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The Downtown Knit Collective

Past Special Events

Sixth Annual DKC Bus Trip 2011

Once again, the weather was picture perfect as 44 knitters boarded the motor coach. First stop, the village of Port Credit and Linda's Craftique where we each did our best to fill the lovely canvas bags each of us received as we got off the bus. As we strolled along the street, we supported the local businesses: Gitta's Stitchery, Nostalgia Bookshop, St Vincent de Paul and apparently a local lingerie shop!

Dutch Mill Country Market lived up to its name and provided more than a tasty meal. Fresh produce, baking and preserves, jewellery, pottery, Christmas decorations, and other unique delights including a petting zoo kept us entertained during our lunch stop.

Back on board for Julie's Needle Emporium in Ancaster. Shopping in this fabulous yarn shop, checking out the large selections of books, picking through the bins of discontinued Noro yarns, sitting in the sun or stolling along the street, what a wonderful way to end the day.

Wonderful yarn shops, wonderful small towns, wonderful food...a perfect day.

Fifth Annual DKC Bus Trip 2010

First stop is Alpacas from Eighth and Mud. Sharon and John will introduce us to one of their alpacas and teach us a little about this breed. We will also have an opportunity to tour a fibre mill. Lunch will be at the wonderful Waterlot Restaurant and Inn in the town of New Hamburg. When you have finished your lunch you can wander across the street to our second stop of the day. Karen and the staff of Shall We Knit have a lot of yarn to tempt you. Karen also stocks a vast range of knitting and crochet books and pattern leaflets.

Stitch N' Pitch 2009

Those who attended the Toronto Blue Jays Stitch n' Pitch event had a blast. Who could argue for the price of a ticket, you got good seats in the 200 level with fellow knitters and crafters, and a goodie bag of yarns and patterns? Extra yarns were tossed out into the crafting crowd, plus Joan picked up a few for Knitting for a Cure. AND there was knitting, lots of it.

Before the game started, there was the fastest knitter competition. Wainetta Prescod tied with Linda Benne for title of fastest knitter in the competitive category. They both knit an amazing 250 stitches over three minutes. Their prize: the opportunity to throw out the first pitch of the game. Blue Jays officials scrambled and found a second ball and our two victors managed to both bounce their balls to the plate! A couple of knitters caught home run balls, unfortunately they were not from the home team; the Blue Jays lost the game. Sob! There's always next year.

Kudos to the gang from Creative Knitting, Joan Kass from the DKC and all the volunteers for helping make this another successful Stitch n' Pitch.

3rd Annual DKC Bus Trip 2008

Oh, what a day!!! 40 knitters boarded a tour bus heading for Port Hope on a beautifully sunny Saturday November 1st. First stop, The Black Lamb, to fondle (and buy) the talented Laurie's gorgeous hand-dyed yarns. Some of us even made it to a spinner's paradise in the basement... even I, a non-spinner was blown away by the fibre in the depths. A bite to eat you say, why of course. Laurie's husband treated us to his home-made coffee cake.

Then while some of us continued shopping, several knitters walked on downtown, shopped a little and met us at Dr Corbett's Inn. Niels had organized an amazing luncheon of homemade cauliflower soup with warm buns, a fabulous quiche with salad and then a masterpiece dessert. Apparently Niels' partner is an award winning pastry chef... we were treated a phenomenal chocolate raspberry dessert. I, for one, will definitely return to Dr Corbett's Inn when I visit Port Hope.

Back on board the bus, many knitters were ready for a nap but we soon arrived at Spinning Wheel Alpacas. The group divided into two: half hit the shop, while the rest of us strolled among the alpacas while Garth answered our questions. After switching spots and more treats including hot apple cider, dessert squares and cookies, we re-boarded the bus and headed back to Toronto.

What a wonderful day!

Vogue Knitting Tour 2008

Sweater Style: A Fashion Show of Handknits-a truly inspiring afternoon. Thirty-one knitters on the Vogue Tour joined with nearly 100 Toronto area knitters at Innis Town Hall on September 6 for an afternoon show featuring truly amazing knitting.

Vogue Knitting editor, Carla Scott started the afternoon with a trend forecast. Then followed an inside preview of the Vogue's Holiday and Winter issues, and Nicky Epstein's newest book "Knitting on Top of the World". Garments and bags by Canada's own Lucy Neatby, Mags Kandis, Fiona Ellis, Gayle Bunn, Robin Melanson, Veronik Avery, Mai Landra and Svetlana Avrakh were first on the runway. What gorgeous eye candy! Mittens, scarves, shawls, pullovers, vests, tops, coats and jackets...a total of 56 items. It was a knitter's paradise-I really wanted to rush to Romni and get my needles clicking but what a dilemma, which item should I knit first? Seeing the garments in person, they appeared even more gorgeous than in the magazine.

The second portion of the show featured DKC designers...our opportunity to let the visitors know the amazing talent of our own guild members.

Fiona Ellis led off with "A Stitch in Time," a talk that looks back at how knitwear fitted in the prevailing fashion trends throughout the 20th century followed by pictures of some sweaters she has had published in Vogue Knitting. The audience was then treated to some of the garments from her two books.

Dr. Knit (Denise Powell) talked about her "Interpretations" of Japanese kimonos, African motifs, Persian slippers and Egyptian jewellery.

Innovative artist, Kirk Dunn stunned the audience with his "Stitched Glass" panels. The completed panel on Christianity was on display along with portions of the Judaic panel. Kirk led us through the thought and design that has gone into these panels. Truly amazing!

Danny Oullette told us how one hat design led him to another. But Danny doesn't just design hats. He gave us a sneak peek of a man's gansey in which he will include optional short row shaping to accommodate the 'belly' if needed. Audience members enjoyed his beautiful shawl and socks and can't wait for the release of a gorgeous scarf pattern.

Joanne Yordannou gave us a trunk show of the garments from her book "Twelve Months of Knitting"... sweaters, hats, scarves, socks, and a shawl. Certainly enough garments at every skill level to keep one's needles clicking for twelve months. What book will she follow this with? Nine Months of Knitting, of course.

Dorothy Siemens couldn't make the afternoon, but Fiddlesticks Knitting was not to be missed. Her gorgeous shawls and sweaters were on display and Joan Kass gave a brief overview of each item. Although many Vogue Knitting tourists were familiar with Dorothy's amazing shawls, this was their opportunity to become acquainted with her lovely sweaters.

And then, the truly innovative Debbie New hit the stage. Although Debbie couldn't volunteer "anything interesting about herself" for her introduction, she was certainly an interesting presenter. The audience was blown away by her garments, her knitted artwork and of course, her "windmills".

Thank you to all the presenters... the Vogue Knitting participants certainly know a lot more about the Toronto and area knitting scene and they were "very impressed".

After the Tour headed back home we received this wonderful email from the organizer of the tour:

Dear Joan and Members of the Toronto DKC,

I have just returned from my tour in Hungary that immediately followed the Vogue Knitting Canada Tour.

Belated as this is, I wanted to thank all of you for the wonderful afternoon that you provided for the Vogue Knitting Tour participants.

What a way to begin a tour…an afternoon filled with fashionable knitwear, food, and friendship! It couldn't have been more successful and I speak for everyone in our group when I say that it was the highlight of the tour.

Joan, I never dreamed what a wonderful Events Coordinator I would be working with when Gayle Bunn suggested I get in contact with the DKC to arrange a special event….and SPECIAL is what you are! We started with a basic idea and you ran with it! Your help was invaluable and most appreciated.

Here's hoping that our paths will cross again...soon!

With warmest regards,

Your friend, Barbara

Stitch N' Pitch 2008

Let's Play Ball! Last year over 500 knitters knit, chatted, swapped yarn and knitting pattern books, and occasionally watched the Blue Jay game. What a blast we had! In fact, Stitch N' Pitch was the most successful promotion that the Blue Jays held in 2007.

Mark your calendar for Tuesday, August 5, at 7:07 p.m. That's the night knitters will once again rule at the SkyDome. Tickets are $20 each and each ticket holder will receive a Free Blue Jays Tote Bag (subject to availability). Tickets may be purchased through Joan Kass ([email protected]) or at the May and June DKC meetings. Incidentally, the Jays will be playing the Oakland A's.

World Wide Knit in Public Day 2008

June 14, 2008 was Knit in Public Day here in Toronto and many groups in the GTA area arranged gatherings to spread the word regarding the joy of knitting. DKC members attended the events at the Scarborough Town Centre and the Park garthering organized by the Purple Purl. From all accounts the events were a great success with lots of interest shown by those who passed by.

Winter Workshops 2008

All participants of the winter workshops had a wonderful time throughout the weekend. It was a great opportunity for all to pick up some new techniques, refresh old techniques, and spend time with old and new knitting buddies.

2007 DKC Annual Bus Trip

The DKC held it's Second Annual Bus Trip on November 10. Over 40 members joined us as we spent the day visiting Shelridge Farms and Koigu Wool Designs. Our wonderful bus driver, Vic Kass, took many pictures for us as we were much too busy shopping to think of these things.


Stitch n' Pitch 2007

The first Blue Jays Stitch n' Pitch was well attended by over 500 knitters and friends. From downtown and out of town we brought our needles, hoods, yarn & floss to the Rogers Center for an MLB & TNNA supported knit out. We had a special section, an exclusive entrance where we wouldn't be given any funny looks or questions about the "tools of our trade" and a commemorative knitting bag filled with patterns and yarn.

Everyone in attendance is looking forward to the 2008 Stitch n' Pitch event.