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Meet Jackie E-S and HeartStrings
Interviews with Jackie
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Spinning Straw into Gold
Jackie Erickson-Schweitzer (Jackie E-S) is a long-time knitting enthusiast who shares her love of knitting and experience through arts organizations, classes, and networking with other fiber artists. In her past "real life" she was an information technology consultant.
Knitting has always been a relaxing and fulfilling counterpart to a sometimes stressful technical career. Jackie is also an avid spinner and often uses hand-spun yarns in her knitting projects, in addition to yarns commercially available.
A candid shot of Jackie E-S taken by a friend onboard a recent Alaskan cruise
Jackie E-S established HeartStrings to provide quality instruction to knitters who want their items to be special, as well as practical and enjoyable to knit. Knitters of all skill levels have been enjoying the knitting patterns designed and published by Jackie E-S / HeartStrings FiberArts.
Lace blouse and scarf in hand-spun silk
With a background in music and mathematics, she enjoys capturing the melody of color/texture and harmonizing it with style and function. Jackie's career in computer systems analysis provided the analytical framework evident in her intricate, yet simple, designs now showcased in her growing roster of HeartStrings patterns.
All HeartStrings patterns incorporate master knitter techniques that minimize extra finishing steps. If you don't consider yourself a master at knitting, don't worry. These techniques are elegantly integrated into Jackie's designs and clearly explained in the pattern instructions. For less-experienced knitters, this is a way to learn new knitting skills. For more advanced knitters, you can benefit by seeing new ways to apply these techniques. You will find that HeartStrings patterns are a pleasure to knit, and the completed project will be a source of pride.
As a certified master knitter and teacher, Jackie continues to share her love of knitting and knowledge through design and publication of skill-building pattern instructions, and conducting workshops, programs and demonstrations. Her interest in the fiber arts extends beyond knitting and spinning to include weaving, dyeing and all needle arts. She also enjoys tournament contract bridge and music. Her most recent 'play' thing is a cajun (diatonic) accordion – She has a lot of practicing to do to get up to the tempo of the masters!
From Jackie — a brief commentary on individual creativity
Rumplestiltskin wrote to me this week about "spinning straw into gold". Bob (aka Rumplestiltskin) turns out to be an admirer of my work and is an interesting intellectual as well. His statement about the role of individual creativity in an ever-increasingly technological society especially struck a chord …
Straw is just a metaphor for raw fibers, and gold is a metaphor for a finished commercial product … The craft of spinning by hand is rarely practiced in this country, I think, but it's not dead. Those who do it are really saying that technology will never entirely replace individual creativity.