February 2022 (Issue 289) with a star-studded cast including Milissa Ellison Dewey, Alison Dupernex, Susan Guagliumi and Bill King

Our full-colour February 2022 issue is on sale and our cover design looks great with jeans and trainers, with waist-pleat trousers and a jacket or paired with tracksuit bottoms for the perfect Hygge look. There’s a real mix of designs this month, for all ages and abilities including an Anne Baker Karabee Design plus four designs from Alison Dupernex. We’ve a full-length step-by-step feature for knitting socks on a circular machine from Milissa Ellison Dewey and Bill King stretches our machines and imagination beyond comprehension! We’re honoured to have the exceptional talent of Susan Guagliumi in the magazine, offering lots of free help and advice and Sally-Ann Carroll has some stylish season-stretchers to perk up our tired winter wardrobes. You’ll love our new Show & Tell series, sharing techniques developed over a lifetime’s machine knitting and Passap knitters have a perfect winter gilet to knit. There’s always help and advice in Dear Anne plus news, reviews and club details for ideas and inspiration.

All change

Leicestershire Machine Knitters are able to meet up again, but not in their usual room on Wednesdays. There’s no proper ventilation and, as no other room is available, monthly club meetings will now be held on the third Tuesday from 10.00 am to 1.00 pm. They’ll also continue their monthly Zoom meetings at 7.00 pm on the first Thursday through the winter. The venue is still West End Neighbourhood Centre, Andrewes Street, off Hinckley Road, Leicester LE3 5PA. The secretary is now Susan Marlow and she’ll pass on full details if you email susanmarlow47@btinternet.com

Meet and greet

Members of Crossgates MKC in Seacroft, Leeds have a new venue, day and time. They now get together once a month on a Tuesday afternoon from 1.00 to 3.00 pm. Their meeting place is Wellington Hill Residents Association in Ringwood Drive, Seacroft, Leeds LS1 4HR. Susan Baddams is your contact and she’ll be pleased to give you full details if you email Susie_anne@live.co.uk

More please!

Terri Dutton called with the welcome news that a new monthly meeting has started. Members already meet weekly on Tuesday afternoon from 2.00 to 4.30 pm and now there’s a get-together at the same time on the first Saturday each month. Visit The Yarn Barn, 362a Hoylake Road, Moreton, Wirral CH46 6DF. Email theyarnbarn362@gmail.com for full details.

Facetime

Jean Richardson has sent a happy letter to let us know that meetings have started again and she writes:-

Hello Anne

I thought I’d drop you a line to let you know that our Bromsgrove Machine Knitting Club has started face to face meetings again each month. We’ve also settled into our new venue in Finstall Village Hall. At our first get-together for over eighteen months, we were lucky to have two new ladies join our club and we offered a warm welcome to them and enjoyed tea and cake! We’d lots of knitting and crochet items for our Show & Tell and this was a lovely way to re-introduce people to the club. Since then we’ve looked at various methods for knitting socks for the colder weather and at a future meeting there will be a demonstration of ‘twisted stitches’. It’s hand-tooled and produces more of a texture than ‘big brother’ cables. We’re all looking forward to a more normal year in 2022. I believe that if Covid-19 has taught us anything, it’s that time spent knitting and crafting in general gives us a feeling of well-being… maybe because we’ve had more time to appreciate our crafting. Happy knitting everyone and best wishes, Jean

Bromsgrove is such a friendly club and members meet on the 3rd Thursday each month from 2.00 to 4.00 pm. The venue is Finstall Village Hall, 27 Alcester Road, Finstall, Bromsgrove B60 1EL. You can email jmr543@btopenworld.com for more details.

Time for tea

Let’s now go to Reading in Berkshire for news of Berkshire MKC. Members now get together on the first Thursday of the month from 7.30 pm. They’ve a lovely meeting place at The Tea Room in Woodford Park Pavilion, Woodford Park, Haddon Drive, Woodley, Reading, RG5 4LY. The new contact is Philip Massey. Do email Philip at bkmc.info@gmail.com or visit www.facebook.com/berkshiremachineknittingclub for lots more information.

Together again

Members of Ewenique are thrilled to return to meeting each month on the 4th Tuesday from 1.30 to 3.30 pm. Their venue remains New Earswick Folk Hall, Hawthorn Terrace, New Earswick, York YO32 4AQ. There’s parking and a café at the hall and Anne Bradley will be happy to let you have full details if you email anne.bradley@btinternet.com

Starting over

We mentioned briefly last month that Carbery Machine Knitting Club had closed, but the group has started up again as Dorset & Hampshire Coastal Machine Knitting Club. Members meet monthly on the first Wednesday from 10.00 am to 12.00 noon at St Catherine’s Hall, 17 Marlow Drive, Christchurch BH23 2RR. For more details Janet Shuttleworth is your contact, so please email jan.knitting@outlook.com

December 2021 update

Dear Readers

At this time of the year, we often reflect on times past and look forward to a New Year with hope in our heart. This year, Carol and Mark Hocknell have reached such a crossroads in life. It’s taken a while, but they’ve signed the contract and Metropolitan has been sold. To be honest I’ve known for a while, but I didn’t want to put a spanner in the works by spilling the beans too soon. Carol has started to let people know, but when we chatted recently we agreed that someone was sure to be forgotten, so please spread the word.

It’s going to take a while to register that it’s all gone. Everyone who spent time in the shop found a bargain and, during Dream Week, we’d many laughs. Bill King and I often struggled to keep a straight face at some point in our lectures. Dream Week was usually held at the time of year when a new gentleman visitor was brought along to get ‘up close and personal’ with the two resident lady pigs. Sadly the girls were rather choosy, so he spent more time in hope than expectation. Their sty was just outside our building, so we all had to take their squeals and grunts in our stride! Alison’s cheery smile always welcomed us in the café and Carol was the first to admit that Kath managed to drag her ‘kicking and screaming’ into the 21st century. There are so many stories to tell that they’d fill several books, so smile awhile as you remember your own happy times in Nantwich.

Metropolitan has now moved to Leeds and the new owner is Helena Bondarcuka. She’s asked me to pass on that after a short period of transition, the new company will continue offering machine knitting courses and sell knitting machines, yarns and other merchandise. Everyone is having to make changes and we don’t seem quite sure how to meet with the world again. I’m sure she’ll let us know her plans in due course.

I’m also certain that Carol and Mark must have mixed feelings. On the one hand they’ll be delighted that Metropolitan is going forward into the future, but they must be equally sad that they’ve reached the end of an era. We all agree that our craft needs new young blood to take it forward, but I’m not sure how they managed to pack up everything and watch the lorry drive away. It must have been quite a challenge for them all. Over the years Carol and Mark have put an enormous amount of effort into flying the flag for machine knitting, so we say a huge ‘thank you’ for their immense contribution. I also send them my own best wishes and hopes for as smooth and as eased a transition of their circumstances as is possible. As one year draws to an end and another begins, I join all our contributors in wishing you a happy and peaceful New Year, filled with good health and good fortune for us all.

NEXT ISSUE – February 2022

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January 2022 (Issue 288) with Designer Special and lots of multi-size designs

Our full-colour January 2022 issue is on sale and our cover design is a block colour sweater, that’s incredibly easy to knit from cuff to cuff plus a back and front. The yarn flows from the centre of a cake and there are no yarn changes or ends to sew in. Karin Rogalski returns with a stash-busting design and our usual mix of patterns is for all machines. Karabee Designs from Anne Baker are so well loved, we’ve two comfy men’s sweaters and much-requested leggings. They’re in opaque, slightly stretchy tuck stitch in eight sizes to fit 92 to 127 cm, 36 to 50 inch hips. Susan Guagliumi offers lots of free help and advice and Sally-Ann Carroll has some winning winter warmers. Bill King moves from one machine to another, combining standard gauge and chunky knitting in one fabric and we’ve four classic tuck and stocking stitch designs in ten sizes from 87 to 132 cm, 34 to 52 in (finished 140 cm, 55½ in). Don’t miss our step-by-step guide to easy cables and Passap knitters have a classy woman’s sweater to knit, along with a feature on knitting reversible two-colour double bed tuck stitch. There’s always help and advice in Dear Anne plus news, reviews and club details for ideas and inspiration.