The amount of yarn in the woods of this place is nothing short of mind-blowing. I'm not just talking about all yards upon yards of string wrapped around sticks in everyone's hands, or the skeins of yarn in our bags waiting their turn, or all the tiny thousands and thousands of stitches that make up the incredibly inspiring and totally gorgeous handknits that we're all wearing with pride to warm ourselves from the chill, but let's be honest, are really wearing with pride so that we can share it with fellow knitters who will appreciate it as much as we do. Even more than all of that yarn - is the truly mind-blowing, absolutely fabulous, completely inspiring, and a little bit trippy yarn bombing that's happened everywhere here - in classrooms, on docks, on trees, in the middle of the woods, and yes - even on canoes. (My roomate Steph has been getting some really great pictures of all that woodsy yarnbombing gooodness). It's a marvel, really - each time I walk somewhere I see something for the first time - a mushroom hidden under a shrub, a lace-wrapped tree, a totally convincing yarn hydrangea, paper butterflies on a wall, miles (I swear) of knitted icord from tree to tree. And every once in a while, in my mind, I take a little step back out of the woods we're in, and the world in which knitted mushrooms are totally and completely expected, and wonder....why?
Why would someone spend their precious time knitting a mushroom to only stick it under a shrub in the middle of woods, in hopes that someone else might discover it and smile? Or spend a day in a room full of strangers stamping linen and learning a new way to sew a bag? Or dive into something they've never done before, on a lark, on a hope that maybe basketweaving would be what they love.
The answer, of course, is different for all of us, and maybe even different on any given day, or hour of our lives. Why do we make things by hand? We do it because we believe it to be the right way to live. Or we do it because it connects us to our past. We do it because it brings us closer to the natural world where the materials come from. We do it to infuse the material things we keep around ourselves with soul and spirit. We do it to love the ones closest to us. We do it to soothe ourselves. We do it because it's fun. We do it because beauty matters. We do it...because it's what we do.
There's an incredible amount of faith in the making of things, isn't there? Even the most practical and logical of makers among us have to have a bit of faith, and hope to get started. And that? That, I think, is the thing that most connects us as makers. Like miles of icord strung from tree to tree.
Today, I'll play with a little bit of yarn. I'll practice my lever knitting. I'll spin a little bit more of my sheep's fleece by the fire quietly with a friend, and I do believe I'll be relay racing with skeins later today (what?). And everywhere my eyes turn today, I will see the work of our hands.
Have a lovely Saturday, friends. I do hope to see some of you at the fair tonight!