Two of my most favorite pastimes are reading and needlework. Unfortunately, it's very difficult to do them simultaneously! Happily, my two loves can still be enjoyed together by working on fiber art that has a literary theme or reading books where needlework is a prominent character.
PieceWork Editor-in-Chief Jeane Hutchins shares my passion for books and stitching, and I can't wait for you to learn how PieceWork’s new issue celebrates needlework in literature.
One of my fondest childhood memories is of the day my grandmother took me to the public library to get my very own library card. I've had a library card ever since.
I read voraciously, as often as I can find a spare moment. Reading is my stress reliever, my hobby, my joy. There's at least one book in every room in my house as well as others in the car and in my briefcase (I never know when I may be trapped somewhere). So I'm really pleased to give you this preview of our first issue of PieceWork dedicated to needlework in literature!
When we first talked about this as a theme, I began to compile a list of literary works containing needlework references. In addition to the ones we chose for this issue, here are some of my other favorites:
A Midwife's Tale: The Life of Martha Ballard, Based on Her Diary, 1785-1812 by Laurel Thatcher Ulrich, Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter, Caramelo by Sandra Cisneros (especially lyrical are the passages about a silk rebozo), William Makepeace Thackeray's Vanity Fair, Louisa May Alcott's Little Women, The Shipping News by E. Annie Proulx, and Dickens's A Tale of Two Cities.
Do you know of others? I'd love to hear from you. Leave a comment at the end of this post.
Below are a few highlights from the September/October 2010 issue:
- Agatha Christie's Miss Marple sat in a corner knitting so she could eavesdrop and no one would know. Miss Marple's spirit lives on in many of today's knitting mysteries.
- If you know a child (from toddler to teen), check out Julia Baratta's "Needlework in Children's Literature" annotated list. Who would ever guess that the hero of Jessica Day George's Princess of the Midnight Ball would be a knitter! The books span many time periods and cultures, and each is a delight.
- Discover the unique technique of netting in an excerpt from Jennifer Forest's delightful book, Jane Austen's Sewing Box: Craft Projects & Stories from Jane Austen's Novels.
- Knitting has a double meaning in the title of Elizabeth Cobbe's article, "Knitting Gloves in Brian Friel's Dancing at Lughnasa," referring not only to the role that this activity plays in the lives of the characters in a play but also to the way in which it is accomplished, performance after performance, onstage.
- Plus 10 literary-inspired projects to net, knit, crochet and stitch!
|| (Photos of art by Joe Coca)
Ahh, reading and needlework--I think it's the best combination. Get your free copy of this issue to see for yourself!