Knitters enjoy a fine twine
Local artisans show off skills at Swedish
Posted Thursday, June 23, 2005
Working their needles and yarn, about 150 women
and children participated in the first Swedish Days Knitout on the Kane
County Courthouse lawn in Geneva Wednesday.
“We have had a really good turnout today,” said
Lesley Edmondson, owner of Geneva’s Wool and Company, which organized
the event. “We’ve had all sorts of different people out here, from kids
all the way to grannies.”
Knitout participants were able to compete in the
fastest knitter, blind-folded knitter and two-headed knitter
Ali Blane of Warrenville and her mother, Christy
Becker of St. Charles, were the winners of the two-headed knitting
contest, where they each had to tie one hand behind their backs and work
together in creating a swatch.
“It wasn’t as hard as we thought it was going to
be,” said Becker, who said she’s been addicted to knitting for at least
the past 10 years. “It was definitely awkward, but we got a rhythm
going, so it wasn’t hard.”
Among the knitters, Gretl Kramer of Elgin was
spinning yarn from roving, which is a big, fluffy ball of loose fiber.
After filling two bobbins of yarn with the roving, Kramer said she would
then ply the yarn together to make a two-ply yarn.
Kramer began spinning at 10:30 a.m. and said she
would finish up around 6 p.m. in front of Wool and Company.
“This is incredibly relaxing,” Kramer said. “I get
a little hot in the sun, but I think instead of making me tired, this
does the opposite and energizes me.”
Claire Blankenship, 11, from St. Charles, said she
planned on finishing an afghan she had started awhile ago.
“I’ve been here since 9 a.m., and I’ll probably
leave whenever my mom leaves,” Blankenship said. “If I keep knitting, I
should be able to finish the afghan today.”
Just down the way from the Knitout and also a new
event to this year’s Swedish Days was the More at Four music venue.
The venue was created to provide music for
festival goers as they eat after the Concerts at Noon and before the
central stage entertainment at 6 p.m.
And it did just that.
“This is very entertaining,” said St. Charles
resident Bob Anderson, who has been a Tri-Cities resident for 57 years
and comes to Swedish Days every year. “It’s really nice to get something
to eat and listen to the music. It also adds to some of the other music
venues they have here, especially if you can’t make it to the later
Though the Knitout concluded with the end of the
day, the More at Four concerts will be held each day of the festival
from 4 to 6 p.m.