This weekend, Slater Mill held a Knitting Weekend with Norah Gaughan and Annie Modesitt to celebrate the opening of the new education center and community guild studios. I was able to attend the wine and cheese reception Friday night (sans the wine) and I took a lace knitting class with Annie Modesitt this morning.
First off, the setting is perfect. Slater Mill, the birthplace of American textile manufacturing - could there be a more fitting location? The upstairs portion of the museum has been redone, with wide oak (well, wood, I'm not a tree expert or anything but it looked like oak to me) floor boards, glass panels with glass doors separating portions of the studio, and beautiful paned windows that look out onto the river and can open to let in the sound of the slight waterfall. Even the grounds are gorgeous, and that's pretty hard to do in downtown Pawtucket.
The wine and cheese reception was hysterical. Norah and Annie are like a comedy duo - they had the entire crowd laughing for most of the night. They also hung around and graciously signed books afterwards. Since I already have a signed copy of Knitting Nature (I met Norah Gaughan about two years ago at Yarnia in Woonsocket, RI) I got Annie Modesitt's book Cheaper than Therapy.
The class today was amazing, even though I was admonished for talking several times (ah, reminds me of my school days). She spoke about lace as if it were normal. We practiced with DK weight yarn so it was easy to see the pattern develop after only a few rows. (So I realize even more now why black mohair was a really poor first choice for lace knitting.) I left having learned a few tricks and feeling confident that I could successfully knit lace - even if it isn't going to be a black sparkly Seascape right off the bat.
Next Tuesday night (the 18th) will be the official opening of the Jenks Education Center and the Community Guild Studios with the ribbon cutting ceremony at 6:30pm. If you're within driving distance, I would highly encourage you to attend.
So here are some pictures from the grounds... I didn't take any during class (I was in enough trouble as it was.)