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Throwback Thursday: Our ModeKnit Yarn Story

One question Annie and I are asked all the time is How did you two meet? Another question is How/Why did you start ModeKnit Yarn? The answers to both are intertwined.

Friends from way back!
Friends from way back!

Annie and I met back in May of 2008 (I think). My friend Karen and I took one of Annie’s knitting classes at Shepherd’s Harvest on Mother’s Day.  We had a ton of fun and learned so much. After that initial class, Annie and I kept running into each other. Karen and I went to one of Annie’s book-signings, and we attended a weekend retreat in New London, MN that Annie taught. We started hanging out, knitting and meeting up for coffee, and Annie invited me to join her knitting group. We’ve been friends ever since.

I started working with Annie when she released her book History on Two Needles, helping fulfill the Kickstarter perks and sending out press releases. It was fun and different from what I was doing as a jewelry store manager.

Black tie event as a jewelry store manager
Black tie event as a jewelry store manager

Fast forward to August of 2012. I was released from my job (a position I held for almost 17 years). It was surreal, sad, and extremely liberating. I felt a profound sense of relief, like I was shedding a skin that didn’t quite fit any longer. I hardly had time to get used to being unemployed when exactly a week later my brother called to tell me our mother was in the hospital and I needed to be there. I flew out to Florida the next day and stayed until October caring for her until I had to come home to register for unemployment and look for a job.

That Christmas my husband Tom and I went back to Florida to spend time with my mother and brother. I knew deep in my heart it was going to be her last Christmas, and we wanted to make it special for her. We hosted her annual Christmas Eve party, making sure she was the belle of the ball. It was the first Christmas I spent with her in at least 20 years, and I’m so, so glad I did. My father passed away in 1998, and I’ve always regretted not calling that morning. I had the impulse, but didn’t act on it. This time I have no regrets.

Christmas 2012- note the afghan on the chair!
Christmas 2012- note the afghan on the chair!

Tom and I flew home on New Year’s Eve, and in January I started a temp job working at a credit union. I wanted a job that was Monday-Friday and flexible, because I knew I would need to head back to Florida sooner than later. The call came in early June of 2013. Once again I flew to Florida and Robert and I (with the help of an amazing hospice) cared for our mother until she passed away in July.

My Minnesota friends, especially Annie and her family, were a huge support to me during that time.  I don’t think I would have made it through without them.

I came home to Minnesota in August, and started trying to figure out what I wanted to do. What I really wanted was to own my own business. (MY brother had the same idea. He opened his restaurant last year!) I started thinking about opening a little jewelry resale business on Ebay.  One day soon after I got back, Annie and I were talking, and she mentioned she wanted to dye yarn and open a business. And we started talking about opening that business together. We sat down and talked, and collaborated, and worked out the details and all the legalities.

ModeKnit Yarn was born.

It’s been an amazing journey! As I look back now at how I got here, I realize everything happens for a reason. I paid attention to what the universe was telling me, and I changed my life for the better. I love what we do here at ModeKnit Yarn, and I love being part of it with Annie! It feels like the right fit.




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