Sunday, January 27, 2013

In The Beginning ...

... was a crocheter.  A 40+ year veteran of the hooks.  Known for my ability to combine prayer and crocheting to bless people. Prayer shawls.  Baby blankets.  Dishcloths.  Even doll clothes.  You name it.  I'd probably made it - and given it away - at one time or another.

But I had a dark secret.

I couldn't knit.  I looked at knitted hats, dishcloths, whatever and secretly felt ashamed because I could "only" crochet.  Like a very distant cousin to the real crafters - those who held needles (needlers) in their hands instead of hooks (hookers).   I would go to yarn shops and see book after book of knitted patterns.  With only one or two books of crochet patterns.  I would feel left out.  Like I could never belong to the community because of my lack of knitting ability.

And then one day, it all started to change.  Actually, pretty innocently.

I walked into a new (to me) yarn store (small) in a small town and saw those lovely, fancy, frilly yarns which those lovely, in style scarves are made from.  I enquired of the store owner only to be informed that these yarns were for knitting, not crocheting.  She encouraged me by saying that she thought I could do it.   That I could actually knit one of these scarves beautiful scarves was a novel thought to me which I initially rejected as (a) impossible and (b) insane.  She took out her trusty needles and a skein of the yarn - and showed me step by step how to do the knit stitch.  It looked easy enough.  After all, I had knit (slippers) when I was 12 years old.  Maybe knitting was like riding a bike; maybe you never forget how.  Maybe.

Maybe - just maybe - I could do this.  Maybe.  It was at least worth a try, right?

I bought several skeins of the yarn.  I bought the needles suggested.  She gave me the scarf pattern.  I went back to my den to see what I could see.

I looked at the pattern.  I looked at the yarn.  I didn't touch the needles - yet.  They were too scary with their sharp pointed ends instead of a nicely rounded hook.  I wasn't ready for them yet.

I tossed arund in my mind what I'd seen the yarn lady do.  How she moved the yarn through her fingers.  The instructive words she had said.  I practised the moves in my imagination over and over until I thought I had the basic concept right - at least in my mind.

Now all I had to do was get out of my mind and into reality.  Actually put needle to yarn - or is it yarn to needle?

It took a couple of days to get my nerve up.  To actually open up the package containing the needles.  To take the wrapper off the yarn.  To start twining the yarn around the needles.  It felt foreign to my hands.  And to the way my mind works.  Hooks, it cried!  I want hooks!  Don't confuse me with needles!

But this wasn't the end.  It was only the raw beginning of what has become an adventure.

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