I feel so blessed that my grandmother's handknits continue to come into our home and our hearts. I'm sure these were made with the same pattern that she made all my childhood mitts from, and those of her children, and my cousins...and on and on. Surely, these are one of those patterns for her that are knit - well, without a pattern. She just knows it.
My Nana was the one who taught me to knit (and sew, too). I remember so clearly being a young teenager, watching over her shoulder as she patiently showed me what to do. I also remember how incredibly frustrated I was because I just didn't quite 'get it'. It wasn't until years later, pregnant with my oldest, that I picked it up again in earnest. Reading the steps laid out in a book triggered my visual memory of her teaching me those years earlier. And finally...it all came together and clicked for me. Since then, it's always had a presence in my life - in large and small ways at different times. And sometimes - I have some little ones joining me in the yarn and string action.
As I've been sharing a bit more knitting than sewing around these parts
this fall and winter, I've received lots of requests from people
looking for tips on how to get started knitting themselves. I think learning from someone is the best - for so very many reasons. If you can find, in particular, an elder member of your family, neighborhood, church to learn from. How wonderful for both you and them to share the craft together - and the stories and the time that go with it as well.
But if that isn't possible, there are so many other ways to learn if you're interested. A few favorite resources of mine:
- Books (Kids Knitting by Melanie Falick and Stitch and Bitch by Debbie Stoller are my favorite beginner books)
- Websites (check out Knitty and Ravelry)
- Online videos (search for a specific knitting techique, or a basic How To)
- Your local yarn shop (check out KnitMap.com to find yours - most offer beginning classes as well as one-on-one help)
If you're a knitter - past or present - I'd love it if you could share in the comments with us how you learned to knit. And any advice you might have for someone wanting to learn.
So, all you hopeful, future knitters: read on, and then, get ready to cast on!