I’ve been pondering what actually makes a knitter.
I have a friend Jangle (because that’s what autocorrect calls her) who knits herself tunic type tops to wear around the house. They have no fixed pattern, are pretty loose fitting and are just made up as she goes along – mostly in chunky yarn with big needles. She is a person who knits. When I was at her flat recently, knitting a striped jumper (stocking stitch, two rows of each colour alternating) she told me that she couldn’t do that with two yarns. Now, I’m not one to argue, but I’m pretty sure that she could with a bit of persuasion.
Now I’d class myself as a knitter, because I long for that feel of the needles in my hands. I can look at a garment and mentally work out how it was, or could have been put together. I love seeing what people are wearing as I want to know the stitch pattern. I have ideas about projects I want to design and which yarn would be best for each individual job. I thrill in looking at patterns and deciding that I don’t want to knit it quite the way it is in the pattern,but with my adaptations. I want to know more about the role knitting and wool has played in our cultural heritage and our farming industry. I love the feel and drape of the fabric as something is developing in my lap… I don’t know if any of this is true for Jangle.
So what exactly does make a knitter – and is it the same as somebody who just knits?