Gwen Matthewman, an 86-year-old knitter who once held two world records, has died, according to reports from the Pontefract and Castleford Express.
Matthewman was once the fastest knitter in the world, at 111 stitches per minute (the current record is 118). She was also considered the world’s most prolific knitter after churning out 915 garments in a year using 11,000 ounces of yarn (that’s nearly 690 pounds).
She was born in 1927 and took up knitting at a young age. She was catapulted into stardom in the 1960s, when she was studied by Japanese knitters on a live television show. She also appeared on David Letterman’s and David Frost’s shows, among other appearances around the world, and was known for having knit a sweater for Neil Armstrong before he traveled to the moon.
Her son says she gave up knitting “many moons ago” to spend more time with her family and take up other pursuits including darts and dominoes.
[Photo via the Pontefract and Castleford Express.]