I’ve been browsing knitting blogs lately, having discovered that there’s this whole little universe of them that I hadn’t really paid attention to before. Yarn Harlot is my favorite so far, and her post about ‘needs’ had me struggling not to burst out laughing at work. There are a number of other funny and interesting knitters out there writing, though. I recommend Mason-Dixon Knitting as well.
I’m starting to realize that I’m a pretty weird knitter compared to most of the people writing knitting blogs, though. For one thing, I’m not sure when I last knit something directly from someone else’s pattern, and I haven’t been paying that much attention to what patterns are out there… so I have no idea what someone’s talking about when they mention that they’re knitting the Ribby Cardi (okay, I did look that one up after I saw it referenced a few times).
I also tend not to knit from commercial yarn, unless it’s Brown Sheep, because they fit my budget. The rest of the time I feel obligated to use up whatever I’ve been spinning, even if it’s a weird color (see the post about experiments below). This makes me feel even more in the dark when reading about other people’s knitting projects, because I also have no idea what the yarn is like or why it’s good or anything, and it seems implied that other people do.
It’s interesting, and even pretty cool, that there is such a strong online knitting culture, where people do seem to know what everyone’s talking about, and you can see a lot of interaction between what they’re all doing. But it’s not what I’m doing. So maybe I need to write more.
I already knew I was a weird knitter before this. I estimate a lot, even on things like gauge. I frequently have only a general idea of what I’m aiming for with the finished product. I approach it a lot like cooking, actually. Mix things together, check the result, make modifications until it seems right. Knit fabric is very mallable, so as long as you pay attention to what’s happening, there are plenty of ways to make adjustments. In that respect, I like it better than sewing, because shaping is something you create as you go, rather than plan out in advance, which makes me feel more in control. I draft my own sewing patterns, too, but it’s a lot more work up front. You can’t wait until the end to decide things.
Anyhow, I’m working on another hat at the moment. I’m trying to push myself to include more stitch patterning in solid color items, and have fewer sections of plain stockinette. Mostly I’m playing with knit/purl relief patterns, like diamonds and lattices. I might try to mix in some sort of travelling stitch thing on the next one, too.
I really ought to photograph some of these things.