Sticks, Strings & Other Things

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Moving along...

OK. I have managed to learn how to edit the links so you'll see a couple over there that might interest you. I'll add more later today like a couple of my favorite yarn stores and maybe a fun knitting site or two. I haven't tackled the pics thing yet so be patient, I'll get to that soon. I did have some issues with what my actual address is so I could invite criticism from those who know me but I seem to have conquered that, too. Nothing like a new 'net concept to make one feel like a neophyte on a 'puter. On with the knitting!

I've been knitting for more than 40 years. My mother taught me when I was about 7 and I've seldom been without a project or twelve since. I'm a "public knitter". I'm the lady you see in the doctor's office knitting a baby blanket or at the high school basketball game knitting a sweater. I'm the lady you see walking around the mall with needles in hand and yarn stranding out of the felted belt bag at her waist as a tiny baby sock grows like magic off of the sticks. It's the magic that holds me. A couple of sticks, a piece of string and abracadabra! a sock! Or a sweater or a blanket or a bag shaped like a fish! Isn't it just amazing? Such simple materials and such complex end results! I've been casually teaching knitting for the last few years and my favorite students are children. They SEE the magic right away and just want to be a part of that. They are so eager and they are unafraid. They take the sticks, add the string and KNOW they can do it. We overthink everything as adults and it gets in the way, don't you think? Teaching children to knit has made me more accepting, more tolerant and easier in my own life. More comfortable. With myself and others. "Just do it" isn't just a cute catchphrase for the Nike Company...it's the battle cry of knitting teachers everywhere and kids GET that concept. They don't think about it and try to make sense out of it...they just do it ...and it works!

I must knit every day. My hands need the sticks, my soul needs the magic. I spent most of December teaching finger-knitting. Not the typical crochet-like chain most know as finger-knitting but rather a needle-free finger technique you employ which results in a 4 stitch wide panel. (which a bunch of moms and dads here in my small town can expect to receive as a scarf for Christmas or Hannukah gifts this season...SURPRISE!) As much joy as I got out of this, by the end of the sessions I found my hands positively itching for the feel of the needles!

Deciding a couple of weeks ago to knit Shirley Paden's Cabled Shrug from the Fall 2005 Interweave Knits was a boon! Like the wood we chop, stack and then burn for heat here in NH our knitting also warms us three ways. We are warmed by the excitement of choosing a pattern and the yarns to make it, we are warmed by the actual item growing off our needles to cover our laps and we are warmed by wearing the item when complete. Even gifting or selling the item has warmth, at least for me. I get a rosy glow inside when I see someone fall in love with something I have made that is just right for them!

As soon as I figure out the magic picture posting thing I'll show you some of the scarves *I* received as gifts. (Thank you SO much to Tucker and Emma!!) I'll also show you what I'm working on now...like that Cabled Shrug.

Stay tuned!

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