April 17th, 2008

Hello Cleveland

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Steve and I are just back from a quick road trip to Cleveland. What’s in Cleveland you ask? Well, besides one of the easiest airports I’ve ever navigated, good food and nice spring weather, there is Beachwood Studios. What is Beachwood Studios? It’s a major production facility for PBS. Why, you may ask, were we there? A few years earlier and my boys’ would have asked if we were visiting Clifford The Big Red Dog or going to Dragonland with Max and Emmie. This trip was all fiber related – we were there for the inaugural taping of Interweave Press’ new show – Knitting Daily TV. Knitting Daily TV is the new incarnation of Shay Pendray’s Needlearts Studio, which has been on the air for several years. Interweave has taken over production of the show and is evolving it into KDTV. WEBS is one of the underwriters and we were asked to participate in several segments. So with lots of work in advance and some crazy last minute knitting (thanks Kirsten, thanks Melissa), Steve and I ventured off to Cleveland.

It was a blast (I can say that now) but it was also very stressful. Steve refused to participate in any on-air segments, so I was on my own. Fortunately, each segment included a host – I got to work with Liz Gipson, editor of Handwoven Magazine and Shay Pendray herself. I participated in 7 different segments within the 13 episodes that were being taped this week. I had lots of props and such, which all had to be set-up in advance in the “green room” (it really is green – look at the walls in the background).

I have to also say a big, huge thanks to Mary, who packed up everything I needed for the show, in bags, labeled with which segment they were for and what she had included. I had everything I needed and it was really, really, REALLY easy to set-up my segments. Mary rocks!

I also had to have seven different outfits – one for each segment – which would not normally be an issue since I’m a bit of a clothes horse, but PBS has rules – rules that basically excluded my entire wardrobe (no black or white allowed). Also, no big prints, polka dots or skinny stripes. . .no red, preferably no pastels, nothing too warm as the set can be hot, but no short sleeves or sleeveless because they can be “unnattractive”. Plus, whatever I wore had to be able to have a microphone attached to it. I did figure it out and did not have to appear naked (I’m sure that would’ve broken another PBS rule, although it was not clearly stated).

Knitting Daily TV will air this July. If you previously were able to get Shay’s show in your area, there’s a very good chance you will get KDTV. If you didn’t, now may be the time to get all of your fiber (and non-fiber friends for that matter) to contact your local PBS affiliate and encourage them to pick up the show. Interweave has done a great job of restructuring the show, hosts include not only Liz and Shay, but also Eunny Yang and Kim Werker. They have all sorts of fun topics and interesting guests (if I do say so myself). I”ll pass more information along as it becomes available and if you aren’t a regular subscriber to knittingdaily.com, go there now and sign-up!

This was an incredibly nerve-wracking experience, but I am so glad we did it. If you don’t challenge yourself, you’ll never know what you are capable of (or so they say). What really reassured me that this was the right thing to do, was this sign on the inside of the door to the elevator at our hotel:

Seriously, where have you ever seen a sheep sign on the inside of an elevator door before? Steve and I were both a bit stunned and tickled at the same time, to say the least.


P.S. Don’t forget – Louisa Harding at WEBS tomorrow starting at 5:00pm! Don’t worry if you can’t be there right at 5 – pop in when you can. I saw Louisa in Cleveland and she’s really looking forward to her visit with us!

P.P.S. Be sure to listen to this week’s Ready, Set, Knit! radio show/podcast on Saturday. Before Steve and I left we interviewed the Yarn Harlot and Melissa filled in for Pixie! It was a fun show – enjoy!

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One Response to “Hello Cleveland”

  1. melissaknits Says:

    Bummer about Steve and television! He would have been awesome!

    Is that a Hampton Inn, perchance? I have had the sheep on a room door, but not in the elevator. I did, on my birthday trip to Maine, get a cowboy hat on my room door, which was perfect.

    Mary is amazing. And I do think PBS has an unstated rule about nudity, but I may be wrong.

    Tomorrow morning will find me in my car driving far enough from home to pick up WHMP on the radio so I can hear myself and squirm.

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