Needling Along

Friday, February 21, 2020

I drove across town in heavy traffic yesterday evening to attend a beginning knitting class. Found myself sitting with two other learners. They were confidently knitting with skills way ahead of my own pitiful status. Our instructor turned out to be a young woman who’s fun and can knit up a storm. Her needles click rapidly and her fingers guide yarn that flies.

She sat beside me, “Show me how you knit.” I poked my needle into the yarn and started to make a wrap. She shook her head, “That’s wrong,” and reached for my materials. “Here, I’ll show you how.” I watched and wondered if she might be showing me a wrong way.

“Are you sure?” I had to be resistant, for I’d spent hours watching YouTube for a handle on how to wrap a knit stitch.

“Positive!” She continued knitting to show me, and proved her point by turning the knitted stitches to both sides, revealing accurate knits. That revealed my occasional dyslexia, for I’d reversed what YouTube demonstrated.

My heart sank, “I’ve been working on a neck-warmer project, have completed fourteen rows of knit and purl stitches. I’ve been making those stitches wrong!”

She laughed, “Don’t worry, we all make mistakes. Bring the project in, we’ll fix everything.” I sighed in relief, and she said, “Sometimes you’ll notice an incorrectible mistake, or a series of them, and will want to avoid unraveling your work. Just keep on. Decide that yours are ‘creative stitches’, and call the work an original pattern.'”

I’m going to enjoy this class. Next week, we’ll tackle problems with my neck-warmer.

At that same time in the shop, a separate group consisted of fifteen or twenty experienced knitters. They sat in a circle chatting quietly, needles flying. Those knitters were comfortable, busy, engaged, and productive. They probably were a knitting club. Someday, maybe I’ll be skilled and confident enough to join the group.

I left the class with firm goals: learn the basics, carve out time to practice regularly, and get up-to-speed enough to needle with those more advanced.

Dear Friends: Already I’m creating: new stitches! In an original, unique pattern! Diana

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