We meet at the Montclair Presbyterian Church, 5701 Thornhill Dr., Oakland, CA 94611.
The Machine Knitters Guild of the San Francisco Bay Area supports the art and craft of machine knitting through our activities and charitable programs. Membership benefits include: monthly programs and newsletters; members-helping-members programs; yarn and swap events to trade or renew your stash; a lending library with books, magazines, and CDs; plus, the members-only chat group.
Our program year, September through June, includes presentations on machine knitting techniques, garment inspiration and design, current trends in knit fashion, shaping hints, short-row techniques, socks, garter bars tricks and much more. Each meeting includes a Show and Tell portion when members display and talk about their knitting.
The business meeting starts at 9:30 am, then the morning program goes from around 10:30 am to NOON.
Questions about membership?
Contact the Guild by email. Dues for the 2020 – 2021 Program Year are $50.00. Not a member? Join us for a complimentary morning program.
Bay Area Events and Shows
Okay, so how do you spell “fun” in Yarnspeak? S-T-I-T-C-H-E-S. The Stitches West Conference in Santa Clara, February 20 to 23, 2020, was, as always, a total blast.
How do you even explain Stitches to people who aren’t into yarn? Well, it’s like Graduation meets the Super Bowl and the World Series, while visiting Disneyland with all of your Besties. It’s four days of the most fun. Lots of yarn, lots of people, lots of classes, lots of products, lots of laughter, lots of everything!! The Stitches Conference is sponsored by Knitting Universe, and that name says it all — Stitches provides everything in the Universe to people who knit.
The Guild had its own booth, super popular with people who are generally curious about anything happening with yarn. We displayed lots of garments that were made by our members using various gauge knitting machines, and there were two machines set up for people to try their hand at knitting a swatch.
The Lookie-Loos fell into two distinct groups. The first group were people who had had a knitting machine “years ago,” or their mom or grandma had a machine, and they were pleasantly surprised that the machines were still around. The second group were die-hard knitters who thought that getting a knitting machine would be a great way to get through their yarn stash. Heh, heh, heh, little do they know…..
Special thanks to Adrienne for schlepping machines, tables and garments to the Santa Clara Convention Center and setting up everything.
And thank you to all our Guilders who worked a shift in our magical booth as we showcased our craft.
Check out our photos ….
Our Guilders participated again this year at Oakland’s 10th annual East Bay Mini Maker Faire, hosted by the Park Day School, on Sunday, October 27, 2019. The event featured both established and emerging local people who create beautiful things. The festival featured everything from rockets and robots to urban farming and alternative energy ideas.
According to its website, “The East Bay Mini Maker Faire follows the “big” Maker Faire models of celebrating invention, creativity, and resourcefulness, but [on a] smaller scale. [The event] showcased the wonders of Alameda and Contra Costa counties and beyond!”
Several of our members staffed a machine knitting booth and were a huge hit. Despite the wind gusts, and bad air from all the fires in the region, many, many people attended the Faire – likely as a respite from the all the power outages!
Luckily, our booth was indoors, so we had lots of visitors. The Guild set up three machines, including an electronic Brother that was hacked to work with a computer. Quite a few people stopped by to watch the demonstrations, and also tried their hands at machine knitting. Our Guilders noted that many men and teen-aged boys were really drawn to the electronic machines, and everyone was very interested in the telling of a quick history of these machines that was provided by our experts.
One of our newer members, who is a designer for a global clothing firm, demonstrated textured patterns and cables on the mid-gauge to a transfixed audience. People are definitely curious about our machines and motivated to learn more about them. Hopefully, we’ll see some new members.
Thank you to all the Guilders who took the time to share our craft!
Click on these images for a larger view.
MKGSFBA had a booth at one of the most well-attended conferences for knitters, the Vogue Knitting LIVE! San Francisco. This event is similar to Stitches — lots and lots of yarn folk — but it is strictly for knitters. Classes, wares, friends. An excellent opportunity to learn and create. The next conference will be next year in October 2020. We will be there!
Our Full Library is on Ravelry
Did you know that the Guild has a lending library of books, magazines and patterns for machine knitters? As these items become more difficult to find, we’re very lucky to have access to such an extensive collection. The entire collection is listed on Ravelry. Request items from our librarian and she will bring them to the next meeting of the Guild. So, please, check us out on Ravelry.
Tuck Lace created with a punchcard knitting machine.
South Bay Machine Knitting
Adrienne Hunter has organized a smaller machine knitting group in the South Bay. The meetings are now being held at the Maker Nexus, a collaborative work space in Sunnyvale (https://www.makernexus.com/). This group is a bit different from the larger Guild in that it is more informal and hands-on. Knitters are encouraged to bring their knitting machines so they can learn from each other and gain access to Adrienne’s deep knowledge about machine knitting. Beginners are very welcome to attend. We encourage membership in both the Guild and the South Bay group, as the two groups are very different, yet wonderfully complementary.
To find out about the next meeting check the South Bay Machine Knitting Meetup Group
Highlighting Our Members
Our membership is our most valuable asset. Many of our members have their own machine knitting or yarn inspired businesses. Here are the sites of a few of our members.
Nancy Roberts, local Silver Reed dealer, sells machines, tools, supplies, and teaches classes. Nancy has been a member since 2005. Visit her site: Machine Knitting to Dye For
We Support Our Local Yarn Shops
Machine knitters go through yarn at a FURIOUS pace. We are lucky to have fantastic brick and mortar yarn shops in the area to support our craft. We hope you will check out these partners who offer Guild members discounts on their yarn purchases.
ImagiKnit at 3897 18th Street in San Francisco – https://imagiknit.com/
A Yarn Less Raveled at 730 Camino Ramon, #186, in Danville - https://www.ayarnlessraveled.com/
Avenue Yarns at 1325 Solano Avenue in Albany - https://www.avenueyarns.com/