February Meeting Wrap-up

February is our Annual Meeting where the MKG board updates the membership on the state of the Guild over the past year. Members can view our 2021 Annual Report on their Dashboard under Guild Business. Non-members who would like to see the report can request one from our secretary.

Even more important than looking back at the last year, we took time to discuss some of our goals and plans for 2022 and beyond. Here is a recap of that discussion:

(Click HERE to view a recording of the meeting.)

Meetings and Events

  • We will continue to offer virtual programming, especially as our membership is spread across 23 states and 2 Canadian Provinces. Meeting attendance has nearly doubled while we have been virtual.
  • As well as virtual programming, we hope to start hosting more in person events as COVID allows. Some of the things we are working on are:
    • Yarnover
    • WWKIP (Worldwide Knit In Public) Day
    • Stitch ‘n’ Pitch
    • Great Guild Getaway


  • We had planned to award two Yarnover Grants in 2022, but we are thrilled that we were able to award four instead. (We were actually able to offer grants to all five applicants, but one had to drop out.) These grants were funded through sales of Great Guild Getaway (GGG) yarn, an anonymous donation, and a corporate match donation from Wells Fargo.
  • We are launching new Educational Grants for our members this year. These grants are for members who wish to build on their knitting knowledge by taking certification level classes, such as Master Knitting, Tech Editing, Pattern Writing, Fair Judging, etc. Members can apply for an Educational Grant in the Grants section of their Dashboard.

Board Changes and Openings

  • Kathy Lewinski (President) and Kate Westlund (Technology Director) will be ending their terms on the board at the end of June 2022. Both have served six years on the board.
  • Kelly Amoth (Vice President) will be moving into the President position for the next two years. Having a Vice President that moves into the President position is really helpful to keep the Guild moving forward.
  • Melissa Mintern (Marketing Director) will be moving to the Technology Director role being vacated by Kate.
  • This will leave two open board positions. There are job descriptions for both positions on the Volunteer page. If you are interested in learning more about either position, please contact Kathy.
    • Marketing – This person is in charge of the Guild’s social media presence, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Ravelry. They work with the Technology director on website content as well. They also coordinate the Guild’s presence at non-Guild events like Shepherd’s Harvest, the MN State Fair, and other community or fiber related events. This position has a three-year term.
    • Vice President – The Vice President works with the President in strategic planning for the Guild. They are responsible for coordinating the Guild’s three grant programs and fund raising activities such as Give To the Max Day. The Vice President fills in for the President when they are not available.  This position has a two-year term and then moved into a two-year term as President.


  • The Guild is only ever as strong as its members.
  • Volunteering is vital to the success of the Guild.
  • While the board strives to create programming and events they hope the membership will enjoy, we are only 9 people out of a membership of 500+. The more members that are involved with the Guild as volunteers, the more the Guild’s activities will represent the Guild as a whole.
  • There are numerous ways you can volunteer
    • Apply for an open board position (see above)
    • Volunteer at Yarnover. Yarnover is completely volunteer run and there are many ways you can help. Volunteers are eligible to win Yarnover door prizes. Volunteers who are not taking a class can also purchase lunch at a discounted price. Yarnover volunteer sign-up is open now.
    • Write a blog post. You might think you have nothing interesting to write about, but we are all knitters and love to read and talk about knitting. Have you taken a fiber related trip? Learned a great new tip or trick? Worked on a special project? Given yourself a knitting challenge? We’d love to hear about it and your fellow members would too! Contact Melissa or Kate if you are interested in writing a blog post.
    • Suggest and present a designer of the month. The board has been choosing these designers for over a year and we could use some help finding more! We are looking for designers that are up-and-coming, so not people with hundreds of designs that have been made over and over again. These are designers who could use a little publicity. We are especially interested in designers who are from the Upper Midwest or are BIPOC. Contact Rose or Melissa if you have a designer we should spotlight. (By the way, if we spotlight your suggestion, you get a free pattern from the designer as well.)
    • Suggest ideas for meeting speakers or topics. Virtual meetings give us the option to have speakers join us from all over. We’d love to know who you’d like to hear from. You can make suggestions through the form on the Dashboard or email Sandra.
    • Volunteer on a committee. We will be needing volunteers on the Yarnover and Great Guild Getaway committees later this year. Watch for more details about those opportunities.


Kathy also took the time at this meeting to thank those people who have been so helpful this past year and more!

The Board

  • Kelly Amoth – Vice President
  • Rose Tobelman – Treasurer
  • Kelsey Sorenson – Secretary
  • Betsy Preston – Service
  • Sandra Wright – Programming
  • Nikky Heidel – Membership
  • Melissa Mintern – Marketing
  • Kate Westlund – Technology

The Yarnover Committee

  • Janese Evans – Committee Chair
  • Becky Huerta – Registration
  • Anna Turk – Teacher Liason
  • Diane Mountford – Marketplace
  • Caitlin Maier – Door Prizes and Sponsorships

The Great Guild Getaway Committee – The GGG didn’t happen last year, but this group had it all planned and was ready to go.

  • Courtney Tambornino
  • Roxanne Richardson
  • Janet Ungs
  • Carrie Sazama
  • Laura Haave 

The Service Committee

  • Deb Parker
  • Andrea Zuckor
  • Dawn Baddeley


  • Jess Dahlberg – Monthly Newsletter Editor and creator of our Mystery Minis Sale and Knit Along (KAL).
  • Anne Rojas – Librarian
  • Bonnie Swierzbin – Ran the Variations on a Theme challenge for service knitting and hosted Sunday virtual knitting when Kathy was away.
  • Deepa Nirmal – Photographed the Broadway Ave Sock pattern and presented a Designer of the Month.
  • Halee Graham – Was so patient to release her Broadway Ave Sock pattern when the Great Guild Getaway was canceled two years in a row.
  • Lindsay Eggers – Helped the Guild with some design work.


  • Registration is open! There are lots of great classes, so we hope you join us.
  • As mentioned above, we are looking for volunteers to help out throughout the day. Sign up here!
  • The Yarnover Shawl Contest is going to be a hybrid of virtual and in person this year. You can read all about it here.
  • If you have registered, but haven’t uploaded your Proof of Vaccination yet, make sure to do it by April 15th. You can upload it here.
  • Free timed-entry tickets to the Marketplace will be available soon. Those taking classes or volunteering do not need to get a ticket.

Service Knitting

  • We are knitting for two organizations this year: MoveFwd and Sanya’s Hope for Children.
  • These organizations have asked us to make hats and mittens (sizes to fit kids through adults), scarves, warm socks and slippers for young adults, lap blankets, and cotton washcloths.
    • Think warmth! Warm enough to wear outdoors in winter.
    • Fiber: Any fiber type is acceptable, provided it is machine washable.
    • Hat specs: Finished size between 18” – 22” around and long enough to cover ears. (Try on your own head to make sure it covers the ears before starting to decrease) Consider cuff or double thickness over ears.
    • Please wash finished items before donating.
  • We have a goal of giving Sanya’s Hope 550 hats and pairs of mittens by July! Hats & mittens do not need to match.
  • Our next Donation Drop-off Event will be Sunday, March 27th from 11am – 2pm at the Textile Center back parking lot.
  • You can also donate at Potomac Bead Co in Alexandria, MN or contact Betsy to arrange a drop-off.
  • We are also accepting yarn donations. (Yarn is used for service knitting, given to other organizations who request it, or sold in our garage sale or auction.)
    • Full skeins with labels.
    • Natural fiber or natural fiber blend.
    • Please do not donate 100% acrylic, partial skeins or balls, tangled yarn, dirty yarn, or yarn that is musty or smells of cigarette smoke.
  • Please do not send or drop donations off at the Textile Center.

Designer Spotlight

Our designer of the month is Brienne Moody. You can read more about her here.

Door Prizes

Brienne Moody Pattern – Vicky Harris

Brienne Moody Pattern – Kris King

Digital copy of Interweave Knits Spring 2022 – Chris Caldarale

Two knit, beaded wrist cuffsBarbie F. shared the Act Deco Beaded Wristers she made with the pattern from our December Designer of the Month,  Diane Augustin, that she won as a door prize.

Have you made a project with a pattern you won as a door prize? Let Kelly know, we’d love to show it off at a meeting.






  • The Norwegian Mitten exhibit at the Norway House has been extended through March 13th. All the mittens will be auctioned off after the exhibit closes.
  • Led by Rage to Order Artists Initiative, the people that brought you St. Paul Cozy, Minnesota artists and crafters are invited to share their fiber art skills and create faux “blooms” for display in downtown St. Paul. The project will be on display at CHS Field to celebrate the 30th anniversary season of the St. Paul Saints from April 12 – May 14, 2022 and in downtown St. Paul this summer. Find out more details and sign up here.

Mini Skein KAL (Knit Along)

We followed up the business portion with a slide show of our Mini Skein KAL entries. You can vote for your favorite through Tuesday, February 22nd.

Recent Posts

Show & Tell


Headshot of Roxanne RichardsonRoxanne Richardson is a knitting communicator who lives in Minneapolis. Her YouTube channel explores a variety of knitting-related topics, including knitting history and techniques, and she writes technical knitting articles for Interweave publications. She’s a certified master hand knitter and certified knitting teacher, and she can’t wait to answer your burning knitting questions.

Currently Open

Marketing Director

The marketing director position is currently open. For more information contact the Guild President, president@knitters.org



(Term 1, Year 2)

A visiting friend from Seattle taught Kelly the very basics of knitting (a twisted loop cast on and just the knit stitch) in 2008 before flying home. Turning to the internet (thanks knittinghelp.com!) Kelly taught herself through a lot of trial and error. Uncontent to keep knitting the scarf she’d started as her first project, she jumped into knitting a pair of striped mittens for her non-knitter, but very knitworthy, twin sister. Twelve years later the mittens are still in her sister’s glove box, and Kelly is usually horrified when she pulls them out and sees the mistakes she made using double pointed needles for the first time. Kelly loves knitting socks and is thankful for the many months of cold weather when she gets to exclusively wear her handknits. (she, her, hers)



(Term 1, Year 1)

Kendra lives in the Twin Cities and learned to hand knit from her mother in middle school. In the last few years, she has also learned crochet and machine knitting. Kendra enjoys knitting items to donate and challenging herself with new techniques. She prefers knitting in the round with colorful yarn. (she, her, hers)



(Term 2, Year 2)

Rose learned to knit from her mother at the age of ten. She started knitting on the ends of small paint brushes. She continued to knit off and on through her teenage and young adult years and became a more avid knitter after taking a Norwegian sweater knitting class through community education. Today, knitting has become a passion and she knits for charity, herself, and her family her stash. She enjoys meeting other knitters and learning new techniques.

Open Position

Programming Director

(3-year term)

This position is currently open. If you are interested in volunteering for the Guild board, please contact our president, Kelly, at the email me link below.


Service Director

(Term 1, Year 3)

Betsy never had patience for knitting, until she found herself spending a lot of time at little league games and waiting for the last kid to emerge from the locker room after swim practice. With her background in graphic design, stranded colorwork has a natural appeal. Not to mention the practicality of an extra layer of warmth. Betsy has recently begun publishing her original hat and cowl patterns, which are available on Ravelry. (she, her, hers) (See our Service Knitting Page for more information about our current projects and donation process.)


Membership/Programming Director

(Term 2, Year 1)

Nikky was first introduced to knitting in 2012 when her visiting sister-in-law taught her the basics of casting on and the knit stitch. A few weeks later, she learned how to purl from her mother-in-law. From there, it quickly became a passion and she has taken on each new project with a desire to expand her skill and discover new techniques. She loves a good mystery (knit-a-long) and knits way more shawls than a single person can wear in a month.


Technology Director

(Term 1, Year 2)

Melissa has been knitting for 15 years. She loves socks and sweaters. She is a new member who hopes to use her marketing background to lift up the MKG. While she isn't local to MN, she really loves the atmosphere created by the Guild. Melissa and significant other Al enjoy traveling, wherein Al graciously offers to drive so Melissa can knit in the passenger seat. (she, her, hers)


Yarnover Committee Chair

While Anna learned to knit at some long-forgotten point in time, her commitment to the craft really began her freshman year of college. Sitting still has never been Anna’s strong suit, and giving her hands something to do while chatting with friends or watching movies in the dorm brought a sense of calm during this new chapter of her life. Once the sense of calm wore off (and no one else needed a scarf), she began trying new techniques, patterns, and projects, and until 2018 was primarily a self-taught knitter. After being intimidated early in her crafting, Anna feels strongly about creating a welcoming environment within the fiber community for people of all ages, abilities, and backgrounds. She enjoys knitting and fiber traveling, test and service knitting, a good challenge (knitting or otherwise), and is likely to have at least 3 WIPs at any one time. She is also learning to spin and ply her own yarn! (she/her/hers)

A photograph of hands knitting green yarn against a black background.Project HandWork is an exhibit of photos by photographer Christopher Dykes. Using flash, a backdrop, and the infinite human variety, Christopher is collecting a series of images of hands at work in the fiber community. Manicures, hangnails, tattoos, wristwatches, cheap yarn, expensive silk, easy socks and exquisite lace all show the human diversity and the compulsion to create.

Yarnover attendees may have their hands photographed for a $50 sitting fee. Each sitter will receive an edited photo via email. The sitting fee goes to Help In Crisis, his local domestic abuse shelter. 



Laura Haave

Great Guild Getaway Committee Chair

Laura learned to knit in 2003 by taking a four-week class during MIT's annual January Independent Activities Period. The class project was a striped hat knit in the round, and since that time, Laura has been a big advocate of 1) helping other adults learn to knit for the first time, 2) hats as a manageable first project, and 3) circular needles for everything. She enjoys thinking about knitting and planning her next project almost as much as she enjoys actually knitting. Laura is highly motivated by knit-alongs and loves to knit in community. (she, her, hers)


Newsletter Editor

I grew up watching my mom knit. She tried to teach me as a kid and I never enjoyed it, but after finishing college I found myself with extra time and no hobbies. In the last 20 years I have dove in all the way and love to learn new and challenging techniques. As my fiber love has grown, I have also started raising sheep in order to go from sheep to sweater. I love interacting with the sheep who have big personalities and learning to process and spin the wool has been a great adventure.


Vice President

(Term 1, Year 2)

Meg grew up surrounded by makers. Her mom, a master quilter, former Home Ec teacher, and 4-H club leader in Duluth, taught her to sew, embroider, and cook. She won a trip to the State Fair as the Dress Review Princess at 13! Another MKG member taught her to knit continental style 15 years ago. Meg can’t sit still and NOT be knitting, embroidering, rug hooking or sewing. Favorite thing to knit? Mittens! She loves taking classes and learning new things – absolutely amazed and inspired by all the amazing knitters in the guild! (she, her, hers)

Get Bentz Farm LogoOur spinning demonstrations are sponsored by Get Bentz Farm. 

After growing up in the city and suburbs, the owners of Get Bentz Farm felt a need to be closer to nature and to be more connected to where their food came from. 

In 2014, they found a farm house for sale and later that year they decided on and purchased their first two Icelandic sheep. 

Once they had a good size flock they began marketing the amazing meat and wool. Initially, they found that many mills in the area do not process dual coated long wools, which slowed down their growth in yarn, but they did find a great market for wool filled bedding products and batting for spinning. 

Today, they have a variety of yarns, batting and roving as well as finished products like dryer balls, sheepskins, and wool bedding. Most recently, they opened their own Get Bentz Wool Mill as well as their own line of yarn – Badgerface Fiber.

Mona McNeely been a certified Iyengar Yoga instructor since 2016 and has studied yoga since 2002.   

She has three grown kids and two, almost three, grandchildren. Her grandma taught her to knit when she was seven. She picked it up again in her early 20’s and hasn’t put the needles down since. She is also an avid spinner and has woven her share of rugs. In her spare time, she volunteers at a non-profit called We Can Ride where they use horses as therapy for people with disabilities. She also works full time as a Treasury Analyst for a fairly large company.  Somehow it all balances out.

Midwest Machine Knitters' Collaborative logo

The Midwest Machine Knitters’ Collaborative (MMKC) is a Minnesota based fiber guild established in 2011. We envisioned the Collaborative as a way to connect with other machine knitters who like to think (and knit!) outside the box. MMKC provides a forum to promote fun, interest, appreciation, education, inspiration, and camaraderie in the art of machine knitting. We welcome all levels of experience, as this is the best way to learn and inspire. We will all become better knitters through collaboration.  https://www.midwestmachineknitters.org/



Kathy has always been into crafts, but didn’t teach herself to knit until after college. She really got hooked while living in San Francisco when a friend opened a knitting store. To pitch in, Kathy started knitting up fun (and odd) things for window displays, as well as teaching classes. In the last couple of years, she has started designing her own knitting patterns (many of them available for free on Ravelry!) with toys and mittens being her primary obsessions. (she/her/hers)