There was a tangible excitement in the air at Craft Days on Saturday, as we all brushed up our long-tail cast ons and deliberated over colours of DK yarn. What were we so eagerly anticipating you ask? Well, for the first time ever, we were being paid a visit by one of knitting's famous podcasters in the form of Nathan Taylor, a.k.a The Sockmatician!
For those of you unfamiliar with Nathan's work, you can find out a bit more about him in this previous blog post, and find his YouTube channel here. Briefly though, we can tell you that Nathan is passionate about (as the name would suggest) sock-knitting, but also a technique called 'double-knitting', which he swung by the shop to teach a workshop on! And so, we all found ourselves listening intently to his many tales of double-knitting adventures, and feeling slightly apprehensive about starting our own...
Jane was lucky enough to join the workshop - here's her own account of the afternoon:
"The double-knitting technique uses two colours of the same weight yarn worked together to give a fabric that is totally double sided and bound together, one side is the reverse of the other! So if you make a pink heart on a grey background on one side, you will get a grey heart on a pink background on the other. Nathan showed us samples of some of his designs for scarves and hats, which were pretty amazing! He then took us through the stages of getting started and actually doing some 'Double Knitting'. A lot of head scratching was involved and I for one was totally exhausted by the time I got home from the extreme mental workout that had taken place! The 3 hour workshop passed in a flash and most of us were left wanting more! Nathan is totally charming and has a relaxed and humorous approach to teaching and so made quite difficult technical instructions fun to follow. As we made our way across the rows, tongues out in concentration (mine anyway) Nathan jumped around sorting out YMI's (yarn management issues) and correcting mistakes with the use of a crochet hook. Our little heart coasters came to life! We kept our energy levels up with a vast supply of home baked American choc chip cookies and a spectacular rainbow cake (made/supplied by Yvonne) and several gallons of tea! Nathan is on a quest to convert every knitter to 'Double Knitting' one at a time and, fittingly, his mantra is 'OSAAT' - one stitch at a time!"
If you have been inspired by this, Nathan has promised to come back in the Autumn to teach another beginners workshop for double knitting and a more advanced workshop for those who want to learn more. Keep an eye out in future newsletters and the website for dates and times.
In the meantime, here's a few more pictures of the session to whet your appetite!