Claire Pereira teaches knitting and crafting classes in Kings Heath and Moseley. Her classes are popular, so if you want to join in the fun, you can find out about booking your spot here.

We thought you’d like to find out what makes Claire tick…

How did you learn to knit? I learnt to knit as a child when a family friend showed me and started knitting again as an adult when I wanted a hobby that gave an outlet for creativity and imagination (working as a clinician in the NHS with 2 young children had made this difficult!) and help maintain good mental health following a period of anxiety and depression.

What kind of thing do you like to knit?  I think there is a project for every occasion and what I like to knit is usually determined by the situation. I currently have about 7 projects on the go. For example, I have my ‘Netflix’ project (a super easy stripped snood in stockinette stitch that doesn’t require focus and concentration that I can work on whilst binge watching a series!), there’s my passion project (a pattern I have fallen in love with because it’s beautiful and am going to gift or keep for myself). I also usually have a ‘skills’ project which I pick to learn a new technique and requires focus and no distraction. One of the joys of knitting is there is always more to learn!

Do you have a favourite beverage to sup while you’re knitting?  As I do most of my knitting in the evenings after the kids are in bed I usually have a coffee on the go at the same time so that I don’t dose off and wake up in a tangle of yarn! I have knitted with a bottle of wine before but the finished product was, well…. less than satisfactory!

Where do you like to knit?  My favourite place to knit is at home on the couch as I don’t have to worry about yarn falling on the floor or having space to untangle my stranded work or a rude word accidentally slipping out when I realise I’ve made a mistake and have to rip back 10 rows! It does mean my couch usually has a range of stitch markers and scraps of yarn in between the cushions though!

What is your favourite yarn?  Can I have 2?? I love Rowan Big Wool as it is what we use when children are just starting out knitting. I love watching them pick their favourite colour and usually they will stroke it or rub it on their cheek as it is soooo soft. It also knits up really quickly so the children can see their achievement sooner maintaining motivation. Personally i am a big fan of Alpaca Soft. It is a dream to knit with, for some reason I knit faster with this than other yarns, and it feels amazing to wear!

What do you like best about being a Knitting For All Franchisee?  Being able to have responsibility and ownership of my own business but with the backing and support of the company and other franchisees

What do you like about teaching knitting?  I love teaching children to knit because of the pride and sense of achievement it gives them to master the stitches and create something special with their own hands. I love the creative, imaginative ideas they come up with when choosing or adapting a project. I also hope that I am helping them learn a skill that will be helpful to their mental health growing up, providing them with a perfect activity to practice mindfulness and promote self efficacy.

I had a child that joined because they wanted to learn how to knit Poppy’s for charity and I thought this was just wonderful. Another heart warming moment for me was when one of the children told me that the reason she loves the class so much was that I am always so encouraging and enthusiastic about their ideas. That hit me right in the feels!

Last term one of our knitters made a cape for her cat! That was one cosy kitty!

Find out more about knitting and crafting classes in Kings Heath and Moseley here.