In Stitches: Semester 64’s Crafty Way to Unwind!

My great-aunt taught me how to knit when I was younger, but I’d long since forgotten. She’s the crafty type, with a whole room dedicated to all things art – it can get quite messy. She taught me how to arm-knit, cross-stitch, you name it. Even before I came to Maine Coast Semester, I had seen that knitting is the thing to do at Chewonki. I was super excited to re-learn and can remember watching closely as Leyla, whose bed was next to mine in Gordy, knit her chunky salt-and-pepper hat. I was super excited when Liz and Susan announced that they were offering to teach people how to knit one Sunday afternoon early in the semester. After picking some leftover blue yarn that Liz had, I was well on my way to knitting a masterpiece…as expected, though, the first thing I knit was a square with a bunch of holes in it.

I was ecstatic when one Sunday Susan took a group of us to Halcyon Yarn, the yarn store in Bath, Maine. I got circular knitting needles, multicolored yarn to make a hat for myself, and two skeins of thick, dark red yearn to make a hat for my mom’s birthday. Obviously, I was over the moon about finally getting to knit something wearable. I spent a few days untangling my yarn after I wound it around my bed post. This turned out to be not such a good idea; Elle ended up untangling it for me. 

As expected, I was devastated when I learned that MCS was transitioning online for the rest of the semester. Above all, I wondered how the social aspect would change. If I didn’t see everyone all day, every day anymore, how would our relationships change? After our first virtual morning meeting, Susan announced that she wanted to start an online knitting group. I knew I wanted to join right away, as this seemed like a great way of staying connected while also doing something I love!

Every Sunday afternoon, a group of Semester 64 students – and occasionally some other faculty if we’re lucky – join Susan on a Zoom call to chat and work on knitting projects, which could be hats, sweaters, scarves, you name it! This past Sunday, a semester 61 alum joined Susan and I, and we talked about everything from cooking to our experiences at Chewonki and everything in between. I really enjoyed talking to someone from another semester and we’re super excited to continue our knitting group through the summer with students from all different semesters, not only 64. 

I always look forward to meeting with my fellow knitters on Sundays; it is one of my favorite parts of the week and lets me feel more connected to friends all across the country.


Hope Jerris


Two hats knitted by hope during the pandemic, grey on the left and pink on the right
Two hats knitted by hope during the pandemic with Semester 64’s virtual knitting group.
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