This weekend at the Fort Worth Community Arts Center is the Fifth Annual International Fort Worth Fringe Festival. As part of the event, Elaine Liner stars in the one-woman show Sweater Curse: A Yarn About Love. For the local premiere that “weaves bitterly funny tales of Liner’s obsession with knitting, great knitters in great lit, and lots of unraveled romances,” the star provided a little Q&A.
Mostly my lifelong obsession with knitting, but the title refers to an old wives’ tale that says you should never knit a sweater for the one you love. They’ll walk out on you before you finish the sweater. It’s been true in my life. It took a long time to find someone sweater-worthy, it turns out, but I take lots of funny little diversions in the show into myths and legends about knitters and great knitters in literature and movies — Bette Davis knits in lots of her movies in the 1940s. I’ve just added a mention of Olympic diver Tom Daley, who knitted poolside throughout the games. He really raised the image of men who knit, by the way. When I did the show in Edinburgh, I saw men in kilts knitting in pubs. It was kind of a major turn-on.
As a playwright and solo artist, I’m looking for ways to get my stuff in front of audiences and having control over it. Fringe performers are artists/entrepreneurs. We have to do our own fundraising, make all the travel plans, find lodging, be stage managers, know our tech stuff, and handle marketing and promotion. I like the solo aspect of it, though it does make the cast parties a little lonely.
Organizers will collect the dues for the year, which are $10. Attendees are asked to bring cash. Those who are interested in teaching a class are asked to let organizers know at this meeting.
Starting next month, there will be a “The Doctor Is In” clinic for all members if they need a problem solved.
“Remember to bring all your show and tell and also if you won any ribbons at the local fairs be sure to bring those to us your awards, and your current knitting projects as we will knit and visit,” organizers said in the announcement.
“We are looking forward to seeing all members and welcome any new member who would like to join out guild.”
There, I talked with Julie Lamb, a New York jeweler I had been admiring but had yet to meet—I was so glad when I finally did. We had a conversation that has stuck with me for the last two years, and then one day I thought, “Why on earth have I not written about this?”
So here I am, making up for lost time with what I think is just one of the coolest stories I’ve heard from a jeweler.
It’s the story of how Julie Lamb, who specializes in fine jewelry, became involved with the most unlikely group of hobbyists you could imagine: knitters.
Now, you could argue that knitters aren’t all that unlike jewelers—they create beautiful things to wear, and many of them are considered skilled artisans. But how does one designer so accustomed to showcasing at jewelry shows end up attending knitting exhibitions? It has to do with one little lamb—Julie’s last name, and a core element of her line. The lamb has since become somewhat of a mascot for the knitting community, and I recently had the chance to ask the designer a few questions about the experience.
No, this wasn’t on my radar, and much to my fiber friends’ dismay, I still haven’t picked up needles. Although we don’t share a passion for the same craft, we are still all creatives. Loves Knitting That being said, I’ve found this community very inspiring! They are extremely enthusiastic about their work, they have fresh eyes when it comes to my line, they identify with it, and they provide the greatest feedback.
Night and day, except for booth setup and bad lighting. Picture this: You’ve gathered your best buds and escaped for the weekend to stay in a hotel and attend giant ballrooms filled with all your favorite things. You’re there to learn more about your passion, meet some of the international Knitterati (“Knitfluencers”), win free stuff, feel, try, buy all the good stuff and limited-edition stuff you can’t usually get your hands on. It’s a shopping frenzy—party atmosphere from the time doors swing open!