Blog prompt: Write about another knitter or crocheter that you admire. Write about if anyone has ever told you how they feel about your knitting.
I almost wish this were an easier topic. Being a solitary stitcher for the most part, there aren’t many fellow knitters and crocheters that I know well enough to be that familiar with their work. And I say “almost” because, although I wouldn’t necessarily mind knowing and interacting with other crafters, the process of getting to know them is uncomfortable for an introvert like me. Which is why blogging is such a perfect activity.
That said, two people jumped to mind immediately for the first part of this blog prompt. The first is my friend Kelly, screen name BunRab. I first met Kelly online sometime in 2002, I believe, on a website called BookCrossing. We met in person a couple of years later, and in recent years have made a point of attending Stitches South together as often as we can.
Kelly is one of those über-confident knitters who can choose a yarn and a needle size and just. start. knitting. No pattern, no gauge swatching, no agonizing over stitch pattern: she simply casts on and starts knitting a sleeveless shell, relying on her years of experience and math skills to make it come out right. And it does. I want to do that. Maybe someday I will.
The second is Alana Dakos (nevernotknitting). She is the first designer I’ve ever encountered that caused me to want to Make All The Things. Seriously. I adore her patterns. I discovered her for the first time right around a year ago (so, that would be May 2013) when I was with a friend in Lovin’ Knit in Marietta, buying yarn for her special project. We were literally on our way out the door, when I glanced at a display and saw this book.
It stopped me in my tracks. Something about that model’s face called me on some level I can’t begin to fathom. I turned around, picked up the book, glanced through it for less than a minute, and went back to the cash wrap to make the purchase.
Most impulse buys are later regretted, right? Not this one. When I got home, I sat down with the pattern book for a thorough study of the designs. And I knew I had to make every one of them. Never has every single design in an entire pattern book struck such a resonance in my soul; usually, if I like four or five out of a dozen or so, it’s worth the money to buy the book. I loved these so much that I looked up its companion volume, Coastal Knits, and promptly ordered that as well. Alana’s next book, Botanical Knits 2, is on pre-order.
I’ve never met Alana, although we’ve corresponded a bit by email when I had a question while I was making one of her patterns. I think I feel connected to her, and to her designs, because she lives and works in the area where I grew up — a place that I love desperately — and I can feel the locale come through in her patterns. Okay, that’s vaguely stalker-ish, isn’t it? I don’t mean it that way, honest. It’s just that, for me, her designs are both comforting and comfortable, and they feel like home.
The rest of this blog prompt suggests I tell you about anyone telling me how they feel about my knitting, positive or negative. I can’t say that I’ve had many conversations where someone’s emotions about my needlework have come under discussion. I’ve shown a couple of tricks or techniques to strangers while sitting in a waiting room and they expressed gratitude, but that’s about it. Unless you want to count my husband’s occasional griping about the amount of money I’ve spent on yarn… No? That’s okay; neither do I.