I have been crocheting for almost 30 years. I have crocheted with thread up to super chunky yarn. I make just about anything, blankets, clothing, amigurumi etc.
I am a member of several crochet groups on facebook where I get inspiration as well as input and helpful tips.
I mostly crochet to give as gifts but I have sold a few items. I even designed my own amigurumi California Raisin when I could not find a pattern for one anywhere.
Interest(s): Everything! knitting, embroidery, crochet, cross-stitch, weaving, spinning, dyeing
Skill level: advanced
Current project or interest:I have been doing all types of needle work since childhood. My grandmother taught me to embroider when i was 5, learned to knit when i was 4, crochet, cross-stitch, needlepoint, weaving, spinning dyeing.....
Interest(s): Cross-stitch and knitting
Skill level: Cross-stitch: advanced, knitting: beginner
Current project or interest:
Interest(s): Knitting and sewing
Skill level: Expert
Current project or interest: I have knitted on and off throughout the years, starting making slippers when i was 12 or so. I knitted baby outfits when my oldest was born--she's now 30, but after her diaper failed to do the job and the outfit was ruined, I swore baby patterns off. The last thing I knitted (I think) was a cardigan. I want to get back into it as I have two grand-kids on the way!
I have done a LOT of sewing, from costuming to wedding dresses. I have upholstered furniture, made drapes, and quilted (though not regularly). Here's a picture of the last sewing project I made:
Interest(s): Knitting and spinning mostly, but I also crochet, weave, needlepoint, and sew.
Skill level:Advanced knitter, low to high intermediate others. Except for sewing... sewing is part of my profession, so I’m expert there. Not that one ever stops learning!
Current project or interest: I am not what you might call a monogamous maker. I have so many, soooooo many, projects in various stages of process. I always have a pair of socks going. I’m working on a couple of sweaters for myself with yarn I dyed. I need a new pair of mitts this winter. And I lost my hat last winter.
I have a Ravelry account (KathleenC) with all my projects, and stash.
Skill level: Advanced Intermediate - 40+ years experience
Current project or interest: I LOVE needlepoint. I have been stitching since I was ten! I recently taught my first needlepoint class through JMU's LLI called "Beyond Wool: Needlepoint Today". I started with painted canvases and basketweave stitch. After joining the American Needlepoint Guild I explored geometric designs with a variety of stitches and threads. I've now returned to painted canvases, applying those different stitch and thread techniques. I'm currently working on the Wizard of Oz characters but I am looking forward to learning how to smock from my 85 year old Mom.
Interest(s): Knitting, but some crochet and sewing
Skill level: Advanced knitter - 12 years. I don’t call myself an expert as I am still learning stitches and techniques, or re-learning some that I used years ago. I do, however, know how to fix almost any mistake. Have not sewn in years and only crochet when a knitting pattern calls for it.
Current project or interest: I have knitted all sorts of items: shawls, cowls, scarves, hats, coasters, dish cloths, sweaters, dog sweaters, console covers, tea cozies, baby items, socks, and decorations. I really enjoy making neck accessories and knitting in the round. Lace intimidates me. I want to make more shawls and tops, but shy away because of the time they require. I have more projects queued up than time to make them. My Ravelry account is JacquelynKay and has most of my projects.
Skill level: New knitter, excited to learn to read patterns and make hats and blankets!
Current project or interest: Coffee cozy so far, but excited to learn to read patterns and make hats and blankets!
Interest(s):I started off sewing with my mom when I was younger, and would like to get back into that more. More recently, I learned how to crochet from a friend two years ago, and have primarily been on a roll with that. These days, crochet has become a gateway to other needle arts like: cross-stitch, embroidery, needlepoint, quilting, and finally learning how to knit! I picked up a beginner cross-stitch kit and quilting coffee placemat kit that I can't wait to dive into. I'm also curious about Tunisian crochet patterns. My Ravelry username is: upturnedroots. I follow a lot of crochet artists on Ravelry and Instagram, and one of my absolute favorites is Hopeful Honey by Olivia Kent, she has great patterns and very helpful stitch tutorial videos on YouTube. Every artist needs great tools, and I am really into collecting crochet hooks and embroidery scissors. I have some shaped like the Eiffel Tower and a guitar! If I'm not buying my supplies at Michaels, Jo Ann Fabrics, and AC Moore, I enjoy Etsy, LoveCrochet.com, and knitting-warehouse.com for affordable yarns, patterns, and crochet hooks. I got some great Lacis Rosewood crochet hooks from Knitting Warehouse!
Skill level: Crochet - 2 years of experience, so intermediate-ish? There are always more techniques and stitches I want to learn! I want to learn how to successfully crochet with a magic circle this year, and get better with color changes and weaving in my ends. Anything else I dabble in - beginner.
Current project or interest: After crocheting a lot of scarves, infinity cowls, hats, headwraps, face scrubbies, catnip cat toys, pet blankets, washcloths, and dishcloths for friends and family - I am finally ready to make some things for myself! This year, I have plans to start my first home decor pieces. I have 2 pillow patterns near the top of my list, and am drafting 2 blanket patterns of my own. Before starting those, I want to make some beginner-friendly garment pieces for myself to get used to blocking, ease, and other elements of crocheting garments. I have 2 crop tops, 2 tees, and 2 cardigan patterns on my list of projects to make for the year.