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Franklin Habit is often mobbed at fiber events, by fans of his own work or of his scandalous Romney, Dolores Van Hoofen. For this episode, we were lucky to find him in a quieter spot: his home studio, surrounded by his treasured collection of books and antique dollhouse.
Though he may be best known in knitting circles, where his generous teaching and witty online commentary have collected fans worldwide, Franklin’s textile interests extend far beyond knitting. In this episode, he explains his love of sewing, weaving, spinning, and other forms of needlework, some learned at his grandmother’s knee in Pennsylvania coal country. He has a particular love for vintage needle arts, preserving historic techniques and tools with curiosity and tenderness.
A writer and illustrator, Franklin is the author of two books, It Itches: A Stash of Knitting Cartoons and I Dream of Yarn: A Knit and Crochet Coloring Book.
Settle down for a visit—by turns warm, whimsical, and whip-smart—with this celebrated knitter, writer, illustrator, and textile enthusiast.
The early adventures of Dolores Van Hoofen can be found on Franklin’s blog, The Panopticon. You can knit your own ewe and 27 outfits and accessories with kits available from WEBS.
Franklin’s Patreon channel features his workroom diary, the renovations at Foxe and Boxe House, and other projects.
His YouTube channel includes knitting techniques, sketches, history, vlogs, and other techniques and amusements, including Little Kitty’s Knitting Needles.
Franklin Habit’s article about the museum in the town of Smock, “Patch Work: Needlework in a Pennsylvania Mining Town,” appeared in the January/August 2008 issue of PieceWork. His series on historical needlework collections appears in PieceWork: thimbles (Spring 2021), capsule sewing kits (Winter 2020), darning eggs (Fall 2020), and sewing birds (Summer 2020).