Summer Knitting Fun

KnitcircusJun 13, '14

Sure, knitting seems like a winter sport, what with the sweaters and the wool, but we all know that love of knitting carries on through all seasons. Summer weather gives us a chance to travel, meet up and try unusual projects.

From Worldwide Knit In Public Day to Mystery-Alongs, Stitch’n’Pitch events, fiber festivals, knitting vacations, shop hops and special events, summer offers plenty of opportunities for knitters to enjoy knitting and the company of other knitters.


Tomorrow! Worldwide Knit in Public Day

June 14-22

manx yarnies 2013, Isle of Man, photo: Isle of Man Courier

manx yarnies 2013, Isle of Man, photo: Isle of Man Courier

World Wide Knit in Public Day (KIP) was started in 2005 by Danielle Landes to be celebrate the second Saturday of June. Now it’s expanded so much it starts Saturday (tomorrow) with events running around the world for a whole week! And when they say “worldwide, they’re not just talking about the US and Canada, but Brazil, Cambodia, Italy, Chile, South Africa, Spain…

Marshall Islands KIP, photo: Jambo Arts

Marshall Islands KIP, photo: Jambo Arts

Knit in Public Day is the largest knitter-run event in the world. Each local event is put together by volunteers who bring fresh ideas into planning the location and activities.

In the past some people have used this event to show the general public that ‘not only grannies knit!’. Knit in Public Day gives local knitters a chance to showcase who they are and what they represent.  Different groups who normally don’t meet with each other can find new knitters in their community through a shared KIP event.

This year’s KIP is coming right up!  And people have signed up with events from Michigan to Qatar, Latvia to Mexico, so check it out! The site is a bit tricky to navigate, but if you go to the Find a KIP page, there are two lists; the one on the left shows all of the countries plus the US, so to look for an event in your state, scroll all the way to the bottom past the UK and check for your location. The list on the right does not include US state listings.



Magnify Mystery-Along, by Laura Nelkin, photo: Gale Zucker

Magnify Mystery-Along, by Laura Nelkin, photo: Gale Zucker

Many knitters like to while away the sunny hours knitting something they’ve never even seen a picture of before! Mystery Knitalongs provide daily or weekly “clues” which create a new pattern, usually incorporating different designs or unusual construction. Shawls could include several different lace sections, for instance. While shawls are most often offered, Mystery-alongs can also include socks , blankets, hats, and other accessories.

TTL Mystery Shawl  image: Kirsten Kapur

TTL Mystery Shawl image: Kirsten Kapur

The lighthearted approach to knitting, with a fun surprise clue and a community of knitters experiencing the mystery together, make mystery KAL’s a perfect summer activity. Favorite designers like Ysolda, Stephen West, Laura Nelkin,  Anna Dalvi, Lee Meredith and Kirsten Kapur all host Mystery-alongs. To find out when new ones start, check out the Upcoming Mystery KAL Group on Ravelry.

A Selection of MKAL’s in progress or starting soon:

June 1- Summer Travels by Cindy Garland

June 1- TTL Mystery Shawl 2014 by Kristen Kapur

June 1- June Mystery Knit Along by Cilla Webb

June 1- Solid Socks Mystery June/July 2014 by Phyll Lagerman

June 4- Addiction- Shawl by Three Bags Fulled

June 7- Da Can You Hear Me MKAL by Meagheen Ryan

June 8- String Theory Mystery KAL by Janet Avila

June 9- Chaussette Mystere– Bamboo Folie by Annie Lussier

June 10- Magia Mystery Shawl KAL by Laura Nelkin (will have beads)

June 21- Ocean Breeze– Boo Knits

June 21- Urban Survival by Josh Ryks

June 23- Mystery Shawl 2014 by Jenna Krupar

July 1- We Are But Stardust by Rebecca Hill

July 1- Clue Sock and Clue Shawl by Verybusymonkey

July 6- Mary Lennox by Kate Poe

July 24- Heart on Fire by Lily Go

Fiber Festivals

photo: Wisconsin Sheep and Wool Festival

photo: Wisconsin Sheep and Wool Festival

Of course, summer would hardly be summer without fiber festivals! Sheep and wool festivals offer an unparallelled opportunity to see the source of much of our yarn in the form of sheep, alpacas, etc and to marvel at the skill involved in herding, tending and shearing them, as well as taking fiber classes, learning new knitting techniques and shopping the yarn-filled marketplaces. A wonderful resource for all of us, Clara at Knitter’s Review has compiled a calendar of all kinds of fiber-y events. Here’s a sampling:


14-15 Jasper County Fairgrounds, Colfax, IA Iowa Sheep and Wool Festival
27-28 Mitchell’s Lakeland Livestock Centre, Cockermouth, Cumbria, England 10th Annual Woolfest


11-20 Inuvik, Northwest Territories, Canada Canadian North Great Northern Arts Festival
17-19 Kintaline Farm, Benderloch, Scotland Gaelic Wool Festival
25-27 Castel Farms, Charlevoix, MI Fiber Arts Festival
27-Aug. 2 Medomak Retreat Center, Washington, ME Maine Fiber Arts Retreat


1-10 Historic Abingdon, VA Virginia Highlands Festival
2-3 Gib & Lou Reese Ice Arena, Newark, OH Mid-Ohio Fiber Fair
3-8 Halcyon Yarn, Bath, ME FiberME 2014
7-10 Renaissance Schaumburg Hotel & Convention Center, Schaumburg, IL Stitches Midwest
9-10 Rheault Farm, West Fargo, ND Fiber Arts Festival
13-17 Allegan County Fairgounds, Allegan, MI Michigan Fiber Festival & Workshops
22-23 Salt Lake County Equestrian Park, South Jordan, UT Great Basin Fiber Arts Festival
30-31 Bethel, MO World Sheep and Fiber Arts Festival

Stitch and Pitch


Stitch N’ Pitch brings together two favorite American pastimes, baseball and knitting. Come to a ball game and knit, crochet, embroider, cross-stitch or needlepoint while you cheer for the home team! Our hometown team, the Mallards, offered free bobbleheads to registered Stitch ‘n’ Pitch knitters.

Stitch'n'Pitch photo: SNP

Stitch’n’Pitch photo: SNP

Still upcoming:

June 15 8-10pm: Atlanta Braves vs LA Angels

June 23: San Francisco Giants vs Padres

June 25: Binghamton Mets vs Reading Fightin’ Phils

July 13: Chicago Bandits vs Pennsylvania Rebellion

Shop Hops/Yarn Crawls

photo: needlework unlimited store

photo: needlework unlimited store

Shop Hops, trunk shows and special events combine the fun of being out and about with the coolness of supporting your local yarn shops. Many stores offer special custom colorways, patterns or indy yarns just for the event, and you can often find delicious refreshments, too! Thanks again to Knitter’s Review for most of the events listed below.


26-29 Hew Haven, CT to Putney, VT I-91 Shop Hop Connecticut

June 27-28  Knitcircus yarns Trunk Show; Sow’s Ear Yarn and Coffee Shop


3-11 Chicago, IL * Chicago Yarn Crawl
9-24 Northern Colorado & Southern Wyoming Hot August Knits Yarn Crawl

8-10             Ohio and Northern Kentucky                        i-75 Yarn Crawl


1 Reed Point, MT * Great Montana Sheep Drive
13-21 Colorado Front Range Yarn Along the Rockies (Yarn Crawl)
19-20 Central Pennsylvania College, Summerdale, PA 29th Annual Knitter’s Day Out
19-21 Greater Boston Area Yarn Crawl Boston Yarn Crawl

Stephen and Stephen Bus Tour

Steven and Stephen graphic: StevenBe

Steven and Stephen graphic: StevenBe

Talk about some crazy summer fun! Knitting party guys StevenBe, owner of two Minneapolis yarn stores, and Stephen West, pattern designer from the Netherlands, will be hitting many stores this summer to meet with knitters around the USA! Watch for special custom colors and yarns at every stop.

June 18 Yarn Garage- Rosemont MN

June 19-20 Yarn Harbor- Duluth, MN

June 21- StevenBe- Minneapolis, MN

June 22- Yarnology- Winona, MN

June 23-24- StevenBe- Minneapolis, MN

June 25- John Fluevog Shoes- Seattle, WA

June 26-27- Makers’ Mercantile – Kent, WA

June 28-29- A Verb for Keeping Warm- Oakland, KA

June 30-July 1- Knit This, Purl That! – Pleasanton, CA

July 2, 5- Knitterly- San Francisco, CA

July 2- John Fluevog Shoes- San Francisco, CA

July 6- Hill Country Weavers- Austin, TX

July 7- Madtosh Crafts- Fort Worth, TX

July 8-9- Fancy Tiger Crafts- Denver, CO

July 11-12- Loops- Tulsa, OK

July 15-17- In the Making- Birmingham, AL

July 18-20- A Good Yarn- Sarasota, FL

July 22-23- Bella Filati-Southern Pines, NC

July 25-27- TKGA Show- Manchester, NH

July 29-31 NYC NY

August 1-2- Windy Knitty- Chicago, IL

August 3-4- String Theory- Glen Ellyn, IL

August 7-10- Stitches Midwest- Schaumburg, IL

Knitterly Vacations

Whether you’re carving out one day for a lovely knitting workshop, cruising on a ship with a talented instructor or boarding a bus to take in the hill country with your knitting in tow, fiber vacations abound!


6-10 Coast of Maine Maine Knitting Cruise with Bill Huntington
9-19 France Jean Moss Handknits Knit France Tour
10-13 The Brumder Mansion,Milwaukee, WI Wisconsin Knitting Retreat
12-15 Sunshine Mountain Lodge, Allenspark, CO Men’s Rocky Mountain Knitting Retreat
13-15 Arrowhead Ranch Conference Center, Lake Arrowhead, CA Griffin Dyeworks Fiber Retreat
15-22 The Dunloe, Killarney, County Kerry, Ireland Knitting Retreat in Ireland
19-22 Kahler Grand Hotel, Rochester, MN Zombie Knitapocalypse Retreat
20-22 Enka Middle School, Candler, NC Friends & Fiberworks’ Summer Retreat with instructors Franklin Habit & Abby Franquemont
20-22 Brickhouse Bed and Breakfast, New Bethlehem, PA Summer Knitting Retreat, tel. 814-229-1598
23-25 Coast of Maine Maine Knitting Cruise with Mimi Bird


3-7 Holiday Inn Conference Center, Marshfield, WI Meg Swansen’s Knitting Camp
10-14 Holiday Inn Conference Center, Marshfield, WI Meg Swansen’s Retreat 2.75
11-20 Inuvik, Northwest Territories, Canada Canadian North Great Northern Arts Festival
12 Brunswick City Park Building, Brunswick, MD Beat the Heat Fiber Retreat
16-19 Coast of Maine Maine Knitting Cruise with Bill Huntington
17-20 Sunday River Ski Resort, Newry, ME Maine Fiber Arts Retreat
17-20 Whitehead Light Station, Whitehead Island, ME Island Knitting Retreat
17-21 Holiday Inn Conference Center, Marshfield, WI Meg Swansen’s Knitting Camp 2
20-27 Alaska Alaska Knitting Cruise
24-28 Holiday Inn Conference Center, Marshfield, WI Meg Swansen’s Retreat 3
25-29 Courtyard Marriot, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada Port ‘O Stitches Shoreline Urban Cadre with Jane Thornley
27-30 The Brumder Mansion,Milwaukee, WI Wisconsin Knitting Retreat
27-Aug. 2 Medomak Retreat Center, Washington, ME Maine Fiber Arts Retreat


15-27 Baltics Baltic Knitting Cruise with Galina Khmeleva and Donna Druchunas
16-19 Kettle Pond State Campground, Groton, VT * Vermont Knit and Fiber Camp
16-30 Ireland Ireland Knitting Cruise
27-Sept. 14 Copenhagen to New York Transatlantic Knitting Cruise with Mary Jane Mucklestone

Wherever your summer takes you, have fun, enjoy, and don’t forget your sunscreen–and your needles!

by Jaala Spiro and Chris Furuya

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