We’re All in One Big Knitting Guild Now

Life has changed, yet we suddenly are all connected in ways we never imagined. Like yarn spun out of the same fiber, we all share a commonality that binds us together, even as we are cut into separate skeins of yarn and knitted into individual garments.

These past few months, I’ve worked on a sequel to my book, The Prayer Shawl Chronicles. In that book, members of one small community find that they are connected in ways they never imagined. They become close friends and give to each other, both anonymously and within intimate relationships. 

In my book-under-construction, The Knitting Guild of All Saints, this community has fizzled out and collapsed. Members of the local knitting guild have gone their separate ways, found they need to take care of small children or move to be near family. They’ve retired or found new community or just don’t attend any more. Yet as they all move out into different communities, the love and connections they made as part of the knitting guild move out into the world to form new loves, new communities, and new life. It’s as if the whole world of knitters and those they love have become one big knitting guild. 

In writing this book during the pandemic, I’ve realized that that’s what has happened to all of us knitters in the real world as well. We may not get to socialize in person at our local yarn shops or knitting groups. But we’re still connected. And lately, many of us have sought out our online knitting communities like we never have before. 

We knitters are all in one big knitting guild now. We’re all still there – virtually – to ask “what are you making?” or “what pattern should I use with this yarn?” We’re still there to cheer each other on in our knitting lives…and in real life as well.

Blessings to all my knitting friends, everywhere, 

Cindy

Cynthia Coe is the author of The Prayer Shawl Chronicles, a collection of interrelated short stories about knitters and those they meet through knitting and sharing prayer shawls. Available in e-book for US $4.99 and in paperback for $14.99. Read it for free if you have Kindle Unlimited! 

Craft Dates – Will Someone Have One and Invite Me?

Hi Friends! A new book came out today, and I want to share the basic idea of it with you: a Craft Date– a party to get together with friends and make a craft within the space of a couple of hours, plus refreshments. 

The concept of a craft date is to have a get-together with friends, have some food and drinks, and everybody makes a craft together. Every attendee is given a kit of supplies with everything you need to make a craft during the party – yarn, needles, pattern, or whatever supplies needed to do the craft at one sitting. The hostess has everything ready to go when the party-goers arrive, so that everyone can get going on the craft, help each other, and have a good time.

I would love to attend a craft date, and on a regular basis. Of course, I realize someone needs to put in a good amount of work to plan a craft date, gather and purchase supplies, provide refreshments, and host the party. But I’m thinking what a great idea for women’s clubs of all kinds, church groups, and local yarn shops. As a former church program planner, I’m thinking this would be a great way to get people together, perhaps monthly, to form connections and invite new people into a community. The effort would be well worth the time spent planning and rounding up materials. 

Would I pay a fee to participate? Oh yes. Instead of attending a “class” at a yarn store, I would much rather pay to attend a “date” or “party” with an emphasis on building friendships and learning a skill I could complete and take home with me in the space of a couple of hours. Why didn’t somebody think of this before?!

In our polarized, often over-digitalized world, knitting and crafting offer a chance for people of all walks of life to sit down and get to know each other in a pleasant, non-threatening, enjoyable, and welcoming community setting. As an added bonus, craft dates – duh – teach people the crafts we love so much and open them up to newcomers.

So I hope those of you who own yarn stores, plan events, or host women’s groups will consider sponsoring a craft date soon. (And I hope you’ll invite me!)

Blessings, Cindy

A Year of Creativity: A Craft Date Planner to Meet, Share, and Createby Petra Hoeksema; Lidy Nooij; Miriam Catshoek; and Bregje Konings, is available on Amazon in paperbackonly, currently on sale for $14.01 in the U.S. I especially liked the usefulness and practicality of the crafts featured. All of the crafts can be done in the space of a couple of hours. A few recipes are featured, as well. I hope this idea catches on! Thanks to the publisher, Quarto Publishing Group, and NetGalley for an advance digital copy of this beautiful book.

Cynthia Coe is the author of The Prayer Shawl Chronicles, a collection of interrelated short stories about knitters and those they meet through knitting and sharing prayer shawls. Available in e-book for US $4.99 and in paperback for $14.99. Read it for free if you have Kindle Unlimited!