As is listed at the side, I currently have a three knitting heroes. Last month, on the occasion of her birthday I went on and on about why Stephanie Pearl-McPhee is one of my knitting heroes. Today I thought I might dedicate the post to the hero at the top of my list... Eunny Jang
I stumbled onto "See Eunny Knit" from a link on the Brooklyn Tweed blog. The post I found had her lamenting she was lacking enthusiasm for knitting from her cue. (I could relate to that!) Her solution was the design of the Endpaper Mitts (I couldn't relate to being able to design anything - especially anything like that!). About them she wrote that they were "...a spontaneous, light bagatelle of a knit" - just what she needed at the time.
"Spontaneous"? How about "impossible (for me)to design never mind knit!) If I tried knitting those my family would no doubt be soon asking why I say I enjoy knitting when it is so frustrating for me. But her language was singularly assured and so relaxed she had my optimistic attention. In a few words she was helping me see the project might be possible!
A glance into the margin revealed her Bayerische socks. These, she said, "really shine on the foot". "Really shine"? Another huge understatement! They're gorgeous! They're flawlessly knit! She was just giving the pattern away as if people wouldn't pay for it!
I bookmarked the blog and went away haunted that I'd found something special. I would have to return to explore further.
Eventually I poured through all the archives of "See Eunny Knit". There were design insights, illustrated observations on fit, technique tutorials and notes on the performance of yarns. There was also beautiful, beautiful knitting. She described knitting with musical references and references to art history. She effused about the effect a carefully placed line of stitches might make in a design. She modelled shots of F.O.'s while clarifying and illustrating pattern modifications for better custom fit.
She demonstrated it all - skill, artistry, passion, and ability to communicate so as to both clarify and inspire. I wondered how long before she would need to turn her energies to something bigger and better than this incredible blog? Soon thereafter the intervals between posts become longer and the posts more brief.
Then she posted of her appointment as the new Editor of Interweave Knits magazine. Her first issue (Fall '07) hit the stands and sold out. (Its currently the favourite magazine on Ravelry)
In her inaugural Letter from the Editor she writes "The thing I've always loved most about knitting is the sense of unlimited possibility... there's always something new to try, something new to write about or read about or share, and new ways to do it...there's so much in store."
Unlimited potential and possibilities - that's how I view knitting and life in general. Eunny Jang demonstrates the notion of spectacular potential in everything we do - knitting being no exception. This why she is my number one knitting hero.
Flip through a current issue of IK and you see the evidence of that point of view emerging since she took the helm. The changes in format, the number of photos of each design the cross references within the book and to past issues. It all comes together to make the projects so much more accessible and inspiring than in the past. While I may have once seen a sweater or two that I thought about knitting, now, to me, any and all of them seem truly possible. Because of Eunny I may even steek!
She titled her post announcing her appointment March 17th of just last year "Oh the places we'll go!" - also the title of Dr. Suess's last book - the one he wrote about moving onwards and upwards. That's where I'm headed with my knitting. And my hero Eunny with her brilliantly revamped magazine and of course the archives that are still on line of her blog, is helping me get there.