Tag Archives: knitting

Knitting Rules!

26 Sep

Last spring I bought a book written by Stephanie Pearl-McPhee, called Knitting  Rules! , which quickly turned out to be probably the best knitting book I have.

Well, along with Stitch ‘n Bitch: The Knitter’s Handbook by Debbie Stoller, which is responsible for my knitting obsession. It’s the book that convinced me within 5 minutes of first seeing it that knitting is, in fact, way cool, and can produce things that are cute and beautiful and modern.

And Stitch ‘n Bitch was good, but recently I’ve been looking for books that aren’t necessarily aimed at a beginner knitter. That’s where Knitting Rules! comes in. There are lots of different types of knitting books, all of which have their role. But within its type, I think this is simply the perfect book. It’s funny, contains lots of interesting, extremely helpful factoids and knitting philosophy, and thankfully doesn’t contain knitting instructions for beginners.

I love having all those useful tips and details and just bits of general information (not to mention the good chuckles) available to me at any moment – just in case.

For instance, before I read this book, I never knew that I could ever need something like, say, a chart on how much yarn in different weights is needed for the most common sizes of scarfs. But now I know such a thing exists, and suddenly it makes perfect sense that it does.

This would’ve been useful recently , when I was in a yarn store pondering buying a couple of balls of a lovely wool and bamboo blend, but wasn’t sure how much was needed for a scarf, and abandoned the idea. Now, if only I’d had my knitting bag, and Knitting rules!, with me…

Another good example are the general guidelines in the book on how to figure out what a person’s head circumference, foot length or wing span is without chasing them down with a tape measure in hand. This is handy for the purpose of actually surprising someone with a knitted gift.

But the most important thing in this book, for me, is the attitude it portrays towards knitting. In addition to all the facts, the book offers numerous moments of recognition and feelings of belonging. It made me feel better about my stash, and about buying the tools a knitter needs. Any time I read it, I feel better about any mistakes that might bug me in the project I’m working on. I feel more confident that I can take on any project with an open and informed mindset.

All of this is does without preaching or even once sounding as if what it says is law to be respected by all knitters everywhere.

In short, it’s a book that I think would suit a lot of knitters, and I highly recommend it.

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I’m scared of people with needles

23 Sep

I’m a bit of a hermit by nature, but sometimes it starts to bug me. That’s when I get it in my head that I should definitely attend a knitting group asap. Because everybody says people meet people through their hobbies, right?

But then the doubting begins.

What could I possibly think to say? Will I fit in? What do people do at these events, anyway? Will everyone else already know each other and unknowingly shut me out? What are the chances of someone else new being there? Are knitting groups closed groups: no new members are really admitted? If I feel horrible and lonely at the meeting, can I just up and leave or would that be horribly rude?

I usually just conveniently forget about the meeting I was planning to go to, and so avoid having to face my fear and shyness. Geez, I don’t know.

Whenever I hear about knitting groups, they seem like stable groups of friends. I imagine it would be pretty awkward to try to join a close-knit group like that.

Being uncertain is the worst. Please, reassure me. What was your first experience in a knitting group like?

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