Laura Ricketts Designs

"She seeks wool and flax, and works with willing hands..."

Laura Ricketts Designs is a personal and business website for Laura Ricketts, hand-knitwear designer, author, teacher, crafter, mother and wife.

Another stitch in the wall

Time keeps ticking away in this crazy July. It is in the 50s outside and raining almost everyday. Today I had to put on a sweatshirt!

I continue to gain strength, and am so blessed that I have been able to knit all week. I have been working on a series of mittens for an Interweave ebook. The mittens are due in a month, and I have the hardest one yet to complete: 12 sts to the inch in multiple colors. It will be beautiful, but it is a lot of exacting work.

I also had a heartbreaking series of email interchange with a lady in the far north of Norway who took serious offense at my work. It weighs me down to be thought ill of, but I understand it is a frequent event when working with the Sámi, especially since I am working at such a distance. Their personal and collective history is so filled with attacks and robbery from outsiders that a defensive position is the often the first assumed stance.

My answer is good motives, good communication and full disclosure. In all my work, I seek to give back to the communities from which I have learned so much. I know full well from living in other countries that intercultural communication can be fraught with difficulties and, as a result, takes time and commitment. So, I keep working to get there... In the in-between, weeks highlight the gracious Sámi I have worked with. They are such a joy to my heart! I truly rejoice in the beautiful artists and their artistry, which I see daily in colorful mittens, dazzling jewelry and stunning carving work.

In other news, I have had some great conversations with people in Minnesota about coming out to teach. One group is at North House Folk School in Grand Marais. They are built on a Danish model of Folk Schools, stressing the building of community among the students and artisans. North House has been around since 1997, and starting about five years ago they began a more concentrated Fiber weekend in February. Next February, I'll journey out and join them for a long weekend. I'm really looking forward to it!