Petra – knitting and crochet enthusiast,
Yarn Over Coffee founder and ‘the mum’
Hello, my name is Petra and I’m creative, caring and very patient knitting and crochet teacher and the founder of Yarn Over Coffee. I’m a forty-something mum of two wonderful children who have ‘joined’ my business. They will introduce themselves later. I love the challenge and the thrill of learning and discovering new things. And I like sharing that thrill.
Before Covid19 I used to be a relaxed and fun craft teacher. I used to run knitting and crochet workshops, craft groups and more formal lessons. However, at the moment I make knitting and crochet kits aimed at children who would like to learn. My children Katie and Peter are helping me with the designs, pattern testing and packaging. We combine my experience of teaching knitting and crochet to a range of crafters (from primary school children to ladies in their eighties), with Katie’s and Peter’s ideas about what they would like to make and how. To make it fair Peter is in charge of all things knitting and Katie of all things crochet.
I started my company Yarn Over Coffee following redundancy from my role of Change and Communications Manager when my children were little. I wanted to do something that would fit around them and that I enjoyed. I started teaching knitting and crochet around my kitchen table. When my kitchen became too small, I started running workshops and craft groups in Yate and Bristol.
Then the first lockdown came and I couldn’t teach and my children were getting a bit bored at home. Somebody suggested I should make kits for people who wanted to learn to knit and crochet. I asked my children, if they were learning again, what would they like to make and Katie said: ‘Teddy.’ We had fun planning our potential kits and Hooked Kits for Kids was born. And when I mentioned that we would need to have a YouTube channel, Peter and Katie were fully on board.
Our kits reflect the way in which my mother and my nan taught me to knit over 30 years ago as well as my experience of running classes and workshops over the past 7 years. I still remember my first attempt at knitting. Using some yellow yarn, my mum cast on about 10 stitches, knitted a couple of rows, showed me how to do it and let me try myself. Once I worked it out I started making clothes for my dolls. And later on clothes for myself.
Many years later, while teaching others to knit and crochet, I witnessed many times that the hardest part of learning to knit and crochet is making the crochet chain and knitting the first stitch on the first row. However, everybody managed to get going if they could start with a precast piece and have something to hold onto. I have also learnt that learners have done much better with chunky, soft yarn. We all learn differently but with a bit of patience, encouragement and practice, I believe that anybody can learn to knit and crochet.
When I’m Not Knitting or Crocheting I Like to…
…try new dishes. During the first lockdown we started ‘culinary travels’ and cooked meals from different countries. Greek, Japanese and schnitzel were our favourite. But we would much rather go back to travelling across Europe with our tent visiting Legolands and chocolate factories. On a less adventurous note, I like gardening -with as much success as slugs, the British weather and our clay garden allow. And I must not forget browsing. Browsing craft magazines and books. Browsing craft shops and buying supplies for all the projects I’m going to (one day) make. Just a ‘shame’ there isn’t much time left for housework.
Peter – knitting manager and ‘the son’
Hello, my name is Peter and I’m 13. I love Lego, Legoland and Lego games. I also like cycling, skiing and snooker. I love cats but unfortunately my parents will not let me have one at home. But luckily our neighbour has two lovely ginger cats who like to come and play with me and my sister. I learnt to knit about 6 years ago and my first project was a blanket for my favourite teddy. Nowadays I like to knit cats and teddies. I enjoy working with mum and my sister for Hooked Kits for Kids; I help to design and test the knitting patterns. I have also recorded our short, simple and easy to follow ‘How To Knit’ videos and I like to take photos of our products.
Katie – crochet manager and ‘the daughter’
Hello I’m Katie and I’m 10. I like to play games. My favourite hobbies are swimming, football, baking and crafting. Like my brother, I love cats. I learnt to crochet when I was 7 and I started by making lots of chains which I then made into friendship bracelets. Currently I’m making a green snake for my bedroom. I like packing orders and I help with crochet designs and pattern testing. I’m left handed so mummy had to record our ‘How to Crochet’ videos instead of me.
If you would like to find out more about our Hooked Kits for Kids please hurry over to the Hooked Kits for Kids page. Or to buy one of our lovely kits click here.