Romi Hill, teacher, designer and creator of beautiful, was our guest today on the Yarn Thing podcast with Marly Bird, we think for our 301st episode at Blogtalk, it doesn’t get more special.
Romi called in from her home in the Sierra Mountains. We could hear her love of the area as she described the forest, and the high desert elevations. We can imagine her gazing out the window at the beauty of her neighborhood, reminices with us about her crafting history. She says she learned to knit at age 9, but had probably learned to crochet much earlier, around 4, and took her a long time to convince her mother to teach her to knit, when the rest of her family were crocheters. It was the feel of the fabric knitting creates that drew her, especially mohair. She knit through high school and college, picking yarn from the sale bins, improvising projects with bits from different patterns. When she was pregnant with her second son, and so sick that there was not much she could do, she became really engrossed in her knitting. At that time, internet was really becoming a helpful tool for finding help and communities for knitters. She attended Stitches West and purchased lace-weight yarn to create a giant shawl. Romi admits it was hard for her to read her knitting, discouraging to because it was hard to imagine the mess in her lap would become anything near as beautiful as the pattern would be.
Romi loved the lace but thought it really needed a pin to keep it in place so that wearing it would not be so fiddly. This was a natural thought as she had been making beaded pieces as a teenager. About ten years ago, she started posting her jewelry online. Her first published pattern was beaded napkin rings through Knitty, later she published through Interweave a beaded knit and crochet jewelry book.
Marly asked Romi where she gets her ideas for her designs. Obviously, it comes through her muse, because she seems to draw it from many different directions. It may be from a stitch dictionary, even heavily modified, or from her walks and adventures in the area she lives. Often she worries about the designs as they are being created that they are what people want to create for themselves, and really can’t believe anyone will want to until her original creation is blocked does she see it as something to share.
One of her first self-published collections 7 Small Shawls, she says was inspired by the story in the movie Julie & Julia, to see the progress through a year long creative project, and it has continued for five years! Romi says she loves seeing what others create and the yarns they use.
Craftsy has also asked Romi to teach her love of lace shawl knitting, New Directions in Lace (Marly’s affiliate link) in a project driven format, to create Fiori Autumnali, a beautiful shawl… not a surprise but it is something we all love that we can sit through Romi’s process and be Part Of The Process With Her.
With her new book, New Lace Knitting, Designs for Wide Open Spaces, Romi created pieces that combine timeless pieces with beloved lace styling in a fresh way. Her goal was that the pieces become wardrobe staples, worn to the office or an evening out.
Looking forward, Romi is working on the next Pins & Lace Club also, which is something knitters get weak in the knees with as it combines Romi’s pattern and the yarn it was created for and her beautiful pins, jewelry created by Romi! Check out her Ravelry Group for more information or this page in her website.
Romi Hill (who often can be found as Rosemary Hill) has a website: designsbyRomi.com, we can follow her designer page in Ravelry, she has a business page in Facebook, also in Twitter and Instagram as RomiDesigns.
If you missed getting to hear this LIVE it is still available as an archive where it aired originally: http://www.blogtalkradio.com/yarnthing/2015/10/27/romi-hill-teacher-designer-and-creator-of-beautiful or in iTunes