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Jane Thornley

        Jane Thornley  

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Be inspired by the knitted works of art by Canadian knitwear artist Jane Thornley.

Meet Jane Thornley:
Born and raised in Halifax, Nova Scotia, I began my knitting life at twenty-one years old with my first project – a trunk warmer for an elephant. Supposedly a sweater sleeve by intent, the fact that my hands had created this miraculous piece of slubbed, apricot-coloured, textile overrode niggles of disappointment.  My passion for yarn had begun.

I took extension courses through the Nova Scotia School of Art and Design but, with the help of my mother and so many wonderful books and magazines, taught myself most of the beading, embroidery, sewing, painting and drawing techniques that have since embellished the otherwise plain surfaces of my life. Give me detail to austerity any day. Something to catch the eye, draw the attention deeper into the subject, is my preferred aesthetic. My early multi-coloured sweaters (pictured on this site in my first exhibition at the Mary Black Gallery) contained as many as 50 different colours of yarn. For me, colour and texture rule and most of the inspiration feeding my imagination comes from the natural world. I see knitting as art, as viable as any other, and no matter what the tool or preferred palette, in human hands, magic happens.

Creating jewelry is a relatively new passion, though a natural extension of my love for colour and texture. My bead drawers brim with semi-precious stones, pearls and metals from all over the world which lure me to compose talismans of adornment for otherwise bare necks and wrists. Wherever I travel, I find inspiration and more beads to weave into something to celebrate the rich global trove in which we live.

Besides jewelry creation and knitting, the latter of which has sustained me on the parameters of many demanding executive careers in public education, I also write women’s fiction.  Seven novels, a few agents, and a tendency to focus more on writing than the business end of becoming published, and I’m still authoring at least one novel a year. Once upon a time, I was listed as one of the most popular authors in fiction and mystery on the now defunct Time-Warner website, I-Write. I am currently also working on a book for knitter’s tentatively entitled ‘Adventure Knitting’ which takes the knitter on a ride through the textural landscape of novelty yarns. Check my journal for more on current writing projects.

Besides a Bachelor of Arts with Honors in English and a Bachelor of Education, I hold a Masters of Library Service and spent many years as the passionate advocate of school libraries. Like so much of human experience, after a certain steam burns away, what is left hardens to the core. Adhered to mine, then, is the love for books, learning, and the celebration of the human voice through words or art. Only recently have I come to fully live what I believe.

My wonderful, supportive husband, John --a talented stone mason, painter and cabinet maker in his own right--and I live on the edge of the Partridge River, in a place that has become a sanctuary and an inspiration for us both.

Yarn Brands
> Alpaca Yarn Company
> Berroco
> Cherry Tree Hill

> Karabella
> La Lana Wools
> Lorna's Laces
> Malabrigo
> Margaret Stove
> Schaefer Yarn Company
> Wendy Peter Pan

Knitting needles