This is Knit in Public Week. Worldwide. I tweeted about it. I posted it on Facebook. I’m an affiliate for Craftsy because I think you might want to take a class there after you read this post. I’ll link to it below.
And you thought the World Cup was big! (laugh)
Although it’s not a big deal in the eternal scheme of things, I thought I’d spin a yarn today about why I knit.
While going through cancer in 2010, I had little energy to do anything creative and when I would attempt to sew (a long-time hobby), my work was substandard. But at times I NEEDED to do something creative.
Also in that year, my sister made me lots of cute hats. I preferred them over my wig and store bought wide brimmed hats. She could take my head measurements, my yarn preferences, and favorite styles that would hide my bare hair line and make things that were comfortable and expressive. Hats that stayed on my head were a must and she knew how to accommodate that as well. (I had a store-bought brim fly off on a windy day after a ladies’ tea and although I lived to tell the story, I didn’t want that happening again. EVER. Thinking back on it, I still get an embarrassed feeling come over me.)
So, after I recovered and regained the mental energy to pursue creative outlets, I needed to create with my hands. More than a meal. More than a blog post. I needed to make something beautiful that wouldn’t shut me off in a room alone thinking, but give me something to do with my hands and still engage in time with my husband in the evenings. I needed something portable. I needed something affordable.
So, in 2012, I piled my daughter-in-law, and other son’s sweetheart into the car and we headed for Franklin, TN, to spend a few days with my sister Louann learning how to knit.
Mind you, this was my third attempt at learning it. Twice before my sister had taught me but I was a little girl first, then a teenager entering college. I had no time to continue what I learned so I never picked it up.
Something this time stuck with me and I have enjoyed it ever since. I love the colors of yarn, and the variety of textures that travel through fingers. I love the choosing of a project based on what I know I can do and what I want to learn to do. It’s a challenge to me mentally to think through and figure things and with the help of YouTube videos, texts and phone calls, my sister continues to help.
Walking into a local yarn shop rather than a big box chain store with a few aisles of yarn does something to my spirit as I see all the colors, textures, and completed samples ready for the feeling.
Sometimes, I even think about how neat (but oh so hard) it would be to open a local yarn shop right here in my community. But I don’t have the resources nor the freedom to do that, so I scour places online within a reasonable drive to visit. Then, I hit the road solo usually for some thinking and praying time in the car.
I’ve even taken a “mystery knit along” class online through Craftsy to learn how to knit a scarf and the yarn was included in the class that I could move through at my own pace. That was awesome! They have quite a variety of classes for various skills in lots of things besides knitting, too.
I also enjoy knitting so I can make knitted hats for others coming through the cancer center where I volunteer. Shortly after I learned, I made the hat pictured at the top for a lady and had it ready the week I supposed she would be coming in with a scarf. Her eyes were beautiful blue and this seemed to suit her.
When I don’t have a specific patient in mind, I’ll knit a hat and take it to the center for placing on the ledge for any patient to pick up who has a need for one.
So, knitting for me met the need to:
- learn something
- connect with my sister (and others)
- CREATE (probably the biggest need at first for me)
- touch and see beautiful yarn
- give back
- sit still
Have you considered learning to knit? Hmmm?
Maybe I should do like my sister did, and pass along what I know so next year, you can knit in public too. Craftsy has a class for that. Anybody want to learn?
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