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Thursday, January 12, 2012

Guest Blogger - Meet Jane Thornley - Inspired Knitter Par Excellence!

Do you ever wonder how/where/when you’ve met someone?  After a while those recollections fade (and really don’t matter!), but when I asked my guest blogger to recall, she had the same response.  We just don’t remember how we “met!”  However, I can say that Jane Thornley has been my inspiration, my muse, my fierce Scrabble (on FB) competitor, and my “kindred spirit” for a number of years.

I am honored and humbled by her coining the term “Kindred Spirits” about our work.  We do think we discovered one another (not sure who!) on Ravelry where she manages several knitting groups.  Amazingly, our work is quite similar in its love of nature and natural materials, use of color and texture, and combining fibers and stitches to produce wearable knitwear.  She is far more skilled, inventive and innovative, published, adventurous, and recognized than I, but surprisingly, we share many of the same attributes.  I can always find her up EARLY to play several of our on-going Scrabble games! ;-o) 

I am thrilled to present her interview here in two parts.  I think you’ll love and admire her as much as I do!

1. Do you have any new Year’s Resolution’s? 
Yes, I vow to avoid all resolutions. They sound so serious, just one more thing to feel guilty about. Instead, I have an internal pilot light to retool certain aspirations in my life, such as move more, eat less (isn’t that one universal in January?), and get my fiction published. Since I have so many things on the go, from the publication of my Inspired Knitter’s Club issues, designing patterns for knitters, making jewelry, doing workshops, and organizing exotic excursions to Turkey, Italy, Spain and Santa Fe, I have to repeatedly remind myself that I’m retired. Now, there’s a laugh: me retired. I should just stop pretending. I’m not retired, I’m re-hired…by me!

2. Where do you reside, work from, stake your claim in the world? 
I’m based in a little forested, riverside, home in Nova Scotia, Canada, but consider myself a bit of a global wanderer with the Internet my virtual store. I have my own web shop for jewelry and designs at but don’t have the time to make knitwear to sell these says. Otherwise, I consider Santa Fe my heart home, so I have a bit of the dry and the damp happening.

3. How long have you been doing what you do? 
I’ve been writing forever and wrote my first stories in grade school. Knitting began in my twenties with embroidery and needlepoint prior to that. I’ve always done something with my hands, including sewing all my clothes right up until the BIG JOBS began. In university, I knit elaborate pictorial sweaters just to survive graduate school and didn’t begin unfolding into free-range knitting until it occurred to me that I was only trying to impose control on my environment with such fiddly work. Now I believe in knitting free to live long.

4. What’s next for you?  

5. Who or what inspires you to create? 
In a word: nature. My designs are very organic and often evolve from views right outside my door such as the river or woods. I’m also very influenced by the places I visit such as Turkey, Italy or Morocco. When I escort a group of inspired knitters to someplace exotic, inevitably I return brimming with ideas. Global cultures inspire me, the ways in which people interpret their inner and outer worlds.

6. Do you listen to music when you work, and if so what kind? 
I listen to music while I write: lately it’s been Freddie Mercury, Sara Brightman, Al Stewart (I’m very eclectic) but while knitting, it’s Masterpiece Theater or HBO. I recently bought the complete set of Carnivale and downloaded all of Downton Abbey.

7. What do you like least/most about your craft? 
Tax time! It’s become so complicated with my touring company plus the Inspired Knitters Club and my pattern and book sales. My husband is my accountant. As I write he’s sitting at the desk next to mine, filing.

To be continued......!  But in the meantime please visit Jane's website and consider joining her Inspired Knitters' Club.

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