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Qinglin likes to be in control from start to finish

I want to create something original, that’s really precious. Knitting really attracts me as you have multiple ways to control what the final fabric looks like. I can totally express my designs and ideas. It creates something unique, you can’t find another piece with the same fabric anywhere else in the world.

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Constance – knitting historian and knitwear designer

I’m now researching a knitted silk stocking found in a shipwreck off the coast of the NL from 1735.  The curator thought that the stocking was of the same age, but it’s not.  The stocking is about 100 years earlier than that.  I believe that the stocking was a treasure belonging to one of the passengers.  It’s similar to those in paintings by Rembrandt. 

Susan – researches knitting and literacy

You can use knitting to make a case for so many aspects of life: mental health and well-being, identity, heritage; personal as well as industrial heritage; sustainability now.  I’m interested in where we go with textiles.  It’s important that we attend to what we do with textiles in everyday life and how these skills help us out in the future.

Melissa – likes to make component sweaters she can modify

I’m an architect and I’ve always liked spaces that you could modify somehow.  Very minimal background and you can completely change the room with a vase of flowers or a piece of art.  I thought wouldn’t it be cool if I knit a base sweater that has component parts that can be changed.  I’ve thought about it a lot, a round necked sweater with ¾ length sleeves and you can change the collars and cuffs and just button through. 

Betsy – wants to bring more joy and making into the world

Holding this yarn and connecting with people about making something was transformational for me.  I was making something from nothing, I could feel it run through my fingers.  Going to a yarn shop, touching all that yarn felt so good.  That led me to a path to eventually go to trauma therapy and do a lot of healing.  Knitting saved my life

Teresa – tested yarn for a living

I got married and so I became Mrs Sample, the sample knitter.  I sat knitting all day with yarn that came from abroad, that the Directors got from yarn fairs.  They would bring new yarns like boucle cotton, or yarns with a coloured thread wrapped through them, or pure angora, all sorts of things were placed on my desk.