Learn to Knit?
Why did I want to learn to knit? It was the 1960″s, and I was a teenager wanting to create something with my hands.
My mother was an avid crocheter. I attempted to learn crochet from her, but I am sure that most of you can relate to mother/daughter learning sessions. It did not go well. I couldn’t please her. Nothing I did was correct.
My Aunt Ione, a very classy lady that I admired, lived in Alabama. She was a Navy Doctor’s wife and a nurse. She would send us knitted items. In my farm girl’s mind, I thought that must be what the classy ladies do. They knit! Maybe I should learn to knit. Mom doesn’t know a thing about knitting and, therefore, couldn’t be critical of what I turned out on my needles.
How I Learned to Knit
The next time we went to the big city (Danville, Illinois) to Sears, I bought a teach yourself to knit kit. Yes, over 50 years ago, Sears had their brand of yarn and knitting supplies. The yarn was a gorgeous purple. It even had needles with it and a small accessory kit with markers, stitch holders, needle gauge, point protectors, and pattern book.
I learned to cast on, knit, and cast off. There was a pattern for a slipper in the Sear’s knitting instruction book. I knit one slipper in garter stitch. That was IT! I was in love with knitting. Next, I taught myself to knit on circular needles. Yes, I did twist the knitting and ended up with a mess, but I knew what was wrong. I started over and knitted myself a lavender skirt in the round with a matching vest. Yes, I had a thing for purples back then, too. I don’t know where any of this first knitting is now more than 50 years later, but it is all vivid in my memory.
Where Learning to Knit Led
I became acquainted with crafters at a small village where one lady was a machine knitter and a spinner, and another was a weaver and a spinner. Also, demonstrators at the Indiana State Fair were very encouraging. I joined the local Guild where I was introduced to weaving, spinning, and dyeing yarn. Of course, I became fully engulfed in all of these crafts, too.
Little did I know that someday I would own a yarn store–The Fiber Closet and teach others to knit and crochet. Now, I have knitting needles in every size and shape and lots of yarn. I have since semi-retired, and The Fiber Closet is now an online shop only.
But, before I owned a yarn shop, knitting led me to explore other crafts. I am the proud owner of several knitting machines. They include flatbed machines, circular sock machines, and Addi circular knitting machines.
I no longer teach any crafts, but I do write about them on this blog.
So, How/Where Did You Learn to Knit? Were You Self Taught?
Inquiring minds want to know. Please tell us in the comment section below.