Receive HTML?

Twist Collective Blog

Happy Birthday

It's August first, and pinch me, but we're one year old today!  Thank you so much for being here, for supporting the work of independent designers with your purchases, and spreading the Twist Collective word.  Want to celebrate with us?  Go buy a pattern (you know you want at least one), and keep us all going for another year!



Lovely cupcake notecards from creativeapples.


Twist report from Tigard Knitting Guild

Marnie MacLean graciously hosted a Twist Collective fashion show last week at the Tigard Knitting Guild in Portland, Oregon.  She also posted about the evening on her blog, so if you are interested in how it went, and want to see some lovely pictures of happy knitters wearing beautiful sweaters, you should go there now. Her friend Erica took pictures.  Just so you know.


marnie hostsfashion show


Where in the World Have the Buzz Bags Gone?

Barbara sent us a photo of her Buzz Bag all coloured in.  Isn't it darling?  


twistbag painted



If you haven't done this to yours yet, Allison Green Will, designer of Bernhardt and Jaali, told me she had great success doing hers with just regular felt tip markers.  I can't account for how wash fast it would be that way, but if the colour all comes out, you can just do it again! Think you might want one to colour in for yourself?  We have about 15 of them left in the shop, so act fast.

Kate and I thought you might get a little kick out of a map, just a graphic representation of where we've sent the Buzz Bags. Just click on this link.

View Where in the World are the Buzz Bags?  map here.

An Introduction, and a Contest

Hello Twist readers!  My name is Rachael, the new production manager for Twist Collective.  I came on board in May 2009 just before the launch of the summer issue, and have been diving in to get up to speed ever since.  I thought it was time to give you all a quick hello, and introduce a kind of contest that we’re having here on the Twist blog.

When I first met Kate, we sat and talked about how we both started knitting and our subsequent forays into the knitting world.  I told her the story of the first thing I had made for anyone, a horribly ugly scarf for my dad.  Here is the story: (reposted from my blog,

I’ve been knitting since I was a kid, but like many people I got back into it as an adult. My mom taught me once upon a time, and I laboriously worked at it.  When I saw other people knitting I thought I was doing it all strange and backwards, but it turned out that I was just knitting English style in a sea of Continental knitters.  After learning that my style was indeed legitimate, I felt a lot better about it and now embrace my yarn throwing technique.

When I was younger I never really finished all that much, though I did do a lot of strange small yarn-lumps that I claimed were mittens for my dolls.  The odd Christmas I would get it together enough to complete a project, and my dad would be saddled with another of my misshapen, dropped-stitch creation that I proudly hoped he would wear to work.

One year, I made was a striped light-and-dark blue scarf for my dad.  I think I got the yarn from Safeway, and it definitely wasn’t the same at one end as it was on the other.  I don’t think it was even long enough to be more than a yoke around his neck, and just tucked into his collar.  My dad worked in a mine, and it actually kept him serviceably warm, so he wore it to work every day.

One day in November, just as my dad was having his lunch in the loader he was working in, he noticed one of the other guys on shift sitting in the snow, just down from the road.  My dad wondered what he was up to - the guy was a notorious prankster, but this seemed a bit odd.  The guy waved to him, and then waved again and again.  Finally, my dad got out of the truck and climbed down the embankment next to the road to see what was wrong.

The guy had taken a wrong step, fallen down the embankment and broken his leg.  He’d been sitting there for hours in the cold, waiting for someone to come by and spot him.  By now, he was getting pretty cold and needed medical attention.  My dad took off for help, but not before taking my scarf off and wrapping it around his head and neck to keep him warm.

I used to see this fellow now and again as I was growing up, and he would always tell me how warm that scarf was, and that it saved his life.  It was ugly, but my dad wore it until it fell apart years later.  My knitting has improved in the intervening time, and I’m branching bravely away from scarves and into sweaters, colourwork, and even my own designs, the best thing I will probably ever make was that ratty little scarf.

Perhaps you’ve been there too – sometimes the ugliest, strangest, quickest things we make are the unexpected successes. So with that in mind, we here at the Twist blog are looking for YOUR stories about the things you have knitted that have led interesting lives, had adventures, and inspired funny, quirky and unique stories or what knitting has done for you or someone you know. 

We’ll be collecting and posting stories as an ongoing column in our blog.  If your story is chosen, Twist will send you a free Twist Collective tape measure in the color of your choosing, and you’ll get a link back to your blog (if you have one).  Feel free to send pictures, or even links to stories you have already written.  Be creative, and you can always send more than one story if you've got them lined up around the block! You can send your entries to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

We're looking forward to hearing all the stories you have to share, and to many more fun issues with the Twist crew.

Seen Around London

Guerilla knitting, London style.  This one the result of a rollicking escapade of Knitstorming.  Read all about it here.






And an installation at the Jerwood Gallery near the Tate Modern in London, of a collection of one of knitting's greatest unsung projects, the UFO.  Curator Rachel Matthews, explains on the Project blog:

UFO Project Administration Service was the answer to a proposal I was asked to give for the Jerwood Contemporary Makers 2009 Exhibition. The exhibition will run from 10th June -19th July at the Jerwood Space in London and will then tour.

You are invited to take part in helping us complete Planet Earth's UFOs.  All the UFOs are posted opposite. Some are 'WAITING' for YOU, and some have been 'TAKEN' by SOMEBODY!
Take chances, make choices, tell stories, imagine the possibilities, and connect to the bottom draw of other knitters across the globe. 

Please leave comments, and for more information or to book a UFO, e-mail This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  

Happy knitting and love,
Rachael Matthews
The blog is worth reading through for all of the creativity, heartache, and peripateticisms we knitters share.  Not every object ends up where its knitter originally imagined, and that's half the fun. Start from the beginning, and you have a great summer read. However, if you have limited time and want to get back to the knitting, read this entry about a shawl that survived its creator.