NEEDLES & KNITS
Over the past couple of years, Gabriela has introduced and has been teaching classes and workshops at Needles and Knits Wool Shop in Aurora. Her unique style, and approach to her classes, is why new and long time students sign up for several classes a year.
So who is the lady that runs the workshops? We believe an introduction has been long overdue, and we are rectifying that right now. Read on, and enjoy the interview transcript below...
How did you start knitting ?
GD: My grade 2 class learned to knit, crochet, and embroider as it was part of the curriculum.
Where did you study?
GD: In the 90's I took Fashion Arts at Seneca and in third year I had to choose a specialty - tailoring or knitting on the machines . I designed a whole fashion line in one semester which was leather skirts and knit sweaters with lace inserts.
I have also taken classes with Lucy Neatby, Jared Flood, Donna Druchunas, and Brandon Mably.
Why did you choose knitting?
GD: I have always knit. I was in between jobs - retail, owning my own ceramics business, and I applied at a knitting store. I started teaching classes and ended up working there 10 years!
What was your first knitting design?
GD: I was 19 years old at Kindergarten Teacher College and I designed a pullover with the Hungarian flag on it for the Hungarian Scouts.
What projects are you currently working on?
Garter stitch cardigan
Mitre square garment
40 UFO's (unfinished objects)
What is your favourite piece that you have knit?
GD: One of my 45 skirts. I love them all so it is hard to pick one.
What hobbies and interests do you have ?
GD: Gardening, pets and family (not necessarily in that order).
Do you have any recommendations or suggestions for people new to knitting?
GD: Use the best quality materials you can afford. Do not be afraid to start over or change things (ie. in the pattern). Take classes - group or one on one. "Knitting is a social thing" so be inspired by others.
What is your ideal " I'm going to knit for the next few hours" routine? Do you watch movies? Listen to music?
GD: I carve out time to knit. If I am knitting intricate lace then I will listen to music. I watch tv if knitting anything else.
English or Continental? Continental
Cardigan or Pullover? Cardigan
Cables or Lace? Lace
DPNs or Magic Loop? Neither - 2 circulars
Yarn - Solid or Variegated? Both
Socks - Toe Up or Top Down? Top Down
Needles - Wood or Metal? Wood
Wool, cotton, alpaca, cashmere, silk? Silk and cotton
What does your stash look like?
GD: It fills the office, a closet and half the attic and there is more scattered elsewhere.
What is your favourite thing about knitting?
GD: The possibilities are endless. "You can tweak anything." If I am teaching a modular class, I love how everyone is knitting the same thing but they all come out differently.
Needles & Knits