Welcome to the home of the Nutmeg Spinners Guild!
Our next meeting will be on Saturday, February 6, 2016.
The meetings run from 8:30 AM to 3:00 PM at
679 Farmington Avenue
West Hartford, CT
Bi-Annual Auction and Pot Luck
Directions to meetings can be found here.
Recommended From The Library
A note from our guild librarian: “As a knitter and spinner, winter is my favorite season for sitting by the fire with a project in my lap or on my wheel. I also enjoy relaxing with a good book on those cold, snowy evenings at home. Here are three books from the library that are perfect for this quiet season that follows the hectic holiday schedule, but also offer inspiration for those of you who are already planning your holiday gifts for 2016.”
Knitting in America by Melanie D. Falick – One of my favorite types of books is what’s often referred to as a coffee table book. Usually this kind of book is filled with gorgeous pictures of exotic or historic places along with fascinating stories of the people who live there. So I was delighted to find just such a book tucked away in the Guild library! According to her introduction, the author spent a year and a half collecting the stories and photographs in this volume and judging by the result, I think it was time well spent. The chapters are
divided into geographic regions of the U.S. – East, West, and Midwest. Each tells the story of a fiber artist, living and working in that part of the country and features one of the artist’s designs, modeled by a family member or friend. There are some very familiar names – Nicky Epstein, Norah Gaughan and Meg Swansen to name a few. There is even a chapter devoted to Connecticut’s own Selma Miriam! Best of all, the last section includes the patterns for all of the sweaters, hats, mittens and wraps pictured. This is a lovely book!
Homespun Handknit, edited by Linda Ligon and All New Homespun Handknit, edited by Amy Clarke Moore – These are sister books from Interweave Press, though perhaps mother/daughter would be a better analogy since the first one was published in 1987; the second in 2009. While both are collections of patterns specifically designed for handspun yarns, there are significant differences. The first was an offshoot of a contest sponsored by Spin-Off Magazine in 1985. A number of entries turned out to be made from handspun yarn and the book itself reflects these home grown roots. Though there are a few familiar well-known fiber artists, the majority of the submissions were from unknown, “amateur” knitters and spinners and each pattern includes a short bio of the maker or the story behind the item they created. The photos are of the handmade items themselves, resting on a wooden table or bale of straw or an off-white cloth as a contrasting background. Most of the creations were made with naturally colored wools with a few dyed pieces here and there. There is an overall rustic, homemade quality in the descriptions and patterns and the assumption is made at the beginning of the book that the reader is already familiar with the basics of knitting and spinning.
The second book is a bit more sophisticated. Most of the items were photographed using live models and the majority were made from brightly colored yarns rather than the natural browns and unbleached whites found in the first book. The instructions are more detailed, making the patterns accessible to beginners as well as more advanced knitters and spinners. Missing, though, are the bios and stories for each of the items; they’ve been shortened to an occasional sentence or two. Instead there is more information about the source and structure of the yarns in the “Spinning Notes” and the more common pattern information for needles, yarn classifications and gauges in the “Knitting Notes.” This second book is a bit more cosmopolitan than its predecessor. Separately, they definitely have different audience appeal, but taken together, they complement each other beautifully.