Tuesday, September 27, 2011

SkillShare: Spinning Yarn, Knitting & Crocheting

Posted by Crystal Pepperdine, Founder and Executive Director of Flint Handmade

Our first SkillShare Workshop, funded by a generous grant from the Ruth Mott Foundation, was a success!

Cathy from Ewe to You Yarn Shop in Grand Blanc and her assistant, Robin, taught us the basics of spinning yarn, knitting and crocheting in the back room of The Lunch Studio.

Future workshops will be in the main room of The Lunch Studio, but due to the popularity of Bikes on the Bricks downtown on the same day, we had to use the back room.

Fortunately, we all fit...and, several bikers all decked out in full riding gear poked their head into the room to see what we were all doing! A lot of them thought it was pretty cool!

We all received a Community Education Tool-Kit in a Flint Handmade grocery tote with a book on knitting, a book on crocheting, knitting needles, a crochet hook, a small skein of cotton yarn and a drop spindle made from a CD!

Our first lesson was in casting on for knitting. Robin (standing) teaches Danielle and Robin C. (sitting, l-r) how to cast on.

We used two different color yarns to practice our stitches.

Cathy and Robin (standing, l-r) help Danielle and Robin C. (sitting, l-r) learn the basics of knitting.

Danielle makes good progress on her yellow dishcloth.

I actually learned how to knit, too! Here's the beginnings of my turquoise dishcloth. I had to make up a little song to remember the steps: "Knit. Wrap-a-dee. Pull it through. Push it off."

Maureen was a more advanced knitter, so she got to practice special stitches. Good work, Maureen!

The two Robin's work on Robin C.'s (left) bright green dishcloth.

Lunch is provided at all SkillShare Workshops! See how excited Maureen is about her delicious sandwich?!?!

After lunch, Cathy taught us how to spin yarn using a drop spindle made from a dowel rod, a cd and a small hook. Robin C. looks on with a layer on roving over her shoulder to prepare to spin.

Danielle and her drop spindle!

Finally, the part of the workshops I was most excited about...spinning on a spinning wheel! Cathy shows me how to draft (thin out) the roving and spin it onto the bobbin. It took time and patience, but I finally got the hang of it!

Spinning turns roving (top skein) into yarn (bottom skein).

Maureen was a natural at spinning! 

While Cathy taught us spinning on the wheel, Robin gave a quick lession in crocheting. The workshop lasted 5 hours, but the time flew by!

Happy, crafty ladies showing off their handiwork at the end of a very productive SkillShare Workshop!

We still have four more workshops scheduled!

View the complete list at our original SkillShare Blog Post and email us at flinthandmade@hotmail.com if you would like to register.

We wish to express our gratitude to the Ruth Mott Foundation for funding our SkillShare Workshops.

Our participants get to take home all of the supplies used to share their new skills with friends and family and continue the tradition of the domestic arts and crafts of our American cultural heritage.


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