Saturday, November 3, 2007

Why oh why?



Why oh why do I do what I do? First of all what I do falls in the category of needle arts - knitting, crocheting mostly with bouts of quilting, tatting, embroidery and needlepoint. It all comes with a love of making something from simple tools and a bit of string.

I run that Barbara Mandrell song through my head sometimes "I was knitting when knitting wasn't cool." About ten years ago I was in a craft store buying a set of needles probably to start a new project and the size I wanted was in a closet with a UFO on them. Anyway, when I went to the register to pay for them the young clerk(late teens I think) said to me "I think it is so cute that some people still knit." Within a couple years everyone discovered knitting and she was probably a member of a Stitch and Bitch Group.

My first memory of something knitted was a pair of slippers from my grandmother one year for Christmas. It was the first time I realized the value and beauty and in a way honor receiving a handmade gift brings to life. I thought it was so wonderful that you could take yarn and knitting needles and create something that provided comfort and warmth in other words coziness. Now you see the reason for my shop and blog names.

The start of my knitting began on the front porch of a neighbors house. Sylvia and I were in about 5th grade and she knew how to knit. My mom didn't know how and the slipper grandma was in Kansas and I lived in California. Anyway I got my hands on a small skein of Red Heart and a pair of needles and she patiently got me through it. Casting on, garter stitch and binding off and I was hooked. I was going to make the world cozy with blankets, potholders and slippers. Never mind that she was right handed and I am a lefty by the end of a couple afternoons I could knit. If by any chance in this crazy internet universe she should ever read this, thank you Sylvia Lerma who lived 2 doors down the street in Oxnard.

My first big project was an afghan. I bought a skein of every color the local drug store had. This was in the days before the big super saver acrylic monsters. I think it was about two ounces which was just enough for a square of knitting before I got bored with a color. I made garter stitch strips that I later crocheted together with black yarn to make the blanket. I think my mother still has that afghan in her home more than 40 years old now and last I saw it all in one piece.

Over the years knitting is a craft I have picked up and put down. I picked up other skills and techniques through books always having to reverse all the hand references in the directions. There is always a knitted UFO somewhere in my life and it has been that way for about 40 years. I don't see this ending anytime soon either. As long as my hands and eyes hold up I will continue to learn and create.

2 comments:

  1. I enjoyed your post, and really like the sweet headbands in your shop :)

    ReplyDelete

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