Green Thumbs!

First off, a little apology: Andy was home all day today, and we finally got to work on finishing up the shelves for the wool room. Hopefully I can show you the finished set tomorrow (!!!) Additionally, I was having trouble accessing the internet, and so I didn’t get the girls to pick a winner for the book giveaway – so that is on the list for first thing tomorrow, I promise.

Before I go to bed tonight, I have something to show you:

I finished my new gloves, and I believe I’ve fallen in love with glove-knitting.
I was afraid that I would get tired of knitting the fingers before I got to the tenth one, but really they seemed to go quickly. It could be that I loved the yarn so much, it might be that it’s just such a new thing to me… I’ll have to knit some more pairs to find out!

I’ve been thinking about what knitting means to me, or more specifically, how I view the finished projects. Though I enjoy the process of knitting for itself, I’m also driven to create useful things, and I have a definite prefernce for handmade over store-bought. So far, most of my finished pieces have been for myself, because it’s easiest to adjust to my own sizing as I learn new shaping and techniques, and also because I look at knitting as a way to get the things I want to wear without having to shop or pay loads of money. (Last winter when I needed some new clothes, Andy and I worked out a shopping budget; I was warned that “yarn to knit a new sweater” most certainly did not count… How did he know??!?)

I’ve found that I am all the more attached to these pieces for the memories they carry, sometimes of the time and place I knit them, sometimes of where and when I bought the yarn, how I found the pattern, or where I wore them first; usually it is a combination of all three. The memories can be surprisingly vivid, and return nearly every time I see or wear something I’ve made. I will never forget wearing my Marakech knee socks, fresh off the needles, for my last evening out with friends before I left Alaska. I knit the first lace shawl (Adamas) during the first long winter when Andy was out on the boat, sitting on the futon downstairs until the wee hours of the morning. I was inspired to knit the Rusted Root sweater when I saw it in progress on a swap pal’s blog, and wore it several times on the drive from Alaska to the Lower 48.
A knit item is, understandably, particularly nostalgic when I’ve spun or dyed the yarn myself.

These gloves have been a favorite project from the moment I opened the box to see and feel the luscious fiber for the first time, before I had any idea what the yarn would become. Spinning it was pure joy, smooth and easy. Then came the long search for the “perfect” project to knit up. There was much petting of the yarn along the way, and now I’ve found a new technique which I love and a pattern that works flawlessly for me. I will not be able to do anything but smile every time I wear these gloves.

A project that I am still working away at, however half-heartedly:

I don’t know why these socks are so difficult for me to want to work on. I like the pattern (Conwy) and though the yarn can be splitty, it feels delightfully smooth and cool in my fingers. I’m plugging away at them anyway, perhaps I’ll like this project best when it’s done…
All for now.


11 thoughts on “Green Thumbs!

  1. The gloves are beautiful. I was thinking about your mittens from the last post and decided to try colorwork with both yarns over my left index finger. I’d tried it before with little success but now it’s working out great- evenest tension ever and much quicker to boot!Thanks for reminding me of that technique!

  2. The socks look awesome. I love that pattern. What isn’t to love about your mittens and that awesome handspun. Gosh, I think I’d be sleeping with it. 🙂 Did you ever say how you spun that up? What the ply is, what the weight, how it was plied?

  3. Those were some beautiful thoughts and I enjoyed reading about them. It makes the wearing of such projects that much more special.However, I think that you should tell Andy that the JOY you get out of knitting makes yarn a DEFINITE addition to the clothes budget. :-)Love the gloves – and with your own spun yarn. So cool!What kind of wheel do you have? Thinking of getting one!!!

  4. Gorgeous gloves 🙂 I hope that I’ll be good enough at spinning soon so that I can also spin my own yarn for gloves!!!Hey now that I think of it… I have some of your gorgeous handspun that I could use 🙂 I even ordered the book that you used from Am@zon :)Cheers Eva

  5. Beautiful thoughts …well said. I’m so excited to try spinning some lovely merino blend roving that I owne and try knitting gloves. Very inspiring!Have a great weekend…though I really think yarn for sweaters should be in the budget!

  6. Beautiful gloves. I feel the same way about my handknits. I get very nostalgic when I wear my very first big lace shawl project. Knitting that helped pull me out of a tough time in life. This makes me wonder if my reluctance in finishing the Forest Path Stole is due to the fact that it’s what I mostly worked on when my dear Cookie was sick. Food for thought.

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