Life’s Knitting Lessons

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“Dear designer of questionable intent,

Please, send me a photo of yourself wearing the knitted pants that you designed. It’s not that I don’t believe that there is anyone out there thin enough to wear horizontally stripped trousers knitted from chunky wool, it’s just that I would like to know whether you are deliberately cruel or whether you are the ONE woman these would look really great on.”

Advice for New Knitters

 

I am teaching a neighbor’s kid how to knit, and I feel like I am losing my last marbles -slowly one by one. I learned knitting when I was a child, not by choice, but it was mandatory in our craft class. Yes! Once upon a time there was a craft class.

The only reason I haven’t strangled my neighbors kid -yet-, is that she reminds me at myself when I was  her age. I hated knitting. I didn’t see the sense in learning it, and the teachers highly questionable assignments didn’t help a bit. Who in right state of mind, wears self-knitted sleeping shoes in bed? Second project was a knitted hat, that I refused to wear. Life was hard enough without it.

Later on, at an age when I could pick the projects, I loved knitting. I proudly wore my thick, long sweater when I went skiing and showed off my poncho, that made me feel so sophisticated. I even sold a hand-knitted masterpiece to a lady, who obviously had too much money.

My neighbor kid wants to learn the old craft and I am trying my best. It would be so much easier if she could focus better. Why doesn’t she sit still? Was I that fidgety when I was her age?

In the 19th century, knitting was prescribed to women as a cure for nervousness and anxiety, what is hard to believe, because it drives you crazy when you start learning it. Watching the kid torture these needles, has me on the edge of a nervous breakdown. What was I thinking?

I wasn’t an easy knitting student either, perhaps life is paying me back. Nahhh, I couldn’t have been that bad, or was I? I hear my Grandmother’s plea in my mind, “Sit still child.”

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Knitting is not that complicated. As long as you chose the right pattern.

When choosing a pattern, look for ones that have words such as “simple”, “basic”, and “easy”. If you see the words “intriguing”, “challenging”, or “intricate”, look elsewhere.

If you happen across a pattern that says “heirloom”, slowly put down the pattern and back away. “Heirloom” is knitting code for “This pattern is so difficult that you would consider death a relief”.”

I will continue to teach my neighbor’s kid how to knit. Who knows, maybe in 30 or 40 years, she will be punished teaching a kid just like her.

 

17 thoughts on “Life’s Knitting Lessons

  1. As a knitter it does require our patience when teaching others.. I taught my granddaughter last year to knit basic knit, she was six.. I found reaping.. IN OVER THROUGH OFF beneficial .She managed a little square of 20 stitches which she then made a barbie doll scarf with. In subsequent intervals.. She did not pick up the needles again for at least four months, And then wanted to knit again..
    After casting on for her.. I was surprised she remembered how it went.. She drops stitches and forgets to wind the wool around the right way, but I allow her to make her mistakes, and correct as she goes..
    So I am so on your page with Patience.. 🙂 Good Luck.. ❤ And wishing you a very Happy New Year of creativity xxx

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  2. There’s a book you might be interested in, it’s called “Crochet Saved My Life” and it touched on all hand crafts, including knitting. But it mostly talks about the mental benefits of crocheting and why it was prescribed for anxiety and such. I do both. and I know the pain of teaching someone else. But it’s so worth it when it “clicks” and they get it. Like teaching anything I suppose.

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  3. My grandmother taught me to knit and crochet and knitting was also a school subject for girls. I, too, was useless in the beginning. I was 12 before I could actually knit something useful😁 From then on I knitted something at least once a year until by forties. Then I stopped for over 20 years. I’ve taken it up again and love it😊

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  4. Ha ha, as a returnee I’ve been caught out by some of those patterns! You also mention skiing; my partner is a qualified instructor. Whenever he looks down a slope and says “That looks interesting” we all back away!

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  5. I rather half-heartedly put on my list of 18 things for 2018 … ‘relearn knitting’ I say half-heartedly because I never got beyond a rather fetching stripey scarf first time round and I remember it being a toil rather than a delight but I see so many of you knitting beautifully and getting pleasure and giving pleasure and I DO like the notion …..

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