Thursday, May 19, 2011

Needle Craft Envy

Confession time.  

For years I have been envious of those who have knitting & crochet skills. Maybe not just "envious," but truly jealous.  It seems like it should be such a relaxing & worthwhile hobby.  I went to college with several women who had mad crocheting skills.  They could sit down, watch whatever the "show of the day" was with a group of people, gab along with everyone else, & crank out a gorgeous, intricate scarf during the process. Amazing.  I have a friend from high school that can knit her own socks.  I repeat...she. makes. her. own. socks. I would love to have that kind of "survival" skill.

I can remember my mom attempting to teach me to crochet on a few occasions when I was growing up.  She would teach me the chain stitch, how to build off of it, & then would let me try to make a scarf or small blanket.  My endeavors normally ended up with her sitting back & shaking her head as my stitches got tighter & tighter, until the point I could no longer get my needle through the piece. Apparently I had tension issues...

I have tried learning to knit on 2 occasions--once in high school & one summer during college. I would finally get the length of a scarf made by knitting & purling, it would be lopsided in parts due to dropped stitches, and then it would end up unraveling because I couldn't figure out how to bind it off.  (Plus--it's really fun to unravel knitting...counterproductive?  Yes...but still fun.) Eventually I would give up, shove the yarn & needles in a bag, & say "I'll try that again one day."
Over the past few years, my Needle Craft Envy has grown. There are so many fun/hilarious knit & crochet projects that you can do...

Like these Crochet beard hats
Hilarity. Work by taraduff on

or this ADORABLE baby apple hat
Work by myknittingworld on

or this AWESOME owl hat that I want in my size.
Work by beckysbabycrochet on

Most evenings, the Hubs & I like to sit back & watch TV before bed.  I have this problem that I can't JUST watch TV--I have to play on my laptop, play stupid games on my iPhone, fold laundry, read, etc...meaning that I could possibly have some form of adult ADD.  I frequently wish my "multitasking" during this time was doing something more productive. So I have made it my mission to actually learn how to knit, & eventually learn how to crochet.  Will I be able to make amazingly fun things like above?--probably not.  Will I try my best?--yes. 

Last weekend I ventured to Jo-Ann's & bought a skein of yarn and some knitting needles.  I didn't want to buy any fancy "organically raised, house-pet, insert-Latin-sound-name-type-of-wool here" for my first practice run in 7 I settled for a fairly inexpensive acrylic skein in my favorite color of green from LionBrand yarn.  I'm a little ashamed to admit that this yarn was part of the "Vanna's Choice" in Wheel of Fortune's Vanna White.  Seriously, she endorses yarn. Perhaps she is a master knitter?  Or maybe she just likes to gesture enthusiastically towards skeins of yarn in her free time? Either way, the price was right & I liked the color.
I'll take a "Y" for Yarn, please?

Personally, I'm not a huge fan of the yarn.  I'd forgotten how icky acrylic yarn can feel.  Once I master some skillz, I will probably move away from acrylic.  In addition to the icky feel, the strands separate quite a bit & that can be a little frustrating since I'm trying to learn to stitch without looking. I also casted on WAY too many starter stitches, so this is going to be one BIG, chunky scarf.  But that's ok, I'm more worried about practicing & building up my ability to knit while watching tv. :-P

This is my progress so far...

It's going to be one HUGE scarf...
I'm still Reallllly slow at this...but I have faith that I will get there.  I plan to do an additional post about what web resources I am finding helpful during this learning process, in case anyone else is interested.  Who knows, there might be one extremely large, chunky, potentially lopsided green scarf up for grabs to some lucky reader (or family member) sometime in the next couple months?... if I ever figure out how to bind-off while knitting...hmm.

I fully welcome & seek out all tips & suggestions from seasoned knitters (& crocheters, I'll get there eventually)!!  

"Finish me!"


  1. I used to crochet in college and I really enjoyed it. Like you, I can't just sit in front of the TV, I feel like I need to be doing something. I would love to learn to knit! Did you teach yourself or go to a class?

  2. I have been teaching myself from online tutorials & videos. I'm hoping to write a post listing the resources I have found to be helpful later this week...I really want to take a class though! Especially if I want to try something trickier like socks. There is a fun little yarn shop that opened in downtown Plainfield last year called Nomad Yarns that offers classes ( The owner, who is in our age range,teaches classes. I want to take one, but the beginning classes never seem to sync up with my schedule...