This past weekend I attended the annual knitting retreat put on by The Studio in Kansas City. January is the perfect time for a knitting retreat. Cozy fires. Bulky sweaters. Cowls. Mitts. You get the idea. It's also time to see familiar faces, old friends from the past 7 (or is it 8?) knitting retreats.
Time to see what everyone is wearing that they made in the last year. Then we reach out to touch, get the name of the pattern, and ooh and ahh over how beautiful it is. That's what knitters do at retreats.
There is also time for walking the labyrinth, taking a nature hike in the woods, sitting in the comfortable chairs at the coffee shop, and discovering that Paula, the barista, is as big of a Carole King fan as you are when you spontaneously break into a loud and rousing rendition of "You've Got a Friend" and she joins in at just the right time.
Knitting retreat is a time for deep discussions about yarns and why some are clearly better for certain types of knits because of the inherent nature of the fiber. You can also make unexpected discoveries. This year, for example, I learned that I prefer to drink Irish Cream Liqueur straight up rather than in coffee which I thought was my favorite way. Only on it's own, can the creamy, smooth, consistency be fully appreciated. How did I not know this before?
Lastly, these retreats are the perfect time to sit around and knit with friends. You can take classes, work on projects in process, or start something new. Just because I can not knit as skillfully as Lauren, is no reason I can not fully appreciate how beautiful her work is and continue to dream that maybe one day I will. Just as with any creative endeavor, a group is best when it has people we can learn from and people we can teach.