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If you are a knitter, I can guarantee someone else has asked you why you knit. The question may have been a polite conversation generator from someone who saw you knitting in public, or it could have been from an acquaintance who just doesn't get why someone would want to knit.
Some people have a hard time understanding why a person would take the time to buy yarn and then spend twenty or more hours to knit a sweater rather than finding a sweater for less than the cost of the yarn on sale at a local store.
Today, we are fortunate enough to get to choose to knit. We don't have to knit because it is a necessity to create warm woolens or the only way to create decorative lace for special outfits or decor items. We do it because we enjoy it. Talk to any knitter, and you will hear many reasons why they enjoy knitting.
A frequent answer is that the repetitive motion with the gently clicking needles is relaxing. When I was in college, I didn't understand the people who got up at 6 am to go to a yoga class. They told me they did it to relax. I found my relaxation in knitting. It was quiet and repetitive, much like a meditation practice. Now that the years have past, I have noticed many of my old college yogi friends have started knitting, and I began to regularly make time for yoga as well.
Of course, the repetitive, meditative nature of stitches and pattern knitting isnít the only draw. There are all of the beautiful yarns. Full of various textures and colors, working with the yarn itself is a sensory delight in this relaxing endeavor. A cotton yarn reminds me of the feeling of nice sheets on a freshly made bed as the cotton yarn slides through my fingers. Soft wool feels warm and cuddly. Silky yarns feel smooth and rich as my fingers work the yarn into a beautiful fabric piece. Looking at attractive colors and rich texture while I am working on my projects adds to my enjoyment as well.
The final product is also a reason to knit. The process of knitting alone makes knitting worthwhile as a hobby, but having a pair of socks or a new scarf, after knitting for a time means I will be able to remember all of the relaxing time I put into my knitting. Items that I knit for gifts take on an entirely different meaning to me as I did put my time and energy into them. Someone I have given a hand knit item to has never asked me why I knit. I hope it is because the reasons why are evident in the hand knit gift given to the receiver.
Content copyright © 2013 by Lisa Linnell-Olsen. All rights reserved.
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