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  • Belinda. Oh, Belinda was absolutely brilliant–a word I stole from her and use all the time because she had about ten different versions of the word, the best being a long, juicy “brilliant” which was her ultimate accolade for anything that was really, really great.

    I was lucky to have Belinda and Neil come visit Nashville, and they gave me a tour of my own home town that I’d never had. They brought boundless curiosity and energy to everything they did–game for anything, always finding the undiscovered wonderful bite, the slice of pizza, the cupcake. They beelined for the Jack Daniel distillery an hour away, of course.

    In London last December, they led my son David and me to a shop that sold only Spanish ham, and we ate our sandwiches filled with perfect, paper-thin slices of jamon in a park by the Thames. It was the most memorable meal. I treasure her brilliant knitting, but I also learned so much from her about her everyday wizardry, cooking. She changed the way I think about food–she cooked exotically and easily, never a fuss, and watching her in action taught me that food is an integral part of life, so why not make it delicious?

    I have one of many Belinda items to share, an MDK post about a pair of gloves she knit for me:
    http://www.masondixonknitting.com/creative-odysseys/madness-from-london/
    I had never made a movie of a handknit before, but these gloves have to be seen in 3D to be believed.

    She was modest, and generous, and brilliant. Simply brilliant.

  • I heard about Belinda via twitter this summer, very sad. I’m glad you shared all this with us now. Such a loss.

  • I did not know Belinda personally, but Kay introduced us via email when Kay was deep in Bat Mitzvah planning and I had a question on her pattern. Belinda was responsive then, and the few other times I reached out in different items. Her knitting voice will still carry on. I’m sure she will be deeply missed.

  • Sorry about Belinda. I didn’t know her personally, but I think I am going to have to make a perfectly plain dark cardigan with a sequin edging in her honor, I used to get her blog in my email. 46, crikey!

    Margit (sp?) of Morehouse Yarns died of ovarian cancer last week, at least she wasn’t quite so young. I used to buy Morehouse Yarn at Union Square, back even before your blog started, back when the schist of Manhattan was still cooling. The yarn was lovely, and I loved her beautiful, simple (although dare we say it, likely to be slog) designs.

    What a shame, in both cases. The longest lives are too short.

  • I love how the intertwined world of knitters can make you feel like you know someone you never personally met. I really miss Belinda, she was very kind, funny, and encouraging. Thank you so much for “introducing” us.

  • sorry i am only discovering this wonderful person thru this post.

    what a lovely tribute.

  • I “met” Belinda through her designs, editing gigs, blog and eventually Instagram feed with lots of Iman shots. When I was planning my first ever (true! at age 48!) trip to London last winter, I emailed her with questions about knitting and eating. She responded generously and at length, leading us to lovely places (including the Spanish ham place). She even offered to get together which I jumped at, but it turned out she was away on holiday during the short time I was there (Spain I think – the photos from that trip were wonderful). I enjoyed our correspondence so much and am so sad to have never met her in person. Toward the end of our email correspondence she shared that she had cancer and I became very very worried when her Instagram feed went quiet in the late spring. Thanks for this post remembering a lovely and generous person.

  • I wish I could have met her! Thanks for sharing.

  • What a lovely tribute to a beautiful person.

  • Morning (my early, her mid) email exchanges with Belinda made for a bracing start of the day. Better than tea, even. I miss her.

  • So sorry for your loss. My knitting world is small, and I never found Belinda and True Brit, but that Orla Kiely bag she’s carrying in the gray and blue outdoor photo? I have that bag. Suddenly connected.

  • A very nice tribute. I didn’t have a connection to her, but feel the loss to our knitting community.

  • Belinda. This chokes me up, I had not known. In the community of knitting there are people one can relate to, have a laugh and a G+T with – she was one of those. Remembering her comments in so many of your blog posts, she was blunt, brilliant, truly British. The silver lining is what she put out there. There are several of her and Wendy’s patterns in my queue – think I’ll knit one. Stonor is beautiful. XO

  • I’m so very sorry for your loss. I know how much she meant to you. All my love! ❤❤❤

  • You two introduced me to Belinda when I was working on Shear Spirit,with Joan Tapper. Up to our knees in half-written patterns from sheep farmers and alpaca ranchers, it dawned on us that our publisher wasn’t going to provide a tech editor. And we had problems. Belinda plunged into the rescue. Our daily emails were all knit talk and pleasant until one day I wrote OY, and then added parenthetically “as in Oy Vey not as on OY in a pub in the UK. She immediate replied “Well what would YOU know about yelling OY in a pub? and we were friends after that–her amazing knitting knowledge and tech editing skills of course saved us. She invited me to come visit, I regret that I never went. (I was a little scared of her bunny, to be honest, I heard tales). I have the sunkissed memory of the days we were all sequestered at your house on LI, Kay, doing the photo shoot for the 2nd Mason Dixon book, Belinda was knitting full speed ahead to finish items just in time to shoot them, troubleshooting like the knitting and design genius she was, and then sitting up late at night chatting. Such a loss. Your tribute to her above is perfect.

  • Really sorry for your loss. Belinda sounds so grounded, inspiring, and fun. May your memories of her always comfort you.

  • Belinda was a dear friend I never met. I don’t recall whether our first conversation was via our blogs or on twitter, but there was an easy connection. Fiber and design. Stationery and shopfronts. Gin and tonic. Rabbits and rats. When LeShodu (the exact cashmere goat equivalent of Iman) achieved a sort of goaty greatness recently, my very first thought was to immediately share this unexpected news with Belinda.

    Ah, well.

    Shortly before she passed away, in what I had no idea was to be one of our last conversations on twitter, Belinda responded to my list of a few things I’d like to do on a dreamtrip to England. She invited me to stay, and said she would join me in all the activities on my list. The one I recall most clearly was a hands-on blacksmithing workshop. I wonder what Belinda would have created there…it makes me smile to think about it. Cheers, you brilliant spark.

  • I always enjoyed Belinda’s comments and would look for them here on MDK. I was so very sorry last summer to learn of her passing.

  • Beautiful tribute. We should all live life to the fullest, as Belinda most definitely did.

  • We never met in person, ours was a friendship on Twitter. Belinda provided the highlight of my trip to London this past May, sending her V&A membership card and a bank card as ID so a friend and I could see the sold-out Alexander McQueen exhibit. She mentioned she was in hospital and wouldn’t be able to meet up with me. When I heard the news from Neil (in response to my belated thank-you card), I was floored that she was still thinking of others, a stranger even, in an effort to make the knitting world a smaller place and share her hometown with an internet acquaintance. I treasure the KNITTER badge Sonya brought me back to San Francisco from Rhinebeck when she met Belinda from a few years ago. Her generosity inspires and our interactions make me want to be a better, bigger, bolder person. Thank you for this post.

  • I only knew Belinda from her comments on your blog. It sounds like she was a person with a lovely, generous, creative spirit; and it’s nice that her memory will live on in the many things that she created. It’s inspiring to see someone who is confident in her abilities and in herself. My sympathy goes out to you and to all of her friends and family.

  • What a beautiful tribute. I didn’t know or know of Belinda, and from your post I can see that I should have.

  • You wrote a great tribute Kay. I know it must have been hard to do. I’m pretty sure we only met once, but Belinda had a way of making you feel important AND competent at knitting within seconds.

  • She talked me through a sweater crisis in great detail, helping me troubleshoot and problem solve.

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