I had the amazing opportunity to join the Chronicles of Yarnia at one of their semiweekly meetings. The tightly knit group of friends welcomed me into their space and began to teach me the basics of crocheting. My grandmother had tried to teach me this art when I was young, but it never took. I didn’t get very far with my project, which originally was supposed to be a phone case, but I did make some lovely wristbands.
First and foremost, I’d like to note how friendly this club is. It’s easy to see why they won Best Club of the Year 2016. They are very inclusive and I came to learn that a common reason for people to join the club was friendship. Most of the new members came along to make friends and find people with common interests, which is why anyone joins a club. Anna Ivanova, vice president of the Chronicles of Yarnia explains why joining the club was good for her.
“It’s great for communication, [and] you make a whole bunch of friends that last a long time. People think that if you do a craft you are really shy, you are like an inside person or an introvert. I came here because I wanted to make friends on campus, and I found out the club exists, and I like it,” Ivanova said.
The conversation and camaraderie were astounding to see. When I first heard of the club, I had thought it would be much quieter at their meetings. Their boisterousness ironically left me speechless at first. However, they welcomed me into their conversations, and I found myself chatting along with them as well. They are all a very friendly group of people. Siri Cooper, original co-founder of the Chronicles of Yarnia, explains why she keeps coming back to the club.
“These are my life friends. These are the friends that are going to be at my wedding. They’re wonderful people and a well-rounded group,” Cooper said.
In addition to being a sociable and fun group, they are also extremely helpful. There were many times while I was learning to crochet, where someone would show me what I was doing wrong, and encouraging the things I did correctly. Kenneth Mandt, previous president of the Chronicles of Yarnia, was one such person that assisted me with my crocheting. Mandt explains why he joined the Chronicles of Yarnia, and why he enjoys the collaboration.
“I was already doing knitting clubs in Anchorage, and I just kind of realized there was a club at UAA about knitting and crocheting, so I joined it… The reason I come to club is mostly for the socialization. It’s really nice to sit around and do stuff like this and talk while working on something… Plus, there are nights like this, where people are here asking, ‘How do you do this?’ and others offering their help. It’s just great,” Mandt said.
If you would like to learn a craft, explore your interests in the yarn arts, or just want to have fun and make some new friends, the Chronicles of Yarnia is the place for you. Even if knitting isn’t your cup of tea, the group encourages crafting of any kind and is more than willing to include you in their circle.
The Chronicles of Yarnia meets Mondays and Thursdays, inside Cuddy Hall, from 6 p.m. – 8 p.m. You can also check them out on their Facebook page: Chronicles of Yarnia – UAA Knitting/Crochet Club –