Cast 75 sts onto size 2 needle; row 1: p1, *k2, p1: repeat from * to end of row; row 2: p1, *p2, k1: repeat from * to end of row; repeat rows 1 and 2 until work measures 10”, bind off, weave in ends.
Are these words, letters, numbers and symbols cryptic to you? Well, if you take up knitting, you’ll be able to decode this set of instructions and turn them into a tangible thing, in this case a pretty dishcloth—a simple and gratifyingly quick project for a new knitter.
Interested in knitting? My quick search in DBRL’s catalog for books on knitting, produced a list of hundreds of titles, so there are rows and rows of choices—from beginning level how-to guides to instructions for challenging, complicated, patterns for advanced knitters. There is also a tidy little collection of titles with writings on the psychological aspects of knitting and “purls” of wisdom that can be gained from engaging in this ancient craft.
Some folks nowadays have the notion that knitting is an activity for grannies, when actually, hundreds of years ago, men were the ones who did most of the knitting. Age and gender aside, knitting and making garments or other functional items is a deeply satisfying activity for potentially anyone, beginning at age 5 or 6. I’ve been knitting since I was 8 years old, when one of my surrogate moms taught me to knit a pair of slippers (complete with pom-poms!). It was a big thrill to make something for myself and I’ve been knitting on and off since then. Reasons to knit are as many and as varied as the individual knitting. My favorite reasons—it’s a quiet, meditative and relaxing activity, it provides a very pleasant tactile/visual experience utilizing yarns with different fibers, colors and textures, knitting projects are portable and I can pass time constructively while in waiting rooms of any kind (i.e. while the car is being repaired), I get to call the artistic shots on each project and making one of a kind items with which to gift friends and family brings me lots of joy.
If you are a seasoned knitter, you’ve probably knitted in the public realm, with nary a care for any eyebrow-raising it might induce among those yet to discover the glee of this creative hand work. Airplanes, trains, doctor’s offices, board meetings, baseball stadiums, coffee shops or benches out in a park, are common places we knitters click away on needles with our projects. On Saturday June 8th, if you are out and about town, keep your eyes peeled for unprecedented numbers of knitters, randomly placed in various public places, because this day has been designated World Wide Knit in Public Day! In fact, at the Columbia Public Library we are supporting the WWKIPD celebration with two events: Knitters and curious non-knitters, please join us on the Reading Balcony between 10 a.m. and 1 p.m., where members of the Mid-Missouri Knitting Guild will host a show and tell and provide feedback or instructions. Immediately following this knitting sit-in there will be a clinic from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. in the Studio. There, the same guild members will be ready and able to help you with any questions or concerns related to knitting. So grab your latest knitting project and come along to celebrate WWKIPD with us here at the Columbia Public Library on this specially designated day.