I was thinking today of all the knitting I have learned to master over the last ‘beep’ years. I say ‘beep’ because when I add up all the years of knitting I sound much older than the years I actually am in my head! My first memory of holding my own knitting sticks must have been when I was less than five years old, sitting with my mum, clicking a pair of yellow plastic stemmed knitting needles together the same way my mum seemed to be doing. I really thought I was knitting as I was making the same noise, albeit without any yarn but I don’t remember being disappointed that I had nothing to show for it. Today I rediscovered those yellow plastic knitting needles! The first true memory of knitting something recognizable was when I was in the second year infants, Year 2 to today’s kids, when Mrs Ralph (I remember she was a very rotund, mumsy teacher!) helped us to knit our own garter stitch teddy bear. I wish I still had him to giggle at! So you could say I started very young but I didn’t knit continuously. In my early teens it became quite fashionable to knit with one huge needle and one standard size with mohair mix yarns. My best friend and I could knit a short jumper over a weekend. We thought we were the bees knees creating marvellous lacy tops in fluffy multicolours. Then as the mid 1980’s arrived knitting took a nose dive and our eagerness with it did. We discovered boys and discos!
That pause in knitting lasted for about 15 years, resurrecting when friends starting producing offspring and I could knock out fairly simple first size cardigans and impress them with baby gifts. Then when I had my own son I enjoyed showing him off in handknits made by my mum, my Nan and by myself and knitting really came into it’s own again in our house. My husband wasn’t impressed with his son in cardigans, but he got over it once he heard others coo-ing our boy in his beautiful outfits and them telling him he was so lucky to have a talented wife!
I have never knitted as much as I have for the last five years. I knit almost every day. I have too many projects to own up to and keep telling myself to finish one item before I start another. There is a lot of temptation out there to start something new and sometimes the yarn just leaps out of the shop or out of the webpage and says ‘please buy me’. Patterns, that’s another thing, I have to have a selection to choose from, don’t I? That’s what I keep telling myself when I accidently buy another pattern book. I know I shall never do every item in every book, or indeed every item on every single pattern, but a lady likes choice.
I’ve been lucky enough to have worked in a knitting store too. That was fun! Wow, put a knitter in a knitting store – it’s like an alcoholic working in an off licence! Much of my stash has been from that era. I will use it all up one day, maybe, or maybe not ……. Watch this space.
www.deramores.com/blog-awards: This blog entry is my submission to the Deramores Blog Awards 2014. Deramores is the UK’s number one online retailer of knitting and crochet supplies.