The Best of Lisa’s List in 2017!

Throughout 2017, Interweave’s knitting feed featured the wise words of Lisa Shroyer in a column entitled “Lisa’s List.” Naturally in her role as a long time editor of multiple knitting magazines, and then as Content Strategist for the yarn and fiber teams here at Interweave, Lisa is more than qualified to address the handmade life. Not only does she have career experience in the realm of yarn, she was born into a fiber legacy. “I grew up in playpens in the back of yarn shops; I grew up with a spinning wheel in the living room,” she says. “You turn out a little bit odd when you eat your leftovers in a microwave someone just used to set yarn dye. Odd in a good way.”

Her self-described oddness is your reward. As a matter of fact, this post was going to be our “top five knitting blogs of the year.” Then we found that it was Lisa’s voice that resonated most in the feed during 2017. The knitters have spoken! Without further ado, here are the top five of “Lisa’s List” for 2017.

yarn ball types

12 Yarn Ball Types and How to Knit with Them

“This week, I set out to write about types of yarn balls and put-ups, but things were not as simple I’d expected. The thing I’ve called a skein my whole life? Other people call it a hank. The thing I call a ball? Other people call it a bullet skein. Whoa! And so we enter the real debate of the 21st century: skein or hank? Ball or skein?”Read More and don’t forget to take the yarn ball quiz!

knitting techniques

8 Ways To Knit And Why You’d Want To

“Recently, I was sitting in a meeting with a bunch of editors, and Hannah Baker was to my right. As happens in many meetings at Interweave HQ, she was knitting. Now Hannah has a really interesting way of holding her yarn; she is a right-hand thrower and she wraps the working yarn several times around the base of her index finger, tensioning the yarn as she works. Her knitting is lovely—she designed and made the Harvey Pullover for the cover of Interweave Knits Fall, in fact. For me, I can’t get the yarn to slide smoothly and quickly enough around my finger for this position to work. I’m a thrower and I carry the yarn over my middle finger, which is also rather unusual—most throwers use the tip of their index fingers.” … Read More

yarn shop owner

Questions You Should Never Ask a Yarn Shop Owner

“It’s a Saturday afternoon and I’m sitting on the couch in my friend Michele’s yarn shop. I’m knitting, some shoppers are browsing, and Michele moves around the bright store, talking to people, straightening things, answering the phone. Within the next two hours, various people drift in the front door, stand there looking confused, and are greeted by Michele. And I overhear some of the STRANGEST dialogue. Based on my experiences and the experiences of my yarn shop friends, THESE are the questions you should never ask a yarn shop owner. But if you work in a yarn shop and you DO get asked these questions, I’ve supplied you with scripts for each inquiry, so you’ll be all set for your next day on the job.” …Read More

(Photo by © Hulton-Deutsch Collection/CORBIS/Corbis via Getty Images)

5 Tips for Faster Knitting + Why You Shouldn’t Care

“When you’re knitting to a deadline, a little bit of the pleasure goes out the window. And speed becomes critically important. Some years ago, I wrote a book about knitting and had to make 10 sweaters in 6 months. The manuscript deadline was right there in the contract I signed—knowingly signed—and I was committed to finishing in time.

“I did not love every manic minute of deadline knitting on those sweaters, no. But I loved the project overall, and I scheduled myself for hours of knitting every weekend. I’ve always been a swift knitter, but during that project I mastered some special techniques that sped up my progress.” …Read More

types of sweater armholes

6 Armholes and How to Make them Work for Your Body

“There are a lot of elements that go into a sweater’s fit. We talk about waist shaping and bust darts and ease and a host of other things when we talk about fit, but my firm belief has always been: fit starts with the armhole. And the kind of armhole that will give YOU the best fit is largely determined by your bust. What’s your bust got to do with it? Well, this week I’m going to walk you through 6 types of sweater armholes and what they have to do with your body, starting with the bust.” …Read More

Which of the Lisa’s Lists from 2017 are your favorite? Maybe you loved the yarn tattoo gallery, or found your fiber spirit animal due to Lisa’s words. We would love to hear in the comments about what you enjoyed overall in the Interweave knitting blog feed during this past year. We can’t wait to offer you more handmade inspiration in 2018!

Be Like Lisa: Knit, Crochet, Spin- Do It All!

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