Tuesday, July 03, 2012

Why Do I Knit What I Do

Knitters say they are either a process knitter or a product knitter. Process knitter knit for the joy of making what they are making. Product knitters knit for the finished product. I don't think a person is one or the other, but a combination of the two. I am much more of a process knitter, because once I see how the knitting looks, I'm ready to move on to something else.

As you've seen on this blog, I love to knit lace shawls. My theory behind this is that I am my great grandmother reincarnated. In my cedar chest I have a set of sheets and towels with knit lace which I discovered Great Grandma Kate made. Now this was in the late 1800's, early 1900's, she lived on a farm and had 11 living children. But she still made a set of these sheets for each one of her children.

As a process knitter, I love to see how the next row will change the appearance of my project. Lace knitting often is the most exiting because it changes so often. I often say that if I wouldn't stop to admire what I'm doing so often I would get so much more done, but that is not the object of my knitting. Plain garter stitch or stockinette stitch bore me, although they both have a time and place. Knitting in public requires a project that doesn't take a lot of concentration. So, why do I have a sweater in the closet that is waiting for me to cast on the sleeves?

Mystery knits are perfect for a process knitter. Each clue as it arrives changes the appearance of the project. Here is a good example: Clue 1.

Clue 2. Unfortunately, this has to be put aside because other things have now come up which have deadlines.

I teach at a knitting shop and the employees knit samples for the shop and I knit samples for my classes. Yesterday I got a call wondering if I would make the lace poncho on the front of Vogue Knitting as a shop sample and also do a class on it. Sure, why not? After deciding to do it, I see that I'll be increasing to nearly 1000 sts!
I love to test knit patterns, especially lace patterns. Through the Free Pattern Tester Group on ravelry I have met 2 talented shawl designers and now they request me to test their patterns. This year, I have test knit 3 shawls for Kimberly Gintar in Germany and today got the pattern for the 3rd one for Aino Haikala in Finland. The last 2 I can't publish pictures yet as the patterns have not been released.

Evening in the Garden by Aino. I love the uniqueness of her designs and shaping.

Blue Ivy by Kimberly. Her shawls are wonderful to cuddle up with.

Judy B by Kimberly.

Ribbons and Lace for the Cure by Kimberly. This pattern is still being tested and has not been released yet. Proceeds from the sale of the pattern will go for breast cancer research. My shawl is orange for leukemia.

This is a sneak preview of Aino's pattern.

I try real hard to do charity knitting, but it is so easy to let that slide. Maybe related to that is that I like to knit things that proceeds of the pattern or kit go for a cause.

Mathilda Monster went to Beyond the Yellow Ribbon for families of military personnel.

A portion of the price of the yarn and pattern for Cardioid went to Susan Koman Foundation.

My least favorite knitting is the request from family category. I really like to knit for them especially when they specifically ask for something, but it might not always be what I want to knit. On the list right now is a pair of socks for my daughter in law. She bought the yarn for me and I'd like to get them done for her birthday in August. My schedule is that this will be a good project when we drive to Illinois for Stitches in August.

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