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photo: Lisanne & Bryce Thomas

We had our first snowfall in Toronto last week, and most of it is still on the ground. This is uncharacteristic for Toronto, the land of slush. I'm enjoying the clean, white landscape rather a lot, even if it does mean less time on the Vespa. It certainly means that I get to pull my knitwear out of storage and put it back on my cold self!

Meanwhile, in the land of Knitty, this is the time for the winter issue, which is all about sparkles and warmth and making things for yourself and the ones you love.

This time, winter Knitty is also about new new designers. There are more new-to-Knitty designers in this issue than in any other in recent memory. One of our new designers is still in high school! Man, that makes me smile.

In fact, reading all the submissions that are sent to Knitty for possible publication is one of the great joys of my job. The work that so many new [and not-so-new] designers come up with is always inspiring and encouraging to me as a knitter, not just an editor. And one of the great frustrations of my job is that I can't publish everything good that comes across my desk.

After a crazy year of travel and teaching, all across the US and over to Scandinavia and the UK, I can tell you with great certainty that it continues to be a great time to be a knitter. We've got it good, people.

The fabulous 2008 Knitty calendar is fresh off the presses and ready for you in the Knittyshop!

We've also got cards for holiday, and all year round, chachkes [little undescribable cute things] and every kind of gear a knitter could want -- in sizes from tiny baby to big, beautiful woman -- all ready for you, no knitting required.

The 2008 Sea Socks cruise is filling up fast. We're going to take over this ship, I tell you! Chrissy Gardiner [fab knitwear designer], Brenda Dayne [host of Cast on and the patron saint of knitting] and I are really looking forward to next May, when we get to cruise and knit and have a great time on the way to Alaska!

Look forward to classes with all of us, knitting onboard and off, knit-focused excursions and a killer goodie bag. Full details are here. There will be at least one pajama party on deck...just bring layers so you don't get frostbite!

Until I went on my first cruise this time last year, I had no idea how relaxing an onboard vacation can be. Unpack once and watch as your home moves through blue waters populated by icebergs. No hassle getting from place to place..the ship does all the work. I can't wait. Join me!

To always know the latest Knittynews, sign up for the free Knitty reader list! The list is never shared with anyone and we only send out a few messages a year.

Amy R Singer
[editor, Knitty]

photo: Amy R Singer

I went to SOAR – the Spin Off Autum Retreat and it pretty much changed my spinning life.

It’s been a long time since I focused on something so intensely for so many days (6 days, 8-10 hours a day) with exactly the right amount of like-minded obsessives.

It was like camp, but better than camp. Spinners are friendlier, even friendlier than knitters (ducks). Friendlier but even more opinionated (ducks again), there can be blood spilled over talk of ‘the best’ wheel. Fiber people are good and generous people and there’s nothing like when 200 or so get together.

I learned what to relax about, what it’s better to be anal about and to love Shetland fiber. It almost doesn’t matter what classes I took. Each and every one tweaked my spinning brain somehow. Just being around all of those spinners, something happens. It might be osmosis or it might just be the relaxing. I found myself able to do things and see things I thought were out of reach for me as a spinner.

And some of my best learning didn’t happen in the classes. It’s the waiting in line, sitting around, watching Pride and Prejudice and drinking learning; the “show me how to do that”, or “do you know a better way to” learning, that was incredible, you think can’t learn or spin another thing, then you are.

All that learning will last as long as I have fiber to spin.

We'll be reviewing stuff!
Coming soon, Knittyspin will start publishing reviews of spin happy stuff, like we do here. If you have fiber, spindles, books, or other spinny products that you'd like us to review, write Jillian for submission information.

Jillian Moreno
[editor, Knittyspin]