Stitch & Story's new Peanuts product at NY NOW
Over at the Stitch & Story (S&S) exhibitor’s booth at the Summer 2019 edition of the NY NOW home/lifestyle/handmade/gift market trade show at New York’s Javits Center, project coordinator Gemma Wilkinson was working on her own S&S knitting project.
She was knitting one of the company's “Quick Knits” projects--the Mateusz Snood (“a classic moss stitch snood”)--in demonstrating Stitch & Story’s “crafting made simple” mission. The London-based company strives to give novice crafters a stress-free time in learning to knit or crochet using small all-in-one kits containing everything needed to get the basics down. The end result, in addition to the finished product, is the personal story of successful achievement that goes with it.
Using the “Knit Your Own Cup Cosy” as an example, the kits come in Stitch & Story’s signature small gift bags supplying the needed yarn, bamboo needles and “super-easy” patterns and guides--with online video tutorials also available.
Jennifer Lam and Jen Hoang combined their backgrounds in design and publishing when they formed Stitch & Story in 2012. Lam had noticed that crochet and knitting were being lost to this generation due to a perception that they were old-fashioned, with overwhelming terminology, cheap yarns and out-of-date patterns. So the founders set out to create a product that would inspire more people to learn to knit--and emphasize the richness of stories behind handmade products.
The Stitch & Story company name, then, encompasses the personal process of starting and completing a creative project while learning a new skill. After successfully conducting knitting workshops in London, the partners felt that they weren’t reaching enough people, so they devised their “workshop in a bag” knitting kits.
Stitch & Story has since teamed with global brands Sophie la girafe and Miffy to create exclusive knitting kits using superfine and chunky merino yarns. The NY NOW appearance marked the launch of its new Peanuts Collection, to include a Snoopy Amigurumi stuffed yarn toy, Charlie Brown Hat, Snoopy Baby Hat and Booties Set, Charlie Brown Sweater and Snoopy Diagonal Striped Blanket.
“Knitting is very trendy right now,” said Wilkinson. “Millennials want a new craft for calming and well-being, that’s also sustainable. Knitting offers a meditation aspect, and you’re learning a skill that you can expand on and also teach your children.”
And knitting/crocheting also provides a perfect palliative for trying situations.
“You can knit on the subway,” said Wilkinson. “Commuting can be stressful, and it can calm you down in a nice, productive way.”