Home Blog Patterns Books Schedule Workshop Tips Contact


NOTE

Additional information re: fees, dates, and requirements appears at the end of this document.

Please pay attention to SKILL LEVELS: failure to do so will mean a difficult experience for some and a frustrating experience for others.

Some workshops and all shorter presentations use a power point projector. I will bring my own. But if I am giving this presentation in a large auditorium in which a small projector will not work, then you will need to make arrangements for a larger projector. (These are usually on hand in larger venues and set up in a projection room at the back of the space.)

CREATIVITY

Once we understand the nature of creativity, we'll know that it lies within each of us, and we’ll appreciate how important it is to nurture. To come to this understanding, we need to see the stages we will encounter, what happens in each stage, how to get a running start, where we might get stuck, how to move forward once stuck, and what qualities we need to succeed. This presentation answers all of these questions and is well illustrated with examples and anecdotes. (And while knitting is the medium through most of this is illustrated, this work applies to most any human activity.)

SKILL LEVEL anyone
ENROLLMENT unlimited. 
SETUP theatre or classroom; table for projector, screen, extension cord
HANDOUTS 1p bibliography + 1p quotes (available upon request)


WHY DO WE DO WHAT WE DO: the importance of working with our hands

This presentation speaks to what knitting (or other hand work) offers—-from alleviating boredom, to making us happy, to promoting good brain health, to contributing to our economic recovery. Participants will see examples of knitting, although this talk applies to all hand work. It is a wonderful feeling to understand why we love to do what we do--and why everyone should be thusly engaged!

anyone
ENROLLMENT unlimited
SETUP theatre or classroom; table for projector, screen, extension cord
HANDOUTS 1p bibliography + 1p quotes (available upon request)


THE KNITTING EXPERIENCE: how do you get there from here?

Many have asked if I knew I would devote my professional life to knitting, if I know how it happened, if it was part of a long-term plan. The short answers would be “No, no, and no.” The long answers require a little more introspection and are fun to consider: what accidents (and there were many of those), fortunate incidents and encounters (and there were many of those), and what well-thought out plans (and there probably weren’t as many of those as there should have been) brought me to this point? What lessons were learned, and how do the lessons of life and knitting constantly interact?

SKILL LEVEL anyone
ENROLLMENT unlimited
SETUP theatre or classroom; table for projector, screen, extension cord


WHERE DO IDEAS COME FROM?

People often ask the questions “Where do your ideas come from? Do they just come to you? How many ideas do you have? How do you know which are the good ideas? Did the yarn inspire the sweater, or do you design the sweater and then find the yarn?” While the answers could be, simply, ‘Yes, No, Maybe, AND All of the above,” this presentation talks about where ideas really come from, how anyone can get enough ideas, how to know which are the good ones, and what to do if you follow a bad one!

NOTE This presentation is very life CREATIVITY, except that it has more in depth examples of the process of creative problem solving applies to knitting.

SKILL LEVEL anyone
ENROLLMENT unlimited
SETUP theatre or classroom; table for projector, screen, extension cord
HANDOUTS 1p bibliography + 1p quotes (available upon request)


HOW WE GET IT ALL DONE: LEARNING, REMEMBERING, TIME MANAGEMENT.

I was the STUDY SKILLS ADVISOR at a large Canadian university, and I have taken the material I taught there—Time Management plus Learning and Remembering—and applied it to knitting. How do we learn?  How do we remember?  How much sleep do we need to be most productive?  What does knitting add to our lives?  What kinds of knitting should we have in our lives? How do we find time to knit the stuff we wanna knit?  How do we find time to finish the stuff we DON’T wanna knit?

SKILL LEVEL anyone
ENROLLMENT unlimited
SETUP theatre or classroom; table for projector, screen, extension cord
HOMEWORK If you feel so inclined, keep track of your time for an entire week, 1/2hr at a time, then add totals in the following categories: sleep, eating, transportation, chores, work, recreation.
HANDOUTS 1p


SALLY’S TOP TEN LISTS

We’ve all heard them: those ‘things’ people say or ask someone who is knitting in public. Are there appropriate responses? Unfortunately, sometimes not: we just have to smile and shrug and remain the good-natured people we are. But sometimes we CAN answer and turn these into positive and educative events! The universe then unfolds as it should!

SKILL LEVEL anyone
ENROLLMENT unlimited
SETUP theatre or classroom; table for projector, screen, extension cord


KNIT TO FLATTER AND FIT

A knitter who spends the time and energy to make her own clothes should be rewarded with a result that makes her happy and proud. It should fit, it should flatter, and there should be no mystery as to how this happened. But sadly, and too often, this is not the result. Why? Because the knitter chooses the wrong pattern OR choose the right pattern but follows the directions without questioning them OR makes the right garment but wears it with the wrong thing.

There are a few simple rules to follow for successful knitting: start with styles that flatter, knit with appropriate decisions for a personalized fit, then wear it with something that makes it look wonderful! This presentation looks at these decisions and puts the power for successful results into your competent hands. YAY!

SKILL LEVEL anyone
ENROLLMENT unlimited
SETUP 
classroom; table for projector, screen, extension cord.
NOTE TO ORGANIZERS Please do not confuse this 1-hour presentation with the 3-hour workshop. There is HOMEWORK for the latter.


WHAT DO YOU WANT TO DO WITH THE REST OF YOUR LIFE?

At different times of our lives, we are driven by a different sense of meaning and purpose. But as we approach our later decades, we can wonder if we’ve really accomplished all we were meant to. This presentation offers ways to look at our experiences and answer some of life’s most important questions.

SKILL LEVEL anyone
ENROLLMENT unlimited
SETUP theatre or classroom; table for projector, screen, extension cord


WHERE DO WE GO FROM HERE? Embracing change

Sometimes it feels as if life is all about change. Sometimes the changes are happy and smooth: other times they are difficult and messy. How do we learn to live with—embrace and appreciate—all changes? How do we learn from them, how do we recognize their pattern, how do we move forward when we feel stuck? This presentation speaks to life but is fully illustrated with knitting samples!

SKILL LEVEL anyone
ENROLLMENT unlimited
SETUP theatre or classroom; table for projector, screen, extension cord


MAKING THE MOST OF YOUR YARN COLLECTION

This presentation introduces ideas that knitters can employ to use, manage, and replenish a yarn collection! We’ll discuss the problems inherent in using multiple yarns and colours, we’ll see which stitch patterns will accommodate different weights and colours best, we’ll talk about how to arrange a yarn collection to make the most of it, plus much more. 

SKILL LEVEL anyone
ENROLLMENT unlimited
SETUP theatre or classroom; table for projector, screen, extension cord

CREATIVITY

Once we understand the nature of creativity, we'll know that it lies within each of us, and we’ll appreciate how important it is to nurture. To come to this understanding, we need to see the stages we will encounter, what happens in each stage, how to get a running start, where we might get stuck, how to move forward once stuck, and what qualities we need to succeed. This presentation answers all of these questions and is well illustrated with examples and anecdotes. (And while knitting is the medium through most of this is illustrated, this work applies to most any human activity.)

SKILL LEVEL anyone
ENROLLMENT unlimited
SETUP theatre or classroom; table for projector, screen, extension cord
HOMEWORK AND/OR SUPPLIES TO BRING paper and pen or pencil, one colourful magazine (knitting and gardening do not work as well as fashion or home décor), scissors (but you will not be cutting your book or magazine)
HANDOUTS 5pp


BORDERS AND BUTTONHOLES

This workshop explores the best techniques for these finishings that make such a difference in our knitted garments.  It covers basic maneuvers, four or more basic edging stitch patterns, and the very  best buttonholes.  Participants will never again struggle with instructions to "pick up and knit 137 sts along right front" nor with the question of how to make virtually invisible buttonholes.

SKILL LEVEL beginner intermediate and beyond
ENROLLMENT 24
SETUP classroom; flip chart and markers
SUPPLIES TO BRING yarn (same weight as homework piece, contrast colour is fine), needles appropriate for working an edging onto the homework piece
HOMEWORK Use non-textured, light-coloured yarns. Worsted weight is best. Block swatch well.

  1. Cast on 24 stitches: work 3" in stockinette all the way to the edge: do not work selvedge stitches in slip or garter.  DO EXACTLY AS WRITTEN: do not slip stitches and do not work short rows through what follows.  (You are shaping a round neck, in case you wonder.) At the beginning of the next RS row, bind off 6 stitches.  At the beginning of the next RS row, bind off 3 stitches.  At the beginning of the next RS row, bind off 2 stitches.  At the beginning of the next 3 RS rows, bind off 1 stitch. Work 8 rows straight.  Then bind off all stitches.

HANDOUTS 3pp


EMERGENCY MEASURES

Sometimes the most insight comes from the struggle one faces when something goes REALLY wrong.  But there are remedies for most any kind of 'disaster' in knitting.  Using these can turn a problem into a wearable garment while teaching us to be more intuitive and more confident knitters!

This workshop will discuss the problems that confront most knitters plus what to do if the garment is too wide, too short, too long, too narrow, too outdated in style, if a bad colour choice was made, if the edgings are not holding well, if the knitter has run out of yarn or forgot to make pockets, or if the garment has suffered a laundering disaster.

SKILL LEVEL beginner intermediate and beyond
ENROLLMENT 24
SETUP classroom; table for projector, screen, extension cord; flip chart + markers
SUPPLIES TO BRING a small amount of yarn, different color than homework's yarns,

HOMEWORK 
Use non-textured, light-coloured yarns. Worsted weight is best. Block swatch well.

  1. Work a 4" wide swatch in Stockinette (all the way to the edges, without treating selvedge stitches in slip or garter) until the piece measures approx 3" in length: work 1 RS row in a 2X2 color pattern (knit 2 stitches in MC then knit 2 stitches CC, carrying the alternate color behind, for 1 row only): cut CC: with MC only, continue in stockinette for 2”: bind off VERY LOOSELY.
HANDOUTS 2pp

THE SHAPES YOU WANT TO MASTER, KNIT, AND WEAR: Alternative hemlines

Straight hems are the norm in knitting. But we can make different choices other than a line that says This is how wide I am across this part of my body! Exploring alternative hems—diagonals or curved shirt-tails—means the option of more interesting and more attractive garments. Come see how easy this is and how to apply it to garment patterns you already own.


NOTE TO ORGANIZER
If the class is the first of these I have offered, I recommend FIRST CHOICES, BASIC SHAPES as an introduction to this material.

SKILL LEVEL beginner intermediate and beyond
ENROLLMENT unlimited. 
SETUP theatre or classroom; flip chart and markers
SUPPLIES TO BRING
paper, pencil, measuring tape, calculator (optional)
HANDOUTS 
7 pages


KNIT TO FLATTER AND FIT

A knitter who spends the time and energy to make her own clothes should be rewarded with a result that makes her happy and proud. It should fit, it should flatter, and there should be no mystery as to how this happened. But sadly, and too often, this is not the result. Why? Because the knitter chooses the wrong pattern OR choose the right pattern but follows the directions without questioning them OR makes the right garment but wears it with the wrong thing.

There are a few simple rules to follow for successful knitting: start with styles that flatter, knit with appropriate decisions for a personalized fit, then wear it with something that makes it look wonderful! This workshop has a lot of hands-on work that looks at these decisions and puts the power for successful results into your competent hands. YAY!

SKILL LEVEL anyone
ENROLLMENT 24
SETUP classroom; table for projector, screen, extension cord; flip chart and markers.
HOMEWORK It is essential that this exercise be completed. You will be disappointed if you don't do this! And please read this carefully, including the NOTE at the bottom.

1.        Dress in something close fitting. (We need to see your real silhouette. You may wear only lingerie, or you may add a bodysuit, a leotard, or tights. But do wear supportive lingerie.)

2.      Standing straight, with arms  slightly away from your side and feet together, have someone take a straight-on, full body (head-to-toe) photo of you. (Have the photo fill the screen as much as possible.)

3.        Print the photo onto plain paper (enlarging it to 8-10" tall).

4.        Trace your outline only with a heavy black pen: we don't need your photo anymore, only your outline. Bring your outline to class.

SUPPLIES TO BRING a couple of pages in at least 2 colors of light-weight (20lb or lighter but NOT tracing paper), light-colored paper (that you can trace your outline through); scissors; measuring tape; pencil; eraser
HANDOUTS
4pp

NOTE TO PARTICIPANTS Common homework and supplies errors are the following: arms too far from sides, feet not together, head not included, paper too heavy or too light (tracing paper does not work), photo brought instead of just silhouette, silhouette not outlined or not outlined heavily enough.



FIRST CHOICES, BASIC SHAPES

No matter how advanced or experienced we are, we run the risk of making a garment that looks awful. Why? We make decisions in the first 20 minutes that have everything to do with the success or failure of a project. What are those decisions? Yarn, color, stitch pattern, silhouette.

This workshop gives diagnostic skills to look at these decisions. And it then follows with basic pattern drafting for the set-in sleeve--our most universally attractive style. So even if you never design your own knitting, you'll have the tools to alter what you do knit to produce the best possible result.

NOTE TO ORGANIZER This class is wonderfully combined with KNIT TO FLATTER AND FIT.

SKILL LEVEL anyone
ENROLLMENT unlimited. 
SUPPLIES TO BRING tape measure
SETUP theatre or classroom; flip chart and markers
HANDOUTS 4pp


THE SHAPES YOU WANT TO MASTER, KNIT, AND WEAR: Armhole shaping

The easiest armhole to master is the drop shoulder. But most knitters find this not their most attractive style. Alternative shapes would be the modified drop shoulder, the set-in-sleeve, the raglan, and the saddle shoulder. All of these are more attractive, more comfortable, and certainly attainable for anyone interested in drafting her own patterns.


NOTE TO ORGANIZER
If the class is the first of these I have offered, I recommend FIRST CHOICES, BASIC SHAPES as an introduction to this material.
All of these shapes cannot be covered in one three-hour workshop. We can choose, based upon what other classes are offered and your customers' preferences.

SKILL LEVEL beginner intermediate and beyond
ENROLLMENT unlimited. 
SETUP theatre or classroom; flip chart and markers
SUPPLIES TO BRING
paper, pencil, measuring tape, calculator (optional)
HANDOUTS 
7 pages



THE SHAPES YOU WANT TO MASTER, KNIT, AND WEAR: Hourglasses and A-lines

We’ve all knit (and worn) lots of straight-sided garments. But we aren’t shaped that way! And most of the garments we buy are not shaped that way! What a wonderful thing to be able to produce knit garments with the same side shaping as the pieces in our closet that we love to wear. Because with either hour-glass of A-line shaping, the attractiveness of our knits is dramatically increased. So come see how easy this is and how to apply it to garment patterns--ones you may draft yourself or already own.


NOTE TO ORGANIZER
If the class is the first of these I have offered, I recommend FIRST CHOICES, BASIC SHAPES as an introduction to this material.

SKILL LEVEL beginner intermediate and beyond
ENROLLMENT unlimited. 
SETUP theatre or classroom; flip chart and markers
SUPPLIES TO BRING
paper, pencil, measuring tape, calculator (optional)
HANDOUTS 
7 pages


LEARNING TO LOVE INTARSIA

Intarsia (also known as picture knitting) is glorious stuff but not without it’s challenges. This workshop will explore techniques to create beautiful fabric, tricks to minimize the ‘mess’, and possibilities to design your own.

SKILL LEVEL intermediate
ENROLLMENT 24
SETUP classroom; table for projector, screen, extension cord; flip chart + markers
SUPPLIES TO BRING more homework yarn + part ball of light-colored yarn, same weight: colorful magazine (knitting or gardening do not work; fashion or home décor do), tapestry needle, one piece blank white paper, pencil, scissors.
HOMEWORK With worsted weight yarn in dark color and appropriate needles, cast on 20 stitches. Knit 5 rows, then purl 1 row.
HANDOUTS 3pp


STRIPES AND STRIPES THAT AREN’T

Stripes… oh so easy to knit! But who can wear them? The truth is that everyone can both knit and wear them. This workshop explores ways to build stripes, knit stripes, and match stripes. And then we’ll play with simple stitch patterns that knit like stripes but don’t look like stripes and can produce some of your favorite knitting.

SKILL LEVEL intermediate
ENROLLMENT 24
SETUP classroom; table for projector, screen, extension cord; flip chart + markers
SUPPLIES TO BRING more homework yarn + part balls of 2 other colors--variegated or solid
HOMEWORK With worsted weight yarn and appropriate circular needle, cast on 20 stitches. Knitting flat (not circularly), knit 5 rows, then purl 1 row.
HANDOUTS 3pp


TWO COLORS, TWO HANDS

Two color stranded is one of knitting’s most glorious traditions. This workshop explores the techniques we need to make beautiful fabrics with heavy emphasis on alternative methods of using your hands (and even your neck) to manage the yarn.

SKILL LEVEL intermediate
ENROLLMENT 20
SETUP classroom, flip chart and markers
SUPPLIES TO BRING more homework yarn + part ball another color
HOMEWORK With DK or finer yarn and appropriate size circular needle, long-tail cast on 120 stitches (or whatever number of stitches fits comfortably on the needle). Join work, and knit 1 round.
HANDOUTS 2-3pp


ESSENTIAL SKILLS (3hr)

No matter how advanced and accomplished we are, there are habits or holes in our knitting repertoire. Perhaps we rely upon the same cast-on, the same increase, the same decrease; perhaps we are confounded by selvedge stitches; perhaps we knit without the awareness that we have choices.

This workshop explores and explains the many techniques we should all have in our repertoire. We'll talk about which are best suited to each situation and why, and we'll practice them all with lots of hands-on experience. 

SKILL LEVEL beginner intermediate and beyond. (Very experienced knitters get a lot from this class, and so do newer knitters.) 
ENROLLMENT 24
SET-UP classroom, flip chart and markers
SUPPLIES TO BRING yarn, knitting needles, crochet hook
HOMEWORK none

HANDOUTS 10pp
NOTE TO ORGANIZER This is, obviously, a short version of the 6hr class. What is included in the 6hr class (but not this one) is the work of BORDERS AND BUTTONHOLES plus some time spent on seaming.

MENTOR SESSIONS
This class does not have an agenda except what is established by YOU. Come to class with questions--technique questions, style questions, fit questions, knitting emergency questions! Sally will address each participant's questions, drawing from over 50 years of knitting and 30 years of teaching. It's a fun class in which we discover that we share similar issues with other knitters and always have more to learn.

SUPPLIES TO BRING yarn and needles (because you never know when a hands-on demo will occur)

NOTES TO ORGANIZER

  1. These sessions can be any length and can include any number of students. I do ensure that everyone has an opportunity to ask questions.
  2. It’s difficult to establish the fee, the skill level, the enrollment: each situation can be different. We’ll negotiate these together.

ESSENTIAL SKILLS (6hr)

No matter how advanced and accomplished we are, there are habits or holes in our knitting repetoire. Perhaps we rely upon the same cast-on, the same increase, the same decrease. Perhaps we are not confident of our seaming or are confounded by the instruction to "pick up and knit 101 stitches around the neck edge . . .  evenly!"

This workshop explores and explains the many techniques we should all have in our repertoire. We'll talk about which choices are best suited to each situation and why, and we'll practice them all with lots of hands-on experience. 

SKILL LEVEL beginner intermediate and beyond. (Very experienced knitters get a lot from this class, and so do newer knitters. But because the work covers skills related to garments, these newer knitters should probably have made a sweater--or else the work won't have a context.)
ENROLLMENT 24
SET-UP classroom, flip chart and markers
SUPPLIES TO BRING yarn, needles, blunt tapestry needle, crochet hook
HOMEWORK Use plain, light-colored yarn throughout.  Worsted weight works best. Block both swatches.

  1. Work an approximately 3" X 3” square swatch in stockinette (all the way to the edges, without treating selvedge stitches in slip or garter), then bind off.
  2. Cast on 24 stitches: work in stockinette all the way to the edges until the piece measures 3" in length.  DO EXACTLY AS WRITTEN: do not slip stitches and do not work short rows.  (You are shaping a round neck, in case you wonder what is going on.) At the beginning of the next RS row, bind off 6 stitches.  At the beginning of the next RS row, bind off 3 stitches.  At the beginning of the next RS row, bind off 2 stitches.  At the beginning of the next 3 RS rows, bind off 1 stitch. Work 8 rows straight.  Bind off all stitches. 
HANDOUTS 10pp
NOTE TO ORGANIZER There is overlap between this and Borders and Buttonholes.

MAKING THE MOST OF YOUR YARN COLLECTION

This workshop shows knitters how to use, manage, and replenish a yarn collection!  Participants will learn ways to use up bits of this and that plus those 4-6 balls of something heretofore unusable.  They will also learn that they may now buy one ball of anything that appeals to them, knowing they will use it well.  The elegance of the resulting fabrics, plus the fact that they look nothing like odd-ball knitting, comes as a very exciting discovery to participants in this workshop!

Students will explore the problems inherent in using multiple yarns and colours: which ones go together, which stitch patterns will accommodate different weights and colours best, how to arrange a yarn collection to make the most of it, plus much more. 

SKILL LEVEL beginner intermediate and beyond
ENROLLMENT 24
SETUP classroom; table for projector, screen, extension cord; flip chart + markers
SUPPLIES TO BRING various yarns (weights and colours), various needles, large tapestry needle (blunt tip essential).
HOMEWORK Use plain, light-colored yarn throughout.  Worsted weight works best. Block the finished swatch.

  1. Find the needle size you would normally knit this yarn; drop down 2 sizes (as shown on a needle chart); convert this size to metric size; multiply by 2; find this much larger size needle in metric: with light colored yarn and this larger needle; cast on 12 stitches; knit 2 rows; change to stockinette, and work 2”; bind off.
  2. With any yarn and appropriate needles, cast on 15 stitches and work 2 rows stockinette, leaving work ready to work a RS (knit) row.
HANDOUTS 4pp


GENERAL NOTES

  • There can be overlap between classes: if you make choices that head in that direction, I will be sure to let you know so we can make alternative choices.
  • I require a minimum of 12 hours of teaching / travel date.
  • Fees are dependent upon the year in which I am teaching: please email me privately for this information.
  • Class limits are listed for each class. While I can occasionally take extra people, there is an additional charge 'per head' over the limit stated with the workshop itself.
  • Fees may be paid in either US or Canadian unless there is a huge differential between the two: we'll talk at the time. Normally, this is not an issue.
  • Teaching venuew within Canada fees require the addition of GST, and venues in Ontario require the addition of HST.
  • Additional expenses, beyond fees for teaching, are travel (flights + airport transfers + usually an extra for baggage), accommodation, food, photocopying of handouts.
  • I do have the following request with respect to accommodation. While I have billeted in the past, and been treated wonderfully by some very lovely people, it is difficult to get the R & R I truly need while living as someone’s ‘guest.’ (I also think it’s pretty difficult for the host, who might even be more tired after class than me!) Plus, I am allergic to cats and fluffy dogs and other things that I don’t always know until I am exposed to them. I have, in fact, come home sick from visits in other people’s homes. Therefore, I prefer to be accommodated in a hotel.
  • I have some dietary concens that are easily addressed at the time.

     home | blog | patterns | books | schedule | workshops | tips | contact