Not that I consider that to be my defining trait in the real word but it is the main reason I’m here. My mom taught me how to knit as a kid but it never stuck. I tried again, for about a minute, in my early twenties but I couldn’t seem to get the hang of it without my mom standing over my shoulder.
I’ve always been crafty, I remember cutting up undershirts and sewing snaps to the back to make bras as an eight year old. When I see something I like, my first instinct is to figure out how I could make it rather than to buy it.
I started quilting in my early twenties when my first daughter, Olivia, was three years old. Quilting appealed to me because I love the way they look, so homey and comforting, plus I have an unnatural obsession with blankets. Seriously, you should see my linen closet. I can’t get rid of a blanket no matter how worn, torn or ugly. I feel the same way about books.
Knitting started as a way to keep my hands busy during the 4 week recovery after a couple of fertility related surgeries about six years ago. Due to a windfall of knitting supplies from my mother-in-law a few years prior, I had everything I needed including a robust supply of acrylic yarn from the seventies. Why don’t we build houses out of that stuff? It looked as new as the day it was born in a chemical vat! I printed instructions off of the Internet, cast on in a medically induced stupor and have never looked back. It just clicked. Since then I have discovered the pleasures of natural fibre and you couldn’t pay me to knit with anything else. My husband rues the day because our bank account has suffered the consequences ever since.
As a quilter, and truly in general, I am very systematic. I start a quilt and while they can sit for a week or two untouched, I will never leave them for long and I would NEVER start another quilt until I’ve finished the first. That’s made for some feverish late night sewing sprees so I can finish whatever it is I’m working on in order to start a baby quilt for a new arrival. Not so when it comes to knitting. I easily have at least ten WIPs, some as old as 5 years. There are projects I worked on intensely only to put them down and never pick up again. Others that I will knit a couple of rows per year. I do know that I will, eventually, finish them all.
Now, I knit almost every day, even if it’s standing at the kitchen counter while the twins eat their lunch. I knit to occupy myself, to stay sane and mostly to be able to say (to myself) “I made that”.