Saturday, 9 April 2016

Stitched together

The last few weeks has got me thinking. Thinking about the knitting/crochet/general fibre craft community. As I mentioned last post I've been watching and listening to a ton of podcasts related to mostly knitting, and I've been struck by how overwhelmingly supportive and positive this community is. Podcasters recommending each other, yarn dyers telling you to check out another dyers wares, without a hint of competitiveness between them. Designers showing off someone else's design they're knitting, and encouraging and complimenting each other.

I see the same generosity and support in my own day to day knitting. I just got back from meeting up with a wonderful woman who I consider my knitting mentor and more importantly my friend. On the face of it, it may be slightly unlikely that we'd be friends. I am a 37 year old library assistant, mum of two boys and rather a homebody. She is a retiree, a grandmother and one of our patrons at the library.

 Three years ago, during Knit In Public week, the library I work at decided to celebrate and asked for knitters to come and join me for a one off, 3 day knit in public event. We had such a fabulous and successful week that we decided to create a once a week knitting group that would meet in the library. Suffice to say we are still going strong, and the group has grown and strengthened over the years.

Every Thursday those that can make it meet in the library, I take cuppa orders and usually one of them brings some home made goodies. They are all so different in their abilities and interests but all share the love of the craft.
There's sharing of tips, patterns, and new wool discoveries.
Passer-by's stop and talk, and sometime join in.
There's encouragement and support, not only in knitting but our lives as well.
It has become an important day in our calendars.

Thanks to those ladies, I knitted my first shawl, the Boneyard Shawl by Stephen West, I've learnt to knit socks, and gained confidence in my abilities.

My friend has been there from the start and has been a huge encourager and mentor.

The beginnings of my Spring Festival Shawl

A few days ago, I hit a snag in my new shawl project, the Spring Festival Shawl, and sent an S.O.S to her via Ravelry. She wrote back with a few suggestions and agreed to meet for coffee if I needed....
and I did need it!
We sat and drank hot drinks, chatted and knitted and she managed to trouble shoot my knitting and encouraged me to trust myself. I left with a bit more knitted, and a lot more confidence.

 We may be so very different but the shared passion and love of our craft has made for a surprising friendship. And I'm so very grateful.

Jo xx

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