Welcome!
Welcome to our newly added WEBS Winter Virtual Knitting Retreat, being held virtually from February 3 - 6, 2022! During the retreat we will have two full days of online classes, virtual trunk shows and Q&A sessions with our sponsors, and an all-day lounge you can join at your leisure to meet with friends, relax, and enjoy scheduled events and games each day. Plus, you’ll receive an exclusive shopping coupon code and a sumptuous swag bag, mailed right to your door! We have some of the most talented instructors sharing their expertise this weekend, including Patty Lyons, Edie Eckman, Elizabeth Smith, Laura Nelkin, Mary Annarella, and Tanis Grey. We want you to have the fun of the retreat from the safety of your living room or craft space, and we all hope you'll be excited to join us this winter! 

Full retreat details are included in the various tabs above, or you may click here to download the retreat brochure. If you have any questions, concerns, or need any assistance related to the retreat, please feel free to contact us, the UMass Conference Services Registration Team, at registration@umass.edu or 413-577-8102! 


Registration Package Rates
We are excited to offer three different retreat registration packages for you to choose from, with each package offering a different number of class hours to allow you to determine just how much virtual instruction you'd like. Pricing for each package includes Zoom links to your classes, as well as links to various events hosted by our sponsors and partners, discussion groups, morning yoga, and the all-day lounge, an exclusive shopping coupon code just for retreat attendees, and a sumptuous swag bag loaded with goodies and materials for virtual activities throughout the course of the weekend delivered right to your door. 

Merino Package: $325.00
Includes: 4 class hours, access to lounge and all presentations and activities; exclusive shopping coupon code and swag bag.

Alpaca Package: $400.00
Includes: 6 class hours; access to lounge and all presentations and activities; exclusive shopping coupon code and swag bag.

Cashmere Package: $475.00
Includes: 8 class hours; access to lounge and all presentations and activities; exclusive shopping coupon code and swag bag.


How to Register 
Step 1: Register for the Retreat 
To complete your registration click the Register Now button above. Registration is only accepted online and will open to the general public at 12 p.m. EST on Thursday, November 18. A minimum non-refundable $100.00 deposit, payable online by Visa, MasterCard, Discover, or American Express, is required to complete your registration. You may pay the $100.00 deposit, your full balance due, or any amount in between. If you do not pay in full during your initial registration, you may create your own payment plan by periodically returning to this page to submit additional payments (keep your username and password handy!). All balances must be paid in full by the close of business (5 p.m. EST) on January 4, 2022. Any registration not paid in full by this date will be canceled and the $100.00 deposit will be retained as a cancellation fee.

Registration is accepted on an individual basis. If you wish to register multiple attendees we recommend each attendee uses their own device and registration account to go through the form and complete their own registration. If preferred, you can register one attendee by proceeding all the way through the form and submitting payment, and can then click the "Home" button at the top of the page followed by "Create Additional Registration" to register another attendee (space permitting). Because registration typically fills fast, we recommend each attendee completes their own registration to expedite the registration process.  

Registration is limited and typically fills fast, so early registration is strongly encouraged!

Step 2: Submit Your Class Preferences
At noon (EST) on Tuesday, November 30, registered attendees will be able to submit their class preferences by returning to this page, logging back in, and entering in their first and second class choices for the number of class blocks included in their selected retreat package. Since the various retreat packages include different amounts of class hours, we suggest reviewing the class schedule in full and marking down all preferred classes and their corresponding timeslots. Detailed instructions will be emailed to registered attendees prior to November 30. Click the "Class Description" tab above to learn more about the classes being offered! About 2 weeks after your preferences are received we will email you with your class assignments. Typically we are able to offer attendees all or most of their top choices of classes, but because some classes have limited capacity and some are more popular than others, we cannot guarantee availability. If any of your preferred classes fill and we cannot offer you a spot, we will let you know and can add you to the waitlist for that class..


Retreat Registration Policies 
Payment Policy
A minimum non-refundable $100.00 deposit is required to secure each registration. Payment is accepted via our online payment gateway by Visa, Mastercard, Discover, or American Express credit or debit card. Those who do not pay their full balance due during their initial registration may create their own payment plan by periodically returning to this page, logging back in, and clicking the "Make a Payment" button to submit additional payments. Additional instructions about submitting payment by card and check are included in the informational email you will receive after completing your registration. All balances must be paid in full by the close of business (5 p.m. EST) on January 4, 2022. Any registration with an outstanding balance after this date is subject to cancellation. 

Cancellation Policy
For cancellations received more than 30 days from the start date of the retreat (prior to January 4): a full refund will be processed less the non-refundable $100.00 deposit.
For cancellations received less than 30 days from the start date of the retreat (after January 4 but before January 20): a full refund will be processed less a cancellation fee in the amount of 50% of the retreat package + $60.00.
For cancellations received less than 14 days before the start date of the retreat (after January 20): cancellations will be ineligible for a refund and no refund will be issued.

All cancellations must be sent in writing to UMass Conference Services by email (registration@umass.edu
) or fax (413-577-8130). No registration will be canceled and no refund will be issued unless a written confirmation is received. 


Have questions or need assistance? We're happy to help! 
Please contact the UMass Conference Services Registration Team at registration@umass.edu. or 413-577-8102.
Our offices are open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. ET (excluding federal and/or Massachusetts state holidays) and some of our staff is working in a hybrid format. When possible, please contact us by email for the quickest assistance. All calls, voicemails and/or emails will be answered as soon as possible during our standard business hours. We look forward to hearing from you!

Tentative Retreat Schedule
Below is the tentative retreat schedule. To download a copy of the retreat brochure, including the schedule, please click here.

Note all time listed are Eastern Standard Time (EST): click here to add your time zone and convert to your local time, if needed.

Thursday, February 3
6 p.m.: Welcome event hosted by Kathy and Steve Elkins
6:15 p.m.: Tahki presentation with Stacy Charles
7:15 p.m.: Valley Yarns presentation
8:30 - 9:30 p.m.: Late Night Lounge

Friday, February 4
8 - 9 a.m.: Virtual Yoga
9 a.m.: All-day lounge opens (drop-in at your leisure throughout the day!)
9 - 10 a.m.: Tea Time in the lounge
11 a.m. - 1 p.m.: Early afternoon classes
               - Short Rows (part 1) with Mary Annarella
               - Math for Knitters with Edie Eckman
               - Fair Isle 101 with Tanis Gray
               - Chart It, Swatch It, Love It with Patty Lyons
               - Side to Side Novus Sweater (part 1) with Laura Nelkin
               - Winslow Park Cowl (part 1) with Elizabeth Smith
1:30 - 2:30 p.m.: Sponsor presentation
3 - 5 p.m.: Late afternoon classes
               - Short Rows (continued) with Mary Annarella
               - Unlearn to Knit with Edie Eckman
               - Steeking Four Ways with Tanis Gray
               - Easy Does It with Patty Lyons
               - Side to Side Novus Sweater (continued) with Laura Nelkin
               - Winslow Park Cowl (continued) with Elizabeth Smith
5:30 - 6:30 p.m.: All-day lounge activity
7 - 8 p.m.: Sponsor presentation 
8:30 - 9:30 p.m.: Late-night lounge presentation
9:30 p.m.: All-day lounge closes

Saturday, February 5
8 - 9 a.m.: Virtual Yoga
9 a.m.: All-day lounge opens (drop-in at your leisure throughout the day!)
9 - 10 a.m.: Tea Time in the lounge
11 a.m. - 1 p.m.: Early afternoon classes
               - TD Sweater Construction with Mary Annarella
               - 5 Buttonholes with Edie Eckman
               - Estonian Inlay with Tanis Gray
               - Build a Better Fabric with Patty Lyons
               - Shetland Lace Basics with Laura Nelkin
               - Study Buddy Mitts (part 1) with Elizabeth Smith
1:30 - 2:30 p.m.: Sponsor presentation
3 - 5 p.m.: Late afternoon classes
               - TD Simultaneous Set In Sleeve with Mary Annarella
               - Treasuring Stitch Dictionaries with Edie Eckman
               - Slip Stitch Colorwork with Tanis Gray
               - Stop Turning with Patty Lyons
               - Beading 101 with Laura Nelkin
               - Study Buddy Mitts (continued) with Elizabeth Smith
5:30 - 6:30 p.m.: All-day lounge activity
7 - 8 p.m.: Sponsor presentation
8:30 - 9:30 p.m.: Late-night lounge presentation
9:30 p.m.: All-day lounge closes

Sunday, February 6
9:30 - 10:30 a.m.: Tea Time in the lounge
11 a.m. - 12 p.m.: Keynote speech with Cecilia Nelson-Hunt


Have questions or need assistance? We're happy to help! 
Please contact the UMass Conference Services Registration Team at registration@umass.edu. or 413-577-8102.
Our offices are open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. ET (excluding federal and/or Massachusetts state holidays) and some of our staff is working in a hybrid format. When possible, please contact us by email for the quickest assistance. All calls, voicemails and/or emails will be answered as soon as possible during our standard business hours. We look forward to hearing from you!

Patty Lyons
Chart It, Swatch It, Love It!
2-hour class offered Friday from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m.

Learn how to spice up any sweater with your own stitches. Love the shape of a garment but would like to add a cable panel to the body or sleeve, how about a lace stitch at the hem or cuff, or even a different neck treatment. With a bit of math, the knitting world is your oyster! We’ll start with an exploration of what cables and lace do to your fabric. We’ll look at what can make the cast on edge undulate or the side of a stitch move in and out. Next we’ll learn the simple math to insert or replace a stitch panel or detail into existing sweater pattern. Then, after looking at swatches, stitch dictionaries and finished objects for inspiration, I’ll set you on your path to start to play with adjusting and combining to create your custom stitches. After the class you’ll be set for using both graph paper and some imaginative three-dimensional tools to start to lay out your own stitch and even start to swatch it.
Skill level
: Intermediate. A firm knowledge of the math of gauge required. Basic sweater pattern knowledge is helpful..

Easy Does It - Unlocking the Mysteries of Ease and Sweater Construction
2-hour class offered Friday from 3 - 5 p.m.

In this sweater tour lecture, Patty will walk you through a variety of sweater constructions and discuss how each sweater works. Learn how to make your own decisions about fit when you read things like “meant to be worn with 2 – 4” of ease”. Easy does it, it’s not as hard as it sounds.
Skill level
: Intermediate.

Build a Better Fabric - Perfect Your Knitting 
2-hour class offered Saturday from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m.

We’ll explore ways to improve your knitting technique by looking at the most important fundamentals, like the job of the left needle tip and the right needle shaft, stitch sizing, and even the correct exit path of your stitch. If you feel like you are always 3 needles off from a pattern, or have inconsistent gauge, or are just unhappy with your finished fabric, this is the class for you!
Skill level
: All. Must know how to knit, purl, cast on, bind off, know simple increase and decreases. Recognize the knit and purl stitch and be able to work them in a pattern without supervision.

Stop Turning! Knitting and Purling Backwards 
2-hour class offered Saturday from 3 - 5 p.m.

Learn the joy of never turning! We will learn how to put the knit stitch and the purl stitch in reverse as well as learn basic decreases, short rows and picking up stitches backwards. Knitting and purling backwards is great for entrelac, bobbles, short rows and chart work.
Skill level
: Intermediate. Must know how to knit, purl, cast on, bind off, and simple increases and decreases and be able to work them without supervision.


Edie Eckman
Math for Knitters
2-hour class offered Friday from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m.
This class will take the mystery out of those pesky math calculations you have to do when designing, altering or knitting a sweater. Math-phobics are welcome, and you don’t have to raise your hand in class. While drafting a basic sweater, we will calculate yarn amounts, figure rates of increase/decrease across a single row, how to shape V-necks and sleeves, and stitch pattern placement. You'll learn how a swatch can tell you much more than what your gauge is, and what happens when your gauge is not on target. We will NOT cover sleeve cap shaping.
Skill level
: Intermediate.

Unlearn to Knit
2-hour class offered Friday from 3 - 5 p.m.
No matter how long you've been knitting or what your knitting style, understanding the structure of the knitted fabric and how the stitches are related to one another is the key to becoming an expert knitter. We'll have fun exploring what it really means to take a length of string and turn it into a fabric. If time allows, we'll even "knit back backwards"! You'll leave class with the confidence and ability to fix mistakes, take shortcuts, and be the master of your stitches. Students should be confident with the knit stitch and purl stitch, and be able to recognize each stitch as it presents itself.
Skill level
: Intermediate.

5 Buttonholes
2-hour class offered Saturday from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m.
Buttonholes can be tricky things. Getting them just right—tidy and tight—can be a challenge. What do you do with giant buttons? Tiny buttons? Yarn that won't hold its shape? These five buttonholes will see you through almost every situation and give you what you need to achieve symbiosis among the button, the band, and the design of the thing you want to button up.
Skill level
: Intermediate.

Treasuring Stitch Dictionaries
2-hour class offered Saturday from 3 - 5 p.m.
Stitch dictionaries. You've seen them: books filled with intriguing stitch patterns, rows of baffling text and perhaps charts that look unfamiliar. Maybe you even own one or three. But what to do with such a book? Learn how to go about turning a stitch pattern on a page into a finished object, and how to choose a pattern. Find out what multiples are all about, why charts are your friends, and how to adapt back-and-forth directions into working-in-the-round directions. We'll look at examples of many different stitch dictionaries. You'll leave ready to delve into that untapped treasure on your bookshelf.
Skill level
: Intermediate.


Elizabeth Smith
A Sampler of Techniques - Winslow Park Cowl
4-hour class offered Friday from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. and 3 - 5 p.m.
In this class you will get started on the Winslow Park Cowl and learn all of the techniques used so you can confidently create your very own. You’ll learn how to create a ‘knitted turned hem, as well as working jog-less 1 row stripes in the round. In addition to these 2 main techniques, Elizabeth will also show you a few other little useful knitting tips along the way, such as casting-on and joining to work in the round tips, how to weave in your ends using the duplicate stitch technique, and online tools you can use to help inspire your next multicolor project.
Skill level
: Advanced Beginner. Comfortable with basic knitting skills such as casting-on, the knit and purl stitch, working on a circular needle and binding-off.

Study Buddy Mitts
4-hour class offered Saturday from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. and 3 - 5 p.m.
So you’ve learned the knitting basics, like casting-on, the knit and purl stitches and binding-off – but now what? If you are a beginner knitter looking to start learning some ‘next level’ techniques so that you can start feeling more comfortable taking on projects other than simple scarves or cowls, then this class is for you! In this class you will learn to make the “Study Buddy Mitts”, a fingerless mitt pattern that has a few different advanced-beginner knitting techniques and is the perfect way to ‘study-up’ on some new skills and dip your toes into the world beyond simple scarves!
Skill level
: Advanced Beginner. Comfortable with basic beginner knitting skills such as casting-on, the knit stitch, and binding-off.


Laura Nelkin
Side to Side  Sweaters - The Novus Construction
4-hour class offered Friday from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. and 3 - 5 p.m.
In this class Laura introduces you to the “Novus” construction, her seamless yet structured modern approach to the side-to-side sweater. She’ll cover how the construction works, how to modify it to fit your body, and any necessary skills needed for the construction, (i.e., provisional cast-on, lifted increases, German short rows). We'll be knitting a eeny-weeny version of the sweater in class preparing students to cast on for their own sweaters once the workshop is complete!
Skill level
: Intermediate. Knit/purl; comfort reading a pattern; best for knitters who have knit a sweater before OR are adventurous first-time sweater knitters.

Shetland Lace Basics
2-hour class offered Saturday from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m.
Laura will cover some history of Shetland Lace and then delve into techniques to help you knit it successfully. The class will cover basic increases and decreases, walk you through chart reading, and get you on your way to becoming a more advanced lace knitter!
Skill level
: Intermediate. Must know basic lace skills.

Beading 101
2-hour class offered Saturday from 3 - 5 p.m.
This virtual class with Laura Nelkin teaches multiple ways of working with beads. It is the PERFECT introductory class! You will learn how to place beads with a crochet hook or super floss, how to work with pre-strung beads in a variety of ways, and how to work with beads on bind-offs and i-cord. We’ll discuss choosing beads and yarn, along with how to look at an existing pattern in your library and how to add beads to it. This is a class for those with basic knitting skills who are ready to add a little bling to their knitting!
Skill level
: Advanced Beginner.


Mary Annarella
Short-Row Shaping
4-hour class offered Friday from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. and 3 - 5 p.m.
This 4 hour class will apply adding series of short rows to different areas on garments. We’ll explore adding horizontal bust darts or shoulder shaping to sweaters as well as to the back-neck of a top-down yoked sweater and work a super-deluxe method for transitioning a final short row to working in the round.
Skill level
: For the adventurous newbie to sweaters as well as advanced sweater knitters. Most helpful if you've made a sweater before.

Top-Down Sweater Construction
2-hour class offered Saturday from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m.
An overview of various sweater types using top-down construction (drop shoulder, set-in sleeve, circular yoke, saddle shoulder, raglan, and compound raglan). We will explore fit considerations for each sweater type as well as how to modify to suit personal taste and preference.
Skill level
: For beginning to advanced sweater knitters.

Top-Down, Simultaneous Set-in Sleeve Sweaters
2-hour class offered Saturday from 3 - 5 p.m.
Students will learn how to construct a top-down stockinette sweater with traditional shoulders (different from the “contiguous” method) and work a set in sleeve at the same time as the upper bodice. We’ll also discuss the most important measurements for getting a great fit with a set-in sleeve sweater and how to modify a pattern to fit.
Skill level
: Intermediate/Advanced. Should be familiar and comfortable with working short rows or are planning to take the short row class the day before.


Tanis Gray
Fair Isle 101 Workshop - Skybridge Hat
2-hour class offered Friday from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m.
Freaked over Fair Isle? Curious about stranded colorwork techniques? Intimidated by multiple strands of yarn in multiple colors? Not sure how gauge works or how to trap those floats? This is the workshop for you! We’ll cover basic Fair Isle knitting techniques for English, Continental, and Combination knitters, tackle common issues, proper technique, color theory, how to trap floats, Latvian braids, Fair Isle history and set good Fair Isle knitting habits. We’ll put everything we learned into practice while knitting up the Skybridge Hat!
Skill level
: Advanced Beginner – no previous colorwork experience necessary.

Steeking Four Ways Workshop
2-hour class offered Friday from 3 - 5 p.m.
Interested in steeking but the thought of taking scissors to your knitting sends shivers down your spine? We’ll learn how to secure and cut our knitting 4 different ways with ease on swatches before you tackle that sweater pattern you’ve had your eye on! You’ll learn the single crochet method (no crochet experience necessary), the backstitch method, the needle felting method, and the sewing machine method.
Prerequisite: Must have previous colorwork experience or have taken Fair Isle 101 with Tanis beforehand!
Skill level
: Intermediate.

Roosimine Estonian Inlay Workshop - A Short Reprise Hat
2-hour class offered Saturday from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m.
Learn the art of Estonian Inlay, or Roosimine in this hat workshop! Originating from the western Estonian island Muhu, this stranding technique has been used for centuries to embellish knitting. Sharing similar characteristics of stranded colorwork, intarsia, and embroidery, this beautiful technique adds texture and color to your knits. You’ll have the option to make a 2-colored hat, or a 3-colored hat with 2-colored Vikkle Braids. We will also cover twisted ribbing, blocking, and finishing techniques, and knit A Short Reprise Hat.
Skill level
: Advanced Beginner – no previous colorwork experience necessary.

Slip-Stitch Colorwork 101 - Bow Tie Pasta Fingerless Mitts
2-hour class offered Saturday from 3 - 5 p.m.
The easygoing cousin of stranded colorwork, slip-stitch knitting is a fun and easy technique that brings more color into your work without the stranding or trapping of floats. We’ll knit up the Bow Tie Pasta Fingerless Mitts pattern, discuss the different types of colorwork, how to read charts, mattress stitching, basic color theory, and finishing techniques.
Skill level
: Advanced Beginner – no previous colorwork experience necessary.


Have questions or need assistance? We're happy to help! 
Please contact the UMass Conference Services Registration Team at registration@umass.edu. or 413-577-8102.
Our offices are open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. ET (excluding federal and/or Massachusetts state holidays) and some of our staff is working in a hybrid format. When possible, please contact us by email for the quickest assistance. All calls, voicemails and/or emails will be answered as soon as possible during our standard business hours. We look forward to hearing from you!

Patty Lyons
Patty Lyons (http://pattylyons.com/) is a nationally recognized knitting teacher and technique expert who is known for teaching the “why” not just the “how” in her pursuit of training the “mindful knitter”. She specializes in sweater design and sharing her love of the much-maligned subjects of gauge and blocking. Patty teaches nationally at guilds, shops & knitting shows around the country such as Vogue Knitting LIVE, and STITCHES. Her popular classes can also be found on DVD and online at Interweave, Annie’s and Craftsy. She also runs wildly popular video sweater classes on her Ravelry group. Patty’s designs and knitting skill articles have been published in Vogue Knitting, Interweave Knits, Knit Purl, Knitter’s Magazine, Cast On, Knit Style, Creative Knitting, Twist Collective and Modern Daily Knitting where she writes a monthly knitter’s advice column: “Ask Patty”. Patty’s designs have also been included in pattern collections from Classic Elite, Noro, Cascade, Tahki Stacy Charles, Sugar Bush and Willow Yarns.


Edie Eckman
Edie serves as a technical editor for yarn companies and independent publishers. Her designs have appeared in Knitters, Interweave Crochet, Creative Knitting, Knit N Style, and many other publications. She has taught at Stitches events, Vogue Knitting Live, The National Needlearts Association, The Knit & Crochet Show, Midwest Fiber & Folk Art Fair, New York State Sheep & Wool Festival (Rhinebeck), Fall Fiber Festival (Montpelier), and other national venues. Her articles and designs have appeared in many yarn company publications and magazines. Edie is the author of Every Which Way Crochet Borders, Christmas Crochet for the Hearth, Home & Tree, Connect the Shapes Crochet Motifs, Socks to Knit for Those You Love, Around the Corner Crochet Borders, The Crochet Answer Book, Beyond the Square Crochet Motifs, and Pincushions to Sew. Together with Judith Durant, she edited Crochet One-Skein Wonders and Crochet One-Skein Wonders for Babies.


Elizabeth Smith
Living in Maine inspires everything Elizabeth does and she is very proud to call it home. Prior to starting her design career, Elizabeth worked in the advertising industry for over 10 years. Currently, in addition to her knitting world, she also does freelance work in marketing, web development, project management and admin/operations. She has also worked in the tech field in the Portland area for some time and has enjoyed working with software companies and other start-ups. Elizabeth has lived in the Portland, Maine area for 17 years (after growing up in New York/Connecticut, college in Boston and a short stint in Southern California where she met her husband many years ago). She strives to create simple, modern designs and write patterns that are easy to follow and fun to knit. Her goal is for crafters to have an enjoyable knitting experience, so she designs, writes and creates tutorials that all aim to help provide knitters with this experience.


Laura Nelkin
Though she has a degree in apparel design from Cornell University, Laura took to knitting years ago and hasn’t looked back. Her designs and techniques are innovative, fun and will challenge you to think in new ways about your knitting. She is currently enamored with unexpected sweater construction, lace, and with incorporating beads into lace, so most of her designs lean in this direction. She travels often to teach these techniques at workshops around the country and online at Craftsy.com, and in her spare time she leads knitting tours abroad. She runs 2 super fun clubs every year, The N Club, and Lola's Choice, and she has a line of knitting kits, self-published patterns, and runs mystery Knit-A-Longs multiple times a year. Her book, Knockout Knits, was released with Random House in September 2014.


Mary Annarella
Lyrical Knits is the creative endeavor of designer Mary Annarella. Mary learned to knit over 20 years ago, practicing with chunky wool on chopsticks. Realizing that the chopsticks weren’t ideal, she soon discovered circular knitting needles, and has been creating seamless garments ever since. Her designs lean toward classic shapes with an attention to detail. Feminine without being precious or stodgy, her garment designs are all constructed seamlessly and (mostly) from the top-down whether they involve set-in or raglan sleeves. As a biology instructor, science geek, and professional singer, designing and pattern-writing merge the technical and creative aspects of her nature. She takes particular delight in seeing knitters use her patterns to create something that makes them happy, fits them well, and keeps them warm.


Tanis Gray
With over 600 published knitting designs in her portfolio, as well as numerous award winning projects, her work has been featured in many major publications and books worldwide. Tanis had her own regularly-featured TV spot on PBS' Knitting Daily TV with Vickie Howell and has taught multiple online Fair Isle classes for Craftsy. She is the author of Knit Local: Celebrating America’s Homegrown Yarns (2011, Sixth & Spring). She is an avid quilter, cross stitcher, photographer, enjoys Sashiko, hiking, Sudoku, cycling, jigsaw puzzles, baking, crewel work, and spoon carving. Having worked at Martha Stewart, HBO, Focus Features, in the art department in the film and television industries, and after a 4-year career as the Yarn Editor at Vogue Knitting and co-editor of  Knit.1, she has been working in the creative field for many years. She has won first place nationally for the American Heritage Award and the National Women in the Arts Award numerous times for Fiber Arts.


Have questions or need assistance? We're happy to help! 
Please contact the UMass Conference Services Registration Team at registration@umass.edu. or 413-577-8102.
Our offices are open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. ET (excluding federal and/or Massachusetts state holidays) and some of our staff is working in a hybrid format. When possible, please contact us by email for the quickest assistance. All calls, voicemails and/or emails will be answered as soon as possible during our standard business hours. We look forward to hearing from you!

General
How do I access retreat sessions?
The retreat will be held virtually from February 3 - 6. All retreat events will be held on Zoom, a web conferencing platform that you can download for free. Each retreat session will have it's own unique meeting link, and prior to the retreat you will receive a personalized schedule by email that will include all of the links that you will need for your sessions, trunk shows, classes, and evening socials. Note all session times are EST (Eastern Savings Time). In preparation for the retreat, please make sure to install Zoom client for meetings

This is my first virtual event. How can I prepare?
We know a virtual event can be intimidating, so we put together a whole bunch of information to help you prepare! Please click on the "Virtual Retreat Tips" tab above to see our suggestions on how to get the most out of your virtual experience. Keep an eye on your inbox as the retreat approaches, too - we'll be sending along some helpful updates, including details on a Zoom practice session that will be open to all attendees. If you're completely new to Zoom you may also find it helpful to check out our detailed Zoom How-To Guide, as well as our Zoom Cheat Sheet!

Can I register multiple attendees at once?
Registration is accepted on an individual basis, so each attendee must go through the form, enter in their unique details, and proceed through to submit payment: you cannot register multiple attendees at the same time and/or add multiple retreat registration packages at once. Because of this, and because of how quickly the retreat can fill, we recommend each attendee goes through and registers themselves using their own account. However, if needed, you can register one attendee and, once that registration is completed, you can go through the form again to register someone else. To do this, first enter in the details for one attendee and proceed through to submit payment. Next, click "Home" in the toolbar at the top of the page. You'll see a summary of the registration you just completed, and a "Create Additional Registration" button. Click this button to be brought to a new, blank form, where you can enter in the details for the next attendee. Do not use your browser's back button and do not replace existing information with another attendee's information: doing so will overwrite the completed registration with this new information, but will not result in multiple people being registered.

What should I do if I'm having trouble connecting?
If you're having trouble connecting to your session it may be because the host has not yet started the meeting. If you join the meeting before the host does, you will see a message that says "Waiting for host to start this meeting." In this case, please wait for the host to join, and you should then be brought into the meeting without issue! Sessions may also use the "Waiting Room" feature, which puts you and other attendees into a virtual waiting room until the host and co-host are ready to begin. If this is the case, you' will see a message that says "Welcome! Your session will start shortly." You will then be let into the meeting by the host once they are ready to begin. 

If the meeting is in session but you can't connect, don't worry! First, make sure you are connected to the internet. Next, try closing  Zoom and then reopen the meeting link included in your personalized schedule email (we will send you all of the necessary links by email prior to the retreat). If this doesn't work, we suggest restarting your device and trying again. If you are still having trouble connecting, please reach out to us at registration@umass.edu so we can assist you.

Will the retreat be recorded?
No, retreat classes, presentations, trunk shows, and all other sessions will not be recorded. Please plan to attend all retreat events and classes live!

When will I receive additional information about the retreat?
When you register you will automatically receive an informational email containing the latest information about the retreat. Leading up to the retreat, you can also expect to hear from us periodically by email with additional updates and instructions on how to access virtual programming. Please add our email address (registration@umass.edu) to your contacts so you don't miss any of these follow-up emails! We're here to help you get the most out of the Retreat, so if you have any questions or concerns in the meantime, please do not hesitate to reach out to us! We can be reached at registration@umass.edu or 413-577-8102, however please note we are currently working remotely so, when possible, we recommend contacting us by email for the most immediate assistance. 

What is the cancellation policy?
All cancellations must be sent in writing to the UMass Conference Services Registration Office by email (registration@umass.edu). No registration will be canceled and no credit will be issued unless a written confirmation is provided. 
For cancellations received more than 30 days from the start date of the retreat
(prior to January 4): a full refund will be processed less the non-refundable $100.00 deposit.
For cancellations received less than 30 days from the start date of the retreat
(after January 4 but before January 20): a full refund will be processed less a cancellation fee in the amount of 50% of the retreat package + $60.00.
For cancellations received less than 14 days before the start date of the retreat
(after January 20): cancellations will be ineligible for a refund and no refund will be issued.


Classes
How do I sign up for classes? 
The registration for the Winter Retreat will be a two-part process. The first step will be registering for your chosen retreat package. Registration will open at 12 p.m. EST on Thursday, November 18. Then, at noon on Tuesday, November 30, registered attendees will be able to submit class preferences by returning to this page, logging back in to their account, and entering the first and second class choices for as many class hours as selected. Detailed instructions will be emailed to registered attendees prior to November 30. Click the "Class Description" tab above to learn more about the classes being offered!

I didn't get the class I wanted. What can I do?
Class sizes are limited and typically some classes are very popular, so while all attempts are made to put everyone into their first choice for each time block unfortunately it is not always possible. We strongly recommend you take a look at all of the class descriptions and try to find two for each block that are of interest to you so that you can enter in accurate first and second choices. If you are placed into your second choice for any block we will automatically place you on the waitlist for your first choice and contact you if a spot opens up. You can also contact us at registration@umass.edu or 413-577-8102 to see if space is open in any other classes that might be of interest.

Is there any homework or materials for my class(es)?
Yes, some classes have homework and/or materials lists, as well as class specific handouts. All of the information that you will need will be provided as an attachment to your class assignment email, followed by any necessary updates, patterns, download links, etc., as the retreat approaches. 

I have questions about a class description, skill level, homework and/or materials. Can someone help me?
Sure! If you have any questions about a class description, skill level, homework and/or materials needed please send along a detailed email to us at registration@umass.edu we would we happy to help, or connect you with the appropriate person who can further assist you. 


Payment
What are my payment options?
A minimum non-refundable $100.00 deposit is required to secure your registration. During registration you can select to pay this deposit, your full balance due, or any amount in between. Payment is accepted via this online registration page by Visa, MasterCard, Discover or American Express.

If you do not select to pay the full balance due during your initial registration, all remaining fees are due by the close of business (5 p.m. EST) on January 4, 2022. You can create your own payment plan to periodically submitting additional payments online, by phone, or by check. Additional instructions are included in the informational email you will receive after completing your registration.

For questions related to payment and/or to discuss alternate payment options, please contact us!

What is the payment deadline?
You must submit a minimum $100.00 deposit to secure your registration. If you do not pay in full during your initial registration, all remaining fees are due by the close of business (5 p.m. EST) on January 4, 2022.


Have questions or need assistance? We're happy to help! 
Please contact the UMass Conference Services Registration Team at registration@umass.edu. or 413-577-8102.
Our offices are open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. ET (excluding federal and/or Massachusetts state holidays) and some of our staff is working in a hybrid format. When possible, please contact us by email for the quickest assistance. All calls, voicemails and/or emails will be answered as soon as possible during our standard business hours. We look forward to hearing from you!

Are you new to virtual learning?
We're happy to help you navigate this new adventure! We have put together tips and tricks, a how-to guide, and a cheat sheet to make your experience as seamless as possible. Please review the information below and contact us if you have any questions.


Prepare Before the Retreat
Check Your Internet Connection
To get the most out of each session, it is important to use reliable internet! If possible, ask others in your home to stay off of the internet when you are in a session to minimize the devices connected to your network. If your wireless internet frequently lags, kicks you off, or is generally unreliable, try to use a wired connection right from your computer into your router, and keep your camera off as much as possible. You could also see if there is somewhere else you can go for internet access, such as the home of a family member or friend, a library, or a local café (if safe, and possible). Some libraries are offering free outdoor wi-fi, allowing you to connect from a nearby parking lot or outdoor space. 

Unsure about your internet speed and reliability? Do a quick test of your internet speed on Google! This test will let you know your internet speed and how well it can handle multiple devices connected at the same time, video conferencing, and more. 

Download Zoom and Create an Account
All Retreat sessions will be held on Zoom, a web conferencing platform that you can download and use for free. To use Zoom, first visit https://zoom.us/download and click the "Download" button under Zoom Client for Meetings. We recommend downloading Zoom onto a device with a larger screen, such as a laptop or desktop computer, instead of using your phone or tablet. In addition to downloading Zoom, you will need to create a Zoom account if you do not yet have one. You can create an account by downloading Zoom and then opening the Zoom app. This will bring you to a login screen, and on the bottom right you can click the "Sign up for Free" button. You can also create an account by visiting https://zoom.us/signup. It's a relatively easy process to download Zoom and create an account, but it does take a few minutes so make sure to do this before the start of the Retreat!

Choose Your Device Carefully
If you have multiple devices, we recommend downloading Zoom onto the one with the largest screen, such as a laptop or desktop computer, so that you can easily see what is going on. When possible we don't recommend using your phone as it will be difficult to see what is happening on such a small screen, plus phone calls, emails, and text messages could be distracting. The features and functionalities of the mobile version of Zoom are also slightly different, so please note  that our guide and cheat sheet are not fully applicable to the mobile version. Lastly, for most classes, as well as a the guided knitting evening social, you will want to be following along and actively knitting: be sure to use a device that can stand on it's own so you can keep your hands free!

Practice with Zoom and Come to a Test Session
If you are new to Zoom, we recommend taking advantage of some of the many resources available to familiarize yourself with how to use it! We have created a detailed Zoom how-to guide, as well as a Zoom cheat sheet for your reference. In addition, we will be hosting a Zoom practice session, open to all attendees, prior to the Retreat. Feel free to pop into this test session to practice logging in, accessing a meeting, using your audio/video, and more! Additional details will be sent to you via email as the Retreat approaches. You can also practice on your own by joining a test Zoom meeting here, or checking out some of Zoom's beginner tutorials here. If you have any questions or need a little more support, please don't hesitate to contact us - we're more than happy to help you get squared away before the Retreat (registration@umass.edu, 413-577-8102)! 

Create a Special Retreat Space
Find an area of your home where you will be comfortable, and ideally one that is private to minimize distractions. Arrange a comfortable chair in front of your screen. Set your screen up on a table, stand, or desk, so that you can easily see it while having your hands free to knit. Create a little kit to keep all of your supplies organized and easy to grab, and fill it with your knitting supplies, class materials/homework, drinks, snacks, a notebook, a pen/pencil, and whatever else you might need. If you decide to have your camera on, consider the camera angle and the background your teachers and fellow students will see. You may want to prop up your screen so that the camera is at or above eye level for a more flattering angle. Consider what others will see behind you, and perhaps rearrange or spruce up the space a bit. During the Retreat, remove distractions and background noises by closing the doors and windows to your space, silencing your phone, and asking your family or housemates to be mindful of when you will be attending Retreat sessions.


During the Retreat 
Get Ready for Your Sessions
Recently you may have noticed an increase in articles and discussions around "Zoom fatigue" - it can be tough to sit in a virtual session for a while! It helps to prepare yourself and your space in advance, and to get mentally and physically ready the day of. Consider stretching or going for a walk before a block of session begins. Leading up to the session, give yourself enough time (at least 15 minutes!) before the start of the session to get your device up and running and make sure your audio and video are working. Know when your classes begin, and what additional events you would like to attend. Be sure to setup your space in the days leading up to the Retreat (see the "Create a Special Retreat Spot" section above!) and have anything that you might need during the session close by - you don't want to miss anything because you have to go grab some supplies or a drink! If you decide to have your camera on, keep in mind the instructor and other attendees will be able to see you, so make sure you are camera ready! This is also helpful if you need to get up and grab a supply from somewhere else in your home (we've all seen the videos of the mishaps that result when someone on camera forgets that they aren't quite dressed appropriately!) 

Stay Muted (except in the lounge and during dedicated Q&As!)
When you join a session you should automatically be muted. Please stay muted unless you have a question or need assistance to avoid broadcasting any unexpected background noises to all of the other participants in the meeting. On the bottom meeting toolbar you will see a microphone icon: if there is a red line in this icon that means you are muted, and you can click this icon to request to unmute if needed. You can also utilize a number of other communication methods in Zoom while staying muted, such as the Chat feature or Reactions (take a look at our how-to guide and cheat sheet for more information!). Your instructor might have their own specific requests regarding how attendees should make comments or ask questions, so the exact protocol to follow may vary depending on the class or session - we recommend logging in a few minutes early to make sure you don't miss any special instructions made by that session's host!

Take Advantage of Time In-Between Sessions
The Retreat is packed full of great events. Review the schedule to get a sense of when you will have some breaks or blocks of down time, and take advantage of these! When you have a break, try to get up and stretch. For longer breaks, consider taking a short walk to get some fresh air and recharge. These are also great chances to replenish any supplies, drinks, or snacks in preparation for the next session!


Have questions or need assistance? We're happy to help! 
Please contact the UMass Conference Services Registration Team at registration@umass.edu. or 413-577-8102.
Our offices are open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. ET (excluding federal and/or Massachusetts state holidays) and some of our staff is working in a hybrid format. When possible, please contact us by email for the quickest assistance. All calls, voicemails and/or emails will be answered as soon as possible during our standard business hours. We look forward to hearing from you!

Questions, concerns, or need some assistance? We're here to help! 
We are so excited you will be joining us for the virtual WEBS Spring Knitting Retreat! A virtual Retreat might be a new adventure, but we are committed to doing all we can to provide you with the best experience. If there is anything you need or anything we can assist with, either before or during the retreat, please contact us at registration@umass.edu or 413-577-8102.

Below are some links you might find helpful as you prepare for the Retreat:

Virtual Retreat Brochure
Virtual Retreat Preliminary Class Materials and Homework

Virtual Retreat Zoom Guide
Virtual Retreat Zoom Cheat Sheet
Download Zoom Client for Meetings (or click here)
Sign-up for a Zoom Account
Zoom Resource Library
Zoom Test Meeting
Internet Speed Test