Franklin Habit Archives - Patty Lyons | Knitting Teacher

Designing for Dolores

I will never forget the day I got the call, the call from herself. There are some fashion icons so famous, so immortal, they only need one name, and their association with their designers have made the designer’s name immortal too. Audrey and Givenchy, Jackie and Oleg Cassini, Cher and Bob Mackie. Would it be possible? Could it be possible? Dolores and Patty.

Just then I got a text. She’ll be in New York next week. She’ll be coming by my studio to get started. At this point I had to put my head between my knees and breathe into a paperbag. It was my turn to design for Dolores.

Get Your Kit

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My Fellow Yarn Travelers

A few days ago I wrote about all my amazing students in 2016.  As I was going through all my pictures I also came across a lot of happy memories of the fun I’ve had with my fellow yarny friends.

I spend about 1/3 of my year on the road. I have a wonderful husband and great friends at home. I wouldn’t be able to do what I do without them. But I also have a huge support group of friends on the road.

Here’s a little peek at the

Life of a Traveling Knitting Teacher!

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Vogue Knitting Live Pasadena 2016










I finally unpacked (okay, it takes me a while to recover from back to back California trips), and another amazing Vogue Knitting Live, is finished (is it November yet and time for the next one?)

For those of you following along, you might remember that at VK Live NYC (“In which Patty ventures to Manhatten, teaches 165 students, loses her voice and is saved by her friends and the staff of Vogue Knitting Live.”) I had a bit of a rough time, but not is sunny California!

Vogue Knitting Live Pasadena 2016

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Stitches East – Amazing!

Next up in the live out of suitcase life of a traveling knitting teacher . . .



This was the view from my hotel room window.  Yes, I woke up that early.

I hope you enjoyed that picture . . . it’s the only one I took. I was too focused on teaching at my first STITCHES to remember to take out my camera.

The thing that is amazing about teaching at STITCHES is how many years folks have been coming. I had students in my classes that have been coming to the show for over 15 years (gulp, that’s a lot of pressure). The students are CRAZY good.  I taught some hard design classes, and the students were so on it. It was amazing. I was really excited that some of my students said they had already registered for my Craftsy classes (that’s pretty finger on the pulse, as they haven’t even been officially announced yet by Craftsy!)

. . . And then there are the teachers! It’s like old home week with all these amazing teachers who have been teaching together for years. There’s a real short hand between them. Luckily, everyone was very welcoming and I was so happy and proud to be a part of it.

There’s nothing I love more than hanging out with my fellow knitting teacher pals. They are (however) a terrible influence, and getting to bed on time was not easy. First there was my roomie, Cornelia Tuttle Hamilton, who kept me up WAY too late talking politics. She may be a brilliant designer, but now she has seen me in the morning before I’ve had coffee, so now she must die.

Then there’s the intoxicating influence of the peer pressure duo of Brooke Nico and Carol Sulcoski. I can deny them nothing, they are the boss of me, and hanging out with them is like living in an after school special. I adore them.  They are brilliant, and wickedly funny.

It’s hard to explain how much fun it is to be with so many talented folks in one space – Melissa Leapman, Lily Chin, Fiona Ellis, Franklin Habit, Marly Bird on and on and on. They humble me, delight me, and make me laugh so hard I want to pee.

Is it February yet . . . is it time for the next one?  Can’t wait.

So looking forward to STITCHES WEST!

Three Years Later . . . Vogue Knitting Live!

teaching copyIt’s been nearly three years since I blogged.  Don’t worry this won’t be the blog equivalent of Edith Bunker’s High School Reunion episode (for those of you who do not possess an uncanny memory for television from 1973 – I’m sorry, but you can click on the You Tube link).  I won’t start by telling you what I did the day after my last blog post.

Here’s the thing about life’s twists and turns, you generally don’t see them coming. If you told me ten years ago that I would no longer be a Broadway Stage Manager, but a professional knitting teacher working for one of the largest yarn companies in the world – well –  there are no words to describe the level of crazy that I would have found that little bit of fortune telling – yet here I am.

Vogue Knitting Live, NYC

Last month was one of my favorite times of year as a knitting teacher, Vogue Knitting Live! It was my third year teaching and I have a ball every time.

VK Live is always kicked off by the teacher meeting. This can easily be mistaken by an observer as a highschool reunion. We were so rowdy the first year that Gabby (the unflappable Event Director) had to stand on the table to get our attention.  This year we all behaved very well, and Gabby was able to speak to the group without resorting to climbing on furniture. A good start to the show.

It’s so great to see all my teacher pals, and to meet new ones each year. At the teacher cocktail party hosted by our fearless leader Trisha Malcolm, I was the recipient of this strange and delightful gift from my pal Franklin Habit.  He said he saw her and thought of me . . . not sure how to interpret that.


I call her Fanny (but sometimes she also looks like a Sadie)

After a rather lively (read naughty) discussion with Carol Sulcoski and Fiona Ellis regarding what the space to the left of Fanny should hold, and a fabulous dinner with Brenda Dayne, Lily Chin and Merike Saarniit it was time to get some sleep before a full day of teaching!


After a snack with Franklin (the perfect was to start any day) I headed down to my classroom to be faced with a staggering 31 students for my first class, The Magic of Perfect Blocking.  That would have been a frightening prospect had it not been for the fact that this group was awesome!  Funny, fast, smart and sassy, just the way I like em!

In three classes I had over 80 amazing students. The VK students are so skilled they really keep you on your toes. This became particularly evident while I was teaching Demystifying Knitting Patterns at night. This class has (gasp) math in it, and teaching it at night meant I needed to crack out a bit of the stand up comedian to keep all the students engaged.  At one point, around 7:15 pm, I looked at my power point and said “Now here I have a presenters note that says – Optional 10 min break if students look nauseous and or disorientated”.  I then looked up at the room and declared “okay, let’s take a 10 min break”.  Much to my joy and relief, after the break, all 20 students returned to the room! (phew)

The next day I got to play with my new teaching toy – the ipad as camera and monitor.  I must say it worked like a dream. I was able to hold my hands in front of the ipad, and see my hands in the ipad screen, while they were projected on the big screen for the students.  This was SOOOOO helpful for Knitting Technique which covers so much material, there would be no way to cover all that ground if the students couldn’t see my hands.

camera set up

So in love with my new ipad toy!!!

As if all the classes weren’t enough . . . then there’s the market place.  This year they added a totally cool feature that I was very sad to have missed out on – free yoga and hand massages – COME ON!


I did get to run into some of my students in the market place, which is always fun.


Me and Jennifer 

I can’t believe I have to wait another seven weeks until VK Seattle.  BOOOOO.

A big thank you to Trisha, Gabby, Renee, Carol, Beth, the entire amazing Soho team, and of course, to my students.  Hope to see you in Seattle