A Focus on Fiber Arts: A Visit with Jody Long, knitwear designer


TORRINGTON  — British-born Jody Long loves to tell how his nan taught him to knit at the age of seven. His first disastrous bunny sweater made him more determined to master his craft. By the age of 14, Long was knitting for the neighborhood, earning himself pocket money to feed his creative passion.

Long went on to college, but after only two months, he was offered a job in the knitting industry. He worked for Woolcraft, King Cole, Stylecraft , and Sirdar as a designer. Magazine work soon followed, which he said he found unsatisfying creatively, since magazines are specific about what they want rather than what a designer wants to create.

A little-known fact is that Long previously owned two yarn shops, which after being sold, afforded him the time to strike out on his own, and to begin designing under his own name. He was later approached by Knitting Fever & Euro Yarns in New York, to design for Mirasol Yarns, which he greatly enjoyed.

Still, Long wanted to not only design for himself, but he also wanted to be “the creative director of his own yarn brand.” Now, Ciao, Airspun, Andeamo, Alba, and Coastline are just some of the yarns in his signature line. Three new yarns were announced this season. Carnival is a multi colored version of Ciao, his successful superwash DK weight Merino. My Little Sunshine Happy Stripes is a cotton/acrylic fingering weight blend, and Lino Moda, a linen and cotton blend.

This year the timing seemed right to launch a U.S. tour to promote his brand. Starting in February, Long is traveling from New York and Connecticut and will then make his way across the country, visiting 17 states in five weeks. Each store will feature his yarns, books and knitwear, while Long showcases his new spring line.

Long visited In Sheep’s Clothing in Torrington Feb. 20. The shop, being too small for the 40 attendees, hosted thee event across the street at Five Points Gallery, which served as the perfect backdrop for the designer’s knitwear.

Knitters were treated to a talk by Jody and were invited to try on and model his new spring knitwear. Trunk shows such as these are important because knitwear seen on  pattern pages are brought to life. Knitters are tactile people, and appreciate seeing the knitting details as well as how the yarn looks and feels in the garments. No matter how well a piece shows on the page it more often looks better and creates more excitement in person. The attendees were able to indulge in shopping for their favorite designs and yarns with help from Long, and his yarn rep Jeff Gill.

Knitters also enjoyed refreshments of charcuterie cups by Ciesco Catering, which were both elegant and delicious. In a nod to Long’s British heritage, Britsbrand served up scones and millionaire bars.

When asked about his accomplishments, Long said he owes everything to being lucky and being in the right place.  

To see Jody Long’s designs and interviews, go to www.jodylongknits.com/, youtu.be/2rRNDo6qvII or visit In Sheep’s Clothing’s Facebook page. 

Virginia (Ginger) Balch knits, weaves and spins in all things “fibery” at her shop, In Sheep’s Clothing at 10 Water St. Torrington 
www.in-sheeps-clothing.com or call 860-482-3979 email-insheepscloth@gmail.com


Share post:


More like this

NFL Picks Week 14: Early Predictions for Texans vs Jets, Panthers vs Saints

NFL Picks Week 14: Early PredictionsOn Sunday night, our...

NFL Week 14 schedule: What to know about betting odds, early lines, byes

Week 13 of the NFL season brought us several...

COLLEGE BASKETBALL: Peninsula College women sweep home tournament | Peninsula Daily News

PORT ANGELES — The Peninsula College women’s basketball team...

$3.2m England star brutally trolled by Iceland after loss

Shai Hope's century and Romario Shepherd's speedy 48 powered...