TEACHER FEATURE: SIVIA HARDING'S MAGIC

One glance through Sivia Harding’s design pages on Ravelry shows the design priniciple “thread” that runs through all of her work: magic. Her designs incorporate lovely beads and intriguing shapes: shawls that arc, möbius accessories and sweaters, and EPS cowls that hug the neck and drape gracefully around the shoulders to keep out the cold. And the beads—they peek from between flowing cables on a pair of gloves, adorn the points and shapes of a lace wrap. She is also known for her knitted jewelry designs, of course, where beads and buttons turn something as simple as I-cord into a work of art. You can find Sivia's designs in all kinds of publications: she has been published in many books, fiber arts magazines, and she also has a Ravelry store.

Happily for us at Knit Fit! Sivia believes that every knitter can work this magic, and she loves to teach us how in her classes!

Sivia describes herself as a process knitter. She started out with crochet, though, which she learned as a child from her grandmother. “I remember making endless crochet chains and then endless crochet afghan squares,” she says. She didn’t learn to knit until she was an adult, when she made what she describes as “an awful garter stitch scarf with very questionable edges!”

When I asked what she loves, and what she struggles with, as a knitter and crocheter, she gave me the same answer: the process. As she puts it, “I love the process. The wisdom of the movements and the fiber, and how it produces calmness and balance all by itself. The biggest struggle for me as a designer is to fully trust that process, not to get too complicated in my mind.”

Sivia makes her living as a fiber artist—a designer and an instructor in a set of venues that she chooses carefully, and which also includes a retreat that she runs in Washington’s San Juan Islands. She also works part time, “assisting a friend who is in theater.” More magic!

She brings this same degree of care and attention to detail to her choice in yarns, where she favors “yarns that are next to skin soft and spun and plied with care,” or what she calls “yarn integrity.” Still, she says that her stash is “preeeeeeety big.” I have a feeling that I would enjoy hearing Sivia tell me about each item in her stash, as much as I would enjoy looking at it. J

Check out Sivia’s class offerings for this year’s Knit Fit! In her teaching, as in her designs, magic is on the menu, and there are both subtle and sparkling forms to work, “as you wish.” (Couldn't resist a little Princess Bride reference...) There is still room in a couple of her classes!

You can also find Sivia on Ravelry, Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook!

Posted by: Sharon Crowley