Tuesday, 5 April 2011

Orenburg Lace workshop

Galina Khmeleva
On 26th and 27th March, thirteen members of the Blue Mountains group of the Knitters' Guild of NSW, participated in an Orenburg Lace workshop with Galina Khmeleva, a Russian born knitter now living in the USA.

On Saturday we learnt how to cast on, follow graphs and bind off. The beautiful delicacy of Orenburg Lace belies the fact that it is mostly made up of only knit stitches, with a combination of yarn overs and knitting stitches together. It is deceptively simple.

participants working on their first sample (on Saturday)
We were given homework to knit a border of four "teeth" and two simple garter stitch squares of fifteen stitches and thirty rows each.
a participant's unblocked sample #2 (from Sunday) - borders and corner
On Sunday we learnt how to graft without sewing, how to turn corners and how to block our lace.
Galina demonstrates her method of blocking

pinned out for blocking

Late on Sunday afternoon, Galina also gave us a demonstration of using the Russian support spindle.
Russian support spindle

On both mornings and throughout the lunch break, there were books, magazines and yarns for sale and lots of Galina's knitted items for us to admire.
Look at me!

Galina's quick wit and dry sense of humour made the workshops all the more enjoyable. Her recount of the history of the Orenburg region and the lace making industry were fascinating.

Thank you, Galina; we look forward to your next visit.

March 2011

  • Katoomba sheltered workshop requires ponchos. They have people that must wait for the workshop bus in cold conditions. Getting a sweater or coat on and off is time consuming and ponchos are ideal. However after many washings, they are running low. Anyone who wants to help should see Noreen. They are to be knitted in acrylic as it isn't as heavy as wool and will stand up to repeated washing. All sizes are needed.

  • Patterns for the puppets for Samaritans Purse boxes are again available from Terry.

  • The Craft Fair was held at Rose Hill for four days. Terry had three sweaters on display which attracted lots of comment and admiration. People were very surprised that a man had designed and knitted them. One woman saw the patchwork sweater and wanted the pattern, however Terry's sweaters are not charted they just evolve. He did offer to sell it to her for $500 but she was not happy to spend that much. More than 200 memberships forms were handed out during the 3 days .
  • Our President, Merrin, talked about the AGM and thanked all that made the effort to come. The new constitution was passed and a copy will be sent with the next newsletter. The newsletter has been held up so that all the information from the AGM can be included.

  • Thanks was given to Clare for her work as the newsletter editor. She is stepping down after several years.

  • Terry was elected Vice President but will remain our convenor. Merrin was re-elected as President.

  • A verbal diary project is underway to get memories of the original Guild members explaining the history and background of the Guild in NSW.

  • A proposal has been put to the guild that group names be location rather than locale so that they are more specific. No changes will be made without extensive consultation with each group as there is a lot involved in a name change.

  • The new Katoomba group hopes to open May 7th and then be run on the first Saturday of the month from 1.30. It will be held in all new rooms in the Katoomba town centre which has 2 rooms, an exhibition space and a full kitchen.
Those attending the Orenburg Lace workshop are reminded to bring $25 to cover yarn, 2.5mm -3.5mm needles, lunch and afternoon tea.

On 9th April, the Blue Mountains Bus Company is running a bus trip to the Farmers Markets in Orange and the Yarn Market at Molong. Pickup at Panthers and various places in the Blue Mountains.

 A workshop was held during today's meeting in which we were introduced to the techniques of entrelac knitting. The goal was a 6" share of garter stitch knitting. Participants voted to have a second workshop covering knitting entrelac "on point", in either garter stitch or stocking stitch.

some of the participants in the workshop

The raffle was won by Rhonda.

  • Retail – wooldance yarn and fibre
  • Workshop - part 2 of the entrelac workshop
  • Afternoon tea – Robyn M, Rosalin, Monica and Lynne

our capable MC
President Merrin with a piece of her jacket
designed by Jane Slicer-Smith
Kate's White Lies cardigan
Ambassador of Love mitten
Jo's shrug
Denise's crocheted blanket
Venetta's fair isle cardigan