This month’s meeting started with the annual meeting where the current committee (with Helen Webster as President) were re-elected for the coming year.
The evening’s talk entitled “A Life of Loops and Looms” was given by local knitting Guru Rachel Hirst who brought along a wide selection of looms and knitting materials to show us.
Rachel told us how ‘Grandma Hirst’ first inspired her life long passion for knitting although two Aunts, an Uncle and her Father also taught her knitting and weaving craft so you could say it is in her genes.
We heard about the delights of French knitting (who amongst us doesn’t remember the cotton reel with 4 tacks knocked into it?) Of course these days, the health & safety brigade are much happier with the plastic version that doesn’t snag the fingers! Rachel still teaches children French knitting –making finger puppets, spiders and snakes.
We also heard about Rachel’s favourite shop ’Fred Aldous’ where she used to go as a girl and still goes whenever she’s in Manchester. We were shown weaving looms made out of simple cardboard, peg looms, indeed looms of all sizes – Rachel is always on the look out for them. Then there were weaving sticks which are great for making bookmarks and we were even shown how to use our hand as a loom.
Rachel showed us examples of her knitting work from fine lace knitting to rug knitting and even a knitted carrier bag made out of ……..old carrier bags!
The evening was a fascinating insight into the fascinating life of a lady who knits and Rachel concluded her talk by presenting the WI with another example of her trade craft – our very own knitted ‘WI’ bunting; a truly magnificent gift.