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The view of the lake

2013 Knitter's Review Retreat
November 7-10
Inn on the Lake
Canandaigua, NY

So sorry, as of August 2, registration and the waiting list are now full.

It's that time again! Please join us for the 12th edition of The Knitter's Review Retreat. We return to the charming lakeside town of Canandaigua, New York, just a skein's throw from the water's edge at the Inn on the Lake.

The KR Retreat is a special kind of gathering that mixes inspiration, learning, play, and a healthy dose of low-stress downtime with your peers. I take great care in pulling together just the right blend of people, vendors, and activities to create a weekend that leaves you feeling relaxed, inspired, and welcomed as part of a community.

As this is our 12th year together, I decided to focus this year's educational program on longevity, both the creative and physical kind. All of the workshops have been conceived to help us focus on the bigger picture of design, fit, color, and our physical well-being. Our esteemed guests this year are none other than Norah Gaughan, Amy Herzog, Gail Callahan, and Carson Demers.

How It Works
The heart of the event is the Weekend Retreat, which runs from November 8-10 and includes an excellent workshop, evening programs and unfettered access to the stash lounge, the extra-decadent Saturday afternoon marketplace (this year including Brooklyn Tweed!), copious freshly prepared meals, a steady flow of tea and coffee, and a comfortable bed on which to rest your head every night. For those who wish to arrive early and enjoy a full extra day of activities, including an additional workshop, we also offer the Thursday Extension that begins November 7th.

Please note that no part of the event, from Thursday to Sunday afternoon, is open to the public.

Aunt Judy and Kathy

What We'll Do
The weekend agenda strikes a careful balance between programmed time for learning and sharing, and unprogrammed time for relaxing and connecting. Highlights include:

A choice of four Saturday morning workshops:

  • Shore Up Your Design Ideas Are you tired of knitting other people's patterns and eager to give your own ideas a go? Renowned knitwear designer Norah Gaughan shares her secrets about how to make a design idea work. You'll leave the class with a fully formed inspiration that's ready to be written into a pattern. Skill level: All

Read about
previous retreats:

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  • Knit to Flatter Ever wonder why some sweaters make you look like a supermodel and others make you look more like a hobbit? Have you ever knit a sweater that looked stunning on the page only to be disappointed when you wore it for the first time? Amy Herzog feels your pain, and she wants to make it go away. Back by popular demand, Amy gives you the tools you need to produce favorite sweaters every time you pick up the needles. Among other things you’ll learn about how to manipulate the appearance of your body’s shape, make pattern modifications, and learn step-by-step techniques for making your next sweater a success. Skills: This class is suitable for adventurous knitters of all skill levels.

  • Rethinking Color I keep hearing people say colorwork is going to be the next "big thing." If this is true, now is a good time to beef up our understanding of—and confidence with—color. Gail Callahan's lifelong passion for color spans her work as the Kangaroo Dyer and author of Hand Dyeing Yarn and Fleece. Gail is also the creator of the Color Grid and a teacher at several venues in the Northeast. In this workshop, you'll be challenged to abandon your language of color and look at color in a new way, aided by hands-on exercises and your very own coloring book. Skills: This class is suitable for knitters of all skill levels.

  • Swatchbuckling Let's face it folks, we aren't getting any younger. We can't talk about longevity without talking about our bodies and what they may be trying to tell us. A physical therapist by trade, Carson Demers is a pioneer in the field of ergonomics for knitters. In this workshop, he'll help you bring improved ergonomics to your knitting technique. You’ll swatch to improve your posture, comfort, and efficiency. You'll also study yarn tensioning techniques and all phases of stitch creation, from simple to more challenging swatches and stitches. Finally, you'll learn new ways to add movement to knitting to avoid stiffness and injuries caused by disuse. Skills: This class is appropriate for students who are comfortable with basic knit purl stitches. You'll also be working swatches of basic cable and lace pattern (with stitch patterns provided in both charted and written formats).

  • You'll also enjoy the Friday evening show-and-tell, Saturday marketplace, Saturday night's special Great White Bale Extravaganza, and Yarn Church on Sunday morning, and the infamous stash lounge all weekend.

  • Thursday Extension
    For those who wish to make a long weekend out of it, our Thursday Extension fits the bill. This smaller gathering begins with a reception on Thursday afternoon, followed by dinner and a very special presentation by Barbara Parry on Thursday night, followed by in-depth workshops running Friday morning and into the early afternoon.

    Choose from one of four classes:

    • Creative Design It's the master-class you've been waiting for, with Norah Gaughan offering a sneak peek into the working of a yarn company design team. She then explores her take on the artistic side of designing, from inspiration to stitches, swatches, and sketches. Skills: Ability to knit and purl, and a curiosity about knitwear design.

    • Knit to Flatter with Amy Herzog. This extended version of her Saturday morning workshop offers deeper design personalization tips and individual help with size choices for each student. Skills: Adventurous knitters of all skill levels.

    • Rethinking Color In this extended version of Gail Callahan's Saturday morning workshop, you'll get to experiment with food coloring on different kinds of fiber and cloth, as well as pluck possible colorways from the stash lounge. Skills: This class is suitable for knitters of all skill levels.

    • Knitting Happily Ever After Those who've taken this class from Carson Demers say it's even more important than the knit and purl stitch, and I happen to agree. You'll complete a Risk of Injury assessment in class to help you understand how knitting may contribute to any aches and pains you have. Even more important, you’ll learn how to reduce them so you can knit happily ever after. Skills: This class is indispensable for knitters of all skill levels.

    How Much Does it Cost?

    Weekend Retreat:
    $625 single
    $530 double (per person)
    $480 per person *triple/three people
    $460 per person *quad/four people
    *These options are most suitable for friends only, as the rooms have two double beds.

    I'm happy to match you with a roommate, or you can specify a roommate on your registration form. Please make sure your intended roommate sends in his/her form at the same time as yours—I am unable to hold rooms for missing roommates.

    This rate covers everything: all classes and activities, two nights' lodging, all your meals from Friday dinner through Sunday lunch, snacks and beverages throughout the weekend, plus all taxes and gratuities.

    Thursday Extension

    An additional $320 single
    An additional $240 double
    An additional $210 *triple/three people
    An additional $200 *quad/four people

    If sharing a room, both roommates will need to be registered for the extension. The fee covers everything—meals and snacks, lodging, and all programming.

    *These rooms are for friends only, as they have two double beds.

    Lodging is in non-lakeview motel rooms that feature complementary high-speed wireless Internet, a coffee maker, hair dryer, iron and ironing board (for last-minute blocking, perhaps?), and an in-room safe if you want to hide your cashmere from me. The inn also offers a limited number of lakeview rooms for an additional $40 per night, including tax.

    Bringing Family

    Non-knitting partners, spouses, friends, or children are welcome as long as they promise not to distract you from your fun. Violators will be deprived of their dessert and forced to learn how to knit.

    We regret we are not able to accommodate children under 12 without a non-participating adult caregiver, as childcare is not available. Well-behaved nursing babies are always welcome, but once the child is a toddler, it will need a non-participating caregiver.

    The cost for adult non-knitting companions sharing a room with a participant is $390 for the weekend, or $560 with the Thursday extension. This includes lodging, meals, snacks, all taxes and gratuities, and the distinct pleasure of staying in a hotel that's packed with knitters.

    Sunset over the water

    How to Register

    So sorry, as of August 2, registration and the waiting list are now full.

    Space is limited and, in the past, has gone in a matter of minutes. If you know you'd like to come, take a moment now to familiarize yourself with the class offerings. Be sure to pick a first and second choice for workshops, as this will increase your chances of getting in. If you do not indicate a second choice, I may select it for you. Note for Thursday extension registrants: We request that you not choose classes from the same teacher as your Saturday morning workshop, as there is significant subject-matter duplication.

    Getting the Form to Us
    You can either FAX your form to us at 888-653-5558, or you can scan and email your form to Note: If emailing your registration, you must select "Paypal" as your payment option. For your security, please do not email any credit card information to us.

    What Happens Next?
    I realize you'll be eager to know whether or not you get in. When I receive your fax or email, I'll send you a quick email. Please note that this is not a confirmation of attendance, only a confirmation that your form was received. This is your cue to sit tight and think good thoughts.

    Space is assigned based on when your registration form was received, which workshop(s) you requested, and, in the case of shared rooms with a specified roommate, whether or not I am able to accommodate your roommate as well. To keep the group well-balanced, I will apply a quota for returning attendees and newcomers and make the final selection by lottery, if necessary.

    By August 16 you will receive a confirmation of your registration status. If you secured a spot at the retreat, your confirmation email will also indicate which class you'll be taking. If you're on the waiting list, do not despair. Cancellations have happened and will likely happen again.

    Once your space has been confirmed, your credit card will be charged for the full registration fee. If you're on the waiting list, your credit card will not be charged, or Paypal account invoiced, until your space has been confirmed.

    Cancellations are fully refundable until September 15, 2013, at which point they will be subject to a $100 cancellation fee. After October 1, 2013, we regret that all cancellations are non-refundable.

    Getting There
    The nearest airport is the Greater Rochester International Airport, served by all major airlines including Jet Blue. From Rochester, our inn is a very easy 40-minute drive to the hotel. Albany is three-and-a-half hours away, New York City just a little over five-and-a-half hours—or 27 minutes by plane.

    What to Do Nearby
    Canandaigua is in the heart of the Finger Lakes Wine Region. In fact, right next to the inn is the New York Wine and Culinary Center, with a Tasting Room that offers samplings of New York's top wines. And for those who like to get out and stretch their legs each day, there's a paved walking trail that runs along a good length of the lake.

    Got Goodies?
    Are you a vendor who'd like to contribute something tempting to our goodie bags? Please email and we'll be in touch. Thank you!

    Thanks so much for reading. I hope to see you this fall!


    Featured Event

    When Knitters Gather
    lake view
    Put knitters together for a weekend and who knows what might happen? Well, I do. Here's a peek inside the 12th-annual Knitter's Review Retreat, which took place on the shores of Lake Canandaigua, New York.
    arrow Read the report

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