Camp KIP, Daybreak Shawl & Paradise . . .

Last week, I attended Camp KIP, a knitting retreat in New Haven, MO (more about Camp KIP below). While there, I worked on a large portion of my Daybreak Shawl, pattern by designer Stephen West.


I knit the last couple rows at the airport while waiting for my flight home. Here is a close-up to show the colors better:

I named it my Camp Kip New Mexico Sunrise Shawl, in honor of Camp KIP and with love for the way a New Mexico sunrise/sunset looks when I visit my daughter Michelle in Las Cruses, MN. You can find details of this project on Ravelry, here.

I loved working on this pattern and am now a huge fan of Designer Stephen West. I learned about him while listening to The Knitmore Girls Podcast, and soon after, the Knitting Pipeline Podcast inspired me to choose this pattern as my first Stephen West Design.

This was my first pattern shawl. I will always affectionately think of it as my Camp KIP 2011 shawl. Not just because I finished it before I came home from camp, but because it anchors me to the people I met there.

Every time I wrap this shawl around me, I will wrap myself in the memory of the most incredible group of knitters — all of them friends now.

For those who do not knit, let me tell you: If you ever want to meet the most charismatic people in the world, find a group of knitters . . . and then watch out, because before you know it, you’ll become addicted to wanting to be around them.

I promise: you’ll want to befriend every knitter in the world.

Who knows, you may even want to start knitting yourself.

Why are knitters so much fun to be around?

1- Knitters are an incredibly intelligent group of people.

2- Knitters are have sharp, quick wits, and many (if not most) are great humorists– some specialize in deadpan, others in one-liners, while others tell the most entertaining stories. Regardless, they’ll keep you engaged, and they’ll keep you smiling.

3- Knitters are as resourceful as they are creative. They know how to turn a problem around and make everything okay. This is a special gift, yet I’ve never met a knitter who doesn’t have it. It amazes me.

4- Knitters are attractive, and young knitters (the majority now) are wise beyond their years. The rest of us have more spirit and youth than any non-knitter, regardless of our age.

Here’s the thing: Knitting is magic in the way it urges a brain to behave. Knitters find it almost impossible to knit and worry at the same time. Seriously. If you’re a knitter, pay attention to what happens to you when you have an urge to worry about something. If you’re like many, you’ll find that you have to put your knitting down in order to do it.

So, imagine a camp with over 100 people, all of them knitting, spinning, talking, laughing, sharing, caring, being creative, being resourceful . . . and here’s the most important part:


Knitting just does that for people.

Okay, now add Cedar Creek Conference Center to the mix — great staff, sparkling clean accommodations with the halls decorated with the most amazing handmade quilts — over 200 of them . . . food . . .

Oh, time out about the food! For those with food needs, allergies or intolerances, Cedar Creek will cater to you. I ate there for three and a half days without issue. Talk about heaven.

I have multiple food issues, yet I was able to relax and enjoy my stay knowing that they were taking the very best care of me. On top of it, the kitchen and wait staff really cared. It was wonderful.
(If you plan on going there and you have food intolerances, be sure to call ahead to let them know. If you do, they will take especially good care of you.)

There’s a brewery on site, a golf course, a western town, and more. Being gluten-free, I didn’t visit the brewery, but I had a great time at a wine-tasting . . . and tasting . . . and tasting.

Knitters are pretty damn good party people, too.

It was a blast meeting all the podcasters who were there. You’ll find the list here. Jackie from KIPPING It Real was the brainchild behind the whole thing. Talk about someone with talent, resourcefulness, a sense of humor and filled with love: Jackie is it.

But so was everyone there. That’s what made Camp KIP paradise.

Wow, and to think that if I hadn’t been diagnosed with all of my crazy food-intolerances, I may never have taken up knitting again.

What a blessing.

Love to all,

Find and write to Lee on Ravelry:
User Name: LeeBernstein
Visit the Knitting Is Gluten Free Forum on Ravelry — GREAT discussions here, including loving support for people with food intolerances . . . and tons of recipes.
Facebook: Fans of Knitting is Gluten Free
Twitter: Lee_A_Bernstein
LinkedIn: Lee Bernstein

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13 Responses to Camp KIP, Daybreak Shawl & Paradise . . .

  1. Jenn Embry says:

    Beautiful shawl! I love it! I can’t believe you were in New Haven, MO and at the Cedar Creek Conference Center no less!!!!! I am originally from Washington, MO. When DH got his first job fresh out of college he worked as a programmer for Vatterott College and we lived in Washington. The then owner of Vatterott also owned (I think still does) the Cedar Creek Conference Center. DH programmed their original online reservation system. We have many friends who live in New Haven and the surrounding area. One of our friends used to (not sure if she still does) manage the stables there at Cedar Creek.

    I love your observations about knitters. I’m not sure that all of those things apply to me, but I sure try. LOL I’ve also noticed most of those same qualities in other knitters I’ve met. 🙂 That is so great that they were able to meet your needs food wise. I’m glad you had a great retreat!

  2. Knitters are also sexy, raucous, intelligent, and prone to lots of booze and food.

  3. Your shawl is GORGEOUS! I love how it turned out. I know someone locally who is knitting this pattern and I’m thinking I may need to bookmark it for a future project.

    Knitting is indeed magic.

  4. Pat1203 says:

    That shawl is absolutely lovely. It will go with so many different things. I’d love to see a picture of you wearing it.

    All the characteristics of knitters were so interesting. I don’t think I have them all but knitting has given me times of comfort and peace.

  5. Paula says:

    Beautifully written, Lee. You have a real gift for expressing yourself in writing. Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts.

  6. Sophia says:

    Sounds like a wonderful time. Good to know that they looked after your food intolerance. That is always reassuring.

  7. Love how your Daybreak turned out! I was admiring it at Camp. Beautiful!

  8. Kris says:

    …a wonderful recap of Camp, and having YOU as my roomie was a !

  9. Kris says:

    it didn’t post correctly…. Having YOU as my camp roomie was an extra special blessing! 🙂

  10. Lee, what a wonderful post. I agree, I have found knitters to be all that you say and more. I am blown away by the talent and creativity of the “younger” knitters.
    CampKIP was a great experience!

  11. Terri says:

    Sounds like an amazing time! The shawl is beautiful. Do you know that Steven is planning a mystery KAL to begin August 1st? Its on Ravelry.

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