Hardcore stitchers

Jocelyn Turner
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Carol McCall

AMHERST – They may only meet once a month at the Four Fathers Memorial Library, but the love for their craft runs all year round. The Twisted Stitchers is a meeting for crafters who enjoy all forms of fiber art.

“The last library I worked at had a similar program,” said Denise Corey, deputy chief librarian. “When I came here, I thought it would be nice to have a program for adults that’s relaxing and it’s a drop in. People are able to do their own thing and we chit-chat, and share ideas. It’s great. I get paid to knit.”

Knitter Helen Sandgland was just one of the stitchers in attendance to their recent meeting. The knitter started coming in October and has since began frequenting the sessions ever since. Knitting is something she’s been doing for several years.

“We were forced to learn it when we were kids in school,” said Sandgland. “I kind of got away from it but once the kids moved out and you’re stuck home, you can’t just sit and watch television, you got to do something. You can’t just sit and stare into space, you have to be doing something with your hands.”

The stitchers meeting, Sandgland said, is a great way for everyone to share their craft and meet new friends.

“It keeps you from going shack wacky,” she added.

Once the gathering really got under way, a few disturbing details arose. Like most hobbies, for most of the stitchers, the craft has slowly turned into an addiction. Much like a drug addict looking for their next fix, these stitchers are constantly looking for new yarn to feed their habit.

“It’s better for you (than drugs),” said Leslie Childs, one of the knitters at the meet. “And you can make a contribution to your community.”

Their addiction even filters into every day activities and special trips, like vacations.

“(We plan) the highlight of vacations around the yarn stores,” added Sandgland.

The Twisted Stitchers welcome all forms of fiber art including rug hookers and quilting. The sessions are free and meet on the second Wednesday of each month from 6:30 until 8 p.m.

jturner@amherstdaily.com

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