My grandmother knits, and she has knit for as long as I have known her. She also does various other crafty, talented things, however since this is a knitting blog, I will talk about the knitting.
I don’t know when I first wanted to learn to knit. I don’t remember when I first asked. I do remember sometime around the age of 13 or 14 (I think?) being given a ball of grey acrylic yarn and a pair of silver aluminum Boye size 10 US needles. My grandmother showed me how to cast on, and how to make a knit stitch for the first row, then followed up with a purl stitch on the next row. I knit the yarn for a few inches. My goal was to make a scarf (now looking back I know I did not have enough yarn for this, however my grandmother humored me).
I know I continued the basics she had taught me, because I still had the grey yarn into my early twenties. I would take it out and practice with it infrequently, using the stitches I remembered. The yarn got to be worn, dingy, and crimped, as I frogged and reknit it several times. I trashed it about 3 years ago when I moved in with my husband, thinking I would never use it.
I have been drawn to pick up needles again, more seriously than at 14, however beyond the few rows I did with the acrylic, it didn’t happen for a while.
Then, before the holidays in 2005, I was in Target, of all places, when I was suddenly struck by the urge to knit! You know their little dollar section at the front of the store, the one where they have cheap gifts and holiday related items? They had yarn, and needles, for 50¢ each! (Haha! The thought of buying yarn from Target now! Hahaha!) I thought that it was a cheap way to start relearning the skill of knitting, so I bought some. It would be easy, as I remembered most of it, right?
I went home, chose a yarn, and began to try to remember what I had learned. I was trying to follow a pattern that came with the yarn, so I went to the internet. I found written instructions, and went from there. I couldn’t see the pattern, or the v’s I was supposed to be making. I went back to the internet several times. (I realized a week later that I had chosen a very bad choice of yarn for a new knitter. It was the string kind. With little squares every inch or so. I chose a new yarn.) My husband thought I had taken to insanity, because I kept ripping it out and starting over. He kept asking why I thought I would like this. I stuck with it, because somehow I knew it would be excellent.
Since my grandmother taught me the basics, I gave her my first knitted item. This scarf was the result many, many years after she showed me the first stitch.
(Honestly, it was so full of mistakes I thought glared at you, I didn’t think anyone else would appreciate it.)
So I have to say thank you to my grandmother, who instilled a love of a craft that I have taken up with a passion that will hopefully last many years. I have already made it through one year, so I think I’ll stick to it. (Besides, I have already spent more money on this craft than any other. I can’t quit now.)
Those US10 Boye silver aluminum needles? I still have them, and I used them to knit my grandmother’s birthday gift I gave her last month.