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Chicago Knits magazine is already preparing for its encore

Issue and volume 1 of Chicago Knits magazine is available now.
Issue and volume 1 of Chicago Knits magazine is available now.
The Fiber Friend 2014

The newest publication to hit knitting industry and local newsstands this spring, Chicago Knits, is receiving glowing feedback and better-than-anticipated readership, which is helping to ramp up the follow-up to its inaugural issue. Officially released at YarnCon in April, Chicago Knits is getting ready to show the world in July that the first effort was not just a high-quality fluke.

With subscription already over 150 knitters in just its second month, editor-in-chief Kim Richardson is pleased with its progress right out of the gate. "To be honest, it's going really well," said Richardson. "It's great to see something you've worked really hard at becoming successful." The feedback has been universally positive, with most residents thrilled that there is a new outlet of craft in our home city.

In its first issue, features include articles on interesting ways to store your stash and an interview with Lisa Whiting, owner of Sifu Design Studio and the person Richardson credits as her rock through this creative process. There are also tips and tutorials about casting on, patterns for several accessories from hats to shawls, and highlights of the hot yarns on the market today. The magazine is printed on glossy, thick-stock paper and the articles are both easy to read and easy to see.

Local yarn shops in the area are also fans of the magazine, with several stores carrying it as part of their printed-publication arsenal. Currently, the first issue can be purchased at Sifu, Montoya Fiber studio in Evanston, Sister Arts Studio in Lincoln Park, Initially Ewe in Western Springs, I'd Rather Be Knitting in Buffalo Grove, and Knot Just Knits in Oak Park. Mia Bella in Highland Park is next to receive the issue for its customers, with other yarn shops sure to follow.

The follow-up issue will be released in July, with the theme being All About Men. The issue will feature a themed pattern story including Guys at the Beach, On the Town, and At the Game. A feature on Sister Arts Studio and an interview with knitwear designer and adopted-Chicagoan Franklin Habit will also be included.

A unique feature to the magazine, and one generally lacking in representation in the industry, is the highlight of vintage knitting patterns in each issue. Knitters develop a new appreciation for their modern wares when they stand next to reworked vintage patterns, and the patterns themselves are written in modern pattern-speak for simpler understanding. Also, as a thank-you to all who contributed to the kickstarter campaign to get the magazine funded, a special Superstar Donor Wall was placed just inside the cover on the first page of the magazine.

To subscribe to the quarterly publication, readers pay just $24.99 for four issues, or a 40% discount from the $7.99 newsstand price. Also, Chicago Knits is always looking for contributors for articles, reviews, and patterns. The magazine website is live and can receive both submissions and subscriptions at the time. There is also a "Contact Us" tab to direct a question to the publishers and contributors.

The second issue promises to be even better than the first, and with Chicago Knits magazine coming out of the gate as successful as it has been, the knitters in the community are anticipating July just to see how high the new bar will be set.

(Click on "Subscribe" to have articles from the Chicago Knitting Examiner emailed directly to your inbox.)

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