The Madrona 2017 Program Overview

Click on a teacher’s name and learn more about each one!

We are thrilled to welcome Lucy Neatby back to Madrona to teach a review of her most popular classes and to be our Saturday Evening Banquet speaker!  We have had many wonderful and colorful times with her since Madrona’s very beginning. Come join us as we honor and celebrate Lucy during this, her last year of teaching in the United States and at Madrona. In her Banquet talk, Lucy will take us on a light-hearted journey of her life as a seafarer and how this influenced her knitting career. For ships and the sea have been a constant thread in Lucy’s knitting life, in her designs and her use of color. The adventure continues and Lucy will share where it might be leading!

Behind every knitted object there is a story and history waiting to be discovered! We are delighted to welcome Susan Strawn to Madrona as our Friday evening Teacher’s Gallery speaker. Susan is a lifelong knitter, knitting scholar, textile historian, and a professor with a Ph.D. in Textiles and Clothing.  She finds joy and challenge in the search and discovery of lost knitting designers and their stories and patterns which she brings to life in her talks, teaching and in the pages of Interweave’s Piecework Magazine. On Friday evening, Susan will introduce you to Virginia Woods Bellamy (1890-1976), a knitter, designer, and published poet who invented the innovative, modular knitting technique she called “Number Knitting”, published a book on it, devised a new way to graph instructions among the earliest efforts of charting and then disappeared from America’s knitting history.  Susan’s research as a “knitting detective” is a fascinating study in itself and both Virginia’s original knitting and Susan’s recreations of Virginia’s patterns will be there for you all to see on Friday evening.  Come join Susan in the search for Virginia Woods Bellamy!

Speaking of “detectives”, Sarah Anderson will introduce a new class, Forensics for Handspun which came about as she was judging handspun skeins and wished that the spinner was with her to discuss the skein. After several years we are so happy to welcome Sally Melville back to Madrona!  Sally attended Madrona last year incognito as a student gobbling up spinning classes.  But she is back to teach for us at Madrona 2017! There is a new class and an update of one of her first and most famous classes – Making the Most of your Yarn Collection. Sally shows you how to put your yarn stash to work in amazing ways!  JC Briar returns to Madrona and it is a pleasure to have her teach again.  Look for her specialty Charts Made Simple. From Stitch Maps to Entrelac techniques, it will all be there.

Jillian Moreno returns again this year.  Her new book, Yarnitecture, for Storey Publishing is out now and showcases spinning for knitters. In an exclusive class for Madrona, Jillian will explore how each decision in the spinning process affects your finished yarn and the finished knitted project.  Come learn to produce the perfect handspun yarn for that special knitted project. We are pleased to welcome Marilyn Romatka to Madrona for the first time. She teaches living folk art crafts from many cultures, learned during her travels to many parts of the world. As you create in class, you feel a connection with the faraway culture. Join Marilyn at Madrona learning to make Japanese Temari Balls, Bow Loom Weaving from Thailand, and Viking Chain Netting jewelry dating back in Scandinavia to the 8th Century AD. Deborah Jarchow, who creates magic on the rigid heddle loom returns with a couple of exciting projects on these little looms.

Stephanie Pearl-McPhee is beloved by us and all of you at Madrona. When she walks through the door, Madrona lights up and we never know what to expect! Besides teaching her ever popular classes, Stephanie and our fabulous teachers will create another not-to-be-missed Teacher’s Talent Show for Charity on Thursday evening – remember it’s a secret!  Amy Herzog is coming with all her sweater knitting and fitting favorites including a new class on designing the sweater of your dreams. Susanna Hansson will take you to the Arctic Circle to knit the unique colorful patterns of The Mittens from Rovaniemi, the distinct style and tradition of the Sami people of the far north of Norway, Sweden, Finland and Arctic Russia. Franklin Habit will teach many of your favorite classes from Shadow Knitting to the new Embroider your Knits and John Mullarkey will introduce three color patterns (using 6 hole cards) for those aficionados of Tablet Weaving. Judith MacKenzie will have her dye pots with her as she continues the spinning journey from the basics of drafting to her tricks for spinning handpainted top into the perfect yarn.

Karen Aho has been with us at Madrona for all our 18 retreats, first as the owner of Acorn Street Shop and now as a teacher and mentor in the Rotunda helping new knitters and those with a problem to solve.  If you have an unfinished needlepoint kit tucked away or want to learn needlepoint, Karen will be teaching The Fine Art of Needlepoint – An Introduction. For those of you who love Catherine Lowe’s couture knitting, Catherine will be teaching a class focusing on couture knitting techniques that will take your hand knits to “Wow”.  Debbi Stone is back! This year she unravels the secrets of “Ravelry” so you can use all the parts of this handy website. Debbi also will take on “Texture” – teaching you how to add and design with many crazy and not so crazy texture stitches to liven up your knitting. You’ll find Galina Khmeleva with husband George in their booth with luscious fiber in the Market. She will step out just long enough to teach Intarsia Lace Design Strategies which creates a stunning mosaic two color design. Jean Wong, a Nihon Vogue certified instructor, will help you delve into the world of Japanese knitting pattern drafting and finishing techniques.

Its back to fiber basics for Amelia Garripoli, who will teach you blending board techniques to design lovely and colorful fiber combinations to spin into stunning yarns. Amelia will also be teaching her very popular Power Spinning class and has written an e-book covering all the techniques of Power Spinning for those who cannot make it to her class. Janine Bajus is our resident Fair Isle expert from the traditional to the unique. Her book, The Joy of Color: Fair Isle Knitting Your Way, is now available for all you Fair Isle enthusiasts. Janine will be teaching her secrets of Fair Isle color, a class in designing your own Fair Isle tam, and will hold a clinic in the Rotunda to answer all your Fair Isle questions and see the amazing designs from her book.  Evelyn Clark has been at the forefront of lace knitting design for many years. With Evelyn to guide you, delve into original lace design techniques and explore Icelandic lace traditions based on an historic Reykjavik shawl. Ilisha Helfman invented Jazzknitting, which uses the placement of color in hand painted skeins to make unusual and fascinating shapes, and also wrote a book about this unusual technique. We return this year to have IIisha teach the techniques of Jazzknitting which she has used as features in many of her creative designs. Ilisha will also be teaching another Turkish spindling class for those who want to renew or perfect their skills.

We welcome Harry Wells to Madrona this year from California where he manages the Northcoast Knittery in Eureka. A lifelong knitter, Harry retired early after 21 years of teaching in higher education to pursue a fulltime career in knitting.  Harry will be teaching everything you need to know to be successful knitting cables and include them as part of your stitch pattern repertoire. Harry will also teach a few mini classes as well.  Although Hilary Grant is not new to Madrona, she will be teaching at Madrona for the first time. She teaches her wet felting classes all over the country and her scarves are carried in many galleries.  Hilary will guide you through wet felting a cobweb scarf which has a fine, lacy, and delicate fabric. Daniel Herrera has long been our resident expert in the Rotunda Help Clinic. His class on multiple knitting methods proved so popular last year that we have asked him to repeat it. Daniel will teach you many knitting methods and which method is best for different knitted styles and designs – you will never ask again, “Why would I ever knit THAT way!” Michele Lee Bernstein, a long time Madrona enthusiast from Portland, taught a mini class last year. She returns this year with a few more mini classes and a class that shows you how to make the lovely elongated novelty stitches and include them in your knit designs.

Ahh, Mary Scott Huff returns with a special class from her soon to be published The Mitten Handbook. Mary guides you through making mittens your way with all the different features that you decide you want to include in the perfect mittens for you or a lucky other! Mary will also hold your hand while you learn to make that first cut into your stranded color work to make a “steek” and to put the finishing touches on it.  Knitting is fun but finishing is where the magic happens. Join Anne Berk as she teaches you all the finishing fundamentals while while making a sweater to fit a “Teddy Bear”.  Sivia Harding loves to combine beads with lace knitting. She will guide you in choosing and placing the perfect beads in a variety of sampler lace patterns that will light up your lace knitting. A bonus is the newest lace pattern from Sivia.  Finally, but certainly not least, we could not keep on knitting, spinning, and weaving without Carson Demers who will show and teach you the secrets to sitting and knitting so that we banish all those kinks from our fingers, wrists and backs!

We may set the stage but what happens at Madrona is in the minds, hearts and inspirations of all of you who walk through our doors. We can never thank you enough for your extraordinary support and making Madrona YOURS!

Madrona is the community in which everyone is welcome and belongs. We are grateful that you want to come home to Madrona and share it’s magic with your ever widening circle of friends!

Stay well and keep on being who you are! We will see you at Madrona – February 16-19, 2017

If you have questions, please click on “contact us” above and you will be able to email questions or phone us.