Above: Several of our class participants from 2016 holding a variety of their completed blocks!
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!
Lucy M. says:
I have quilted and done needlepoint for years and could manage to knit a rudimentary scarf. I decided to try and advance my knitting skills. I saw the description of The Building Blocks class and thought I’d give it a whirl. From the very first class-understanding yarn and how to read the label- I was off and running.
I moaned when I saw the first block (I can’t do this!) but with Mim’s amazing instruction she taught us HOW to read the instructions in a pattern. Also the with the help of the videos provided by Michelle Hunter (author) there was nothing I couldn’t do. Cables, lace knitting, right twist-you name it I can do it!
This class gave me the skills to really read a pattern and deconstruct the seemingly complicated instructions. Almost immediately my imagination took off and now with the skills learned in this class and Mim’s guidance I really am the “Boss of my knitting.”
I also highly recommend taking the second class in this series Building with Color- incorporating color into your work gives amazing results.
The world is now my kitted oyster! Thanks Mim and Over the Rainbow yarn!
Cheryl C. says:
I am a MUCH more confident knitter. I’m working on a shawl with lots of lace and a fancy border. I would NEVER have tried that before taking the class. I am much better at reading my stitches and can un-knit to back up to a mistake and fix it without dropping stitches or getting lost, even with lace. I find friends bringing me some of their mistakes and I can often fix them! I look at patterns and I’m blown away by the possibilities now available to me. Before the class I’d say “Oh that looks way too hard” now I say “Wow that’s beautiful. I’m going to make that!” So many friends have commented on how beautiful my afghan is. I love lying under it, on the couch, with a good book or movie. It’s the best investment I’ve ever made to take my knitting to a new level. Totally worth the investment of time and money.
Sue M. says:
After picking up knitting after a 40 year hiatus, and not even remembering how to cast on, I signed up for the Building Blocks class at Over the Rainbow. I can’t believe how much I learned in 6 months. As a teenager, I only knew how to knit and purl. In 6 months I had learned a variety of stitches, how to fix mistakes, and how to read charts. I think I went from a novice to being a fearless knitter who was able to take on lace patterns, fancy edging on sweaters, and then some. It gave me the skills to tackle projects I never thought I could do.
I was so pleased with what I had learned, I then signed up for Knitting with Color class, and learned the different techniques for knitting with more than 1 color at a time. I’d always wanted to be able to make those pretty patterns I see other people wearing, and now I can!
Mim is an awesome teacher who can teach anyone how to knit with confidence. The books she uses with video tutorials are clear and a valuable resource to complement the techniques she teaches.
I highly recommend either or both of these classes if you want to hone your knitting skills.
Mary S. says:
I learned to knit from my mother at age 8. I was able to do basic things and had made a few sweaters but I did not know how to make lace or other interesting textures, so I wanted to learn some new techniques. I started attending Building Blocks in order to try new stitches.What was most valuable is what I learned from Mim about how I was knitting. It turns out I was doing a combination version that twisted and untwisted the stitches when I switched from knit to purl. Suddenly some odd things that had happened over the years made a lot more sense. I closed up holes in lace when I knit my usual way. I had done a whole garment once with the twists left in, but then couldn’t remember how I did it. Now I can really “boss my knitting” and can make anything look like I want by my own choice. I also decided not to change my basic technique. My mom passed away this year, so it is kind of a legacy at this point. What I would like to know is how SHE learned it that way!Building Blocks was supposed to be a class to teach me how to do fancy stitches, and instead it taught me all about how I knit so I could go on and learn to make my own stitches look any way I want them to. Wow. I had no idea all that was about to open up to me. I have so many ideas and not enough time to knit them all–but isn’t that the problem everyone has? Thanks, Mim!
I can hardly describe how much I love seeing the work our customers do. Just like in elementary school, show and tell is my favorite time of day. I look around the shop each day, thinking of all the potential which the skeins of yarn on our shelves possess to become shawls, sweaters, hats, socks, mittens, plush toys, pillows, blankets, and other fine works of art. But of course, there’s not enough time in a lifetime to make all the things that float about in my mind. That’s where you, people of my knitting community, come in.
There’s something communal about knitting. I’m drawn to other knitters. I don’t typically feel comfortable around people, but if they are knitters, it puts my mind at ease. I feel like we’re part of the same world. I know that we share the same struggles and triumphs. The dropped stitches are symbolic of all disappointments, and the lace motifs taking shape are indicative of all the breakthroughs. I’m delighted by the fact that when you share with me, we can share each other’s pride and joy!
“Who’s The Boss?” is one of our tag lines here at the shop. We love to advocate for our people. It’s great to know all the knitting techniques, of course, but the fact is: it’s your craft, and you’re the boss of it. If you want to follow your pattern so meticulously that there’s not one single mistake to be found in your work, you’re the boss. If you love the imperfections, you’re the boss. If you want to make those sleeves longer and add polka dots, you’re the boss. If knowing only the basic knit stitch is enough for you, and you only want to knit in blue, that’s great – you’re the boss.
You might have noticed the “Who’s The Boss?” board we’ve set up right beside the front door. Or if you don’t visit the shop as frequently, you might have noticed the “Who’s The Boss?” galleries on our website and Facebook page. If you haven’t, take a gander some time. The folks on our real and virtual walls are just like you – knitters of all kinds who’ve shared their work and their joy with us.