Clara Parkes – The Yarn Whisperer

Thursday’s Podcast Guest: Clara Parkes!

Clara came on the show to promote her new super fun book “The Yarn Whisperer“!  (Also, she came on to try to get Marly to laugh so hard she’d snort.)

YarnWhisperer90020J5_6 copy

From Clara’s website:

The book was born from a simple notion: We are what we knit. I’m not suggesting you’re a pullover or a pair of socks. But over the years I’ve realized just how deeply knitting itself—our stitches, materials, techniques—is a metaphor for who we are and the lives we live.

It began while I was sitting at a table for two, waiting for a friend to show up and suspecting that I’d been stood up yet again. I wondered: Is this how a dropped stitch feels? Or consider the traveling stitch, that blundering Winnebago swerving from lane to lane without so much as a how-do-you-do. Or garter stitch, the robust and wholesome friend who’s always overlooked in favor of the slender homecoming queen, stockinette?

The stories became more personal as my mind turned to my grandma, terribly self-conscious of the skintags that peppered her neck yet obsessed with adding bobbles to everything she knit. Or my parents’ divorce, a poorly worked steek that caused my young self to unravel.

The Yarn Whisperer is about my own life in knitting, both literally and figuratively. But it also explores our collectivelives in knitting. I’ve left many blanks for you to fill in. My hope is that it may help you see your own story, and your knitting, in a new, more meaningful light.

If you’ve listened you heard Clara’s wonderful chapter on bobbles, and is it just me, or who else wants to see her book turned into an audiobook??

Clara’s other books can be found here!  Other places you can find Clara: her blog, Knitter’s Review, Facebook, Twitter, Ravelry, and of course, on her BOOK TOUR!  Make sure you check to see if she’s coming to a town near you, and go check it out!  🙂

*Giveaway* – leave a comment here with Clara’s keyword, and be entered to win a copy of her super awesome fun book!!


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  1. Audrey says:

    I love how Clara knows her yarns and fibers. She teaches us about crimp, staple length, and other fascinating properties.

  2. Casey says:

    What a show! I really enjoyed listening to Clara, and look forward to reading her book. When I was a child of the 80s, I used to crimp my hair everyday. Now I’m glad the only crimp in my life is on fiber, not me!

  3. NightowlKnitter says:

    This was the first time I got to listen live. I so very much enjoy all of Marley’s shows, but it was even more fun watching chat room chatter at the same time. I would LOVE to buy Clara’s new book, but all the money my kids are spending in college is putting a crimp in my spending budget! I sure hope I can win a book instead!

  4. Shelly says:

    This interview definitely didn’t crimp my style! I sooo want to read this book, sounds like it will be a new favorite

  5. Cheryl clemons says:

    I love Claire and her Knitter’s Review. I would love to get a copy of her book, I know it won’t crimp my style.

  6. Vicki Lynch says:

    The crimp in the yarn is a much better term than the kink or kinkiness of the yarn. Unfortunately, the kink is usually what comes to mind first.

  7. Anne Clark says:

    I love a nice crimp in my fiber, but I definitely do not like a crimp in my hair. Too many 80’s flashbacks! Thank you for a wonderful show, Marley and Clara!

  8. Debra says:

    My dog’s hair looks like I crimped it when it gets wet. Especially around his ears. I won’t be knitting with it though.

  9. Cynthia says:

    I love crimpy yarn and catching up on all of your podcasts! I cleaned up my craft room while listening to 2 episodes.
    You are so full of yarn love!

  10. Suzanne says:

    I really enjoyed Clara’s spirit and the reading she did from the book. You two are lucky that you have such a treasured friendship, the kind where you feel safe enough to let your guard down so much that every cell in your body relaxes, right down to the crimp in your hair.

  11. Cindy says:

    Love Clara’s books and hope to see you this Friday at your upcoming book signing. I took up spinning last year and learning lots about fibers and textures and I especially like the crimp you find in different types of fleeces

  12. Mary Kay Smith says:

    I saw a whole new side of Clara in this interview. Previously, I’d only seen her on Knitting Daily where she seems very serious and scientific about yarns and their crimps. I loved this and can’t wait to read her book! I would be one of those to get the audiobook too.

  13. Debbie says:

    Loved the interview, and especially Clara reading a passage from The Yarn Whisperer. I met her this past MDSW festival and my friend and I gushed over all we have learned about wool, crimp, plies, etc to make better yarn and better match our yarn to our projects.

  14. Jo-Ann Gillette says:

    I loved the interview with Clara Parkes. She’s a hoot. If a lock of fleece has a good crimp to it, your sure to get a nice spun yarn. I am looking forward to reading her new book.

  15. Jennifer Hill says:

    Your interview with Clara Parkes was great! I’ve read her Knitters Book of Wool where the word crimp is very important. Her Knitters Book of Yarn is on my Christmas list and The Yarn Whisperer would make a great addition to my books.

  16. Linda says:

    I hope The Yarn Whisperer is available on the Nook Color. It’s usually cheaper that way and doesn’t put such a crimp in my spending. Although I would much rather have this book in hand.

  17. Amberly says:

    I loved hearing Clara read from her new book. She has such a pretty voice. I’m definitely going to read her previous books, and learn more about different yarns and their crimp.

  18. Deborah says:

    I love everything about Clara Parkes and her fabulous books. I would love a copy of the Yarn Whisperer to complete my collection! But if I don’t win, I will soothe myself stroking some lovely, crimpy locks of BFL.

  19. Anita Dodds says:

    Last Thursday my best friend and I went to the Mountain Meadow wool mill in Buffalo, Wyoming and took the tour. It was so interesting to see the different kinds of wool and learn about their different properties including crimp. I bought a hank of worsted weight Suffolk wool to swatch. It is truly lovely and will make a great rustic sweater with lots of texture.
    I loved the interview with Clara Parkes and always look forward to the Knitters Review.

  20. Donita says:

    The crimp in my wool is the only crimp in my life… Thanks Clara for sharing your knowledge & your experiences!!

  21. Knitterchow on Ravelry says:

    I am learning to appreciate crimp in wool as a new spinner. Thank you for the wonderful interview with Clara Parkes!

  22. Pat says:

    Thanks for another interesting interview – I loved the bobble story! But now I’m afraid I’ll think of “kink” when I mean crimp! Keep up the good work!

  23. Rachel says:

    Remember when people used to use those curling irons that put crimp in your hair? I guess I’m a child of the 80’s-anyhow, these days I enjoy studying fiber crimp. Sounds like Clara’s new book will be fascinating.

  24. Shelly says:

    Winning these books would NOT crimp my style. I would gift them to my mom who loves to read and taught me how to knit.

  25. Theresa says:

    Hi, I just had the time to hear your wonderful interview with the fabulous Diana Gabaldon. I wish I was a “sassenach” but I’m just a regular gal from Chicago who is a huge fan. Thanks for the wonderful books and interview.

  26. Dominik says:

    My 12 year old daughter loves to curl her hair and do all sorts of crazy things – I know that she would squeal with delight if I ever showed her a crimp-er from the 80’s… In the meantime, I will keep pretending that I never used to crimp my hair…

Marly Bird

The One and Only, Marly

Marly is a knitwear and crochet designer (and yarn addict) that is here to help you learn how to knit and crochet in a way that's fun and approachable.

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