Mim Bird is the owner of Over the Rainbow Yarn and a knitting genius extraordinaire. In June of 2011, on her birthday, she opened this shop in Rockland, Maine in order to share her love of fiber crafts with the world. Mim is the creative mastermind behind almost everything that we do. She's a knitting history enthusiast as well.
Get to know Mim by reading her latest blog posts below.Find Mim on Pinterest Return to About Us
Our two skill-building class series for beginning and intermediate knitters are coming around again next week. We start fresh from the beginning every six months, in January and in July.
Building Blocks teaches beginning knitters techniques like bobbles, several types of increases and decreases, cables and twists and slipped stitches which can be create a variety of textures. Building in Color teaches intermediate knitters techniques like intarsia colorwork, fair isle colorwork, short rows, elongated stitches, and knitting in the stitch below which can be used to incorporate multiple colors into your knitting projects.
It’s our goal in these classes and in day-to-day life to make every knitter feel like you’re the boss of your knitting. You can do it your way, and if you like it, then you did it right. If you want to veer away from a pattern or make it up as you go along, we think that’s swell. We’ll help you get your work to look the way you want it to and we’ll teach you everything you want to know. If you haven’t noticed, we feature a “Who’s the Boss?” photo board right up front in the shop, and also on our website!
These classes taught by Mim Bird are more than just an opportunity to complete a knitted sampler blanket within six months; they’re skill builders and confidence builders! At the end of the road, we’ll give you a certificate of knitting achievement because you’ll have come a long way towards knitting mastery. You’ll know more about yarn weights and fiber properties, deciphering patterns and reading charts, fixing your mistakes, and perhaps most importantly: reading your knitting.
But don’t take my word for it. I’m writing this blog post because I want to share with you a few reviews that we’ve gotten from folks who’ve finished either Skill Builder class series! Thank you guys!
I’ve been seeing the word “hygge” everywhere lately, and I found myself intrigued by the concept. Hygge, pronounced “hooga”, is a Danish word that seems to be all about coziness, warmth, and mindfulness. Visitdenmark.com says, “In essence, hygge means creating a warm atmosphere and enjoying the good things in life with good people”. Doesn’t that sound lovely? It seems to me that the concept of hygge is perfectly suited to a fiber lifestyle, especially here in Maine. Over The Rainbow Yarn’s Stitch ‘n’ Spin groups are pretty much the embodiment of hygge — lovely people sitting around a table, working on soft and cozy projects, and forming new friendships. Sometimes there’s even chocolate.
Winters in Maine can be long and dark, and I occasionally start to wonder whether spring will ever arrive. Remember when it stayed light out after 6 pm? Me neither. But now that I know about hygge, it’s almost as if I’ve been given permission to hunker down, don my wooliest socks, and knit the winter away. (In this scene I’m also picturing myself in front of a woodstove, with a mug of mulled cider and a kitten. Hey, we’re all entitled to our own hygge fantasies.) I think that the happiest country in the world is onto something here, and I intend to explore this concept further for you, loyal readers.
The scarf you can see in the background of that photo (behind a candle and my mug of tea) is our version of Pink Fluffy, a wonderfully simple garter stitch scarf by Andra Asars, and possibly the most hygge item in the shop. I also have to say that I think my Caribou Cowl is pretty hygge too. It’s soft, cozy, and very meditative to knit. This month, you can download it for free from our website!
Embrace hygge and stay cozy, my friends.
The beginning of the year is a good time to embark on an ambitious knitting project. The ability to impose daily, weekly, or monthly goals onto a calendar year is straightforward and satisfying. Dividing up a blanket, a complicated lace shawl, or even a sweater into goals like “knit 10 rows per week” makes large projects feel achievable. But have you ever thought of recording day-to-day events like the weather in your knitting?
If you haven’t heard of it, the temperature blanket concept is to spend an entire year knitting or crocheting one row each day in a color which corresponds to the temperature outside that day: for instance, dark purple means 0-10 degrees, light purple means 10-20 degrees, dark blue means 20-30 degrees… and so on. You pick the pattern (stockinette, ribbing, single crochet, or something fancy), you pick the colors, and you pick the rules. You could use the high, low, or mean temperature for the day. You could use the temperature for your home town or the temperature for wherever you happen to be each day. You could make it a scarf rather than a blanket if you prefer. The point is that it’s not a pattern; it’s a concept. If you’re interested in catching up, wunderground.com tracks temperatures and other weather data for every day, and it’s easy to look up past days.
In the past weeks, I’ve seen a number of people on the internet sharing their completed temperature blankets from 2016. They all have a pleasing rhythm with a dash of randomness. They tend to have cooler colors on either end and warmer colors in the middle (if they were knit in a northern climate).
I think we all have the feeling that we imbue our work with memories of the time we spent creating it, but knitting a temperature blanket is a deliberate attempt to capture memories in your work. It’s like a snapshot in stitches. It’s like knitting as journaling.
Lea Redmond, author of Knit the Sky, first published the temperature blanket idea along with several other whimsical and inspiring suggestions for capturing a period of life in a knitted object. She suggests a mood scarf with colors corresponding to your daily moods, and she suggests a sky scarf with shades of blue and grey corresponding to the color of the sky.
Maybe it’s a bit late in the season to get started this year, but for football fans, the Scoreboard Scarf by Michelle Hunter uses a similar idea. You knit your team’s scores into the scarf by knitting a row of one color for each point your team scores and a row of another color for each point the opposing team scores, and you break up the games with a single row of a neutral color. Well, either that or you make up your own knitting rules.
Here’s a thought – why don’t you knit a scarf in which you think of something you’re grateful for at the beginning of each row? How about transitioning to a new lace motif at the beginning of each new week or month?How about combining a sky scarf with a mood scarf by knitting a different stitch based on your mood in the color of the sky? How about writing in an actual journal about what you thought about while knitting each day?
Knitting as journaling is a concept one could run wild with. It might challenge you to think about knitting in a new way.