Crafty fibre fans gather at Working Title

Christine Aubry


After having to postpone several times, I finally met with a special group of ladies on the first Tuesday in April, but unfortunately, their leader was missing in action—recovering at home from emergency dental surgery.

Thankfully, I had met Margaret Gouin previously, and she had shared with me that it was her love of knitting that led to the creation of a regular “knitters’ group” that meets every Tuesday afternoon at Sandy Hill’s Working Title Kitchen on Laurier Avenue.

What began in 2019 as a small group of five knitters and crafters slowly grew, as some brought friends, and passers-by asked if they could join. Gouin’s mailing list now includes 13 crafters of all levels and experience.

“Any kind of fibre art is welcome,” said Gouin, “be it knitting, crocheting, embroidery, sewing.”

“We have women from all walks of life,” said Trish Heal. Indeed, the group boasts an impressive array of artists of all mediums, including painters, quilters, a puppeteer, a weaver-spinner, and even a botanist.

Given that not all of the women live in Sandy Hill — some walk several kilometers to the café — I asked if they have ever considered meeting somewhere else. While they were obliged to move during the beginning of Covid and again this past January during the restaurant’s renovations, they have always returned and intend to remain faithful to Working Title Kitchen.

“We love the high ceilings and the openness of the space,“ said Angela Sumegi. “It’s hard to find a coffee shop that can fit a group this large and that would allow us to just sit and chat.”

“They are very accommodating for a group this large; Leanne has been exceptionally good to us,” added Lee Sullivan.

Leanne Moussa, owner of allsaintsottawa and the Working Title Kitchen, stopped by the group’s table (reserved for them every week), to say hello and share what she loves about hosting this regular group of patrons:

“We want Working Tile Kitchen to offer something for everyone. We want people to come and stay for tea, and be proud to show off their neighbourhood,” she said.

When the group raved about the restaurant’s gorgeous patio on Laurier Avenue, where they love to gather in the nice weather, Moussa asked if they were the ones who had “yarn bombed” the trees in front of the patio during the pandemic. While no one claimed responsibility, Moussa said she would love to see more — a joint endeavour for the group?

As for their missing leader, her friends exclaimed: “She’s worth an article on her own!”

Perhaps for a future issue I will be able to convince Gouin to tell me more about her love of all things fibre. I may need to dust off my knitting skills on Tuesday afternoons to get the full scoop.

Some of the women who meet every Tuesday afternoon at the Working Title Kitchen, gathered around their usual table under a Bhat Boy painting that features Laurier Avenue houses and buildings, including the former church where the restaurant is now located.  From left to right: Nathalie Thirlwall, Carol Miller, Lee Sullivan, Angela Sumegi, Trish Heal, Barbara Abu-Zahra, Hélène Séguin, Wendy Nicholson (front centre).
Photo Christine Aubry